I'm a crap swimmer and need to get faster but tend to have 1 spead. If I breath every 2-3-4 or 5 strokes I'm still about the same slow speed.
I don't have the luxery of spending more than 2 sessions a week in the pool and now my dad has been diagnosed with cancer I'm having to travel more to see him meaning no spare cash for lessons.
So I thought about music to try and get me faster - Sony are bringing out a new MP3 player which is waterproof (so useful for all 3 sports (turbo not road biking naturally))
Does anyone else swim to music? What are the thoughts about it?
I have a 910 as I could never keep count of laps and do tend to just zone out and go up and down so thought this may help/
my thoughts would be that if you arent very fast, music isnt really the answer - unless its speed metal or 200 bpm dance techno crap, you dont want to be zoning out, thats going to lead to lazy and bad habits which are going to be hard to break. Do your drills and sprints and you shouldnt get the chance to get bored. Swim improvements normally come after seeing something you done wrong or by a small improvement that gives more than than its expected worth - something like sorting out your catch or giving the right amount of glide
Music to make you faster will only get your arms moving quickerYou need to make sure you are swimming effectively and are swimming strong, not necc moving your arms quicker
EP - do you know someone who is a good swimmer who could come and watch you swim and analyse what you do. As DK said above, they may identify one small thing which could give you a gain.
My thing used to be putting my hand up as if I was stopping traffic when I was gliding. I never knew I was doing it til someone came and watched me swim and pointed it out. Now i have stopped doing it and I have gained a second or two per length.
Have you looked at swimsmooth website or TI technique. Plenty of clips on youtube.
Also, check out SwimPlan.com. They will devise swim sets for you with drills and intervals to mix up your training. This is free.
Also, consider what is stopping you going faster? Is it breathing or technique?
If its breathing you may want to devote a session for swimming intervals eg 100m in a set time but allow yourself a rest interval at the end. Aim to keep that pace constant over the time you are swimming ie pitch the pace correctly at the start so you don't slow til the end.
I found this was a good way for me to build my swim endurance
I have a swim MP3 which i use for realy long swims, but my agvice woud be ...
Get a tempo trainer
It will train you to swim to a rythm, to not go of too fast, and you can change the setting by as ltlle as 100th of a second wich can make a big difference on a long swim
Tri club coach once told me to build speed by doing lots of short (50-100m) sprint reps initially cos when I tried to maintain a faster pace for longer than that, my form started to fall apart.
I've also used a wetronome which really makes sure I keep working in the latter stages of a session when I start getting tired.
I saw a swim coach in Oct/Nov and he said I have a good style just lack power and a few tiny changes. He also said no point doing drills when you don't have someone to see if you are doing them right as you could be practicing to do things wrong. He also said use paddles (and a pull bouy) too.
Areas to "fix" were make sure I return my head to face down (worse when trying to swim fast and breathing every 2 strokes), make sure my left are lifts properly (I sometimes barely missed the water) and to roll when I breath not lift my head (I turn my head but lift it too rather then just turn to breath)
When I've done speed work as advised I've dropped to breathing every 2 strokes but typically this is only 1 or 2 seconds different than when breathing 3+ strokes yet I'm exhausted doing 2 stroke breathing.
My plan had be to do 1hr straight swims twice a week (ideally may be once) and work on endurance as I'm limited with the time I can get into the pool
EP How long have you been managing 2 x 1HR swims per week? I' started just before Christmas and saw my tri coach for the first time last week and she said my power has improved a lot.
I've just been zombie swimming nothing else.
Just a thought.
I have been just doing 2hr zombie swimming each week for a couple of months and have seen an improvement in times.....overall......reminder must get to pool today
seren, are you just doing the 2 hour sessionseach week or are you doing other swim sessions as well?
PIxie sounds like your technique is OK but you lack speed. To swim faster you need to practice swimming faster in short bursts i.e. 100m intervals with short rests of maybe 20-30 secs. Try a warm-up of say 20 lengths concentrating on form, 10 x 100m intervals and a cool-down of say 20 lengths. Adjust to suit time available.
Drop a drill session 8 x 50m in and you pretty much have a Fink swim session
With regard to seeing what you look like in the water I was thinking of getting one of my kids to walk along for a few lengths and video me on my phone. Not sure how the pool will react to that but they may be OK if it is quiet. Better that way than the other way round which may look a bit dodgy...
...after a couple of weeks of that you try a zombie swim again and see if you are getting any faster.
Forget the music you need to be concentrating on form/technique.
just the zombie swims as i don't do drills for various reasons.....I'm sure that doing drills would help more but i can't cope with them...........
so just wanted to say that if its only zombie swims you can fit in to your training then just the practice will make you better......maybe not as much as doing drills but you will improve
and doing a 2 hour swim is going to help with endurance.
For me .. I have found swiming faster for shorter distances improve just that ... i can swim faster for shorter distance and has close to zero effect on my long swim
My best IM swim is from doing more longer (and very long) swims and working on swiming smooth and at a consistant rythmn
I disagree. But we're all entitled to our opinion right?
If we take technique out of the equation (dangerous with swimming speed as it is so very technique affected) I would place intervals higher than endurance to increase speed - which is the objective in the first line of the original post from TEP. With only so much time to apply to getting faster I would have thought doing some intervals at a forced higher pace is by far the best option at this point in the cycle. Technique will likely get more efficient. And nearer the event work up some endurance with longer non-stop swims.
Zombie swimming slowly is likely to train a slow zombie swimmer, music or no music. Which if you are at the back of the pack working to beat cut-off could be dangerous later on in the day.
IMO your both wrong or both right which ever you want to call it. i reckon you need both, the endurance makes you more efficient so your not wasting energy which can be applied else where - kicking for instance. the intervals will increase your functional threshold and help with feeling what it is like swim fast and this faster swimming makes me more aware of if im in a streamline position. Intervals make you look so pro, especially if you wear a swim cap too and that got to be good
yea - i suppose i lose sight of where i started and only look at what applies to me now. i still swim at one speed really though, my outlaw time was 1:16 which is about 8 minutes per 400m and my non sprinting 400m time is roughly the same although i can do a 7:30 if i try
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