's Forum Archives - Triathlons

Archive Home >> Triathlons

swim training frequency(7 posts)

swim training frequencybigborebob
Aug 13, 2003 6:55 AM
Here's another newbie swim question. The swim is our weakest leg in sprints. While we are at the "LEARNING" stage of swimming (coming in last by minutes), is it OK to swim everyday while working on technique & endurance?? I've see the charts for tri training, but we are trying to catch up on our swim. We still have time to do some running & biking, but I don't want to swim so much that there is a "no gain" effect similar to strength training the same muscles everyday. Thanks again. Bob
Typically as volume increases, intensity should decreasejs5280
Aug 13, 2003 8:21 AM
I don't think swimming every day would be determental. I've heard it is common for swimmers on swim teams to practice twice a day for 5-6 days a week. However, they have a mix of easy and hard effort days, plus they have a solid base built up. Hard effort days require more recovery and if you don't give your body time to recover, it will start failing. These are similar principles with training for cycling.

Since you're learning, it might be hard to judge your effort levels so you'll probably just have to listen to your body, if you're tired, sore, or just not into it, take that day off. You might be able to make up some time with increased workouts, but if your workouts are poor (i.e. your practicing bad swim form because of fatigue) you won't be helping yourself any. Also, work on side stroke and the breast stroke. My first season I would often resort to these stokes for a length to recover because your head is above water most of the time. I even had a race this year (high altitude) where I had to swim a little side stoke to catch my breath. You're allowed to use any stoke you want in a tri. Don't worry about other people's race times, always race your race.

If you're looking for swimming resources, I've found Steve Tarpinian's video "Swim Power" very helpful in visualizing good form. It also addresses structuring workouts, open water, etc. The local library happened to have a copy, so I check it periodically to refresh my memory and sharpen my skills. There's another good/popular series out there, but can't remember the name (focuses more on body position, anyone?). Ask your coach if they have any videos, particularly if you have a hard time visualizing what you should be doing. Having someone videotape you is also one of the best ways to actually see what you're doing and how you might improve your stoke if you don't happen to have a coach handy.
re: swim training frequencyflying
Aug 13, 2003 5:04 PM
I am no expert but the only thing I would add is this...
As long as you are not practicing & compounding wrong technique.
I know being self taught I practiced a bad form for a long time. I wish I had a swim coach or at least had found the total immersion book sooner.
Very good & if you have not heard of them............
That's it, Total Immersion. . .js5280
Aug 15, 2003 2:37 PM
Couldn't remember the name in my previous response. I've heard good things about it, but haven't tried their products or services.
That's it, Total Immersion. . .bigborebob
Aug 16, 2003 5:22 AM
A friend of ours who is extremely good in triathlons gave us a copy of the book. The drills do work. I can actually feel myself gliding in the water due to a few of his drills. Now I just have to put it all together for long distance. oh well, I enjoy the training as much as anything. Thanks again
That's it, Total Immersion. . .flying
Aug 16, 2003 6:58 PM
Yeah its a funny thing...swimming
Sometimes you read something like total immersion & it really rings true.
Then you try it & it works. Im no swim expert but I know my legs were dragging because I could swim fast & long with a pull buoy but suffered without. I like their press with the chest description.
Good Luck
(cough) kinda overrated (cough)sctri
Aug 20, 2003 11:59 AM
Triathletes seem to really really love the total immersion line/ideas but in the rest of the swimming world, this guy isnt making waves (swimming fishlike or otherwise).

A good coach, masters club etc. can do way more for you than books or videos in my opinion.

A lot of coaches run mini camps for triathletes (4 or 6 hour sessions spaced out over some weeks so that you can practice and train, while still getting some feedback and correction from a coach)(at least thats how I run them)

Not to slag on TI, but there are lots of good swim videos out there, I would also recommend some of the australlian videos, they are pretty good, or again, Coaches! find one that is reasonably priced and qualified and get some buddys to go in with you to reduce the cost.
(great in the offseason)