Author Topic: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!  (Read 1885 times)

Moustachienne

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Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« on: August 02, 2018, 09:02:03 PM »
I've just started an Aquafit plus length swimming program at my local pool and am loving it.  But here's the challenge.  Clothing logistics!

It's easy to stroll the 15 minutes to the rec centre in the summer, wearing sandals, shorts, and a t-shirt over my swimsuit.  Easy to get changed and easy to change back into afterwards, even in a wet and steamy change room. And a mesh shower caddy has been life changing. :)

But come the cold and rainy season, I'll need a different level of outer gear that's still easy to slip on/off.  Slip on runners or boots?  Easy on/off "snap pants"?  Easy pull on leggings?  What do you other swimmers do to make life easy and lower the barrier to actually getting into the water?

Many people seem to drive to the pool which solves quite a few of these problems as no outer wear or umbrellas would be required but I'm strongly and ideologically opposed to driving such a short distance to engage in a fitness activity. (!) I expect that's true of everyone else here!


obstinate

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2018, 09:48:07 PM »
The standard approach is to bring a duffel and change in the locker room. My gym is only five minutes away, but this is still my preference (possibly since I'm a man and I wear thigh-length swim-wear that doesn't really permit much walking in).

Syonyk

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2018, 10:06:15 PM »
Ride a bike and accept that you'll be slightly cold when it's below freezing?

abhe8

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #3 on: August 02, 2018, 11:59:48 PM »
I would just wear your normal clothes over the swim suit on the way there, and change out of the wet suit for the walk home. Wear whatever outerwear is weather appropriate. Nothing special needed!

Hirondelle

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #4 on: August 03, 2018, 12:40:23 AM »
Lifelong swimmer. I don't really understand the problem tbh?

I've always wore my regular clothes over my swimsuit on my way to the pool, then shower there and get back into normal underwear + the same clothes. I mean it's just a difference between spending 1 or 2 minutes in the changing room. I've gone to the pool wearing tights, tight jeans, literally any piece of clothing I've ever owned in the past 15 years :p (I go biking or walking, never by car).

ElleFiji

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #5 on: August 03, 2018, 02:58:11 AM »
Lifelong swimmer. I don't really understand the problem tbh?

I've always wore my regular clothes over my swimsuit on my way to the pool, then shower there and get back into normal underwear + the same clothes. I mean it's just a difference between spending 1 or 2 minutes in the changing room. I've gone to the pool wearing tights, tight jeans, literally any piece of clothing I've ever owned in the past 15 years :p (I go biking or walking, never by car).

All of this... except that I curse myself if I wear tight jeans or certain leggings after. I'm always still a bit damp, and wrestling into jeans can be awful. Luckily I no longer own any.

If you are swimming before bed, going in normal clothes and having a pair of sweat pants in your swim bag for after is basically perfection and an adult version of changing straight into pyjamas. And in winter we all need giant coats and boots...so we wear them

Hirondelle

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #6 on: August 03, 2018, 03:08:32 AM »
Lifelong swimmer. I don't really understand the problem tbh?

I've always wore my regular clothes over my swimsuit on my way to the pool, then shower there and get back into normal underwear + the same clothes. I mean it's just a difference between spending 1 or 2 minutes in the changing room. I've gone to the pool wearing tights, tight jeans, literally any piece of clothing I've ever owned in the past 15 years :p (I go biking or walking, never by car).

All of this... except that I curse myself if I wear tight jeans or certain leggings after. I'm always still a bit damp, and wrestling into jeans can be awful. Luckily I no longer own any.

If you are swimming before bed, going in normal clothes and having a pair of sweat pants in your swim bag for after is basically perfection and an adult version of changing straight into pyjamas. And in winter we all need giant coats and boots...so we wear them

So do I. And still somehow I end up wearing tights on too many swim-days. Sigh. Sweat pants are a good one indeed but I'm too lazy to carry around 2 sets of clothing. Somehow I rather curse myself.

Lady SA

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #7 on: August 03, 2018, 07:20:01 AM »
I just bring a small backpack (one of those drawstring ones) with my small towel, underwear, and a thermal shirt. Then after swimming, I simply change into all of my clothes again and add the thermal shirt because I'm damp. I put my wet suit and towel back in the little bag and back home I go. Easy peasy.

Like others, I'm just wearing normal, comfy, relatively loose clothes like sweat pants or long-sleeved t-shirts, and my pair of sneakers (or winter boots if there is snow). I dont have special "going to the pool" clothes, just warm clothes or cooler clothes.

Moustachienne

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #8 on: August 03, 2018, 09:24:05 AM »
Thanks folks,

Some of you have caught the problem exactly.  That is, struggling back into pants in a damp steamy change room without enough benches and floors you don't want to put bare feet down on.  Perfecting the one foot hop is essential. :)   Also very small half lockers so duffel bags, long raincoats, etc., are no goes. (I will bring a plastic bag to contain the dripping collapsible umbrella.)

Sweat shirts and sweat pants for the win, I think.  Maybe loose waterproof pants for an outer layer. Don't know why I was thinking about tighter stuff like leggings.  And jeans are the worst, as we've all discovered.   


mm1970

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #9 on: August 03, 2018, 09:38:07 AM »
I wear pants.  They are sort of quick dry pants that are mid-calf length (they are hand me downs from someone else).  Sometimes just stretchy loose sweatpants.  On the top, a zip hoodie.

I pack underwear, bra, t-shirt in a shoulder bag with a broken zipper with some cruise ship line on it that I bought at a garage sale.

I still wear flip flops.  So to put pants on one leg at a time, you have one foot IN the flip flop and the other foot ON the flip flop.  Yes you need balance for that.

So afterwards, it's super easy to pull on the pants (they are loose and stretchy) and a t-shirt.

TrMama

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #10 on: August 03, 2018, 11:50:26 AM »
Ditch the pool and swim outside year round ;-)

You'll need a swimming wetsuit, but don't despair because they're multi-purpose! You wear your normal outdoorsy clothes over your bathing suit to bike to the lake. Ride slow so you don't get too sweaty. Then take off your outer clothes and put on your wetsuit on the shore. Swim.

After swimming, just swap your bathing cap for a bike helmet and pedal home. Wetsuits are the best for biking in freezing cold rain. They're so warm! Easy peasy!

obstinate

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #11 on: August 03, 2018, 12:11:46 PM »
Ditch the pool and swim outside year round ;-)
Most public swimming pools in the US are closed during the winter, for obvious liability reasons.

catccc

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #12 on: August 03, 2018, 09:28:50 PM »
Once in college, someone stole my pants from the locker room once and I had to walk back to my dorm in super cold and windy weather in a winter coat and no pants.  I got windburn on my legs.  This was the late 90s and wind pants type things were acceptable to wear around, or perhaps even desired, since someone wanted mine so bad they snatched them.  I think the culprit was someone I knew, as she complemented my pants the prior week and then was wearing identical ones a week after the theft.  I never did ask her about it, but come on?!  They were currently in stores so it's possible she bought them.

Anyway, my suggestion is wind pants.  The trick is to put them (or any pants when you are kinda damp) on like pantyhose.  Scrunch them up, stick a foot through, and unscrunch them on your way up the leg.  You do have to sit down for this.  Dry your top half off, put hair up in a clip to prevent drips, then put your towel around your waist.  Dress your top first.  Put your shoes and socks near a bench, then sit on a bench- on the towel to avoid public icky-ness.  Use the inside of the towel that has not touched the bench to dry off your legs and then your feet.  Put socks on, then you are free to step into your shoes while you put on your underwear.  Then work the pants up most of each leg.  Then you can actually put your feet totally in your shoes, stand up, and pull the pants up the rest of the way.  Then you can grab your flip flops and put the gross soles together and deposit them into whatever section of you bag is designated for grossness.  Procedural overkill?  Maybe.  But it works for me.  I'm not really germophobe, I will 5-second rule my dropped food all the time.  I just think locker rooms are particularly icky.


obstinate

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #13 on: August 04, 2018, 05:23:53 PM »
I just think locker rooms are particularly icky.
Super grateful for the locker room at my Y. They must run a serious dehumidifier in there, because it is always very dry, even though we have an indoor pool.

Moustachienne

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #14 on: August 04, 2018, 06:14:30 PM »
Ditch the pool and swim outside year round ;-)

You'll need a swimming wetsuit, but don't despair because they're multi-purpose! You wear your normal outdoorsy clothes over your bathing suit to bike to the lake. Ride slow so you don't get too sweaty. Then take off your outer clothes and put on your wetsuit on the shore. Swim.

After swimming, just swap your bathing cap for a bike helmet and pedal home. Wetsuits are the best for biking in freezing cold rain. They're so warm! Easy peasy!

"Wild swimming" always sounds great but the ocean here is cold even in summer.  Just can't imagine swimming outside in the rainy season.   Brrr.  :)

Moustachienne

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #15 on: August 04, 2018, 06:16:44 PM »
Once in college, someone stole my pants from the locker room once and I had to walk back to my dorm in super cold and windy weather in a winter coat and no pants.  I got windburn on my legs.  This was the late 90s and wind pants type things were acceptable to wear around, or perhaps even desired, since someone wanted mine so bad they snatched them.  I think the culprit was someone I knew, as she complemented my pants the prior week and then was wearing identical ones a week after the theft.  I never did ask her about it, but come on?!  They were currently in stores so it's possible she bought them.

Anyway, my suggestion is wind pants.  The trick is to put them (or any pants when you are kinda damp) on like pantyhose.  Scrunch them up, stick a foot through, and unscrunch them on your way up the leg.  You do have to sit down for this.  Dry your top half off, put hair up in a clip to prevent drips, then put your towel around your waist.  Dress your top first.  Put your shoes and socks near a bench, then sit on a bench- on the towel to avoid public icky-ness.  Use the inside of the towel that has not touched the bench to dry off your legs and then your feet.  Put socks on, then you are free to step into your shoes while you put on your underwear.  Then work the pants up most of each leg.  Then you can actually put your feet totally in your shoes, stand up, and pull the pants up the rest of the way.  Then you can grab your flip flops and put the gross soles together and deposit them into whatever section of you bag is designated for grossness.  Procedural overkill?  Maybe.  But it works for me.  I'm not really germophobe, I will 5-second rule my dropped food all the time.  I just think locker rooms are particularly icky.

catccc - this is so vivid it's like we're in the squicky locker room right with you.  :)   Perfect step by step technique!

Mezzie

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #16 on: August 05, 2018, 08:15:11 AM »
My swim practice went later than the locker room was open, so after I'd just cover up in a long wind jacket with a hood. Note that winters here rarely drop below 40F, so as long as I kept moving, there was no real danger.

TrMama

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Re: Clothing advice from swimmers needed!
« Reply #17 on: August 07, 2018, 11:58:02 AM »
Ditch the pool and swim outside year round ;-)

You'll need a swimming wetsuit, but don't despair because they're multi-purpose! You wear your normal outdoorsy clothes over your bathing suit to bike to the lake. Ride slow so you don't get too sweaty. Then take off your outer clothes and put on your wetsuit on the shore. Swim.

After swimming, just swap your bathing cap for a bike helmet and pedal home. Wetsuits are the best for biking in freezing cold rain. They're so warm! Easy peasy!

"Wild swimming" always sounds great but the ocean here is cold even in summer.  Just can't imagine swimming outside in the rainy season.   Brrr.  :)

FTR I learned this trick when I used to outrigger canoe in the winter in the PNW. We had to wear Jane/John style wetsuits in the boat in case it capsized. However, the wetsuit was also the perfect clothing item for my 10km bike ride to and from the docks.

Years later, when I did open water swimming in a nearby lake in the early spring, I just reused the same trick.