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Thread: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

  1. #21
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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    Quote Originally Posted by Calvin S View Post
    DISCLAIMER: I am not a true believer in the pure USRPT form of training.
    I am not a beliver at all. USRPT may work for some few guys but for the most of mastersswimmers is USRPT a wrong way to train...
    30 x 100 is good for a test one time per month but not more...
    "Swimming ist't just a sport. It's a healthy lifestyle, a total body workout, a meditation session,
    a weightless freedom and a way of life"

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    Very Active Member Allen Stark's Avatar
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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    Quote Originally Posted by MartinK View Post
    I am not a beliver at all. USRPT may work for some few guys but for the most of mastersswimmers is USRPT a wrong way to train...
    30 x 100 is good for a test one time per month but not more...
    Why? I am not a "true believer" but I find USRPT sets to be a valuable tool. For me, USRPT doesn't overload the anaerobic systems enough so I also do HIIT sets. I am a "believer" in mostly race pace work, why train yourself to swim slow? I also do drills, lift weights and taper for meets, none of which are in USRPT dogma, but I still find it a valuable tool and they are challenging sets. YMMV
    "To strive,to seek,to find,and not to yield" Tennyson
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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    Quote Originally Posted by Allen Stark View Post
    Why? I am not a "true believer" but I find USRPT sets to be a valuable tool. For me, USRPT doesn't overload the anaerobic systems enough so I also do HIIT sets. I am a "believer" in mostly race pace work, why train yourself to swim slow? I also do drills, lift weights and taper for meets, none of which are in USRPT dogma, but I still find it a valuable tool and they are challenging sets. YMMV
    I don't think anybody has an issue with race pace training of the sort USRPT prescribes. I think where the disagreement is is that that is all USRPT does, as well as the other things that come with it - no dryland/strength training, requires specifying training to a very narrow set of events, hard to do in a team setting. If you're just doing a few broken race pace sets, you're not really doing USRPT as a program - the idea of it from what I understand is that outside of warmup/warmdown, that's basically *all* you do.

    USRPT found the perfect poster boy for the program in Michael Andrew - a genetic outlier who trains almost exclusively on his own and who's family seems completely dedicated to advancing his swimming career.
    400 IMer/200 backstroker in another life, now sprinter/breaststroker... Yeah, I don't know how that happened either!

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    Very Active Member Calvin S's Avatar
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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    Quote Originally Posted by Allen Stark View Post
    Why? I am not a "true believer" but I find USRPT sets to be a valuable tool. For me, USRPT doesn't overload the anaerobic systems enough so I also do HIIT sets. I am a "believer" in mostly race pace work, why train yourself to swim slow? I also do drills, lift weights and taper for meets, none of which are in USRPT dogma, but I still find it a valuable tool and they are challenging sets. YMMV
    Thanks Allen, that's exactly what I meant when I said I was not a "true believer". Honestly, the crux of USRPT sets is the same stuff I was doing when I was a young teen and on through high school and college. I just don't subscribe to the Michael Andrew/Rushall notion that you ONLY do USRPT and forget all the rest. However I have nothing against anyone who does subscribe to that philosophy. There's more than one way to skin a cat here.

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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    Quote Originally Posted by Allen Stark View Post
    Why?
    I like the discussion about this topic and I can understand both side but to be honest I like to train in my slow pace much more than always do some race pace sets...Like CalvinS said there is many ways to go and to improve..I have found my way and I am totally happy and fine with it.
    "Swimming ist't just a sport. It's a healthy lifestyle, a total body workout, a meditation session,
    a weightless freedom and a way of life"

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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    Miklcct,

    As I read this thread, I think you are mixing concepts. As I read articles on the internet, they are mixing concepts.

    USRPT is meant to be short distance (25s), all out sprints with recovery time. 30 x 100 with 20 secs rest is just someone's extrapolation to middle-distance swimming and does not really fit into USRPT.

    No one can do 30 x 100 with 20 -30 sec rest at 100% effort unless they are prepared to fail after 4-5 repeats. There will be some amount of pace work happening which is not what USRPT is all about. 30 x 100 is geared towards finding/improving your anaerobic threshold to train the body for effort right at that threshold.

    Since you say your technique improves with speed, a good set will be 10 x 50 w/ 60 seconds rest and go 100% effort for the entire set. Then, do the rest of your practice at a slower pace.

    A good goal for your practices is to think about target heart rates. USRPT is going to have heart rates in the 170+ range - maybe even 180+. USRPT is 100% effort which cannot be maintained for long periods of time (no more than 25-50). Even Andrews has said he needs to do more volume to be competitive at the 100s.

    As Jeff and others have said though - working on technique trumps all other training concepts. I have a hard time believing your technique improves as you go faster. Learn how to swim slow with great technique and then add intensity and volume.

    And, we are still waiting for video.

  7. #27
    Very Active Member Calvin S's Avatar
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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    30x100 just sounds like the other variation of the T-3000 my coach made us do all through high school. Twice a month. One day it was a T-3000 and then 10-14 days later it was 30x100 on :10 rest trying to hold better on each 100 than your average for the T-3000. There is very little as a coach I wouldn't put my swimmers through, but I always promised my swimmers NO T-3000. Fk that noise. Even with my love of distance, the only thing a T-3000 did for me was put me to sleep. And it was always easy to go faster than my average pace/100 on the 30x100 because my pace was always terrible becuase I stopped caring around the 13-1400 mark.

    Sorry I digress, but all this talk of 30x100 was taking me back.

    On another side note, I did do a 30x100 set often in college, but it was structured a lot differently:
    3x100 @ 1:10 WHITE
    3x100 @ 1:20 PINK
    3x100 @ 1:30 RED
    3x100 @ 1:40 BLUE-ish
    18x100 @ 1:50 BEST AVG

    Really the first 12 were for "priming the pump." It was the 18x100 best average that was the meat of the set.

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    Very Active Member JPEnge's Avatar
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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    Quote Originally Posted by Windrath View Post
    I have a hard time believing your technique improves as you go faster.
    I actually believe it could. It sounded from his older posts that he was prioritizing DPS over literally everything else. Now, obviously DPS is nice, but too much of a good thing in this case is a bad thing if it means losing the rhythm and balance of the stroke.
    400 IMer/200 backstroker in another life, now sprinter/breaststroker... Yeah, I don't know how that happened either!

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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    Calvin S,

    I agree - never did a T-3000 with any team. For 99.9% of the swimmers, they are an exercise in mental boredom instead of physical conditioning or pace. Having said that, I do remember 2 times when we did 30 x 100 on 1:30. I held the backstrokes at 59 when my best was only 54.9. The other time was all 100 IMs - coming in at 1:02s or something like that.

    Jeff - I can see your point as it relates to this thread.

    Windrath

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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    Quote Originally Posted by Windrath View Post
    Miklcct,

    As I read this thread, I think you are mixing concepts. As I read articles on the internet, they are mixing concepts.

    USRPT is meant to be short distance (25s), all out sprints with recovery time. 30 x 100 with 20 secs rest is just someone's extrapolation to middle-distance swimming and does not really fit into USRPT.
    Not true. Rushall does suggest 100s for USRPT. See for example: https://coachsci.sdsu.edu/swim/bullets/ultra40a.pdf
    Dr. Rushall created "Ultra-short Race-pace Training" (USRPT) to exploit this unique
    physiology. He did so on the basis of scientific studies validating the Principle of Specificity in
    swimming-studies demonstrating that the energetics and technical skills of a particular race are
    specific to the velocity of the race. Accordingly, USRPT excludes anything, like kickboard
    kicking, that is not race-specific for stroke, distance, pace, technique, and mental readiness. The
    sets comprise serially repeated short sprints, on 15 to 20-second rest intervals, typically 25s at
    100 race-pace, 50s at 200 race-pace, and 100s at 1500 race-pace.

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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    Quote Originally Posted by Windrath View Post
    Miklcct,

    As I read this thread, I think you are mixing concepts. As I read articles on the internet, they are mixing concepts.

    USRPT is meant to be short distance (25s), all out sprints with recovery time. 30 x 100 with 20 secs rest is just someone's extrapolation to middle-distance swimming and does not really fit into USRPT.

    No one can do 30 x 100 with 20 -30 sec rest at 100% effort unless they are prepared to fail after 4-5 repeats. There will be some amount of pace work happening which is not what USRPT is all about. 30 x 100 is geared towards finding/improving your anaerobic threshold to train the body for effort right at that threshold.
    The guideline says to attempt 24 to 30 x 100 m at 1500 m target race pace with 20" rest.

    Since you say your technique improves with speed, a good set will be 10 x 50 w/ 60 seconds rest and go 100% effort for the entire set. Then, do the rest of your practice at a slower pace.
    Is this useful for training for 1500 m or up? My all out 100 m time is about 1'37" to 1'40", but I can't sustain anything less than 2' pace for long distance.

    As Jeff and others have said though - working on technique trumps all other training concepts. I have a hard time believing your technique improves as you go faster. Learn how to swim slow with great technique and then add intensity and volume.

    And, we are still waiting for video.
    The coach usually notices my legs are sometimes wide open like scissors, and says when I swim faster, my legs are more stable and won't flail wide. What I interpret that is I am actually losing balance at my current sustainable speed, which improves when I go over it.

    I finally booked a professional analysis session which will come next week, hope I can know all my problems then.

  12. #32
    Very Active Member Swimspire's Avatar
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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    Good to hear that your coach was observant in bringing up some issues with your stroke (especially your kick) and that you're getting a stroke analysis. I do not believe that by speeding up your stroke you will be able to overcome weaknesses in technique. Quite the contrary, it is only by slowing down that you will be able to discover flaws in technique - and correcting these flaws will help you improve your efficiency and, ultimately, your speed. Whether for shorter or longer distances, technique rules the day. The USRPT training you're focusing on will only help up to a certain point - if you don't focus on technique, no amount of speed work will help you to achieve maximum efficiency in the water.

    Of course, you're always more than welcome to share a video of your stroke on the forum to receive additional perspectives beyond that of your coaches. Good luck!

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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    Not quite on topic for this post, but close....

    I am not a support of USRPT - Ultra Short Race Pace Training. However, I believe in Race Pace Training which most good coaches have been using for the past 30+ years instead of slogging out volumes of low intensity yards.

    This is what confused me with Miklcct wanting to add "USRPT" to his practices. I suspect he is using "USRPT" when he really means "Race Pace Training." Even so, his time in the sport does not suggest a 30 x 100 set will be effective.

    I also suspect most of us believe a decades old mantra - "Train the way you want to race because you will surely race the way you train."

  14. #34
    Very Active Member scyfreestyler's Avatar
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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    Glenn Gruber, a member on this forum, has used USRPT quite successfully in non-sprint events. Hopefully he will stop by here and offer some assistance.

    Check this out for now...

    http://forums.usms.org/showthread.ph...s-USRPT-or-CSS

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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    Thanks scyfreestyler!

    A little background for those who have not read some of the old USRPT posts...

    I started USRPT in September of 2014, five days a week as a 65 year old, for the express purpose of breaking the 400 SCM record in the 65 - 69 age group. In March of 2015 I broke the record at an SCM meet in Oregon City, Oregon, then did it again at the Canadian Nationals in May of that year.

    In my experience over the years with USRPT, I have found that many, if not most people, believe that because the name is Ultra Short Race Pace Training, that the "short" part pertains to the distance for which you are training i.e. short distance like the 50, 100 or even 200. I believe that USRPT is actually a better method for distance events than it is for sprint events, but don't tell that to Michael Andrew who has shown much success in the sprints at the International level.

    The "short" in USRPT pertains to the repeat distance you use to train for your event, thus a repeat distance of 25 and 50 for sprinters, and 75 and 100 for distance swimmers. In my training for the 400 record, I did 25s and 50 repeats at my goal time (:32) for my race. I found 75s to be too difficult in the sense of not being able to maintain my goal time for a significant number of repeats, but that was likely an age issue. There are also USRPT sets that use 12 1/2 yards for those people focusing on the 50.

    For someone training for the 1500 or 1650, 100s at your goal pace time is very appropriate. If you find that you can do 30 or more at your goal time, then reduce the time by one second (not five seconds at a time) and see how many you can do. Every set you do in USRPT you should fail at some point. The protocol is three fails in the set, then the set is over. But most importantly it is the how many you can do before the first fail and then how many before the second fail etc...

    A word about the number of repeats in a set. If you have read the papers of Dr. Rushall, he suggests sets of 20 or 30 etc at race pace. He and I have talked about this recently and we both wish he had not put a number on these sets. The concept should be to go until you can't make the goal time anymore...NOT 30 x 50 or 20 x 75 etc. In my current training, my total number of repeats of 50s at race pace in a set will vary from a low of 12 to a high of 24. Some days are better than others. But despite that, I only swim at race pace and that seems to serve me well. I also enjoy the daily challenge of how many I can do in each set...always striving to be better each day.
    Glenn Gruber

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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    I don’t only train at race pace; I do a lot of drills and slower paced training. However, I do include a USRPT set in my training at least three times a week. This probably goes against the grain of what USRPT is all about. I think it’s meant to be a whole approach to training where everything is done at race pace rather than just including a set in your regular training. Be that as it may, I still find it very useful and it really helps with my 200 training. Admittedly I am not very creative, and it is always a set of 50m free at my target 200 pace until failure. I usually get to somewhere between 15 and 20 repeats before I fail for the third time, at which point I stop.
    The notion I would like to dispel is that cranking out repeats at race pace leads to ‘bad form’ or is equivalent to ‘garbage yardage’. Quite to the contrary, by the time you get to the 15th repeat, the only way to make your target time is to maintain perfect form as you are not getting any fresher and you can’t just muscle your way through it anymore. Round about the 15th repeat, my heart rate is between 90-95% of its max and I am very out of breath. Fatigue is one of the best instructors and I find myself focusing on my head position, body position, hand entry, pull, turns, streamline, etc. In short, trying anything and everything to maintain that target pace. In the end, I want to be sure that it is fatigue that stops me from maintaining my target pace rather than poor form.

  17. #37
    Very Active Member Glenn's Avatar
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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    Quote Originally Posted by Syd View Post
    The notion I would like to dispel is that cranking out repeats at race pace leads to ‘bad form’ or is equivalent to ‘garbage yardage’. Quite to the contrary, by the time you get to the 15th repeat, the only way to make your target time is to maintain perfect form as you are not getting any fresher and you can’t just muscle your way through it anymore. Round about the 15th repeat, my heart rate is between 90-95% of its max and I am very out of breath. Fatigue is one of the best instructors and I find myself focusing on my head position, body position, hand entry, pull, turns, streamline, etc. In short, trying anything and everything to maintain that target pace. In the end, I want to be sure that it is fatigue that stops me from maintaining my target pace rather than poor form.

    Excellent explanation of a typical USRPT set as it happens!

    I agree 200%. When I find holding the goal time getting harder and harder in the set, I have several strategies I use to be able to continue. One is starting 4th stroke breathing just after the breakout after the turn on a 50 repeat. When I do that I can usually make the goal time.

    When I am super fatigued and I hit the wall and see I have made the time, sometimes I just think "I cannot make another one". But a few seconds later I say to my self "just one more". That is usually enough to motivate me to crank out another one. if I make that one, I try it again...Eventually I cry (or whimper) "uncle".
    Glenn Gruber

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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    [QUOTE=Windrath;330880]Miklcct,
    USRPT is meant to be short distance (25s), all out sprints with recovery time. 30 x 100 with 20 secs rest is just someone's extrapolation to middle-distance swimming and does not really fit into USRPT.

    No one can do 30 x 100 with 20 -30 sec rest at 100% effort unless they are prepared to fail after 4-5 repeats. There will be some amount of pace work happening which is not what USRPT is all about. 30 x 100 is geared towards finding/improving your anaerobic threshold to train the body for effort right at that threshold./QUOTE]


    Let me make a correction here if I may. USRPT is race pace swimming not all-out swimming (except for sprint USRPT training for the 50). You are absolutely correct that no one can do 100s all out 100% effort. But the only time you do 100s in USRPT is when you are training for the 1650 or 1500. And those repeats are surely not all-out, thay are at 1650 race pace.

    I train for the 100 by doing 25s holding :13 until I can't do them anymore.

    I train for the 200 by doing 50s holding :31s until I can't do them anymore.

    When I trained for the 400/500 I did so by doing 50s holding :32s until I could not do them anymore.

    Occasionally I do some training for the 50 by doing all-out 25s from the blocks on a 3 - 4 minute interval. I can do up to 14 of them. This is called Sprint USRPT and the protocol is different from all other distances. The protocol was changed because no one could do 25s all-out on :15 seconds rest and do more than 3 or 4.
    Glenn Gruber

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    Re: USRPT training - how should I identify goal time?

    Quote Originally Posted by Glenn View Post
    all-out 25s from the blocks on a 3 - 4 minute interval.
    Best set ever

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