What is an Interval?
Interval = Swim Time + Rest Time
If the set is 2 x 100 @ 1:30, it might take you 1:21 to finish the set, so you get 9 seconds of rest before you push off again. The faster you go, the more rest you get! (but the more tired you get, too!)
What is Interval Training?
It’s not as complicated as you might think. Interval training is simply alternating hard activity with repetitions of either rest or lighter activity. In the gym this is the equivalent of doing 10 repetitions of bench press, then taking thirty seconds rest and then doing another 10 repetitions. If you were to repeat this process a few more times, you’d have a set that looks something like this:
4 x 10 Bench Press @ :30 seconds rest
In swimming, this is no different. Just swap out the repetitions with the distance you’re swimming. For example, if you were to do 50 meters of Freestyle, then take: 30 seconds rest, and then do it again, then your set might look something like this:
4 x 50m Freestyle @ :30 seconds rest
Swimming without interval training is like going to the gym and doing the same exercise continuously without breaks. If you’re running this is fine. In swimming, you’re doing yourself a disservice. Here are some of the benefits of interval training:
Benefits of Interval Training
Whether you’re a novice exerciser or you’ve been exercising for years, interval training can help you jazz up your workout routine. Consider the benefits:
- You’ll Improve Technique: By taking repetitive but short breaks, you will train your body to only swim at a higher body position and at greater speed.
- You’ll Burn More Calories: Taking short breaks in the workout allows you train at a higher intensity and thus elevate your heart rate.
- Improved Aerobic Capacity: As your cardiovascular fitness improves, you’ll be able to train longer, faster and with more efficiency.
- Added Variety: Swimming the same routine over and over can get boring and monotonous. When you do interval training, there is no limit to what you can accomplish.
- No Equipment Needed: All you need is a pace clock at the pool or on your wrist. Even if you don’t have a clock, you can do interval training by breath count between repetitions.
How To Swim Faster With Interval Training
Interval training will help you get the most out of your swim workouts!