I have been doing a good job of consistently swimming at lunch the last few months. It's really helped me increase my mileage this year and I'm on track to hit 200 miles for the year!
One of my swim buds spent Thanksgiving with his family visiting their daughter at the University of New Mexico. She is a freshman there and is competing in her first year of collegiate swimming. During the holiday visit, he got in the pool and swam during the team's workout a few times. He came back with the idea for a workout that he got from one of their coached sessions.
The workout sounded very simple...in theory! It's a set of 50's done on a decreasing interval time. You start at the minute, then subtract 5 seconds until you hit 40 seconds and then start over again at the minute. Two weeks ago on a Friday, we decided to try out the workout. Fridays are our 50's Friday theme and we always do different workouts that are focused on 50's.
We got the workout started on the top and did okay at first. Somewhere in the middle of the 3rd set it all fell apart. We started getting our send off times confused and it was a mess. We lost track of which interval we were on and how many sets that we had done. It was mayhem in the pool!
Fast forward one week...we had learned our lesson from the first week and had written out the send off times for the sets. We stayed on our workout sheet for about 3 sets again before it again fell apart. At that point, we had a shift change...two of us were finished with our swims and another getting started so we switched out who was swimming the set together. It worked out great and the final two restarted the intervals and seemed to hold it together for a couple sets.
I got back to my desk and later that afternoon got an email from my friend asking me to try and figure out the math of where we had gone wrong. What I came up with was that this:
Order: Stroke on min, Stroke/Free on 55 sec, Free on 50, Free on 45, Free on 40
Set 1 - top, top, 55, 45, 30, 10(stroke)
Set 2 - 10, 5, 55, 40, 20
Set 3 - 20, 15, 5, 50, 30
Set 4 - 30, 25, 15, top, 40
Set 5 - 40, 35, 25, 10, 50
So in the first set you actually do 6 repeats in order to capture starting on the top. Then as you end each set, with the interval on the 40 you are basically finishing as a touch and go. When you send off after the touch and go, you are going back to your stroke on the minute interval. It feels really strange to come off of a sprint and then cruise...this is where we kept getting confused. We were swimming this interval too fast and either skipping or repeating the minute to try and get back on track.
The group plans to try out the workout again this Friday to see if the Third Times a Charm! I'll be out of town on Friday but I can't wait to hear how it goes.
So far my December swim mileage is at 7.7 miles and my year total is at 188.58 miles leaving me with 11.5 miles left to swim in the 18 days remaining. I think I'm going to make it!!!