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A Starter Swim Workout: Getting Back Into Swimming

Get Back Into the Swim of Things

It's Summer, and that means pool time. Besides being a fun recreational activity, swimming is a great way to burn calories and stay cool. And since getting back into the routine of swimming can feel a little daunting, I made a workout for you. I think it's a good idea to have your exercise plan in hand when you work out, so print this page and take it with you to the pool. If you're new to swimming, here's a beginner swim workout to get you started.

To check out the workout, continue reading.
100 yds freestyle — easy
100 yds pull* freestyle
50 yds kick** freestyle
50 yds kick backstroke
50 yds kick breaststroke

The Main Event:
200 yds freestyle (rest: 30)***
100 yds backstroke (rest: 15)
50 yds freestyle (rest: 10)
200 yds medley — your choice of strokes, mix it up


100 yds kick medley — you choose strokes
100 yds freestyle — easy

TOTAL WORKOUT = 1,100 yards
Distance = .67 miles
( a swimmer's mile is 1,650 yards not 1,750 — or 1,500 meters)
Repeat the main event and add an extra 550 yards for a total of 1,650 yards, or a mile!

*Pull: Hold a buoy with your legs and use only your arms to swim
**Kick: Use a kickboard and use just your legs to power yourself across the pool
***Rest the listed amount between reps/laps

Image Source: Getty
CamieRodan CamieRodan 7 years
Is there any way to translate this workout into time (ie: minutes per rep)? My gym only has an endless pool, and I have had trouble figuring out good workouts for it. This one might work!
Sundown321 Sundown321 7 years
You must have read my mind! I was thinking about getting back into swimming yesterday! I joined the local waterpolo team for a fun summer workout!
lydialee_home lydialee_home 8 years
runningesq - thanks for the tips. There's wetsuit and non-wetsuit division in the swim. I have a full wetsuit and while it help me on my legs, my arms always feel tired at the end. My sighting is very bad also, and I haven't swim outdoor for a while - [will practice at the lake this weekend]. I have spent more time on run instead of swim lately, and I haven't swim more than 2000 yard for a long time. And good luck in your upcoming 1/2 ironman and the full ironman in November!
runningesq runningesq 8 years
lydialee -- some tips for OWS (open water swimming): - see if the race is wetsuit legal. if it is, buy or rent a wetsuit... it makes a big difference. - if you are new to OWS start near the back/ outside of the pack. the front is a human washing machine! - expect to get knocked around a bit...with all the bodies it's impossible not to knock into/ get knocked into other swimmers. - every 4-5 stroke look UP .. it goes against everything you've been taught in swimming, but you need to make sure you are going in the right direction. It's called "sighting" and I truely suck at it ;) - have fun ! (and good luck at the NWM! That's a race I'd love to do.. for the Tiffany jewelry and the firefighters at the finish line ;))
lydialee_home lydialee_home 8 years
Fit - any training tips for long distance open water swim? Just signed up the 2.4 mile catfish swim on July 26.
runningesq runningesq 8 years
Anon: It's just the way it is. A swimmer's mile is 1500M/ 1560 yrds How many laps for a mile? Lap = down and back Swimmers mile = 1500 meters 15 laps in the 50 meter lanes 30 laps in the 25 meter lanes 33 laps in the 25 yard lanes
runningesq runningesq 8 years
Lauren - in a meters pool a mile is 1500M
LaurenG22 LaurenG22 8 years
MY pool is in meters... so that might be different, huh?
bigestivediscuit bigestivediscuit 8 years
I'm going for a swim tonight so will try this!
cjstraus cjstraus 8 years
Yay!!! I was a competitive swimmer as a kid and I miss feeling strong in the water! Hopefully this workout will help :) Thanks, Fit!
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