5 Reasons Not to Wear a Wetsuit

It’s only natural that people should ask why we swim without wetsuits. The water in the San Francisco Bay varies is normally in the 50F range. That is cold compared to an 80F swimming pool or a 95F bath.

  • 212F Water Boils
  • 95F Hot Bath/Shower
  • 80F Swimming Pool
  • 63F San Francisco Bay Water Temperature (Summer)
  • 47F San Francisco Bay Water Temperature (Winter)
  • 32F Water Freezes

When folks ask me why I swim in cold water without a wetsuit I answer like this.

 

5 Reasons Not to Wear a Wetsuit

  1. Because we can’t… Swim competitions and Official channel crossings forbid wetsuits because they add buoyancy and give an unfair advantage compared to swimmers who swam prior to the existance of wetsuit technology.
  2. Because we don’t want to… Wetsuits are constricting and uncomfortable to wear.
  3. Wetsuits are a drag to put on a take off.
  4. Sauna feels better the colder we get.
  5. When you gotta go, you gotta go, but not in a wetsuit.
  
  
A shout-out to my high school friend Michelle Macy who posted a similar post on her blog.
  
  

5 Reasons To Train in the San Francisco Bay

It’s only natural that people should ask why we love to swim in the San Francisco Bay. Swimming in the ocean sounds perilous and dirty to the unintiated. My answer to this common question is below.

5 Reasons To Train in the San Francisco Bay

  1. The Bay is clean and has less chemicals than the pool.
  2. Swimming allows me the feel the strength of my body.
  3. Time with the people at the Dolphin Club makes me a better person.
  4. Being among the ocean creatures puts me in touch with nature.
  5. The colder the water the better the sauna feels at the end.

Swimming in the Ocean at Night

Last night I swam in black glass. We jumped into the San Francisco Bay ocean water after dark. It was so darn peaceful as the light of the Ghirardelli Chocholate Factory shone across the black glassy water. These are the nights that can make any workday worth living. It was a wonderful cold water training swim. My buddy Dave joined us for the apres-swim sauna then we all went back to a French place and talked about adventures past and adventures future. These are the days worth remembering.

Adam has been training these days too in Denver, where the temperatures have dropped down at night to the 40s, so I suspect most of his training has been on the Wilier cycles (shameless plug, sorry, but we love these guys).

Hope everyone’s training is going awesome. Take care.

Participation update

Wow, what an awesome Labor Day weekend. Adam did quite a bit of biking. And I went surfing on Black’s beach in San Diego and snorkeling and jet skiing in the Baja Mexico. We are both doing our parts to keep fit and keep our tans up. Long weekends are the best!

Exciting announcement: We’ve had a wave of interest from old friends and new friends that read about our adventure in the press. Some people are interested to learn more and some people have already committed fully to joining us in 2009! We couldn’t be happier, and are excited to have so many people wanting to join us.

10 Degrees Latitude is an event to traverse 10 Degrees of Latitude on every continent. In 2008 we traversed Europe. In 2009 we will traverse the North American continent. This adventure race will be heavy on the biking, with swimming or kayaking mixed in depending on the preference of the participants.

Click here to join us in 2009.

Day 23 – Channel Day Moments

We swam the channel yesterday.  Today is a planned day to rest, recoop and reenergize. We still have 200 more miles to bike to get to Paris — which will start day after tomorrow.

Some stats about our swim:

  • Dover, UK to Calais, France
  • 14 hours 23 minutes
  • 21 miles
  • Water temp 60F
  • In terms of nutrition… We each fed once every 30 minutes in the water on GU Roctane and GU20 using the Gu-Bot bottle. The bottle held 2 GU packets in a separate chamber from the warmed GU hydration. We ate 2 packets and 12 ounces of warm water during each feeding.
  • Seas were pretty rough at times
  • Our pilot on channel day was David Whyte. Seriously folks, he’s the best in the business and has piloted over 350 successful channel swims. 350!!! His support was phenomenal. His thoughts we only on the swimmers — and his hand-picked crew helped our crew huge. His boat is one of the largest in the fleet. I remember late during the swim when he turned around and shouted encouragement to me in the water at the top of his lungs, flinging his arms in celebration. He was wonderful. It’s a pity he’s retiring this year — but we hear he’s trained an awesome successor in Chris Osmond.

Check out these videos and photographs:


Predator goggleA shout-out to Skyline Goggles, especially our friend Rick Runckel, President. Neal used the Predator goggles (pictured) during his crossing. These goggles are built for open water swimming — they have a huge viewing angle and don’t hurt eye sockets during swims, whether those swims are 1 hour or 14 hours.