Pre-race swim calms my nerves

I wrote earlier this week that I’d decided, sort of accidentally, to taper for the Broad Street Run tomorrow. This is mostly because of a doctor’s order not to run on the ankle I’d just gotten a cortisone shot in.

But I have gotten a few good swims in, including a great workout suggested by my friend Meredith yesterday. I jokingly-but-not refer to Meredith as my swim coach. A swimmer and former swim coach herself, she suggested training parameters for the Bay Bridge Swim and the Ocean Marathon in Jacksonville that were totally dead-on. Also, she always seems to have a great workout on hand — something that’s both fun and butt-whupping, which is about the best compliment I can give a workout.

I modified what was a much longer workout (stay tuned for the full version, which I plan to attempt sometime next week) to reflect that fact that I do plan to run 10 miles, fast, tomorrow. Check out my amended version, which works out to about 3,300 yards, below. A word of advice: the 25s, which look like an afterthought, will KILL your triceps and your lungs after you’ve completed the rest of the workout.

500 warm up

10×50 on 1:00 (warm up set, your choice stroke)

Pyramid set, freestyle, on :15 rest, moderate pace that you can maintain (goal is to hold your pace the whole time): > 1×50 > 1×100 > 1×150 > 1×200 > 1×250 > 1×300 > 1×250 > 1×200 > 1×150 > 1×100 > 1×50

4×25 sprint your choice on :45

4×25 no-breath freestyle, as much rest as you need (if you’ve got good lung capacity and breath control, you shouldn’t need more than 20 to 30 seconds)

300 cool down

Also, do you guys know about the Speedo waterproof mp3 player? I didn’t, until Meredith told me about it (Like I said … she knows her stuff). Now, I’m not sure how I can live without it. Have you used one of these? Let me know what you think, if so.


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5 responses to “Pre-race swim calms my nerves

  1. Mer

    Next time, do the pyramid three times – once just pull and once kick with fins – and THEN attempt the sprints and no-breathers! I promise you, you’ll want to die. In the best way possible. And then, really and truly, you get a free pass to eat whatever you want for the rest of the day.

  2. Interesting that you use a pre-race swim to calm your nerves. If the doctor had not told you to take it easy would you still do a pre-race swim instead of easy jog? It makes sense that swimming would loosen you up and wake up your muscles before a race without over working the muscles you will be using while racing. Do you think swimming was better for you pre-race?

  3. Good question. Typically, I run two days before a race, then take the day before the race off. I always worry that without that last run, my legs won’t feel fresh enough on race day. But swimming worked so well this time, I’ll definitely consider subbing it for a run in the future.

  4. Pingback: Swimming motivation found « Amy’s Training Blog

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