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Specific Speed

November 1, 2012

For the most part, distance swimming is associated with the level of effort that has been called “anaerobic threshold” – or more qualitatively, the level of effort that you can sustain for a long time. However, this is a fairly wide range of efforts, and more importantly speeds. Swimming, perhaps moreso than other disciplines, sees a substantial dropoff in speed as distance goes longer – sometimes at a static level of perceived effort. Perhaps more importantly, as athletes are gaining in skill this “velocity decay” occurs quite substantially as distance increases. So, my curret thiughts are on maximizing the speed associated with a given level of training effort.

This is not a new idea: coaches are always trying to figure out how to get athletes to go faster when fatigued. And there are many ways to approach this, but for my current focus I am going to use short chunks of effort on small amounts of rest. This means 50s! Lots of them. I am currently exploring a framework wherein nearly everything that is done at a high end of the threshold spectrum is done as 50s, with other more technically oriented swims sprinkled in at longer distances.

1 x 300/500. 50 choice / 50 1-arm
4-8×100 kick in back, desc 1-4
6-12×25 ODD 1-beat/EVEN BUILDUP

10 x 50 on :10 REST RED
5 x 100 on :10 REST PINK BR. EVERY 2-3
10 x 50 on :10 REST RED, ODD FAST, EVEN SLOW
5 x 100 on :10 REST PINK, alt BR left/right by 25

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  1. Erring on the Side of Too Fast « Athletic Algorithms

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