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  #11  
Old 11-29-2017
Danny Danny is offline
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Originally Posted by Tom Pamperin View Post
Danny,



Another set I started using is to train the SPL that I want to race at, without any worry about pace. So, for me, I want to race mostly at 16 SPL as my default. So I've started swimming pyramids where my only goal is to hold that SPL (or better) and make it feel easier and easier. I'll start with a 25m repeat, rest, 50m repeat, rest, and keep adding one 25m length until I break my target SPL. Then I'll start all over. Often by the middle of the set I'm hitting 15 SPL consistently. It's a nice way to work on skill without the aerobic demands of a USRPT set--I'm hoping the two approaches will complement each other as I go along.
Tom, this sounds like an interesting exercise, but I know I can hit an SPL target for as long as I want to by simply slowing down my stroke rate. Do you use a TT when you do this? If not, how do you avoid slowing down your stroke rate?
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  #12  
Old 12-01-2017
Tom Pamperin Tom Pamperin is offline
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Originally Posted by Danny View Post
Tom, this sounds like an interesting exercise, but I know I can hit an SPL target for as long as I want to by simply slowing down my stroke rate. Do you use a TT when you do this? If not, how do you avoid slowing down your stroke rate?
Danny,

I don't monitor stroke rate for these sets where I add 25m to each repeat holding a chosen SPL until failure, but I do try to swim at a "normal" speed without slowing down excessively to maintain SPL, or trying to go fast either. I glance at the clock now and then, and seem to be averaging around :47-48 per 50m--my current USRPT pace is sub-:45 per 50m. That :48/50m is about the pace I could hold for 500m last spring (I'm not there again yet).

It's very very easy to hold SPL for a 25m repeat; it's pretty easy to hold SPL for 50m. As I start to go beyond that, I concentrate on maintaining the feeling of ease and relaxation--that is the only thing I concentrate on, with a slow firm catch and good body position. It's a very intuitive thing, and without objective measurements I may be fooling myself about how useful it actually is. That said, I really like it, especially when I want a less aerobically challenging set. For me, it's all about increasing my ability to RELAX into the SPL I choose, and making it feel effortlessly sustainable.

I take about 20-25 seconds of rest between repeats right now, but may work to maintain the set with less and less rest as my training goes on.
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  #13  
Old 12-04-2017
Tom Pamperin Tom Pamperin is offline
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Had another USRPT session yesterday--my third. Last attempt gave me 9 50m repeats total before failing out of the set (30 x 50m at :45 speed with :20 rest).

Yesterday I swam repeats 1-7 without missing.

Missed #8, skipped #9 to rest.

Made #10, missed #11, skipped #12 to rest.

Swam #13 and #14, missed #15 for 3rd failure/end of set.

So, 10 successful repeats (improvement +1) and 7 repeats before first fail (improvement +3, I think).

I monitored SPL and found myself drifting up to 18, even 19, at the end of the first 7. Hit 18-19 again while barely making #10. Then I focused on holding SPL at 16-17 and not letting SR creep up for #13-14--I think that's why I was able to get two successful repeats in at the end even while getting more and more tired.

Conclusions from today:

Capacity does increase steadily with USRPT training, and it's motivating to see the gains.

Holding SPL while tiring, for me, involves consciously holding back on SR for a slower tempo. When I do this, I'm able to hit my target speed with less perceived effort. I will make this focus a priority as I tire in future sets.
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  #14  
Old 12-04-2017
Tom Pamperin Tom Pamperin is offline
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Originally Posted by gary p View Post
If your SPL at the turn is high, you know your DPS is slipping and you either have to increase your tempo or correct your form degradation to make the target time. In the old days, I would just crank up the tempo for the next length. That would begin a spiral of bad technique/faster tempo. Now I concentrate on the technique points I know I start to let go when fatigued (steady and complete exhalation, head all the way down, don't stop the stroke short, look back when breathing, quick inhalation and start head rotation back down as the recovery hand is coming forward across the face) and try to make the targeted time by getting the SPL back down.
Yes, that's what I'm trying to do now--it worked well in my last session (see the post immediately above). Thanks for the suggestion.
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  #15  
Old 12-05-2017
gary p gary p is offline
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Originally Posted by Tom Pamperin View Post

Capacity does increase steadily with USRPT training, and it's motivating to see the gains.

Yes, it can be very motivating. After 5 months of minimal swimming while I concentrated on improving my triathlon bike leg potential, I got back to exclusive swim training in early October. Nov 1, I did a USRPT set of 100's (yards) on 1:35 targeting < 1:16. Failed at 13, 18, and 20. After a month of working the set, I was able to do 20 straight at <1:13 on the same interval. Lot of conditioning improvement, but I also attended a USMS Swim Clinic in early November which also helped me improve my technique. At the beginning of the season, I thought my goal of swimming a 20:33 1650 free was a long shot. It now see it as well within reach.

Also working on becoming a 200 butterflyer using USRPT.

Last edited by gary p : 12-05-2017 at 06:01 PM.
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  #16  
Old 12-05-2017
Streak Streak is offline
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Really finding this thread interesting. I have never considered any USRPT work. What would be a good way to start?

Part of my 3 times weekly routine include a 6x100 yard on 1:50 per 100 (4 lengths). I usually complete each 100 in about 1:34 slowing to about 1:36 for the last one.

If I really put everything into it I can maybe do a 100 in about 1:29 but no way can I repeat this.

Gary, your 100's on 1:35 targeting <1:16 has me hyperventilating just digesting that!!
20 straight at <1:13 , amazing!!
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  #17  
Old 12-06-2017
Tom Pamperin Tom Pamperin is offline
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Originally Posted by Streak View Post
Really finding this thread interesting. I have never considered any USRPT work. What would be a good way to start?

Part of my 3 times weekly routine include a 6x100 yard on 1:50 per 100 (4 lengths). I usually complete each 100 in about 1:34 slowing to about 1:36 for the last one.

If I really put everything into it I can maybe do a 100 in about 1:29 but no way can I repeat this.
Streak,

at 1:34/100 on a 1:50 interval, I think you're not too far from my paces. Given that, I'd suggest trying the same set I'm doing, which is:

30 x 50y at :45 or faster pace on a 1:05 interval (you want 20 seconds of rest, give or take a couple of seconds--that rest interval is crucial)

Miss your time once, rest for the next repeat instead of swimming, then begin repeats again until you miss again.

Miss 2 times in a row, or 3 times total, and your set is over. That's it--very very simple. And the 1:05 interval makes it particularly easy to track how many repeats you've done on a pool pace clock, as your send-off time advances :05 on each repeat.

I tend to monitor SPL and try to resist simply upping SR when it gets hard, but I don't count a missed SPL as a "miss." I do find that focusing on holding good form and a lower SR/lower SPL is what gets me those last few repeats when it gets really hard to make the times.

This will be hard at first if it's a good goal pace--I think maybe I only did 3-4 repeats in a row before my first failure when I started out. But you'll progress steadily if you keep at it.

Once you can do all 30 repeats, it's time for a faster pace, or longer repeats like 75y.

I'm doing 2 of these sets a week right now, may up it to 3 pretty soon.

Good luck--let us know how it goes if you try it. I really like training this way, as otherwise I tend to focus on technique and avoid challenging myself aerobically.
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  #18  
Old 12-06-2017
Tom Pamperin Tom Pamperin is offline
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OK, todays USRPT set saw some gains. I managed:

1-10 on :43-44

missed #11, rested #12

13-14 on :44-ish

missed #15, rested #16

missed #17, set over

I recently added 3 half-hour weight room workouts per week, and today I swam just after the workout. That might have had some impact on failing so suddenly at the end.

Gains:

last time 7 repeats before failure; this time, 10

last time 10 successful repeats total; this time, 12

I'm on my way!
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  #19  
Old 12-06-2017
Tom Pamperin Tom Pamperin is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Streak View Post
If I really put everything into it I can maybe do a 100 in about 1:29 but no way can I repeat this.

Gary, your 100's on 1:35 targeting <1:16 has me hyperventilating just digesting that!!
20 straight at <1:13 , amazing!!
I agree completely--very motivating to hear about your progress, Gary. Thanks for posting.
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  #20  
Old 12-06-2017
Streak Streak is offline
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Thanks Tom, that's great and something even I can understand!
When my swim buddy is there we normally finish our session with 4x50 on 50 seconds.
I usually do these around 41 for the first maybe 43 for the last. I have done a few sub 40's but those are rare!!
Hopefully with a 20 second break between each set I will be able to do a few more than 4 without getting totally winded.

Cheers

Joel
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