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RJMichaels1
May 5th, 2005, 04:51 PM
I started swimming a couple of weeks ago. Right now I can only swim about 100m at a time taking a break between each 100m. Is there any other cardio that I can do to help improve my swimming stamina. I can run up to 8 - 10 miles but can't swim more than 100m with out taking a break. Any suggestions?

SwiminONandON
May 5th, 2005, 04:59 PM
It takes time. Swimming is an entirely different beast. It takes different muscles and a different kind of endurance. Try taking less and less rest between 100s you'll build up in no time.

Good luck, keep us posted!

jswim
May 5th, 2005, 06:15 PM
Exactly!...

It is totally different. just keep at it and try doing a bit more each time.. once you get comfortable with 100m, try adding 25-50 meters on each set the next time you workout... it will come..

It's just different... I can swim a mile now without much of a problem, but I can't run a mile to save my life!

Keep at it and good luck!

Conniekat8
May 5th, 2005, 06:56 PM
Keep swimming.
Don't fight with water, try to be relaxed and loose and glide through it.
it's not like pushing weights, where you need to apply a lot of pressure right away. Get the hang of the rhythm and balance first... You can start pushing harder after you get the hang of basics.
Also, pay attention to your breathing. Don;t hold your breath, exhale underwater. Breathe every 2-3 strokes.

There's a lot of technique in swimming that you need to get the hang of first, before you start pushing for hard workouts.

if you can run 8-10 miles, your cardio is more than adequate. it's your rhythm and your breathing that is making you belabored.

RJMichaels1
May 5th, 2005, 07:05 PM
How often should I swim? Right now I swim 3 to 4 days a week. I usually play Racquet ball the same days I swim to make sure I am getting a good workout, should I switch that to a different day and concentrate more on swimming?

dorothyrde
May 6th, 2005, 07:07 AM
One thing that helped me when I first started was to be told to slow down. I was trying to swim too fast for my ability at first and would just end up out of breath and discouraged after about 100. I did not think I would ever be able to swim anything of any distance.

Then the Master's coach announced that we would be doing a T-30(see how much you can continuously swim in 30 minutes). I told her there was no way I could swim that long. She said, oh yes you can, you just need to slow down so much that someone could walk next to you faster and you feel silly. Then when your body adjusts and you will be able to speed up. She also explained that the body needs a couple of 100 yards of slow swimming and then you feel better. (I feel that way about running, the first 5 minutes are hard, and then I get in a groove and can go awhile).

So I tried it and went sloooooooooow and after about a 200 I felt better(I had never swum farther than a 100 before). I completed the T-30, swimming a whopping 1000 yards, but the accomplishment was I swam the whole thing straight. This proved to me that I could do it(mental thing), and taught me how to do it.

Since then I have improved steadily. I am still slow, but did swim 1000 in a meet in march and was just under 16 minutes. So slow down so much, that it feels silly, and see if you can improve your distance. Once you get the feel of how to swim longer, and work through the mental battle that you can do it, you will extend your swims.

BTW, I did not learn to swim until I was 38.

Jeff Commings
May 6th, 2005, 03:49 PM
I knew a marathon runner who couldn't swim 25 yards without gasping! Of course, I can't run down the block without wheezing.

Anyway, the point is to just get comfortable with the water, let your body get used to the different cardio requirements. Like all athletic efforts, it takes time to see improvement. So don't rush it.

SwiminONandON
May 6th, 2005, 04:27 PM
Swimming is pretty much all I do ( I lift 3x a week, run a couple miles a few times a week, and bike a few times a week) ... anyway ... I swim about 6 days a week. 4 coached workouts a week and 2 on my own, but with workouts from coaches.

sibleyclan
May 7th, 2005, 06:46 AM
I, too, just returned to the water (after over 30 years) and couldn't swim over 100 w/o a break. Yesterday, following the earlier suggestion from Dorothyrde, I tried slowing waaaay down and ended up swimming 1300y in 35 minutes w/o stopping. I alternated 100 fr, 100 br & 100 ba. I still felt realitively rested at the end of it all. I guess I can now look forward to gaining speed *and* distance.

dorothyrde
May 7th, 2005, 08:01 AM
Yay Leonard. It works, you feel slow and a little stupid, but over time you will gain in speed, good job!

Scansy
May 7th, 2005, 08:51 AM
Originally posted by Jeff Commings
I knew a marathon runner who couldn't swim 25 yards without gasping! Of course, I can't run down the block without wheezing.

Anyway, the point is to just get comfortable with the water, let your body get used to the different cardio requirements. Like all athletic efforts, it takes time to see improvement. So don't rush it.

I have an experience that relates to that. I felt like I was in pretty good shape about a year ago. A friend who is a runner felt the same way. I ran with him and fell apart..... very quickly. He was smug about running being better than swimming to get in shape. Then about a week later he swam with me. I was the smug one then!

The point is your body will get good at what you train it to do. Running and swimming use different muscles in different ways. And the breathing rhythm is different too.

A key part of becoming a better swimmer is to focus on your form. Connie is right - don't fight the water.... it will always win. If you focuse on technique, your swimming conditioning will happen almost by accident.