Cold in the Swimming Pool? Warm Up!
Nobody likes to be cold in the swimming pool!
Unless you’re a very unusual athlete, blue nail beds, tight muscles, and chattering teeth are not your idea of fun. Getting cold in the pool can turn a great swim workout into a miserable experience that can result in falling short of your fitness goals and an unshakable all-day chill.
Pool time is precious and often hard to fit into your schedule – so what can you do to keep warm and keep your swimming on track?
How To Keep Warm in Cold Water:
- Dress Warm: Dress appropriately before you leave for the pool. Many swimmers make the mistake of dressing down before workouts to minimize the temperature transition from pool deck to pool water. Don’t do this! When you arrive at the pool pre-chilled, your condition is less likely to change.
- Get Ready: Make sure your mesh gear bag and precious swim gear are close at hand to the end of your lane. Jumping in and out of the pool usually chills swimmers, so make sure your equipment is conveniently located. Adjust your swim goggles, MP3 player, and swimwear before entering the pool.
- Dive In Quickly: Build on the momentum that carried you to the pool. Don’t waste time eyeballing the water – dive in immediately. Spending time on deck will not keep sustain warmth during your workout.
- You’re In – Get Swimming: This is the most important step for me. Make sure your workout includes a warm up with full body swimming. Sure, you may be excited to use your new hand paddles or swimmer snorkel, but start with a substantial and consistent swimming effort at the top of your workout before you start working on drills and stroke technique. Spirited full body swimming will help maintain your body temperature. Swim drills and stroke work are important to improving your swimming, but beginning with a lesser effort could cause your body to cool down and get cold.
- Keep It Moving: It’s wonderful that you’ve discovered a new best friend in your lane – but keep it moving. Chatting between sets or laps eats more time than you realize. Keep rest intervals under control and move on with your swim.
- Get Out / Get Warm: Congratulations – your pool time is up and hopefully you hit your yardage. Get out and get warm. Hit the hot tub, take a hot shower, dry your hair and body, and dress warmly.
Cold swimmers – I hope this helps. Please let me know what you think and share your tips as well!
See you at the pool,
Robin Spencer Kiefer
P.S. Did you see last week’s advice on How To Choose Swim Fins?