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  1. #1
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    The Butterfly Lane

    Butterfly, beautiful to watch, difficult to train.
    We SDK off every wall.
    We're most likely to smack hands with each other and those beside us.
    Fly's fun to sprint but no fun when the piano comes down

    What did you do in practice today?


    [ame="http://www.usms.org/forums/showthread.php?t=16584"]the breastroke lane[/ame]


    [ame="http://www.usms.org/forums/showthread.php?t=16601"]The Middle Distance Lane[/ame]


    [ame="http://www.usms.org/forums/showthread.php?t=16587"]The Backstroke Lane[/ame]


    [ame="http://www.usms.org/forums/showthread.php?t=16588"]The Butterfly Lane[/ame]


    [ame="http://www.usms.org/forums/showthread.php?t=16618"]The SDK Lane[/ame]


    [ame="http://www.usms.org/forums/showthread.php?t=16591"]The Taper Lane[/ame]


    [ame="http://www.usms.org/forums/showthread.php?t=16586"]The Distance Lane[/ame]


    [ame="http://www.usms.org/forums/showthread.php?t=16589"]The IM Lane[/ame]


    [ame="http://www.usms.org/forums/showthread.php?t=16585"]The Sprint Free Lane[/ame]


    [ame="http://www.usms.org/forums/showthread.php?t=16619"]The Pool Deck[/ame]
    Last edited by ande; May 6th, 2010 at 10:55 PM.

  2. #2
    Very Active Member SolarEnergy's Avatar
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    Yesterday I did
    2x 12x50 butterfly on 1:05
    - First block was done with a lot of surface kicking
    - Second block full stroke

  3. #3
    sǝssɐןb ɹǝʇʇǝq ʇǝb That Guy's Avatar
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    Yesterday I did a short workout so I could be on time for my son's baseball game. Total workout was only 1600 yards, but 675 of that was full-stroke fly. Main set, all fly, focus on EVF throughout:

    4 x 75 on 1:45 @ 200 pace. I think I went 50,51,50,51
    4 x 50 on 1:15 25 pace, 25 sprint w/ big kick. 32,31,31,31?
    4 x 25 on 0:45 sprint. 14's and 15's.

    This is a good fly set because it hits different pace levels, it doesn't break me down too much, and of course it totals 600 fly. If I'm feeling good after the 4th 75, I can always just keep doing 75's instead of the shorter distances. That didn't happen yesterday though.

    I log my swim workouts with 3 key numbers: total swim yards, total fly yards, and time of the workout. The fly numbers are more important to me than the others, by far.

  4. #4
    Very Active Member swimmj's Avatar
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    I'm working on developing a fast, medium, and slow speed in fly. For slow fly, I don't kick much. My goal is to swim a 200 fly where the piano doesn't fall on the 3rd 50.

    So yesterday, working on pacing a 200 IM and saving the legs for the second half of the race, I did 6 x 200 IM SCM and went out in :40, :41, :42, :41, :41, :41. Unbelievable how slow and easy a :41 can feel....

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    sǝssɐןb ɹǝʇʇǝq ʇǝb That Guy's Avatar
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    The fun part about the Butterfly Lane is other people's reactions. I had hecklers one time. It was awesome. No really, it was! Here's what happened: a few years ago, I went to my gym at around 8:30 pm, which is a very unusual workout time for me. I didn't recognize any of the people in the pool. In one lane, there were three women circle-swimming a workout together. By the time I finished my warmup, they had finished their workout and adjourned to the warmer therapy pool to shoot the breeze. My main set that night was 20x25 fly on :30. I did the first 25 in 15 seconds and heard cat-calling from the therapy pool: "oooo-OOOO-oooo!!! He did a 25 flyyyy-YYYY-yyyy!!!" I thought, "oh...kay" and continued my set. After the 2nd 25 (another 15), I could see in my peripheral vision that they were still laughing at me. After the 6th, they weren't smiling anymore. After the 12th, I heard one of them ask the others dejectedly, "wanna go in the hot tub?" I did 15's for all 20 25's... I guess they weren't expecting that.

  6. #6
    Very Active Member swimmj's Avatar
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    Quote Originally Posted by That Guy View Post
    The fun part about the Butterfly Lane is other people's reactions. I had hecklers one time. It was awesome. No really, it was! Here's what happened: a few years ago, I went to my gym at around 8:30 pm, which is a very unusual workout time for me. I didn't recognize any of the people in the pool. In one lane, there were three women circle-swimming a workout together. By the time I finished my warmup, they had finished their workout and adjourned to the warmer therapy pool to shoot the breeze. My main set that night was 20x25 fly on :30. I did the first 25 in 15 seconds and heard cat-calling from the therapy pool: "oooo-OOOO-oooo!!! He did a 25 flyyyy-YYYY-yyyy!!!" I thought, "oh...kay" and continued my set. After the 2nd 25 (another 15), I could see in my peripheral vision that they were still laughing at me. After the 6th, they weren't smiling anymore. After the 12th, I heard one of them ask the others dejectedly, "wanna go in the hot tub?" I did 15's for all 20 25's... I guess they weren't expecting that.
    That is funny. I guess they thought you were showing off for them....

  7. #7
    sǝssɐןb ɹǝʇʇǝq ʇǝb That Guy's Avatar
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    Quote Originally Posted by swimmj View Post
    That is funny. I guess they thought you were showing off for them....
    I guess it slowly dawned on them that "Behold, as I do the exact same thing over and over again, without ever looking in your direction!" is not a typical showoff strategy.

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    Active Member michaelreed77's Avatar
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    Question Re: The Butterfly Lane

    So I just finished my first year of competition after two years of solo lap swimming. I'd like to swim more fly since I got 5th at State with a 33 low 50 fly (age 55-59). I know my form has opportunity for improvement & I think my coach can help me with that. Any thought on cross-training or my solo workout swims? I die in the last 10-15 yards. I'm averaging 12-13k per week in practice.

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    Distance Man tjrpatt's Avatar
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    Here is some fly sets that I did in the last 6 months, all fly:

    2 x 250s on 3:30

    this set was 4x, odds free, evens stroke but I did the last round all fly
    200 3:00
    175 2:40
    150 2:15
    125 1:55
    100 1:30
    75 1:10
    50 :45
    25 :25
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  10. #10
    Distance Man tjrpatt's Avatar
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    Last year, I did 2 laps of fly in Long course just training. some woman, "Wow, that is pretty amazing. Did you tightened up at all?" Ah no, it is not that hard to swim two laps of fly when you are in decent swimming shape.

    the worst is when you tell people that you swim the 200 fly, they act like you are running the Boston Marathon. Seriously, it is just swimming 8 laps, 4 laps in LCM.
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    Very Active Member born2fly's Avatar
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    Tom, nice fly sets. those 2 x 250 is kinda similar to one of my favorite fly sets. which is 5x300's on 4. 1st hundred fly good pace, 2nd hundred free moderate, 3rd hundred fly faster than the 1st hundred. Definitely helps with the 2fly and bringing it home that last 100!

  12. #12
    Distance Man tjrpatt's Avatar
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    Quote Originally Posted by born2fly View Post
    Tom, nice fly sets. those 2 x 250 is kinda similar to one of my favorite fly sets. which is 5x300's on 4. 1st hundred fly good pace, 2nd hundred free moderate, 3rd hundred fly faster than the 1st hundred. Definitely helps with the 2fly and bringing it home that last 100!
    nice set there and a set right up my "weak last 100 of my 200 fly" alley. After seeing some of your 200 flys, you really know how to bring it home.
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    Very Active Member SolarEnergy's Avatar
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    Quote Originally Posted by tjrpatt View Post
    Seriously, it is just swimming 8 laps, 4 laps in LCM.
    On the other hand, fly is the only stroke where you can technically end up not being able to finish the race. If unable to recover the arms after 125m, game over.

    I think that is what keeps people away from the 200. They fear ending up going under the shame of quitting by the sides, trying to avoid being crashed by those that kept flying.

    We were only 4 in our age group at the last Provincials. Sad, especially for the one who came last ;-)

    On the other hand, people are fascinated by the stroke. Paradox.

    Very nice fly threshold sets BTW. I can't think of any better way to train for this stroke. Kilo long sets with very little rest.

  14. #14
    Distance Man tjrpatt's Avatar
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    Quote Originally Posted by SolarEnergy View Post
    On the other hand, fly is the only stroke where you can technically end up not being able to finish the race. If unable to recover the arms after 125m, game over.

    I think that is what keeps people away from the 200. They fear ending up going under the shame of quitting by the sides, trying to avoid being crashed by those that kept flying.

    We were only 4 in our age group at the last Provincials. Sad, especially for the one who came last ;-)

    On the other hand, people are fascinated by the stroke. Paradox.

    Very nice fly threshold sets BTW. I can't think of any better way to train for this stroke. Kilo long sets with very little rest.
    Someone got DQed in some fly event at Colonies Zones, "stating arms not moving simultaneously". I never heard that before.
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    I've been swimming most of my life, and butterfly is my favorite stroke. However, I am one of those people who equate the 200 fly with the Boston Marathon. I applaud you! I competed it for the first and last time my freshman year in college. The worst part was both swims were on the same day. I told my coach that after that, I was fine being a sprint specialist.

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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    *REAL* men swim the 200 fly.

    smart men watch it.

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    Very Active Member swimmj's Avatar
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    Quote Originally Posted by michaelreed77 View Post
    So I just finished my first year of competition after two years of solo lap swimming. I'd like to swim more fly since I got 5th at State with a 33 low 50 fly (age 55-59). I know my form has opportunity for improvement & I think my coach can help me with that. Any thought on cross-training or my solo workout swims? I die in the last 10-15 yards. I'm averaging 12-13k per week in practice.
    1) work with your coach to work on your form, and then especially, try to hold good form and tempo when tired.

    2) sets where you swim some fly/some free are really nice to get stronger. One doesn't want to train fly when your stroke is falling apart - it doesn't help.

    3) if the end of a 50 is starting to hurt, do 25's in practice and start with getting at least as much rest as you take to swim it. So, if a 25 of fly takes :15, do them on the :30. If you start to lose your ability to maintain good form, then it's time to rest more or you have done enough repeats.

    4) slowly build up to doing more and more fly in practice and then add some 50's in - 25 free/25 fly to start and then 12.5 free/37.5 fly, etc.

    5) training alone gives you more space and the ability to swim as much fly as you want - take advantage of it!

    Have fun!

  18. #18
    Very Active Member Chris Stevenson's Avatar
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    Quote Originally Posted by swimmj View Post
    1) work with your coach to work on your form, and then especially, try to hold good form and tempo when tired.

    2) sets where you swim some fly/some free are really nice to get stronger. One doesn't want to train fly when your stroke is falling apart - it doesn't help.

    3) if the end of a 50 is starting to hurt, do 25's in practice and start with getting at least as much rest as you take to swim it. So, if a 25 of fly takes :15, do them on the :30. If you start to lose your ability to maintain good form, then it's time to rest more or you have done enough repeats.

    4) slowly build up to doing more and more fly in practice and then add some 50's in - 25 free/25 fly to start and then 12.5 free/37.5 fly, etc.

    5) training alone gives you more space and the ability to swim as much fly as you want - take advantage of it!

    Have fun!
    This is an excellent post. People shouldn't be discouraged by descriptions of long fly sets in this thread; they aren't the norm in masters.

    Even if you never intend to swim (say) 200 fly in a meet, I think that doing fly in workouts gives you the most "bang for your buck" in terms of conditioning and building fitness in limited time. That's assuming your shoulders can handle it, of course.

    And it IS a beautiful stroke; when it comes together, nothing beats it. (The opposite is also true, as most people know: when you die, nothing hurts quite so badly. "Reach for the sky," and all that.)

    Doing fly/free is a great way to build endurance fly; I particularly like the set described earlier about the 300s done as 100 fly/100 free (active recovery)/100 fly (try to go faster). This sort of thing can be easily modified based on your abilities:

    -- 200s done as 75 fly/50 free/75 fly
    -- 100s done as 50 fly/25 free/25 fly sprint
    -- etc.

    You can also do broken swims.

    About the only part where swimmj and I disagree is the last point. It is true that you have more room by yourself...but I often lack the self-discipline to do hard fly sets when training alone. If I announce to my lane-mates or coach that I am doing a set fly, I feel some pressure to complete the task even as the pain comes. When I am by myself, it is too easy to rationalize cutting the set short or decreasing the amount of fly ("my HR sure is pretty high, I think I've already done a lot today, I think this should be more of a recovery workout, etc"). But others may be less wimpy than I.

  19. #19
    Very Active Member Calvin S's Avatar
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Stevenson View Post
    About the only part where swimmj and I disagree is the last point. It is true that you have more room by yourself...but I often lack the self-discipline to do hard fly sets when training alone. If I announce to my lane-mates or coach that I am doing a set fly, I feel some pressure to complete the task even as the pain comes. When I am by myself, it is too easy to rationalize cutting the set short or decreasing the amount of fly ("my HR sure is pretty high, I think I've already done a lot today, etc"). But others may be less wimpy than I.
    I agree that having people in your lane helps a lot more on a fly set. It's even better if your lane mates are also having to struggle through the same set. I think all the difficulties in swimming fly sets in a lane full of people (the choppy wake, lapping slower swimmers, banging arms on your outsweep, etc) all make for a "worst case scenario". I just think to myself, at least in the 200 fly I wont have all these damn waves to swim through!

  20. #20
    Very Active Member FlyQueen's Avatar
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    Re: The Butterfly Lane

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Stevenson View Post

    And it IS a beautiful stroke; when it comes together, nothing beats it. (The opposite is also true, as most people know: when you die, nothing hurts quite so badly. "Reach for the sky," and all that.)

    UGH! The dying part being why the 100 and I are still on hiatus ...
    "I don't race to see who is the fastest, I race to see who has the most guts."

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