Ask the Experts: Open-Water Q+A with James Lock

Get an advantage on your competitors by getting all the open-water advice you need

21 to 26 of 26 messages
15/08/2012 at 14:02

Yes, you could always make up the time on the bike and run but swimming open water can always be a challenge in itself so it's always best to be as prepared as possible. You don't have to be a strong swimmer but you should try to train regular for the race, be comfortable and confident about swimming the distance and also have some open water experience before starting. Sometime failing to prepare can be preparing to fail! 

15/08/2012 at 14:05

That's all we have time for!

Many thanks to James for such excellent advice and thanks to everyone who joined in the webchat. 

We'll have more webchats over the next few months, so do keep checking back at 

15/08/2012 at 16:49
Thanks very much James for the advice
16/08/2012 at 12:19

Hi KittenKat,

Yes you are right, I am a keen swimmer and I am training for my first triathlon, so wanted to make the most of having an expert to answer my training questions and settle my nerves about cutting up my wetsuit

16/08/2012 at 15:03

KK - I don't think strong swimmers are disadvantaged in olympic or sprint races. In an average olympic race a strong swimmer could make up 3 or 4 minutes on the swim over the lead group. I don't think a strong biker or a strong runner would make up any more than that on the bike or the run. Do you think they could? In your case you must have been well above average in 2 of the 3 legs so it makes sense that you did well.

In iron distance races i would definitely agree that the swim should be longer but that would probably raise problems for nutrition. If it was much longer I think you would need some kind of drink and food stop on the way.

17/08/2012 at 10:05

Wouldn't we all! For me i only really started swimming 3 years ago after focusing only on running. I started off always thinking that i couldn't match the 'natural' swimmers but in the last year i've started to think i was just using that as an excuse not to work hard at swimming! I started swimming 4 or 5 times a week and i'm starting to get decent times now, though it is still possibly my weakest. I think it is worth the extra effort because i've gained about 3 minutes in a sprint over the last year. No chance i could have gained that in the run or bike. The nutrition in the 10k was a sight alright. One thing that struck a chord with me during the olympics was that the 1,500m swimmers swim up to 120km a week! That's not just natural talent, its incredibly hard work!

I am quite geeky when it comes to looking at results and its surprising well distributed at the top end anyway. Generally the top 10 overall are pretty close to the top 10 of each discipline. In any race i've done this year I don't recall the winner having a relatively weak swim. There are obviously exceptions. One guy that races regularly is a monster on the bike and makes up about 5 minutes!! He can also swim and run pretty well though.

We'd love you to add a comment! Please login or take half a minute to register as a free member
21 to 26 of 26 messages
Previously bookmarked threads are now visible in "Followed Threads". You can also manage notifications on these threads from the "Forum Settings" section of your profile settings page to prevent being sent an email when a reply is made.
Forum Jump  

RW competitions

RW Forums