About the I Hate Joe Zarzaur Open Water Swims Presented by Zarzaur Law


Posted by Coach John Murray

For many years a section of Quietwater Beach, also known as “Mommy Beach”, has been the go-to place for triathlon group swim training. With the popularity of the Pensacola area’s triathlon club, Tri Gulf Coast, exploding over the past 5 years, the desire to be part of that group has grown as well. The need for newer athletes to get accustomed to swimming in the open water was realized and through a 3-way partnership, members of TGC can now participate in an organized training session. 

The "I Hate Joe Zarzaur Open Water Swim" (IHOWS) series is held weekly on Thursday mornings at 6:30 am . This year it runs from April 27, 2017 through October.26, 2017 You must be a member of Tri Gulf Coast to participate, but you can join at trigulfcoast.org/join-tgc, with a weekly or annual membership. 


Below are 5 facts about the Thursday morning “I Hate Joe Zarzaur Open Water Swim”:


1. Generally we divide into two groups each Thursday.  One group, “the outside group”, swims a bit further out, but back and forth parallel with the shore. Swimmers are timed to keep us from going too long and will average about one mile of swimming. The “inside group” will stay closer to shore, in “stand-up depth” and work on open water familiarization and technique.


2. The swim start time is 6:30a but show time is NLT 6:15a. Several tasks take place prior to 6:30a. We take the roll, take a group picture, and a short discussion regarding the rules happens prior to each swim. The whole flow works better when athletes arrive about 15-20 minutes early.


3. Occasionally we will mix things up a bit and practice entries and exits, buoy turns, or swimming in a crowd. All of these elements have helped triathletes have a better race day triathlon swim.


4. The swim is named the “I Hate Joe Zarzaur Open Water Swim” because of the gracious sponsorship of Zarzaur Law. (Here's the story behind "I Hate Joe" which inspired the similarly named "I Hate Open Water Swim.") In conjunction with Joe Zarzaur, along with Tri Gulf Coast and Team MPI hundreds of athletes over the past two seasons have been able to become stronger and more confident open water swimmers.


5. Coach John, from Team MPI, leads the I Hate Open Water Swim. He us available for swimming questions that athletes may have regarding technique, training strategy or race tips.


Interested? Join Tri Gulf Coast, then join us Thursday mornings - no later than 6:15 am! 

~ Coach John Murray

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