As you begin month three you will notice that you continue to build volume over the first three weeks of the plan. Again, the focus should be maintaining good form over all set lengths as opposed to trying to focus on increasing speed. The longest swims this month are a 600m swim in week 3 and a 750m swim in week 4 which should be challenging but your fitness should have progressed to allow you to complete these swims successfully. If you had difficulties in completing the second month, do not hestitate to repeat it in order to make the transition to month three more attainable.
At the end of this month you should notice that you are able to maintain solid form over longer swim distances in addition to building the confidence required to swim the distance on race day. Best of luck!
For the prior two months, see Month 1 and Month 2
Endurance & Ladder Sets All endurance swimming should be completed at a comfortable pace. Your goal should be to swim the end of your workout no slower than the beginning. This will make the pace you swim at the beginning of an endurance set feel slow but as you complete the distance it will start to feel more challenging. If you complete a workout and you find that the pace you chose was too easy, you can go a little harder on the next endurance workout. For the ladder sets, try to swim at a pace where a rest interval between ten and twenty seconds is sufficient to allow you to finish the ladder.
As far as specific amounts of time I would avoid trying to hit time goals as a beginner - instead I would focus on trying to feel comfortable, balanced and aerobic for your entire swim. As you build your confidence in the water the times will come down.
Workout 1 Form
Workout 2 Endurance
Workout 3 Form & Endurance
3 x 50m
2 x 100m Catchup
2 x 100m Kick
2 x 100m Fist
Total – 900m
Warmup 3 x 50m Ladder 50m, 100m, 150m, 150m, 100m, 50m Cooldown 3 x 50m
Total – 900m
Warmup 2 x 50m Drill 2 x 50m Right Arm 2 x 50m Left Arm 2 x 50m Kick 2 x 50m Scull Endurance 300m Cooldown 2 x 50m
Warmup 3 x 50m Drill 2 x 100m Pull 2 x 100m Kick 2 x 100m SPL Cooldown 3 x 50m
Warmup 4x50m Endurance 2 x 250m Cooldown 4 x 50m
Warmup 2 x 50m Drill 2 x 50m Catchup 2 x 50m Fist 2 x 50m Kick 2 x 50m Scull Endurance 2 x 300m Cooldown 2 x 50m
Total – 1200m
Warmup 3 x 50m Drill 2 x 100m Catchup 2 x 100m Kick 2 x 100m Fist Cooldown 3 x 50m
Warmup 4 x 50m, 100m Ladder 1 x 300m 1 x 200m1 x 100mCooldown 100m, 4x50m
Total – 1200m
Warmup 2 x 50m Drill 2 x 50m Right Arm 2 x 50m Left Arm 2 x 50m Kick 2 x 50m Scull Endurance 600m Cooldown 2 x 50m
Warmup 2 x 50m Endurance 750m Cooldown 1 x 50m
Warmup 2 x 50m Drill 2 x 50m Right Arm 2 x 50m Left Arm 2 x 50m Kick 2 x 50m Scull Endurance 3x100m Cooldown 2 x 50m
Notes for the Workouts Catchup – using the pull buoy, complete a stroke with one arm before beginning the next stroke with the opposite arm. Concentrate on a smooth stroke with high elbows.
Fist – using the pull buoy, close your hands to make fists and swim front crawl as you normally would. Concentrate on holding as much water as possible with your forearms.
Kick – with or without fins, complete the distance with just kicking. Concentrate on kicking from the hips and rotating on your side to breathe.
Pull – using the pull buoy, use the front crawl and concentrate on maintaining good body position (i.e. looking down, legs up) while not sacrificing form.
SPL – count the strokes per length (each arm) taken to complete the distance. As your form improves, you should find this number decreases.
Right Arm/Left Arm – using the pull buoy, complete the distance with only one arm. The opposing arm remains extended above your head. Concentrate on a smooth pull and maintaining your form.
Scull – this drill will help you develop a feel for the water. On your front or back, keep your hands completely under the water and use a sculling motion to propel yourself for the distance of the set.
RestFor the rest between sets I would recommend that you are taking between 10 and 30 seconds to recover. If you need more than that, you are swimming the set too hard and should focus on swimming at a pace that will allow you to quickly recover and start the next interval.
Pool LengthsAlthough all the workouts are labelled with meters, for the purposes of these workouts, yards and meters can be used interchangeably.Pool BuoyA swim aid that you put between your legs to help you maintain a neutral body position while concentrating on your pull rather than trying to remember everything at once.
A ladder is doing progessively longer sets and then doing progressively shorter sets. For example, you could swim 25 yards, then 50, then 75, then 100, 75, 50 and then 25 with a break in between each "rung" of the ladder.