Contact lens with goggles, prescription goggles or Lasix with 8 mile ocean swim
JaneBynon United StatesMember
Greetings! I hope to complete my first marathon swim in the Alligator Lighthouse swim in September. I have a pretty solid plan for training and nutrition but I have a question regarding whether to wear my usual contact lenses with goggles (I do not want to do this) or to purchase a pair or two of prescription goggles. I am moderately nearsighted so I was actually planning on getting Lasix to correct the issue once and for all, but at 53, the recommendation is more toward refractive lens exchange which may be out of my price range. This is a hot and salty race. It will probably take me 5 to 5.5 hours if all goes well. Anyone have any thoughts, relevant experience or even funny stories? Thanks in advance! -
I am farsighted but have worn contacts and regular goggles for all of my swims up to almost 17 hours. Granted, my contacts are disposable so I could always ditch them mid-way if need be. I have not had any issues on a big swim and I have issues on one training swim out of thousands.
Thank you! Maybe I should not be so precious then about wearing them. They are disposable and I have never had any problems or considered any other option on shorter (2 mile) lake swims. I was worried the salt water would bother me but perhaps it will be fine. Thanks again!
I use these:
Cheap and comfortable, clear or mirrored. Assume you could source from a US site.
Much as disposable contacts are generally fine, I would rather avoid the possibility of one coming loose mid swim..
I've always worn my contacts in my goggles, including in salty swims up to ~9h and freshwater up to ~12h. I rarely have issues with my contacts at all, and [touch wood] never have in the water, so it works well for me personally. I do know some swimmers who keep an extra pair (of disposables) in their crew's supply, so should something go sideways there are replacements available. Can't say I'd want to try to pop in a new lens while treading water, but at least you'd be able to see once finished
I have had good luck with TYR's corrective goggles. I used to use the Speedo version, but they cut into my face after about 8 hours. TYR's are a lot more comfortable... as least for me.
And they are relatively inexpensive - $20.
The only time I had an issue was because I got sunscreen in my eye, so you cant really blame the contact.
Thank you all very much! I feel a lot better about this now. I think my plan will be just to head out with my usual disposable lenses but have a backup pair of prescription goggles on hand in case I need to ditch the contacts at some point. Thank you Stephen and Anthony for the recommendations for goggles. I have checked and can get the UK site to deliver to me in the States. I will get a couple different brands and try them out for longer OW practice swims in advance. Nice to hear about your experiences kejoyce and abbygirlrose! Yes, I am chuckling out loud imagining me attempting to put in new contacts whilst treading water. That seems like quite a specialized skill. I am so pleased to have found this group! Everyone is so helpful and friendly. I am grateful for you.
I have always worn contacts under goggles. I train with and without them. Not being able to see past about 20 meters forces you to focus on your kayaker!
I’ve always worn contacts in the water without any issues. I’ll pop them out and wear my glasses post swim. I’ve never had one pop out. Maybe have prescription goggles as a backup?
I also use contact lenses in all my swims, with no issues.
I've worn these optically corrected goggles now for over 10-years, practice, long swims and competition. I've done many 10K's, 10-12 mile swims like the Mercer Island Marathon swim in them. My correction is a negative 3.5, I get the smoked for outside and clear for indoors. There only $8 bucks, I don't care if I lose them or want to break out a fresh pair for factory fresh anti-fog for a long swim because again, there just $8. https://new.swimoutlet.com/products/sporti-antifog-s2-optical-goggle-22598
My SO is not a swimmer, but she says that Lasik was the best money she's ever spent.
I think it would be better to spend the $8 bucks every now and then. Let the Opthalmologist figure out how to pay the kids private school himself. Just think of everything you've ever done with your ocular challenge
(glasses) thus far in life.
I too am of the "wear contacts under 'regular' goggles crowd. My Rx includes an astigmatism, so all of the correctable goggles that I"ve found won't work, because they only magnify. Plus, the astigmatism in one of my eyes changes up to 50 degrees every other exam or so. So, it's fun trying to find just the right clarity to see!
Another option that hasn’t been mentioned is CRT lenses. These are contacts that you wear at night and remove in the morning. Overnight, they reshape the lens of the eye to give perfect vision. Once the CRTs are out, the lenses of the eye maintain that shape for about 24-36 hours. My oldest son has been in them for about two years with lots of success.
I wear my contacts on all of my swims. If one pair can make it for 67 hours, yours can handle 6 hours no problem. Never had an issue. Just wear what's comfortable. It's important to be able to see if you can.
Did you have any difficulty getting them out of. Your eyes after being in salt water for that long versus the fresh water of lake Champlain?
No difference between salt and fresh. It feels super great to pull them off, for sure. And I do usually toss that pair after I'm done (just like my suits). But they come right out. No issues.
Good to hear! Sometimes after long swims, I feel like I'm peeling saran wrap off of my eyes..... ick!
I also usually wear contacts while swimming without issue. However, if you are wearing contacts, please be sure that you do not have a stye or any other minor eye infection/irritant when doing so, otherwise it could turn into a major issue when doing a long swim. I learned this the hard way back in May--I did a 7hr43 minute swim with a tiny stye and contacts and two days later I had a black eye from how infected it was, had to go to urgent care for two antibiotics, and was sidelined for weeks while it healed (other than a few kick sets I stubbornly did). I still do and plan to continue wearing contacts whenever I can, but I will also have some corrective goggles available just in case. Just wanted to throw this out there in case someone can learn from my mistake.