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Training sessions 15 to 28 February 2019

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In August 2019, I'm aiming to swim 21km (plus potentially a little more) at Vidöstern Simmet, which is billed as Sweden's toughest open water race. At Outdoor Swimmer we frequently get asked for ideas for training sessions, so I started sharing the training sessions I'm doing for that on Twitter @SimonDGriffiths for anyone else that wants to try them. I've now decided to move them here as I kept running out of characters on Twitter. These are mostly sessions I've done with Teddington Masters Swimming Club and created by the club coaches (thank you Ian, Lorraine and Veronica). Others I do with friends (AKA "The 400 Club"). Tuesday morning sessions are often adapted from sets originally created by Fiona Ford from Triathlon Europe, who is a Swim Smooth coach and contributor to Outdoor Swimmer.

Training sessions often appear to be written in code so please ask via Twitter if anything is not clear. Abbreviations I use include:

FC = Front crawl, BA = Backstroke, BS = Breaststroke, Fly = Butterfly, IM = Individual Medley, +10s = take about 10 seconds rest before starting the next swim.

The main pools I use are Hampton Pool (36m long), Richmond Pools on the Park (33.3m long), Teddington Pool (25m) and Hanworth Pool (25m)

Adapt the distances for the length of pool you're training in and adjust the times to suit your own swimming speed. Let me know via Twitter how you get on.


Previous training sessions


Training sessions from 15 to 28 February 2019


Wednesday morning 27 Feb 2019 – Richmond Pools on the Park (33.3m pool)

Pre-competition sprint session

Warm up

4L FC, 3L BA, 2L BS, 1L FL, 2L kick (400m)

6 x 2L odds build, evens sprint first ½ length + 20s rest (400m)

Main

12 x 33.3m sprint, 3 on each stroke + 30s rest after each

66.7m easy

2 rounds of:

  • 4 x 100m FC off 1:45 as 2L steady, 5s rest, 1L sprint
  • 100m easy
  • 2 x 100m FC Max effort off 2:00
  • 100m easy

Cool down

4 x 33.3m FC easy, stroke focus, bilateral breathing +5s after each.

66.7m BA

Total 3066.7m


Tuesday morning 26 Feb 2019 – Richmond Pools on the Park (33.3m pool)

Slightly easier CSS/threshold set in advance of Bracknell masters gala at the weekend

Warm up

4 x 100m alt FC/BA

Build

4 x 100m FC descending off 2:00 (i.e. swim each one faster than the previous one)

Main set

At threshold pace, swim three rounds of:

  • 4 x 66.7m FC off 1:00 (approx. 7s rest after each)
  • 2 x 100m FC off 1:35 (approx. 15s rest after each)
  • 1 x 200m FC
  • 66.7m easy

Cool down

200m easy

Total: 3200m


Monday morning 25 February – Richmond Pools on the Park (33.3m)

Eight in the lane this morning for this set of 8 400s - you certainly feel the draft benefit when you swim as number 6!

Warm up

400m as 3 x (100m FC, 33.3m BA)

Main set

8 x 400m FC off 6:15 consistent pacing at around 5:35 to 5:40 per 400.

6 x 33.m FL + 30s rest after each

Cool down

200m easy

Total: 4000m


Saturday morning 23 February 2019 – Hampton Pool (36m)

Best swimming session of the week at Hampton Pool, starting at 6:25 in the morning, followed by coffee and jam tarts.

Warm up

216m FC

4 x 2 lengths drill IM order (ie. 2 lengths on each stroke)

216m FC

4 x 2 IM order kick

216m FC as 4 lengths hard, 2 lengths easy

Main set

(Part 1)

10 x 72m FC on 1:00 (approx. 5s rest after each)

72m easy

4 x 36m sprint, IM order

2 x 36m sprint BA

2 x 36m sprint FL (approx. 30s rest after each)

72m easy

432m FC

72m easy

(Part 2)

5 x 72m FC on 1:00 (approx. 5s rest after each)

2 x 144m FC as 3 lengths hard, 1 easy (+ 30s rest)

72m easy

4 x 36m FC breath holding

Cool down

216m easy

Total: 3960m


Friday lunchtime 22 February 2019 – Teddington Pool (25m)

Popular lunchtime session with Teddington Masters

Warm up

100m FC, 100m BA, 100m BS, 100m FC, 100m BA

Main set

4 rounds of (75m build, rest, 25m sprint, rest, 50m easy) – 1 round on each stroke. On rests, pause to wait for 6th swimmer in lane to finish.

4 x 25m sprint IM order

3 x 4x1 IM as easy, medium, sprint

50m easy

6 x 50m off 1:20 as one sprint, one recovery, choice of stroke

25m easy

4 x 25m sprint with racing starts (off blocks for dives). Walk back.

Cool down

100m easy

Total distance: 2075m


Thursday evening 21 February – Hanworth Pool (25m)

A solid front crawl set with Teddington Masters and coach Lorraine.

Warm up

400m FC, 200m BA, 400m FC

Build

4 x 50m FC off 45s, 4 x 25m kick, 4 x 50m FC off 45s

8 x 25m FC steady, stroke focus (2-3s rest after each)

4 x 50m FC off 45s

Main

3 x 200m FC off 3:15 steady pace, sprint last 50m of each

100m easy

200m FC max effort, 50m easy

4 x 25m FL sprints, 50m easy

4 x 100m FC off 1:35 (approx. 10s rest after each)

4 x 100m FC off 1:30 (approx. 7s rest after each)

4 x 100m FC off 1:25 (approx. 5s rest after each)

50m easy after each block of four 100s

2 x 25m FL sprints

Cool down

200m easy

Total distance: 4600m


Wednesday morning 20 February – Richmond (33.3m pool)

Start the day with some sprints. This session has a nice sting in the tail.

Warm up

400m alt FC/BA

6 x 33.3m FC build off 45s

6 x 33m FC as half length sprint, half length easy off 45s

Main set

3 rounds of:

  • 33.3m FC sprint + 5s rest (aim for 100m race pace)
  • 100m FC steady

Off 2:30

3 rounds of:

  • 66.7m FC sprint + 5s rest (aim for 200m race pace)
  • 66.7m FC steady

Off 2:30

3 rounds of:

  • 100m FC sprint + 5s rest (aim for 400m race pace)
  • 33.3m FC steady

Off 2:30

3 x 133m FC off 2:30 (aim for 400m race pace)

200m easy

200m max effort

Cool down

200m easy

Total 3000m

Tuesday morning 19 February 2019 – Richmond Pools on the Park (33.3m pool)

Threshold (CSS) set by Chris Freeman based on an original by Fiona Ford

Warm up

100m FC, 100m BA, 100m FC, 100m BA, 100m FC

8 x 33.3m sprint (2 on each stroke)

Main set

6 x 100m FC off 1:35 (approx. 15s rest), then straight into 200m FC at same pace

200m easy

8 x 66.7m FC off 1:00 (approx. 7s rest), then straight into 200m FC at same pace

200m easy

6 x 100m FC off 1:30

Cool down

6 x 33m FC, stroke focus

4 x 100m FC off 1:45, easy pace, bilateral breathing and stroke focus

100m BA easy

2 x 200m FC off 1:45, easy pace, bilateral breathing and stroke focus

Total 4200m

Monday morning 18 February 2019 – Richmond Pools on the Park (33.3m pool)

Back in the pool with The 400 club after a day walking in the hills yesterday.

Warm up

400m as 3 x (100m FC, 33.3m BA)

Main

8 x 400m FC off 6:15 (descending from 5:45 to 5:30)

Cool down

200m easy

Total: 3800m

Saturday morning 16 February – Hampton Pool (36m)

90-minute Teddington Masters club session

Warm up

26 lengths as 2 lengths FC, 1 length medley order drill (936m)

Main set

2 x 12 lengths FC off 7 minutes (approx. 1 minute rest)

2 lengths easy

6 x 4x1 Individual Medley (approx. 20s rest after each)

2 lengths easy

12 x 2 lengths mix strokes (mainly FC) (approx. 30s rest after each)

8 x 1 length sprint (FC, FL, FC, BA, FC, BS, FC, FL)

Cool down

6 lengths easy

Total distance: 4176m

Friday 15 February - Swim Solutions and Teddington Pool (25m)

I started this block of training with a video analysis session in the endless pool with TI coach Tracey Baumann at Swim Solutions. These sessions always generate a mixture of frustration (new faults introduced since my previous filming, old faults that have crept back or never been eliminated) and optimism (maybe I can go faster if I can iron out those faults). Key areas for improvement are hand entry on my right side and refining the catch and tightening the connection between the upper and lower parts of my body through engaging the core. I then went to Teddington Pool for a short swim to try to put into practice the new focus points.

4 x 25m as FC, BA, BS, FC + 10s rest

4 x 75m as FL, BA, BS + 30s rest after each

4 x 50m FC off 50s

4 x 25m FC kick + 15s rest after each

4 x 75m FC + 30s rest after each

75m easy FC stroke focus

3 x 25m FC sprints from a dive

100m FC stroke focus

Total distance: 1250m

Cover April19

Issue 25 April 2019

  • Take the plunge! Your first outdoor mile
  • Training sessions for all abilities
  • The Siren's Call - Not all mermaids are damp Disney prinesses
  • How to cope with a mass open water start
  • Wild About You - find love with the swimmer of your dreams

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