With pools now opening we are slowly getting back into the water. Sometimes we feel we need to hammer to make up for lost time. But doing that out the gate can lead to overtraining and increased risk of injury. We need to methodically build endurance, so over time you will be able to swim faster longer.
Below are some tips to build your swimming endurance back again:
Endurance is something you need to work up to slowly. This is the best way to mitigate injury and burnout. When first getting back in the water focus on technique. Mastering efficiency will allow you to slowly build speed and distance over time.
As form and technique improve, increase distance and intensity. Building endurance is about putting in the time and using it wisely. Remember recovery is important too as volume builds.
You can increase endurance as you start without increasing overall distance and consuming too much time as you start. Simply increase the set distance and lowering repetitions. Such as 12 x 50s, switch it to 6 x 100s, then 3 x 200s then finally 600m straight. Although the distance is the same you are increasing continuous swim time all the while decreasing rest time between each push off.
It is still important to add in some interval training. It works both the aerobic and anaerobic systems, building both strength and improving cardiovascular fitness.
You can achieve this by swimming your sets on quicker intervals and by decreasing rest time between each interval.
While we can’t replace the “feel” of the water, incorporating strength training into your program can help built power in different muscle groups to strengthen your strokes. You can sustain more stress on your body without fatiguing too quickly.
In the end we need to listen to our bodies and adjust accordingly to keep the momentum of our training building.