Reply To: Swimmer Gone Rogue

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Thanks for so many suggestions! I will be sure to check out all of those options you listed for self timing. I do my best to leave on 0s and judge what was under pace and what was over, but it’s really too much variance. As far as your first few thoughts, let me explain my logic behind my choices and see if you can poke holes in it (which I would love).

The 50s on :50 were originally from a presentation about parametric training from former Michigan coach Jim Richardson that I’m happy to email to you if you’d like to see it (file’s too big). He used nx50s on :45 (scy) for 500 pace -1, and that was the best data I had at the time. I adapted it to meters and made them on :50 instead of :45. Admittedly, I think nx75s on 1:10 would be a better set for the 400/500, but I was doing long course with the exception of 2-3 workouts/week so sticking with 50s and 100s seemed best. It’s funny that you should mention the 50s on :50 and 1:00 being essentially the same because that’s the thought I had originally. For the first couple months I wasn’t doing 50s on 1:00 because it seemed pointless while doing 50s on :50. Then around mid June I stopped doing 50s on 2:00 and started doing 50s on 1:00 instead. Why? Well two main reason: 50s on 2:00 were more fatiguing than they were worth (100 and 200 free aren’t a big focus) and I was mostly doing 50s on 2:00 to increase my speed reserve but my speed reserve is so low that 50s on 1:00 seemed to be enough. I know they look very similar on paper but cutting the reps in half and adding the extra bit of rest gave me TPs that were ~1.5 seconds different. My 50s on :50 improved substantially once I started doing the 50s on 1:00, but I changed other things as well so I can’t pinpoint that as the reason. I would love to hear your thoughts on this and have you point out any flaws in my thinking if you see them.

The 100s on 2:00. I should preface this by saying I train at roughly 4,500 ft altitude. I know that shouldn’t change how training paces transfer from practice to meets, but I think it changes the rest intervals. I know 100s on 2:00 are supposed to be for back 1/2 200, but maybe at my altitude it would more like a 1:30/1:40 type interval at sea level? That’s based on nothing more than personal experience and the differences I’ve noticed training at altitude and not. Any type of high intensity type stuff like this becomes much easier on the same rest intervals when doing them at sea level. Maybe I should have been doing my 100s back on 2:30 to compensate for this? Same as above, I’d love to hear your thoughts on the topic.

Sleep. You could say I’m famous (infamous?) among my friends for sleeping a lot. Seems like a no brainer to me since it’s the easiest thing to do to get better. I can also see the confusion with how I wrote out my schedule. My “AM” workouts were at 11, and my “PM” workouts were usually around 5. I was swimming on my own so hours were very flexible and didn’t have to wake up super early. My MINIMUM is 8 hours, I strive for 10, but usually fall in the middle around 9.

Thanks again for taking the time to respond