Thursday, January 28, 2016

EC Swim Challenge

by Justin Daerr

Every year Endurance Corner puts together a two-week challenge for our athletes to up their swim training in February. This year we wanted to expand this challenge beyond our team and encourage anyone who visits the EC site to join us. Winter has been harsh this year (I’m pretty sure it’s snowing in Miami right now) and motivation can start to wane as the weather continues to be less than cooperative.

With that in mind, right now is the perfect time to give your swim fitness a bump with a two week overload. For the next two weeks, we will post a 3, 4, and 5k workout each evening on our homepage (within this article), with the exception of each Saturday evening, giving you Sunday off from the pool.

Whether you decide to use our workouts or your own, we hope you can join us in our two-week challenge.

Good luck!


Session 12 - Saturday, February 21
The final day of the EC swim challenge is a simple one: the straight swim.

5K Workout
Warm up
200 easy
16x25 as descend 1-4 4x on 10” rest
200 easy

Main Set
4K straight swim; get your time

200 choice


4K Workout
Warm up
200 easy
16x25 as descend 1-4 4x on 10” rest
200 easy

Main Set
3K straight swim; get your time

200 choice


3K Workout
Warm up
200 easy
16x25 as descend 1-4 4x on 10” rest
200 easy

Main Set
2K straight swim; get your time

200 choice


Session 11 - Friday, February 21
Today’s main set is a long set that starts and finishes strong with a moderated middle section. Stay focused late in the workout as it can become difficult to stay on pace in the early 100s after the long pull.

5K Workout
Warm up - 1000m
400 easy
300 buoy+paddles
4x50 25 build / 25 easy
100 choice
All on 15” rest

Main Set - 3600m
2x100 good effort, 10” rest
Then drop 5 seconds off the interval and swim 10x100 on 5” rest
Transition to paddles+buoy+band
1200 straight with gear
Take gear off; wait 20-30 seconds then go into:
12x100 on same interval you used for 10x100 above

200 kick
200 easy


4K Workout
Warm up - 600m
200 easy
200 buoy+paddles
2x50 25 build / 25 easy
100 choice
All on 15” rest

Main Set -3000m
2x100 good effort, 10” rest
Then drop 5 seconds off interval and swim 8x100 on 5” rest
Transition to paddles+buoy+band
1000 straight with gear
Take gear off; wait 20-30 seconds then go into:
10x100 on same interval you used for 8x100 above

200 kick
200 easy


3K Workout
Warm up - 800m
300 easy
200 buoy+paddles
4x50 25 build / 25 easy
100 choice
All on 15” rest

Main Set - 1800m
2x100 good effort, 10” rest
Then drop 5 seconds off interval and swim 4x100 on 5” rest
Transition to paddles+buoy+band
600 straight with gear;
Take gear off; wait 20-30 seconds then go into:
6x100 on same interval you used for 4x100 above

200 kick
200 easy


Session 10 - Thursday, February 20
Today’s workout has a mixture of strength work and pace changes. Really focus on keeping the easy sections nice and mellow and only speeding up when called for.

5K Workout
Warm up
800 easy choice

Main Set - 3450m
5x250 paddles+buoy on 15” rest; middle 50 strong; the rest moderate
-100 easy-
4x200 band+buoy as 50 easy / 50 build 2x through on 15” rest
-100 easy-
4x150 paddles on as 50 easy / 50 build / 50 steady on 15” rest
-100 easy-
4x100 swim as 25 quick / 50 easy / 25 quick on 15” rest
-100 easy-

5x50 kick; first one nice and mellow, then descend the last 4 on 10” rest
12x25 swim as easy, steady, fast, fast on 10” rest
200 easy


4K workout
Warm up
600 easy choice

Main Set - 2750m
4x250 paddles+buoy on 15” rest; middle 50 strong; the rest moderate
-100 easy-
3x200 band+buoy as 50 easy / 50 build 2x through on 15” rest
-100 easy-
3x150 paddles on as 50 easy / 50 build / 50 steady on 15” rest
-100 easy-
3x100 swim as 25 quick / 50 easy / 25 quick on 15” rest
-100 easy-

5x50 kick; first one nice and mellow, then descend the last 4 on 10” rest
8x25 swim as easy, steady, fast, fast on 10” rest
200 easy


3K workout
Warm up
500 easy choice

Main Set - 1850m
3x250 paddles+buoy on 15” rest; middle 50 strong; the rest moderate
-50 easy-
2x200 band+buoy as 50 easy / 50 build 2x through on 15” rest
-50 easy-
2x150 paddles on as 50 easy / 50 build / 50 steady on 15” rest
-50 easy-
2x100 swim as 25 quick / 50 easy / 25 quick on 15” rest
-50 easy-

5x50 kick; first one nice and mellow, then descend the last 4 on 10” rest
8x25 swim as easy, steady, fast, fast on 10” rest
200 easy


Session 9 - Wednesday, February 19
Today’s main set is one of the longest of the swim challenge. The main set should feel somewhat like an extended warm up early on and should eventually become more challenging in the second half. Be smart early.

5K Workout
Warm up - 600m
200 easy
2x100 moderate
4x50 descend
-all on 10” rest

Main Set - 4000m
2x100 on X+10”
2x100 on X
2x100 on X+10”
4x100 on X
2x100 on X+10”
6x100 on X
2x100 on X+10”
8x100 on X
2x100 on X+10”
10x100 on X

For example, if X = 1:45 send off, you would swim 2x100 on 1:55, 2 on 1:45, 2 on 1:55, 4 on 1:45, etc.

200 kick
200 easy


4K Workout
Warm up - 600m
200 easy
2x100 moderate
4x50 descend
-all on 10” rest

Main Set - 3000m
2x100 on X+10”
2x100 on X
2x100 on X+10”
4x100 on X
2x100 on X+10”
6x100 on X
2x100 on X+10”
10x100 on X

For example, if X = 1:45 send off, you would swim 2x100 on 1:55, 2 on 1:45, 2 on 1:55, 4 on 1:45, etc.

200 kick
200 easy


3K Workout
Warm up - 600m
200 easy
2x100 moderate
4x50 descend
-all on 10” rest

Main Set - 2000m
2x100 on X+10”
2x100 on X
2x100 on X+10”
4x100 on X
2x100 on X+10”
8x100 on X

For example, if X = 1:45 send off, you would swim 2x100 on 1:55, 2 on 1:45, 2 on 1:55, 4 on 1:45, etc.

200 kick
200 easy


Session 8 - Tuesday, February 18
Today’s main set includes several repeats with gear and finishes up with some 50s of regular swimming. During each round, the only rest you take on the 200s or 150s is changing the gear up. Keep the effort moderated until you get to the 50s at the end of each round. The challenge comes from trying to speed up at the end of each round after all the paddle/pull work.

5K Workout
Warm Up - 1500m
400 easy
400 buoy
400 buoy+paddles
6x50 as 25 build / 25 easy
100 easy back stroke
-all on 10-15” rest

Main Set -3200m
Four rounds of:
200 band+buoy+paddles
200 buoy+paddles
200 paddles only
4x50 swim descend 1-4 on 5” rest
-Rest 20-30” as you put gear back on

The only rest in the set above is stripping gear as you move your way through the set; then take 20-30” at the end before repeating.

300 cool down


4K Workout
Warm Up - 1400m
400 easy
400 buoy
400 buoy+paddles
4x50 as 25 build / 25 easy
100 easy back stroke
-all on 10-15” rest

Main Set -2400m
Three rounds of:
200 band+buoy+paddles
200 buoy+paddles
200 paddles only
4x50 swim descend 1-4 on 5” rest
-Rest 20-30” as you put gear back on

The only rest in the set above is stripping gear as you move your way through the set; then take 20-30” at the end before repeating.

200 cool down


3K Workout
Warm Up - 800m
200 easy
200 buoy
200 buoy+paddles
3x50 as 25 build / 25 easy
50 easy back stroke
-all on 10-15” rest

Main Set -1800m
Three rounds of:
150 band+buoy+paddles
150 buoy+paddles
150 paddles only
3x50 swim descend 1-3 on 5” rest
-Rest 20-30” as you put gear back on

The only rest in the set above is stripping gear as you move your way through the set; then take 20-30” at the end before repeating.

400 cool down


Session 7 - Monday, February 17
Today’s session begins with a set that many people are familiar with (40x50 and assorted variations). When you get to the fartlek set below (Set 2), take enough rest between all fast and easy segments to allow for each repeat length (such as the 50 and 50) to be as close to an even pace as possible.

5k Workout
Warm up - 1150m
400 easy choice, rest 15”
10 x 75 as 25 easy / 25 build / 25 back, 10” rest

Set 1 - 2000m
40x50 as:
16x50 as 3 cruise, 1 fast on 5-10” rest
12x50 as 2 cruise, 1 fast (add 5” rest to send off)
8x50 as 1 cruise, 1 fast (add another 5” to send off)
4x50 as 4 fast (add another 5” to send off)

600 paddles/buoy relaxed effort

Set 2 - 700m
25 fast / 25 easy
50 fast / 25 easy
75 fast / 25 easy
100 fast / 25 easy
100 fast / 25 easy
75 fast / 25 easy
50 fast / 25 easy
25 fast / 25 easy

6x50 kick descend 1-3 2x on 10” rest
250 choice


4k Workout
Warm up - 1000m
400 easy choice, rest 15”
8x75 as 25 easy / 25 build / 25 back, 10” rest

Set 1 - 1500m
30x50 as:
12x50 as 3 cruise, 1 fast on 5-10” rest
9x50 as 2 cruise, 1 fast (add 5” rest to send off)
6x50 as 1 cruise, 1 fast (add another 5” to send off)
4x50 as all fast (add another 5” to send off)

500 paddles/buoy relaxed effort

Set 2 -450m
25 fast / 25 easy
50 fast / 25 easy
75 fast / 25 easy
75 fast / 25 easy
50 fast / 25 easy
25 fast / 25 easy

6x50 kick descend 1-3 2x on 10” rest
250 choice


3k Workout
Warm up - 600m
300 easy choice, rest 15”
4x (3x25 as 25 easy / 25 build / 25 back 10” rest)

Set 1 - 1000m
20 x 50 as:
8x50 as 3 cruise, 1 fast on 5-10” rest
6x50 as 2 cruise, 1 fast (add 5” rest to send off)
4x50 as 1 cruise, 1 fast (add another 5” to send off)
2x50 as all fast (add another 5” to send off)

4x100 paddles/buoy relaxed effort on 15” rest

Set 2 - 450m
25 fast / 25 easy
50 fast / 25 easy
75 fast / 25 easy
75 fast / 25 easy
50 fast / 25 easy
25 fast / 25 easy

6x50 kick descend 1-3 2x on 10” rest
250 choice


Session 6 - Saturday, February 15
Today’s session is a variation of set from one of Monica Byrn’s masters sessions in Boulder. She uses this set as a chance to benchmark progress of her athletes every four to six weeks. A time trial might seem like a tall order after a week’s worth of high swim volume, but you might just surprise yourself. Just relax, take a deep breath, and GO!

5k Workout
Warm up - 1800m
600 easy choice
8x75 as easy/build/easy by 25s on 10” rest
6x50 descend 1-3 2x on 15” rest
6x25 descend 1-3 2x on 10” rest
150 easy float/shake out

Main Set - 2700m
600 paddles/buoy cruise; rest 30”
3x200 swim steady on 10”, 20”, 30” rest
6x100 paddles only on 15”, 10”, 10”, 5”, 5”, 5” rest
100 very easy recovery

When ready:
600 for time

500 easy choice cool down


4k Workout
Warm up - 1800m
600 easy choice
8x75 as easy/build/easy by 25s on 10” rest
6x50 descend 1-3 2x on 15” rest
6x25 descend 1-3 2x on 10” rest
150 easy float/shake out

Main Set - 1700m
400 paddles/buoy cruise; rest 30”
2x200 swim steady on 10”, 20” rest
4x100 paddles only on 10”, 10”, 5”, 5” rest
100 very easy recovery

When ready:
400 for time

500 easy choice cool down


3k Workout
Warm up - 1000m
300 easy choice
4x75 as easy/build/easy by 25s on 10” rest
3x50 descend 1-3 2x on 15” rest
6x25 descend 1-3 2x on 10” rest
200 easy float/shake out

Main Set - 1500m
400 paddles/buoy cruise; rest 30”
2x200 swim steady on 10”, 20” rest
3x100 paddles only on 10” rest
100 very easy recovery

When ready:
300 for time

500 easy choice cool down


Session 5 - Friday, February 14
Today’s workout includes a long aerobic main set. There are some pick ups within the 100s and 50s before returning to the distance repeats. Make it a goal to try and hold or slightly descend your pace on the distance repeats (#1, 5, 8) throughout the workout.

5k Workout
Warm up - 1200m
2x200 easy choice; 15” rest
6x100 as 25 right arm only / 25 left arm only / 50 swim; 15” rest
8x25 descend 1-4 2x

Main Set - 3200m
8x400 broken up as:
#1 400 straight swim on 30” rest
#2 2x200 on 15” rest
#3 4x100 as two quicker on 10” rest, two moderate on 10” rest
#4 8x50 as three moderate on 5” rest, three quicker on 5” rest, two easy on 10” rest
#5 400 straight swim on 30” rest
#6 4x100 as two quicker on 10” rest, two moderate on 10” rest
#7 8x50 as three moderate on 5” rest, three quicker on 5” rest, two easy on 10” rest
#8 400 straight swim

8x25 easy backstroke shake out
4x50 kick (can be with fins), 10” rest
200 easy


4k Workout
Warm up - 1200m
2x200 easy choice; 15” rest
6x100 as 25 right arm only / 25 left arm only / 50 swim; 15” rest
8x25 descend 1-4 2x

Main Set - 2400m
6x400 broken up as:
#1 400 straight swim on 30” rest
#2 4x100 as two quicker on 10” rest, two moderate on 10” rest
#3 8x50 as three moderate on 5” rest, three quicker on 5” rest, two easy on 10” rest
#4 400 straight swim on 30” rest
#5 8x50 as three moderate on 5” rest, three quicker on 5” rest, two easy on 10” rest
#6 400 straight swim

4x25 easy backstroke shake out
4x50 kick (can be with fins), 10” rest
100 easy


3k Workout
Warm up - 800m
2x200 easy choice; 15” rest
3x100 as 25 right arm only / 25 left arm only / 50 swim; 15” rest
4x25 descend 1-4 10” rest

Main Set - 1800m
6x300 broken up as:
#1 300 straight swim on 30” rest
#2 3x100 as one quicker on 10” rest, two moderate on 10” rest
#3 6x50 as two moderate on 5” rest, two quicker on 5” rest, two easy on 10” rest
#4 300 straight swim on 30” rest
#5 6x50 as two moderate on 5” rest, two quicker on 5” rest, two easy on 15” rest
#6 300 straight swim

4x25 easy backstroke shake out
4x50 kick (can be with fins), 10” rest
100 easy


Session 4 - Thursday, February 13
Today’s workout has a few smaller sets with less overall intensity than the last few days. The whole workout should almost feel like an extensive warm up with a few chances to pick up the pace for short bouts.

5k Workout
Warm up - 1500m
600 easy as 125 free / 25 choice continuous
6x (75 easy, rest 5”, 25 build, rest 10”)
12x25 as either 2 easy, 2 quick (3x) on 10” rest or IM order by 25s (3x) on 10” rest

Set 1 - 1000m
20x50 as 3 steady, 1 quicker (but controlled, only a few seconds faster than steady); 10” rest on all

Set 2 - 1500m
500, 400, 300 with paddles/buoy very moderate, 20” rest
300 paddles only build by 100s

8x50 kick descend 1-4 2x; can be with fins; 10” rest
8x50 as IM order 25/25 free; choice rest (can replace fly with head up freestyle)
200 choice


4k Workout
Warm up - 1200m
400 easy as 75 free / 25 choice continuous
6x (75 easy, rest 5”, 25 build, rest 10”)
8x25 as either 2 easy, 2 quick on 10” rest (2x) or IM order by 25s (2x) on 10” rest

Set 1 - 800m
16x50 as 3 steady, 1 quicker (but controlled, only a few seconds faster than steady); 10” rest on all

Set 2 - 1400m
500, 400, 300 with paddles/buoy very moderate, 20” rest
200 paddles only build by 50s

6x50 kick descend 1-3 2x, can be with fins, 10” rest
4x50 as IM order 25/25 free, choice rest (can replace fly with head up freestyle)
100 choice


3k Workout
Warm up - 800m
200 easy as 75 free / 25 choice continuous
4x (75 easy, rest 5”, 25 build, rest 10”)
8x25 as either 2 easy, 2 quick (2x) on 10” rest or IM order by 25s (2x) on 10” rest

Set 1 - 600m
12x50 as 3 steady, 1 quicker (but controlled, only a few seconds faster than steady); 10” rest on all

Set 2 - 1000m
400, 200, 200 with paddles/buoy very moderate, 20” rest
100 paddles only build by 25s

6x50 kick descend 1-3 2x, can be with fins, 10” rest

4x50 as IM order 25/25 free; choice rest (can replace fly with head up freestyle)
100 choice


Session 3 - Wednesday, February 12
Today’s main set is the first workout that requires specific send offs, as opposed to a suggested rest interval. For this workout, you want to choose a send off to begin with that will allow for 10+ seconds rest while swimming moderately. As the workout progresses, you will drop the interval by 5 and then 10 seconds as speed and intensity rise. For example, you might choose 1:45 (X) to begin with, then move to 1:40 (X-5) and eventually 1:35 (X-10) in middle.

The tightest intervals are in the middle of the main set and are bookended with easy 100s (X+60) to allow for better quality in this section. Stay under control early on to allow for pace to rise in the middle, and to allow you to return to a more moderate aerobic pace on the back end of the main set.

5k Workout
Warm up - 1500m
400 easy; rest 15”
200 band/buoy; rest 15”
200 buoy; rest 15”
400 buoy/paddles 15”
2x (3x50 kick, drill, swim) on 10” rest

Main Set - 2700m
5x100 on X interval
5x100 on X-5”
1x100 on X+60” (full recovery)
5x100 on X-10”
1x100 on X+60” (full recovery)
5x100 on X-5”
5x100 on X interval

6x50 as 25 choice / 25 free on 15” rest
6x50 kick on 5, 10, 15 seconds rest 2x through
200 easy choice


4K Workout
Warm up - 1100m
200 easy; rest 15”
200 band/buoy; rest 15”
200 buoy; rest 15”
200 buoy/paddles 15”
2x (3x50 kick, drill, swim) on 10” rest

Main Set - 2300m
5x100 on X interval
4x100 on X-5”
1x100 on X+60” (full recovery)
3x100 on X-10”
1x100 on X+60” (full recovery)
4x100 on X-5”
5x100 on X interval

4x50 as 25 choice / 25 free on 15” rest
4x50 kick on 10” rest
200 easy choice


3K Workout
Warm up - 800m
200 easy; rest 15”
100 band/buoy; rest 15”
100 buoy; rest 15”
100 buoy/paddles 15”
2x (3x50 kick, drill, swim) on 10” rest

Main Set - 1600m
3x100 on X interval
3x100 on X-5”
1x100 on X+60” (full recovery)
2x100 on X-10”
1x100 on X+60” (full recovery)
3x100 on X-5”
3x100 on X interval

4x50 as 25 choice / 25 free on 15” rest
4x50 kick on 10” rest
200 easy choice


Session 2 - Tuesday, February 11

Today’s main set is a distance/endurance set with a focus on being strong late in the workout. The goal is to make your fourth and fifth repeats the fastest of the entire workout. In order to achieve that, you will need to temper your efforts early on.

5k Workout
Warm Up - 1500m
400 easy, every 4th length choice; 15” rest
400 easy w/buoy; 15” rest
400 with buoy+paddles, build every 4th length; 15” rest
4x50 as 25 build / 25 easy; 10” rest
100 easy shake out

Main Set - 2500m
5x 500 as
#1+2 swim steady on 30” rest
#3 paddles+buoy (optional to add band); moderate effort on 30” rest
#4+5 swim both repeats faster than #1+2; #5 should be fastest repeat of all; 30” rest

100 choice; easy shake out
8x50 steady kick alternating 5+10 seconds rest
12x25 swim as easy, steady, fast, fast 3x through on 10” rest
200 choice


4k Workout
Warm Up - 1200m
300 easy, every 4th length choice; 15” rest
300 easy w/buoy; 15” rest
300 with buoy+paddles, build every 4th length; 15” rest
4x50 as 25 build / 25 easy; 10” rest
100 easy shake out

Main Set - 2000m
5x400 as
#1+2 swim steady on 30” rest
#3 paddles+buoy (optional to add band); moderate effort on 30” rest
#4+5 swim both repeats faster than #1+2; #5 should be fastest repeat of all; 30” rest

100 choice; easy shake out
4x50 steady kick alternating 5+10 seconds rest
12x25 swim as easy, steady, fast, fast 3x through on 10” rest
200 choice


3k Workout
Warm Up - 900m
200 easy, every 4th length choice; 15” rest
200 easy w/buoy; 15” rest
200 with buoy+paddles, build every 4th length; 15” rest
4x50 as 25 build / 25 easy; 10” rest
100 easy shake out

Main Set - 1500m
5x300 as
#1+2 swim steady on 30” rest
#3 paddles+buoy (optional to add band); moderate effort on 30” rest
#4+5 swim both repeats faster than #1+2; #5 should be fastest repeat of all; 30” rest

100 choice; easy shake out
4x50 steady kick alternating 5+10 seconds rest
8x25 swim as easy, steady, fast, fast 2x through on 10” rest
100 choice


Session 1 - Monday, February 10

Today’s main set calls for groups of shorter descending repeats followed by a 200 steady swim. A good way to approach this set is to try to swim the 200 around the pace of your second repeat in each descending set. For example: if you swam the opening 50s in 47, 45, 43 and 41 seconds, then you should target about 3:00 on the steady 200.


5k Workout

Warm Up - 1500m
200 easy; 15” rest
400 build with buoy; 15” rest
300 as 75 off-side breathing with every 4th length non-free choice; 15” rest
4x (3x50 as swim/kick/build) on 10” rest

Main Set - 2600m
4x50 descend on 10” rest, 200 steady 20” rest
4x100 descend on 10” rest, 200 steady 20” rest
4x150 descend on 10” rest, 200 steady 30” rest
4x200 descend on 10” rest

+++
100 easy shake out then 8x25 kick on 10” rest
+++
6x50 alt by fast/easy with easy/fast on 15” rest
+++
100 pull, 100 IM, 100 choice


4k Workout

Warm Up - 1500m
200 easy
400 build with buoy
300 as 75 off-side breathing with every 4th length non-free choice
4x (3x50 as swim/kick/build) on 10” rest

Main Set - 1800m
4x50 descend on 10” rest, 200 steady 20” rest
4x100 descend on 15” rest, 200 steady 20” rest
4x150 descend on 15” rest, 200 steady 30” rest

+++
100 easy shake out, then 8x25 kick on 10” rest
+++
4x50 alternate fast/easy with easy/fast on 15” rest
+++
100 pull, 100 choice


3k Workout

Warm Up - 900m
200 easy
200 build with buoy
200 as 75 off-side breathing w/ every 4th length non-free choice
2 x (3x50 as swim/kick/build) on 10” rest

Main Set - 1500m
3x50 descend on 15” rest, 200 steady 30” rest
3x100 descend on 15” rest, 200 steady 30” rest
3x150 descend on 15” rest, 200 steady 30” rest

+++
100 easy shake out, then 8x25 kick on 10” rest
+++
3 x 50 as 25 fast / 25 easy
+++
150 easy choice

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