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I would like to improve my swimming/speed - so how best to tackle this?
I am cutting out the gym in favour of more pool time, but swimming up and down alone wont improve my times
Interval training - I was debating this but I have not been involved with a club in such a long time that I could do with pointers. I am able to commit up to 4 sessions per week, and time in the water averages at 1 hours availabilty.
I am currently doing 3 water sessions and 1 cardio in the gym - so the extra water session would come from this time.
I have only started back in the water recently and asides from being demoralised with how unfit I am on the first session I am spending my time "just" swimming (full stroke) a bit of kick, then bit of pull. I feel now I have most of my technique back its the right point to reintroduce speed.
Just do your own intervals, warm up for 5 mins then swim as fast as you possibly can for a length (assuming decent 20m+ pool) then a recovery slow length, repeat for 10-20 mins til knackered , then do a steady pace for 20-40 mins if you can. This probably isn't what a swiming coach would tell you but it should dramatically improve your fitness and hence your speed. More technical advice may hopefully be along soon
I'm a masters competitive swimmer and also coach kids.
I find it impossible to train alone - way too lazy. Have you thought about joining a club?
I would suggest varying your speed as much as possible.
For example set yourself a target along the lines of 10x100m swims. Then on each 100m do each length progressively faster so start slow and build up so the last length is a fast as you can manage. Then rest for 5-15 secs before repeating. You can do this on all strokes. Varying the distance will increase your fitness. So do 200m swims and build speed over each 50m instead.
You can also increase the repetitions if it gets too easy.