Training tips

Keri-Anne Payne

Team GB swimmer Keri-Anne Payne, specialises in marathon open water swimming and came fourth in the 10k swim at the 2012 Olympics. She shares her top tips with us. 

Find a training buddy

Swimming is so much more enjoyable with training buddies. When I go training there are 22 of us.  I love being there with them; it makes me want to train harder!

Food

Eating properly before and after training will help you to recover quicker and get your body ready to train and race.  I would always eat two slices of toast before my morning session and a banana after the session

Trial out your kit

If you are using a wetsuit make sure you have a 'trial' run in it, even if it’s at your local pool. The wetsuit can restrict your shoulder movement and will feel really strange but if you go into your race knowing what it will feel like, you're a step ahead!

Where you swim

If you are a beginner and this is your first swim, stick to the back or the sides of the racing pack.  If you are an experienced swimmer, then get stuck in at the front and give it your best shot!

Cold water

On race day if the water is cold, I would urge you to fully submerge yourself before the race so that your body can adapt to the new temperature.  If you can get in the water (not for very long) as close to your race as possible, when you get back in, it will feel warm!

Remember the golden rules of exercise

Start gently, build up gradually and do it regularly. Make sure you set achievable goals, which help you to monitor your fitness and boost your confidence when you achieve them. Always wear appropriate gear, and if you have any medical condition or health concerns that may affect you on the day, speak to your doctor about it prior to the event.