Friday, October 16, 2015

Take On The "How Far Can You Go" Winter Challenge

** News flash: Save £130 on new HUUB Aura and Aerious Wetsuits in the Swim Smooth shop, strictly whilst stocks last! : www.swimsmooth.com/huub  **

Here's a fun little challenge to track your swimming improvements over the coming months. It's super-easy to do and super-easy to understand!

Simply take your current best 400m (or 400yd) time and look it up below. The table will give you a special "challenge" time per length of your pool (for example 30 seconds per 25m for someone who currently swims 400m in 8:30). Now take a Tempo Trainer Pro in mode 2 and program in that number so that it beeps to you at that interval (in our example every 30 seconds).

All you have to do is push off and start swimming when it beeps and try and keep up with it on every turn. Your challenge is to see how far you can go before you lose it! This is like a beep-test in the gym except the beep doesn't get faster but it will definitely test your boundaries!

It will be a challenging pace so you might only manage 50 to 100m at first (that's normal) but if you train consistently you should find as the weeks and months go by that you can gradually swim further and further at that pace as your swimming improves. If you get to the point when you can swim a full 400m then well done - you've made a HUGE step forwards with your swimming!


Your Challenge Pace!
Your current
400m/yd time*
per 25m/ydper 50m/ydper 33m/yd
12:00418355
11:45408154
11:30407953
11:15397852
11:00387651
10:45377450
10:30367348
10:15367147
10:00356946
9:45346845
9:30336644
9:15326443
9:00316342
8:45316141
8:30305940
8:15295839
8:00285637
7:45275436
7:30265335
7:15265134
7:00254933
6:45244832
6:30234631
6:15224430
6:00214328
5:45204127
5:30203926
5:15193725
5:00183624
4:45173423
4:30163221
4:15153020
4:00142919

* Your current 400m best pace (not you all time PB!).

A few quick notes:

- Stay calm and relax when you set off. You're going to have to swim fast but you don't want to feel stressed and panicky! Remember to exhale smoothly into the water.

- It's fast swimming but you will probably still be able get ahead of the beeper over the first length if you really gun it. DON'T DO THIS! Try and set off perfectly at the pace, pushing off as the beeper goes.

- This 'challenge' pace is much faster than your normal distance swimming pace for 750, 1500 or 3800m so don't get too fixated on it. It's just a way of pushing the boundaries and finding your limits. Whatever you do, don't set off at this pace in a triathlon or distance swim - you'll blow to bits!

- You can slot the test into any session, whilst it's hard swimming it is also quite short and shouldn't take too much out of you.

- Train normally through your week using your usual mix of technique, CSS and open-water sessions. The test doesn't really give you any fitness gains itself, it's just a test you can slot in every now and again.

- Make sure you've had a thorough warmup and don't be afraid to try it as a bit of fun at the end of sessions. Even if you feel a little tired it's surprising how well you can swim!

- You can try it as often as you like but we recommend about every 2 weeks.


The How Far Car You Go Challenge is a lot of fun and the beauty of it is it's simplicity. It's not designed to replace a proper CSS test (which will give you much more analysis in the SS webapp) but it can give you some instant feedback on how you are doing and a nice motivating challenge.

Swim Smooth!

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