Long distance swimming takes both physical and mental stamina. Regardless of how good of shape you’re in, more often than not your mind calls the shots on how long you’ll be able to stay in the water during a practice or race.
Skipped a meal? Didn’t get much sleep last night? Worried about finances? Too much to do in too little time?
All of these things and more can affect swimming performance, along with common detractors such as boredom, discomfort, or fear. Learning how to overcome these barriers is critical to success. Once the barriers are overcome, it’s simply a matter of pushing yourself to the limits and swimming until you physically can’t swim anymore.
So how do you overcome these barriers? The first step is preparation. Plan your day around your swim session by making sure you’ve had enough to eat (but not too much) and are well rested.
Force yourself to not worry about your bills or whatever else might be stressing you out. Treat the pool as your sanctuary; a place where you leave all your worries and cares at the door.
Music is a proven method to energize and inspire athletes.
And with Underwater Audio’s products, swimmers have access to their electronics just like non-water athletes do.
So if you’re feeling bored or distracted, skip to your favorite song and put it on repeat. The time always goes by faster when you’ve got a good jam to rock out to.
Another thing you can do is make friends with other long distance swimmers.
Encourage and push each other to swim harder and longer.
Cheer them on and share in their moments of success. A supportive environment will foster better swimming for everyone involved.
Most importantly, think positive thoughts and don’t let negativity seep into your mind. Nothing kills a swimming session more than telling yourself “I’m too slow,” or “I’m no good at this,” or perhaps “everyone else in the pool has better form than me.”
Thoughts like this are toxic and will do nothing to improve your swimming.
Like other sports, swimming is 90% mental and 10% physical. Make the decision today to not let boredom, distraction, stress, or negativity get in the way of your swimming.
So grab your waterproof iPod, listen to your favorite tunes, and swim until your arms want to fall off. You’re worth it!
Johnny found a love for swimming a little later in life. He really didn't know how to swim too well when he first started...