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Wetsuit problems

OK, I'm not asking if my wetsuit fits right because you cant tell without seeing it.

But, I went to Heron Lake a couple of weeks ago and struggled to swim 1000m. I was constantly out of breath and kept having to stop to get a breather. I thought that it was probably down to being my first open water swim and I didn't relax.

Today, I did my first open water Tri and had exactly the same problem. This time though, I felt very relaxed, I started off at a gentle pace and felt good before I started. I then managed about 150m frontcrawl, then had to breastroke the rest due to being out of breath. Also, my arms felt very tired after the 150m.

Now I should point out that I am a pretty competent swimmer and can swim 5k in a pool without any issues, so the actual swimming/technique thing is not the problem.

Has anyone else had a problem like this? I'm thinking that the wetsuit is too tight and is restricting my breathing. I am going to change the wetsuit for the next size up, as I figure it cant be any worse than whats happening now.

My swim time was about 6 minutes slower than it should have been, so gutted about that. Having said that, I beat my previous best bike split (20k) by about 4 mins, so well pleased with that.


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    ipay1980ipay1980 Posts: 84
    could it be the water temp. if it was cold, could take you longer to get going. also was there a current, any current in a river or waves can dislodge your preferred rythm really easily. key is to stay relaxed and make sure that you are comfortable being able to bi lateral breath.

    today, competed in an olympic, swim in a river, loads of people had issues getting going because of cold temp.

    have you done much open water swimming? technique is different to that of pool, in respect of arm stroke and ability to glide through the water. alot of good pool swimmers are not as strong in the open water, so practice is key
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    No current, no waves, and wasn't even cold. Yeah, new to open water, but I've swum in the sea before (without wetsuit) and never had problems.
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    TommiTriTommiTri Posts: 879
    I'll post my thoughts for what theyre worth.

    I haven't done a huge amount of OW.

    Anyway, got a new wetsuit for xmas, a 2XU C1, unfortunately I then lost a stone in weight, so I am way out of the weight range for the size.

    In my 1st OW session in it I seemed to fatigue very quickly, shoulders were hurting etc. I concluded that I was taking on too much water, and also that I didn't have the suit on properly. It obviously didn't help that it was a little too big. Next session I too 15 mins getting the suit on properly making sure I had it pulled up into the crotch, it meant I had a little to much space in the back and a more open neck (owing to the suit being too big) but I swam much better.

    A bit of water came in, but not too much. The shoulders felt more flexible.

    So my points are, get someone with loads and I mean loads of experience to have a look at you in the suit, preferably wet. Also make sure you have it fully on properly before you decide its too big i.e have it pulled up into the crotch. Also its likely it will take a few sessions to get you used to the slight constriction in the shoulders, even the best suits will have a little, your arms just arent used to it, so give it a few sessions.
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    MGMG Posts: 470
    Tommis got it, I think. Obviously without seeing you in the suit its hard to comment.

    When you put the suit on put your feet in plastic bags first (sounds mental but stay with me....) with your feet in the bags they will slide into the suit MUCH easier, (once feet are in, take bags off!!) then pull the suit up over your thighs, really pull up so its proper tight into the crotch...

    Do the same plakky bag trick for your hands, and pull the suit so there is PLENTY of slack on your shoulder, dont worry where the wrist part of the suit is, mine sits quite high.....then get the rest of the suit over your torso, and adjust, making sure you have a crease in the suit where your shoulders are........

    Once the zip goes up (or down) the suit should feel tight like compression clobber....

    The main thing is (as tommi states) make sure the suit is RIGHT up into crotch and also make sure you have a bit of play in the shoulders
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    I have pulled it up as far as I can get it, and I have almost no play in the shoulders. the zip actually slides open, almost all the way unless I pull the cord up and over the velcro. I squeeze my shoulder blades together to get the suit done up as well. I have checked the sizing guide, and I am on the top weight limit for the size have.
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    handangeohandangeo Posts: 32
    Did anyone ever think cutting the sleeves on a wet suit to give more flexibility [ i dont want to go and buy a short sleeve suit!] or can you do this kind of thing?
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    Just to clear this up. I have been to Datchet this morning and tried a different wetsuit. I have tried the 2XU E:1 and have comfortably swum 800 metres in this. I then tried my hire suit (2XU T:0), which after 250 metres, again had me breathing out of my a**e. Now I accept that the E:1 is of much better quality, etc, etc. I would also add that the E:1 was also a size up from what I hired. I am now sending back the hired suit and getting a bigger wetsuit.

    Moral of the story; get someone who knows to check the fitting.

    I think the bloke at the lake was being polite when he said that my hire wetsuit was rather snugg!!!!!
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    JulesJules Posts: 987
    TommiTri wrote:

    A bit of water came in, but not too much.

    You want some water in it though, right?
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    gdh250467gdh250467 Posts: 237
    On the water issue, yes you need water in your wetsuit. This is what keep you warm, as it's warmed up by your body heat and provides and additional insulating layer, on top of the neoprene. This is why the wetcuit needs to fit like a second skin, otherwise you'll suffer from flushing, resulting in the warm water being replaced by the cold water that you're swimming in,therefore defeating the object of the wetsuit.

    The water also acts a bit like a lubricant, allowing easier movements.

    When using a wetsuit it worth fully immerisng yourself in water and once under just stretching out the collar to allow water in, it's unpleasnt initially, but that's part of the fun. If you can try to squeeze the water down over your torso, and also into the arms to ensure that all you limbs are wet. Ideally, if you cna then get out of the water it''s woth going for a little jog as this allows the water to be fully distributed throughout your suit, and also warms the water up quickly. When you get back in the water you'll hardly feel the temperature.

    If you're still cold, have a piss, that's one of the reasons for being fully hydrated before you enter the water, no point going in with an empty bladder, and f you see anyone around you with a smile on their face, you can guess what they're doing, or have just done.

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