The run in a long swimrun event like Breca or Otillo may look scary from a swimmer’s point of view, but remember the swim may look scary from a runners point of view.
If swimming has been your dominant sport all your life but the total run distance of a swimrun scares you, take a look at how the event course has been put together. Chances are the longest run section won’t be as bad as you think.
However splitting these distances up with swims give your legs a really good break. Adding to this is the fact that most swimrun races will have technical parts in the run. Climbing over rocks, running through bush – these things add to the fact that it is not just a straight out run. Although this sounds like it makes it harder sometimes it actually gives your heart and lungs a chance to settle down.
Yes, a lot of swimrun events will have lots of hills – walk them! Unless you are a really good runner then running up the hills is going to shoot your heartrate up so high you will have to stop anyway. This defeats the purpose of running up in the first place. Lots of people will be walking the hills in a swimrun event – including some of the very top teams.
Start your running training really easy doing less than you think you should and build up gradually. The best way to train for a swimrun event is to get out and simulate the event. Get your teammate and gear organised and start doing swimrun sessions consisting of small runs into small swims, gradually building up.
Carl is head coach at Swim360 Coach, a former Olympian and national champion freestyler. Carl now uses his skills and passion for coaching and competing in the open water.