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The art and challenge of wild swimming

Updated: Jul 3, 2023

As you dive into the cool, refreshing waters of the upper Thames, you feel the rush of adrenaline and excitement coursing through your veins. The Lock to Lock wild swim series is not just a competition, but a celebration of the art of swimming and the beauty of the natural world.

As you begin to stroke your way downstream, you become aware of the unique relationship between yourself and the water. You are not simply swimming through it, but rather, you are moving with it, in harmony and syncopation.

The currents and eddies of the river guide you effortlessly along, and you feel a sense of calm and peace wash over you. This is the flow state, a state of mind in which you are completely immersed in the task at hand, free from distractions and worries.

As you glide through the water, you are joined by other wild swimmers, each with their own unique relationship with the river. Some are racing for the finish line, while others are simply enjoying the freedom and beauty of the natural landscape.

But all share a common bond, a deep appreciation and respect for the water and the life it sustains. For them, swimming is not just a physical exercise, but a spiritual practice that connects them to something greater than themselves.

And as you emerge from the water, refreshed and invigorated, you know that you have experienced something truly special. You have joined a community of wild swimmers who understand the power and beauty of the natural world, and who strive to protect and preserve it for future generations.

Wild swimming is a popular outdoor activity that involves swimming in open bodies of water, such as rivers, lakes, and oceans. The Lock to Lock 10K wild swim is a challenging and rewarding event that requires proper training and preparation. In this article, we will provide a concise and informative guide on how to train for this demanding swim.

Start developing a strong foundation

Before embarking on any training program, it is essential to have a strong foundation of swimming skills. If you are new to swimming, start by taking swimming lessons or working with a coach to improve your technique and endurance. You should be able to swim at least 2-4 kilometres comfortably before starting your Lock to Lock 10K training.

Build endurance gradually

The Lock to Lock 10K is a long-distance swim, and building endurance is crucial for success. Start by gradually increasing you’re swimming distance each week, starting with 2-3 kilometres and adding 10% to your total distance each week. You can also incorporate interval training, where you swim at a higher intensity for short periods, followed by rest periods to build cardiovascular endurance.

Train in open water

Swimming in a pool is great for building endurance and technique, but it's important to train in open water to prepare for the Lock to Lock 10K. Open water swimming requires different skills and techniques than pool swimming, such as navigating currents and sighting landmarks. Incorporate open water swims into you’re training program, starting with shorter distances and gradually building up to 10K.

Practice pacing

Pacing is crucial for long-distance swimming, and practicing it during training can help you achieve your goal. Start by swimming at a comfortable pace and gradually increasing your speed as you build endurance. Use a watch or a GPS device to track your pace and make adjustments if needed.

Fuel your body

Proper nutrition is essential for optimal performance during training and the Lock to Lock 10K.

Safety first

Always prioritise safety during you’re training and the Lock to Lock 10K. Swim with a partner or in a group, wear a brightly coloured swim cap and a wetsuit if needed, and be aware of your surroundings and any potential hazards.

In conclusion, the Lock to Lock 10K wild swim is a challenging but achievable goal with proper training and preparation. By building endurance gradually, training in open water, practicing pacing, fuelling your body, and prioritising safety, you can successfully complete in this rewarding event.


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