Getting Back Into The (Ocean) Swim Of It – Training With CanToo Starts

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CanToo Ocean swimming

Our coach Adam shows how it’s done

If you’re at a Sydney beach on a Saturday morning and you see a sea of orange – don’t panic!

It’s just we CanToo swimmers getting into the surf  to train for our ocean swims.

The season’s training at the beach started on Saturday and I was there. It’s my second year of swimming, check out this post for more information on the CanToo Swimming programme here. 

Or even better just hop over to the CanToo website.

Here’s are some photos to show how we got on last Saturday. Can I confess that I felt pretty nervous about swimming out at sea again? 

CanToo Ocean swimming

Here’s the crew getting ready right by Mona Vale Surf Club.

CanToo Ocean swimming

Terrific to catch up with some pals made last year.

CanToo Ocean swimming

My life might be in this man’s hands… it’s a worrying thought… no seriously, Mirek is a coach and mentor who is fantastic at supporting new ocean swimmers. Great to see him again.

CanToo Ocean swimming

Our coaches had checked the surf conditions and worked out a plan for all the different groups of swimmers. Some have heaps of experience and some have none at all.

CanToo Ocean swimming

Mona Beach was looking absolutely beautiful.

CanToo Ocean swimming

Our surf safety crew are fit and strong young women – thank you, you keep us safe.

CanToo Ocean swimming

Adam talked us through dolphin diving under the breaking waves.

CanToo Ocean swimming

Then in we went, we worked on getting out through the beakers to the deep water out then back, then coming in again safely through the HUGE waves and surf. A challenge, I can tell you.

CanToo Ocean swimming

I took my waterproof camera , but this shot just doesn’t show the thrill of being out the back there, and how big the rolling seas were… disappointed!

CanToo Ocean swimming

Check out those podgy knees!! Oh not to worry, my heart and body has had a workout and I feel fit and healthy and completely exhilerated.

I did the Macquarie Big Swim from Palm Beach to Whale Beach in late January this year. It was BIG!! The surf was huge. My post about that swim is here.

Do you swim far out in the ocean?

Is there any greater thrill? 

 Happy splashing!



More Swimming In Sydney Posts

Swimming Laps Outdoors in Sydney  My Very Favourite Places

Swimming For My Sanity – And Why Swimming Is Great Exercise For Mums

Swimming At Manly With The Bold And The Beautiful

All About Swimming With CanToo in 2012 – 2013







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Posted on: November 11, 2013


  • Well done Seana! They look like a fun crown – is that a wetsuit or just rashie? I’m thinking that water must be cold. Brrr. Would love to try this sometime, in the meantime will enjoy reading all about your ocean swimming escapades 🙂

  • Reply November 11, 2013


    What a timely post! I’ve done a swim with Cantoo (and two half marathons and the 9km (and my husband has done many swims with them and a tri-athlon and the 9km) and he’s signed up for the Olympic triathlon too.
    We just competed the tri at Huski and I’m so bummed out cos I just was horrible in the swim. He beat me by 5 mins! I admire all you ocean-swimmers cos I just completely suck at it!
    Mirek was our mentor for the last run – he is completey nuts and we love him!
    Good luck.

    • Reply November 11, 2013

      Seana Smith

      Hey Brenda, how great to hear from you. I did think of trying a 9km run over winter but two of my boys play rugby league and with a travelling husband, it just sounded too hard… but I will one year if my old knees can stand it.

      The whole idea and ethos of CanToo is terrific… we raise money for young researchers and we keep healthy ourselves too. I’m so glad my friend got me into it last year.

  • Reply November 11, 2013


    I’m bookmarking CanToo’s website for next year because I’m really keen to give ocean swimming a go. I like the idea of being guided through the process all while being a bit social. The surf and currents scare me just a tad. I think that’s a healthy attitude to have about the ocean though.

  • Reply November 13, 2013

    Robyn (Mrs D)

    It looks FREEZING!!! I know I should, I know I should, I know I should, I know I should!!! I will give you a call about it tomorrow xx

  • Reply November 16, 2013

    Hotly Spiced

    Well done, Seana. I think if you’re going to do ocean swimming you need a coach and support people around you. You always feel more confident when you’re in a group. I like to swim in the ocean and do the races but I hate the start of the race with all the crowding and people kicking you and swimming on top of you. Once you get out the back and find your own space, it’s really quite lovely – if not also challenging! xx

    • Reply November 16, 2013

      Seana Smith

      Oh yes you are so right about the start of races. I have always hung back as I don’t want to get kicked or flattened. I haven’t done many of the big ocean swims but hope to do DeeWhy in a week- slowly.

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