I did my first OW swim last night. Only my fourth OW swim ever. Took to it very easily last autumn, but was a little un-nerved yesterday. Spent all winter improving technique/speed/swim fitness in the pool, but the cold water, not being able to see where you are going because the sun was in my eyes, different body position and most of all, not being able to gauge speed/technique due to the lack of any point of reference, made it tricky. Managed 1500m (ish) and i`m sure next week will be better and hopfully warmer. Practise, practise, practise.
My first tri had a 1500m OW swim. I had only done 10 swim sessions before and could bearly do 200m FC in the pool. But, on race day with a wetsuit on, i did the whole distance FC without stopping. Wetsuit give extra boyancy, reduces drag, lifts legs to improve body position meaning you can use your legs less. One small thing since that made a real difference, is to relax your hands (don`t clinch fingers together to make a paddle). Holds the same amount of water and takes the tension out of arms etc.
Having run Brighton Marathon on Sunday and then coming down with Gastroenteritis 6 hours later, I have been in pieces ever since. Only just feeling human again. In need of a couple of easy weeks and with only 6 weeks to go, I have today withdrawn. I could not see how I would be in any way ready.