WOW: Swim Your Way Fit

Patrick Dunham's picture
By Patrick Dunham on June 7, 2017

Pools are officially open and it is getting hot, so it is the perfect time to incorporate some swim workouts into your regular workout routine. But if you think swimming does not provide as good of a workout as your usual run or gym routine, think again.

Swimming actually offers 12 to 14 percent more resistance than exercising on land because your muscles face continual resistance with every move you make in the water, resulting in an excellent, low-impact form of exercise that provides a great full-body workout. Swimming will also improve your flexibility and strength, increase your endurance and circulation and help you control and maintain a healthy weight. Plus, swimming is a very important skill to know. It could save your life or someone else’s.

Try a couple of my favorite swim workouts below.

Swim Workout 1
Warm-up: 

  • Perform some simple body weight movements such as squats, lunges, pushups and shoulder mobility for about 5 to 10 minutes before jumping in the pool.
  • Swim 5 laps at a slow to moderate pace (same stroke/s you will be using for your workout)

Workout:

  • 10 sets of 50 meter sprints with 30 to 60 second rest in between each swim sprint. 
    • Your rest period should be equal to the time it took to swim 50 meters.
    • Use a 1:1 work to rest ratio; 45 second swim sprint: 45 second rest.
  • 5 sets of 100 meter fast swims with 30 to 60 second rest in between each swim sprint. 
  • Your rest period between sets should be equal to the time it took to swim 100 meters.

Swim Workout 2
Warm-up:

  • Perform some simple body weight movements such as squats, lunges, pushups and shoulder mobility for about 5 to 10 minutes before jumping in the pool.
  • Swim 5 laps at a slow to moderate pace (same stroke/s you will be using for your workout)

Workout:

  • Swim 50 meters, rest 1 minute
  • Swim 100 meters, rest 2 minutes
  • Swim 250 meters, rest 3 minutes
  • Swim 100 meters, rest 2 minutes
  • Swim 100 meters, rest 1 minute

Swim Lingo:

  • Yard pool: 35 laps equals 1 mile.
  • Meter pool: 33 laps equals 1 mile.
  • One length of the pool is down from one end to the other.
  • One lap of the pool is down and back one time.

Enjoy your workout, don't forget your sunscreen and remember to never swim alone. Always swim with a buddy or where a lifeguard is present.  If you aren't a swimmer, Carilion Wellness offers swim lessons for everyone from 6 months old to adults. Call 540-853-0000 for more information. 

Find your strength at Carilion Wellness!

Before performing any exercise consult your physician for clearance. Stop exercising immediately if you feel lightheaded, dizzy or have chest pains.