Saturday, August 09, 2008

Swim Set: Powerups

Here's a good main set that you can throw in for any distance you want: Powerups. When my kids were little and we would go hiking, I would take a small baggie of jellybeans in my pocket for a little bit of energy on the trail. The kids took to calling them "Powerups", so that's what I always think of when I need a little extra energy. This set can be used to train for anything from shorter to very long distances.

A Powerup is any length of swim that you start at a cruise pace and increase speed throughout. The key is to really know your pacing. Really do start at a slow pace, and gain speed smoothly throughout by applying power to each stroke, not by increasing churn or arm turnover. By the time you come in to the wall at the end of each Powerup, you should be going full-tilt boogie and you should be starting to go hypoxic.

150s are some of my favorite Powerups (especially in the 50 meter pool), so I did a set this week of:

3 x
{3 x 150 Powerups
50 cruise backstroke

For a total of 1500 yards.

You can do Powerups of even really long distances like 3 x 1000 Powerups. These are great for Ironman training because they help you remain strong throughout the swim instead of starting fast and fading away like so many triathletes do.

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