swimming workouts

Three Swim Workouts

It’s been awhile since I talked about how much I love and enjoy swimming. Even though I haven’t mentioned it lately, never fear–it’s something I will always do, even if I don’t write about it. My workout routine currently is as follows:  1 spin class, 2 cardio days with weight lifting and 2 days of swimming. The swimming is always there and always will be. I love it. It’s the perfect activity for sore muscles the day after a really hard weight lifting session. Swimming is the perfect activity after a long work week when I need to decompress.

If you are looking for some ideas on how to spice up your workout, give one of these swim sessions a try. You can shorten it or lengthen it depending on your abilities. Don’t be ashamed if you’re only doing 2 lengths at a time, or if you need to rest. We all start somewhere! When I first started swimming I was tired and out of shape and needed to rest after each length of the pool.

Here are three workouts that I alternate between depending on my mood and whether or not I’m swimming as a “recovery.” My recovery swims are slower because I’m sore. It feels so great to swim when my muscles are sore! And it’s even better when I can sit in the hot tub afterward.

Workout #1 – About 50 minutes

  • 50 lengths freestyle, fast no stopping
  • Rest 2-4 minutes
  • 10 lengths medium pace w/kickboard, no upper body
  • 10 lengths freestyle with buoy, no kicking
  • 10 lengths breaststroke
  • 10 lengths freestyle with buoy, no kicking, and using hand paddles
  • 10 lengths breaststroke

Workout #2 – Between 45-55 minutes

  •  30 lengths freestyle, fast no stopping
  • 10 lengths breaststroke
  • 10 lengths freestyle with buoy, no kicking and hand paddles
  • Rest 30 seconds-1 minute
  • 10 lengths medium pace w/kickboard, no upper body
  • 8 lengths freestyle with buoy, no kicking, and using hand paddles
  • 12 lengths freestyle, fast
  • 10 lengths breaststroke

Workout #3 – Between 40-50 minutes

  • 30 lengths freestyle, fast no stopping
  • 20 lengths breaststroke
  • Rest 2 minutes
  • Interval sprints freestyle as fast as possible down and back then
  • Rest

Be sure to hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!! Swimming makes me really thirsty, especially if swimming in a salt water pool. I think the salt water sucks the moisture out of my body while I swim or something. I drink one water bottle through my hour long pool session and try to drink water when I get home too. Also, don’t forget to hydrate your skin after you clean up to prevent the swimmer’s “itch” (dry skin from chlorine).

As with every really hard workout, follow it with a hearty, healthy meal. My most recent swim session was Workout #2 and when I got home, Michael and I made homemade turkey burgers. What I love about turkey burgers is that they are tasty, filling and pretty low in calories.

The turkey burger itself was about 200 calories, the slice of Swiss cheese 70 calories, sandwich thin 100 calories, lettuce and tomato. In addition to the turkey burger (which was juicy and satisfying), we steamed broccoli with Goddess dressing:

And I had some red grapes with dinner. And maybe….a glass of some other kind of grapes….

I’ve been adding some fruit to my meals lately, and not just having fruit as my snacks like normal. I liked having something sweet after eating my breakfast or dinner because I tend to want SWEETS. Eating some fruit with dinner makes it easier to limit the sweets I have for dessert. Win-win.

Swimming is how I lost 110 pounds and I firmly believe swimming is how I’ve kept the weight off. No matter what happens (injury, etc) I can always swim! If you’re on the fence about whether or not to try swimming, I say take the plunge. Give it a try. If I could dare to get into a swimsuit at 250 pounds, anyone can!

QUESTION: Are you a swimmer? What’s your favorite routines?