Why you swimming goals drive your workout type

Looking for a workout?  Many people are often on the hunt for a swim workout. Before you go on the hunt ask yourself this question: What are your swimming goals?  The answer to this question will change what practice you want.  I have listed several common goals and the important considerations to drive your workout choice based on that goal:

I’m out of shape and just want to get my endurance up:
Start by getting your continual swimming (that’s distance without stopping) up to at least 250 yards (10 lengths of a 25 yard pool) Do that with workouts that ask you to swim short sets on low rest to help you reduce the amount of time you need to recover while helping build your aerobic base. Once you can do 250 yards nonstop look to the next category in my list.

I’m a solid lap swimmer and want to get the most out of my time in the pool:

To realize the most out of your time in the pool embrace intervals. Swimming up and down the pool is a good way to get started, but to get to the next level you need a way to improve your aerobic threshold. To improve your aerobic threshold start swimming your practices on an interval that is based on your current ability.  Learn how to determine your current base interval, then start swimming sets on that interval.

I ’m a master swimmer or former competitive swimmer and I swim to stay fit:

Be diverse, don’t be stuck always doing the same workout. Vary your emphasis, with days focused on distance, sprinting, and IM and stroke while using kick and pull to round out the workouts. Our bodies adapt to one form of workout, don’t get stuck in only one of these critical development areas.

I’m a master swimmer and I want to compete and do fast times:
In addition to the advice to be diverse from above I have two additions. First, visit the weight room.  Strength training is a key element in building speed. Second, choose a limited number of events for the season and taper for best performance.

Swims Stroke Tool’s Training Center offers nine new workouts everyday to suit different levels and different interests.  Distance options from 2000 – 4000 yards (and you can always modify up or down to get in between) as well as three specialties, middle distance/distance freestyle, IM/stroke, and sprinting. To get your practice visit the Training Center

Did you have an answer that did not appear on my list?  Put it in a comment below and I will reply with what you should consider.


Leave a Comment