California SwimRun coaches (Sean & Andy) do crazy sports: English Channel swim, Ironman, X-C skiing, rowing, Catalina Channel Relay swim, Ragnar Relay, PCT hike, etc. In May 2015, they competed in UTÖ SWIMRUN...39 km of running across & swimming between islands in Sweden: http://www.utoswimrun.se . And, if that was not enough, they went back to Sweden in Sep 2015 and competed in the ÖTillÖ SwimRun World Championships...75 km of running across & swimming between islands in Sweden: www.otilloswimrun.com (http://www.otilloswimrun.se). Since then, they have competed in the Casco Bay SwimRun in Portland, ME and, the Loch-gu-Loch SwimRun in Loch Ness, Scotland.
Competitive SwimRun requires that you race in teams of two and stay together (within 10 meters) at all times, for safety and, to make the contest more challenging. Team members run and swim while wearing specially designed trail shoes and wetsuits throughout the entire race. There are no age handicaps in SwimRun events. Nutrition stations are located along the course but, there is no stopping, no gear-drop, and no transition stations…the teams bring all of the gear that they start with, to the finish line.
SwimRun is a rapidly growing sport throughout Europe as an alternative to traditional triathlons that are increasingly expensive and require a significant amount of gear (full wetsuit, bike, two pairs of shoes, etc.).
The positive benefits of SwimRun that athletes experience include: being able to train with, help and talk to a teammate all the time…especially during a race; lose weight and fat and gain overall muscle tone; the constant transitioning between running and swimming provides a routine cooling for the body, strengthens the core and back muscles; there isn’t the “exhausted” and “beaten-up” feeling that comes at the end of a marathon or ironman event where the same muscles are used repetitively over long distances; and, none of the clothing/gear has that “funky” smell from miles of running or biking because it gets rinsed in the ocean every 15-30 minutes.