View Full Version : 5K training for newbie

August 10th, 2013, 08:02 PM
I currently swim 3-4 times a week, approximately 3000mts each workout and then a longer workout of 4000-5000mts. A standard workout I do regularly is 15X100 10 secs rest at threshold pace (for me that's approximately 1:40 per 100).
I've done several 1-2 mile open water swims (some as part of a triathlon) and am now thinking of probably a 5K. If I wanted to train for a 5K, how would I need to structure my training? Some thoughts, but I'm not a swimmer by background, hence the request for insights.
- make sure I'm hitting 15-18K+ consistently for a few weeks
- long workout at 6-7K
- Quality work should be 3-4K at least once a week, some variation of 15X200s,20 secs rest, 2x(15x100), 10 secs rest, etc. This is the part where I probably need the most help, what kinds of sets will constitute quality training to prepare for the distance?

Any thoughts or insights on how to structure the training would be much appreciated. Thank you.

August 14th, 2013, 08:43 AM
I think you're on the right track for 5K preparation with what you're already doing. The open water workouts on these forums are excellent to use. You'll notice that they have much higher yardages as they also target much longer distance swimmers. I adapt them to my availability and paces, etc. which usually includes 4-5 swims a week mostly at about 3000-3500 yards with one over 4000 (usually an aerobic pace workout for the longer one).

To put in some perspective. Three years ago I used to workout 5-6x week 4000-5000 yards each but almost all aerobic swimming. By mixing in the threshold, VO2 max, and speed workouts in the open water workouts of this forum but at shorter distances, I'm swimming the 2 mile to 5K distances much faster this year than I did then.

August 14th, 2013, 12:30 PM
That's good info on your progress, srcoyote. I've been using some of those workouts and really enjoy the change of pace every day. Good to know that they do help change up the speed eventually. :)

August 15th, 2013, 08:17 PM
Great, many thanks. I'll pay attention to the workouts on the forum.

August 15th, 2013, 09:21 PM
I agree that you seem to be on pace for a great 5k. I would also suggest getting some practice in some open water venue (lake, ocean, stream) just to help with some mental preparation. Nothing fancy, just getting in to gain experience with swimming in a different environment. Have a great swim!