1 Guppy Challenge 10 weeks We re going to get to specific swim workouts in a moment. Let s start with a preface that I hope will arc over these workouts and this Challenge. First things first: If you're a member of a master's swim team, swim with this team a couple of days a week. Do these workouts I'm recommending another couple of days a week, or as many days per week as you want to be in the pool. Or, twice in one day in the pool if you want. You might think this is absolutely out of the question, but, once you start improving, and you really catch the swimming bug, you'll be looking for opportunities to jump in the pool and improve. That might include both a morning and evening swim from time to time. Up to you. Basic theme of this Challenge: Fix technical problems, and improve your basic swim fitness and endurance. What I don't want is for you to go out there and kill yourself in the pool. Your problem is not that you aren't swimming hard enough becoming more thrashed after every set isn't going to make you faster. Rather, we have to fix technical problems, and then we need to improve your endurance. None of this involves you getting your heart rate to new heights. Nomenclature: A "leave interval" is typically the metric denoting how much time you get to rest when you swim sets. By this we mean that you "leave" the wall every so often. The swim + the rest equals the leave interval. So, let's say you were swimming repeat 100 yards, as in, 10 x 100yd. Let's say you were capable of swimming 100 yards, all out, in 1:45, but you could swim it pretty easily in 2:10 or 2:15. We might say that a good leave interval for you is 2:30, meaning that you would "leave" at 2:30, 5:00, 7:30, 10:00, etc., until you had completed 10 of these 100s. In this case, you'll get 15 or 20 seconds rest between each of your 100s. A leave interval is sometimes referred to in 100 yard (or meter) terms. So, if you were doing a "ladder" set that consisted of swimming 100yd, followed by 200yd, 300yd, 400yd, and then back down, 300, 200, 100, you might say that you're "leaving" on the "2- minute base." this means you swim your 100yd, maybe you finish that swim in 1:40, you rest 20sec, then leave at 2min. Then you swim the 200, say, in 3:35, and then you leave at the 4- minute point. If you're leaving
2 on the "2min base" then your leave interval for 200yd is 4min, your leave interval for 300yd is 6min, and so forth. Default set: I've got just a basic default set for you. It's your meat and potatoes set, at least for awhile. It's 500 yards long, and it's got a little bit of everything in there that's going to give you fits. This is pretty much a warm- up set that you're going to do over and over for awhile, and it's this: 150 yards, then 100 yards, then 50 yards, swimming freestyle. These 300 yards are to be conducted on a "leave interval" that grants you about 30 seconds of rest between the 150 and the 100, 20 second rest between the 100 and the 50. If you can handle a leave interval on the 2min base, that means you swim the 150, and then when the clock hits the 3min mark you commence swimming your 100yd and then when you finish, and 2 more minutes have expired, you swim the 50. If you can't quite make the 2min base, fine. If you were able to swim on the 2:20 base, then you would leave on your 100yd swim when the clock strikes 3:30. By the way, we call that leaving "on the bottom." even if there's a digital clock, swimmers will still say, "let's leave on the bottom." This is because digital clocks are still fairly new to us oldsters, and we're used to those large- faced round clocks on the pool deck with a big hand that strikes "30" when that hand is pointed to the bottom of the clock. Anyway... If you add 2:20 to 3:30, your next "leave", for your 50, is "on the :50," that is, when the clock strikes 50. Then you swim your 50yd swim and you'll have 1:10 in which to complete your 50yd swim + your rest. Most of you, try to stick to either a 2- minute leave interval, or a 2:20 leave interval. These are convenient intervals for this, because, in each case, we will move to the next phase of this set "on the top." I'll let you figure out why we call it that. After the 150/100/50, on the top, I'd next like you to kick. Just a 50. With a kickboard. And with your fins if you need them. I want these 50s to be kicked on the 4- minute base, which means you will finish the 50, plus the rest, in 2 minutes; or the 6- minute base, which means you'll finish the 50 kicking, plus the rest, and be ready to go again, in 3 minutes. You should
3 not require a lot of rest after 50 yards kicking. While your legs will have gotten a pretty good workout, this won't be a taxing workout aerobically. So, try not to end up with more than 30sec rest after your 50 yards kicking. More on this 50yd kicking. I'd like you to flutter kick, the kick you use in freestyle, for the first length, and then dolphin kick back. If you cannot dolphin kick yet, fine, dolphin kick back until you completely stall and fail, and then flutter kick the rest of the way back. Use fins if this is just too hard. After your 50yd kick, on the next top, i want you to swim another 50. But now, I want you to do this 50 semi- catch- up. Then I want a 50 with 1- arm pulling, 25yd per arm. Finally, another 50yd kicking. That's 500 yards total. Lather, rinse repeat. I might ask you to do this set multiple times. So, the Default Set looks like this: - 150yd/100yd/50yd, on the 2min, 2:20, or 2:40 base. fins if needed, on whatever base needed, leave in soonest top. - 50yd semi- catch- up, no fins, leave on soonest top. - 50yd one- arm pull, no sculling with off- hand, with fins if needed, leave on soonest top. fins if needed, leave on soonest top moving right into this set all over again. Meters: What if your pool is meters? If it's short course meters, just the same workout, but your leave intervals might need to be a little longer, as in, if you're swimming yards on the 2:20 base you'll probably need to swim meters on the 2:40 base. If you're swimming "long course meters," that is, the long way in a 50 meter pool, when you're halfway across then start doing one- arm pulls with the other arm. If you are in a long course pool, and you can't see the pool clock from the other end, just leave about when you think it's time. You'll get the hang of it.
4 Filming: We aren't going to need this right away, and it's not a prerequisite that you ever do this, but, it would be nice if you had a buddy come to the pull with you at some point with either a camcorder or even just a tablet. Yes, I'd like to see your stroke. However, better yet is for you to see your stroke. Once we begin actually talking about how to fix your stroke, I want you to know what your own stroke looks like. It's pretty easy, once you find your way around your tablet- as- camcorder, to have your buddy film your stroke, just on top of the water, and then play this back for you without you ever leaving the pool. I want you to see what your stroke looks like, immediately, immediate feedback, so, you swim up and back, stop, watch the replay on the tablet, note whether the changes you're seeking are with effect, swim another 50, get filmed, and so forth. There is an online tool called Ubersense, we use it in bike fitting, I think it can easily be used in swimming, and in this case, we can employ a split screen, where the stroke I want you to exhibit is on one side, your own stroke is next to it. Or, there is your bad stroke, next to it is your better stroke. How to know what the day s workout is: Some of you like a general idea of workouts to do you don t like being confined to a daily prescriptive routine. Others like and even need the daily prescriptive routine. Some of you workout 5 days a week, some 3 days, some 2 days. Some workout Mon/Wed/Fri, some other days. How to meld all of this into one workout program? We ll do this as follows. What I would like is for you to do 3 workouts a week, or 6 a week. Somewhere in there. I m going to assume you ll do 3 per week. Obviously I don t know which days, so, I m just going to say 1 st Workout, 2 nd, and so forth, you slot them in on the days you swim. Then I ll have 2 bonus workouts, extra credit, for those of you who re swimming a 4 th and 5 th day. So, 3 is the minimum. If you however lose a day in there and only swim twice, fine, just move to the next week s workouts. If you lose an entire week, and it s Week 3, then in the 4 th week you just perform Week 3. If you lose more than 1 week due to sickness or whatever, no problem, move back a week for every week you lose. If you were about to commence Week 5 and you lose a week, just then commence Week 5. If instead you lost 2 weeks entirely, then go back to Week 4, as you ll need a week to catch back up.
5 Workouts Week 1 Week 1, 1 st Workout: Set 1: Default set twice through, nonstop, total = 1000 yards. Description: - 150yd/100yd/50yd, on the 2min, 2:20, or 2:40 base. fins if needed, on whatever base needed, leave in soonest top. - 50yd semi- catch- up, no fins, leave on soonest top. - 50yd one- arm pull, no sculling with off- hand, with fins if needed, leave on soonest top. fins if needed, leave on soonest top moving right into this set all over again. Rest 1 to 3 minutes, until your HR and breathing are calm. Set 2: 3 x 100yd, total = 300 yards. Description: 3 x 100 yards leaving on the 2min, or 2:20, or 2:40, whatever gives you more than 10sec rest but less than 30sec rest between each 100. Total this workout: 1300 yards Week 1, 2nd Workout: Set 1: Default set twice through, nonstop, total = 1000 yards. Description: - 150yd/100yd/50yd, on the 2min, 2:20, or 2:40 base. fins if needed, on whatever base needed, leave in soonest top. - 50yd semi- catch- up, no fins, leave on soonest top. - 50yd one- arm pull, no sculling with off- hand, with fins if needed, leave on soonest top. fins if needed, leave on soonest top moving right into this set all over again.
6 Rest 1 to 3 minutes, until your HR and breathing are calm. Set 2: 6 x 100yd, total = 600 yards. Description: 3 x 100 yards leaving on the 2min, or 2:20, or 2:40, whatever gives you more than 10sec rest but less than 30sec rest between each 100. Total this workout: 1600 yards Week 1, 3rd Workout: Set 1: Default set as a warmup. Total = 500 yards. Description: - 150yd/100yd/50yd, on the 2min, 2:20, or 2:40 base. fins if needed, on whatever base needed, leave in soonest top. - 50yd semi- catch- up, no fins, leave on soonest top. - 50yd one- arm pull, no sculling with off- hand, with fins if needed, leave on soonest top. fins if needed, leave on soonest top moving right into this set all over again. Rest 1 to 3 minutes, until your HR and breathing are calm. Set 2: 500yd straight swim, total = 500 yards. Description: Swim this 500 strong but not all out. Keep your pace level. This means the first 100 yards will seem very easy. This should be a clue about how you should start your swim in triathlons which are typically triple this distance or longer. Set 3: 2 x 50yd kicking = 100 yards. Description: Try to kick this on your back, just flutter kick, no kickboard, hands in front of your head, leading, on the top of the water. Use Zoomers if necessary.
7 Total this workout: 1100 yards Week 1, Extra Credit, 4 th Workout: Set 1: Warmup. Total = 500 yards. Description: - 6 x 50yd leave on the 1min, 1:10 or 1:20, giving you more than 5sec but less than 15sec rest. - 50yd kicking - 3 x 50yd on the 1min, 1:10 or 1:20 base. Rest 1 to 3 minutes, until your HR and breathing are calm. Set 2: 6 x 150yd, total = 900 yards. Description: Leave on the 3min, 3:30, or 4min, choosing your interval by giving yourself at least 15sec rest but no more than 40sec rest. Total this workout: 1400 yards Week 1, Extra Credit, 5 th Workout: Set 1: Warmup. Total = 600 yards. Description: - 6 x 50yd leave on the 1min, 1:10 or 1:20, giving you more than 5sec but less than 15sec rest. Rest 1min. - 3 x 100yd on the 2min, 2:20 or 2:40 base. Rest 1 to 3 minutes, until your HR and breathing are calm.
8 Set 2: Swim 100yd, kick 50yd x 4 = 600 yards. Description: Swim your 100yd comfortably, move straight into a 50yd kick, then straight into the swim, this 600 yard set is nonstop. Set 3: 100yd x 4 = 400 yards alternating fast and slow 50s. Description: Each 50 is fast immediately followed by the slowest 50 you can swim while holding form. This is a nonstop swim. Total this workout: 1600 yards Weekly Totals: Workouts 1 thru 3: 4000 yards Workouts 1 thru 4: 5400 yards Workouts 1 thru 5: 7000 yards