View Full Version : Advice for a newbie

August 15th, 2004, 12:43 PM
Hi. Hoping to get some advice on my swim routine:

I'm 47 yr old male, 5"11"+, 215Lbs (yeah that's right - 'bout 40 lbs overweight). I used to run competitively in HS and college. Ruptured a disc in my lower back many years ago ago and have spent many years and numerous procedures/Docs attempting to find a minimally-evasive fix. This is part of the reason I have put on so much weight. All efforts have been to little or no avail. Docs say that barring full-blown surgery, swimming is the only exercise they would recommend. So swimming it is (I've decided to not try surgery and live with the pain). I have been swimming off-and-on for about 3+ months. Most of what I have learned about swimming techniques and workouts have come from this site. And it has helped take off some of the weight (I was up at 230). But I am finding motivation and plateau-ing a problem now. Due to work related travel I also cannot work out consistently, sometimes not swimming for a whole week. So, in an effort to keep up my motivation and interest, I have decided to join a local masters swim team. I am more than a little worried that I will not be up to the task as I have never swum competitively before or even in a group for that matter. Sorry if I have overshared, but here's the question:

Given that the team workouts will start in about 3-4 weeks, what modifications to my workout regeime below would you suggest to prepare me for the team workouts?

Sunday - no workout

Sat - 1,550 total scy - easy swim (31 minutes)

Fri- 2,250 total scy - 200 warmup then 3 minutes rests inbetween the following sets:
4x50 :50 pace [range :35-:40 with :10-:15 RI]
4x100 1:50 pace [range 1:30-1:35 with :15-:20 RI]
4x200 3:45 pace [range 3:25-3:35 with :10-:20 RI]
4x100 1:50 pace [range 1:35-1:40 with :10-:15 RI]
4x50 :50 pace [range :40-:45 with :5-:10 RI]
50 warmdown

Thurs - 1,800 total scy
50 warm up
1x1600 at 29:15
150 warmdown

Wed - 1,200 total scy
8x100 2:00 pace [1:40-1:45 with :15-:20 RI]
1x400 at 7:40

Tue - no swim

Mon - no swim

All swimming has been in freestyle as my breast, back, and fly are pathetic on a good day. I was pretty toasted after the Friday workout . . . any suggestions on what I should do over the next three - four weeks in prep for the team workout would be appreciated.

Rob Copeland
August 16th, 2004, 08:05 AM
My advice is to keep doing what you are doing, until the Masters group begins to workout again.

No one should ever feel they are not good enough or fast enough to join or swim on a Masters team. You shouldn’t be concerned if, right now, you are one of the slower people in practice. For most of us the goal is long term improvement and an exercise program that is challenging and fun. If you look at it from that perspective, you have a great advantage over those of us who have been doing this for years. You have huge opportunities for improvement!

October 11th, 2004, 05:45 PM
FYI . . .
Thanks for the advice. You were right. Everyone is friendly and easy going. I felt very comfortable after just the first workout and now actually look forward to swim workouts with the team! It has really helped my motivation and I am now down to 207 lbs. My speed and distance abilities have dramatically improved as well. I would encourage anyone who has not swum with a team before, and may feel intimitated about starting, to do so.