Notwithstanding this post’s title, my strength training routine – which I started about 6 weeks ago – is only partly tailored for open water swimming. It’s a balanced, total-body routine designed for strength, simplicity, and sustainability.
Strength means not designed for maximum muscle mass (the former helps swimming, the latter does not).
Simplicity means using only a few basic gym equipment, and that I can remember the routine easily without writing it down.
Sustainability means giving myself the best chance of consistently doing the routine over the long term. It’s integrated seamlessly into my everyday life, and it’s brief (no more than 30 minutes per session).…
“You’ve got to swim fast to swim fast.”
That’s Rob Orr, long-time Princeton men’s coach, doing his best Yogi Berra impression.
“Swim slow to swim fast.”
That’s the title of an instructional video that generated some lively discussion on the USMS discussion forum this week.
Who’s right? Well, I guess it depends. How’s your technique? If you’re already relatively “fast” (which usually means efficient), you probably have good technique and would benefit from swimming “fast” (as in hard) to simulate racing.
But if you’re not already an efficient swimmer, you probably should be focusing more on slow, mindful drilling than on sprint sets.
It sounds like a chicken and egg problem, but it’s not. If you can’t swim slow (correctly), you won’t swim fast (period).…
Today I passed 100 miles for 2010. There was a time, some years ago, when I covered this distance in 2-3 weeks instead of 7. But there was also a time – most of the past 10 years, actually – when it might have taken me 6 months.
So I’ll take it.…
Go the Distance is a nice little motivation hack. Each day (or week, or whatever), you enter how far you’ve swum into your account at usms.org. The online tool keeps track of your total distance accumulated for the calendar year, and posts that number online each morning – along with ~1,500 other participants.
It’s a reason to get to the pool on days when you might otherwise not. If you’re motivated by numbers, you can pursue “milestones” (50 miles, 100 miles, 500 miles, etc.), which sponsor NIKE rewards with various goodies – a swim cap for 50 miles, a water bottle for 250, up to a $250 gift certificate for 1500.
Or if you’re motivated by sheer competitiveness, you can peruse the list and, oh I don’t know, find someone you want to “beat.”
Such as one Dave Radcliff, a 76-year old member of the 1956 Olympic team, who has swum 107.81 miles this year, to my 95.76
Dave, I’m coming after you!…