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  #1  
Old 02-03-2016
glider
 
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Default Continuous swimming - how do I get beyond 50 meters?

Hello dear swimmers

I started TI last year - before I did not really swim a decent freestyle. My goal is "eternal gliding". TI was kind of a revelation to me. Of course there is still so much space for improvement, but meanwhile I have made quite some progress and I'm able to swim a pool length in a more or less decent way (and in the green zone of Terry's SPL chart at a tempo of about 1:20 to 1:30 with the tempo trainer). However, when I'm getting to the end of the pool, I have an unpleasant feeling of breathlessness, and therefore usually I wait half a minute or even longer before I embark on the next length. If, rarely, I can bring myself to do 2 lengths in a row, I kind of get a feeling of near-drowning by the end of the 2nd length.

When trying to analyze the reason(s) of my breathlessness, I'm not very successful. I am obviously thinking about a) technical flaws, such as too much drag due to insufficient balance, but I do not believe that this is the main cause, as I'm observing lots of other swimmers who seem to "work" more than I do (at least that's what it looks like for me) but who swim length after length. I also think of b) psychological issues (such as fear of lack of air or, don't laugh at me now, fear of water in general), or of c) an unknown factor. Physically I am in quite a good general condition by the way, and I am also able to do open turns (and even isolated flip turns), so it's not that.

Therefore:
- Who has experienced a similar thing?
- What is your advice for me?

Thanks!

Nico
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  #2  
Old 02-03-2016
sclim sclim is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glider View Post
Hello dear swimmers

I started TI last year - before I did not really swim a decent freestyle. My goal is "eternal gliding". TI was kind of a revelation to me. Of course there is still so much space for improvement, but meanwhile I have made quite some progress and I'm able to swim a pool length in a more or less decent way (and in the green zone of Terry's SPL chart at a tempo of about 1:20 to 1:30 with the tempo trainer). However, when I'm getting to the end of the pool, I have an unpleasant feeling of breathlessness, and therefore usually I wait half a minute or even longer before I embark on the next length. If, rarely, I can bring myself to do 2 lengths in a row, I kind of get a feeling of near-drowning by the end of the 2nd length.

When trying to analyze the reason(s) of my breathlessness, I'm not very successful. I am obviously thinking about a) technical flaws, such as too much drag due to insufficient balance, but I do not believe that this is the main cause, as I'm observing lots of other swimmers who seem to "work" more than I do (at least that's what it looks like for me) but who swim length after length. I also think of b) psychological issues (such as fear of lack of air or, don't laugh at me now, fear of water in general), or of c) an unknown factor. Physically I am in quite a good general condition by the way, and I am also able to do open turns (and even isolated flip turns), so it's not that.

Therefore:
- Who has experienced a similar thing?
- What is your advice for me?

Thanks!

Nico
Me.

I have been a struggling older TI swimmer for 3 years now. I alternate between moments of despair, and one magic step forward, then try to do the logical next step and fail miserably, etc.

Getting unpleasantly out of breath has been a familiar and recurrent theme throughout this process, despite being a very fit athlete in in other activities, so it has been very discouraging. I am now on a roll, having being recommended to do 50 m descending sets at a faster TT time than I was having trouble with 3 weeks ago, and having great success, to my great surprise, so I have forgotten the most recent despairing thought regarding my shortness of breath 1 month ago. The reasons for improvement are many and complicated and interconnected, likely due to many contributing deficiencies I have corrected over the past 3 years, mostly without noticeable improvement at the time, but without which my present confidence would not have been possible. So I would say, have patience, work on one little thing at a time. It will come, trust me.

PS Look at the "The Swim Breathing Thread - How to make it feel effortless" thread to see how much problem I was having breathing in late 2014. I am only just now finally coming to grips with the basic problem for me, which was poor balance breathing to the left.

Last edited by sclim : 02-03-2016 at 11:54 PM.
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  #3  
Old 02-04-2016
novaswimmer novaswimmer is offline
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How often are you breathing? I have to breathe every other stroke, or I'm done.

My record is nearly one hour of freestyle non-stop. But lately I'm lucky to do 1/2 hour. With high school swim teams monopolizing the pool, I don't get to swim as often in winter.
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  #4  
Old 02-05-2016
jenson1a jenson1a is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glider View Post
Hello dear swimmers

I started TI last year - before I did not really swim a decent freestyle. My goal is "eternal gliding". TI was kind of a revelation to me. Of course there is still so much space for improvement, but meanwhile I have made quite some progress and I'm able to swim a pool length in a more or less decent way (and in the green zone of Terry's SPL chart at a tempo of about 1:20 to 1:30 with the tempo trainer). However, when I'm getting to the end of the pool, I have an unpleasant feeling of breathlessness, and therefore usually I wait half a minute or even longer before I embark on the next length. If, rarely, I can bring myself to do 2 lengths in a row, I kind of get a feeling of near-drowning by the end of the 2nd length.

When trying to analyze the reason(s) of my breathlessness, I'm not very successful. I am obviously thinking about a) technical flaws, such as too much drag due to insufficient balance, but I do not believe that this is the main cause, as I'm observing lots of other swimmers who seem to "work" more than I do (at least that's what it looks like for me) but who swim length after length. I also think of b) psychological issues (such as fear of lack of air or, don't laugh at me now, fear of water in general), or of c) an unknown factor. Physically I am in quite a good general condition by the way, and I am also able to do open turns (and even isolated flip turns), so it's not that.

Therefore:
- Who has experienced a similar thing?
- What is your advice for me?

Thanks!

Nico
Who has experienced similar things? When you have time, read thru the number of forums that have dealt with this problem. Before TI I swam many mindless laps in the all inclusive needs of piling on the distance. The cost was sore shoulders and the need for weekly massages to relieve the soreness. Then I received a fantastic birthday present from my son-in-law--Terry's book on TI. While it wasn't a magic bullet, it did open my eyes to a new and better way to swim well.

Coach David Shen opened my eyes when he told me that he thought that I was simply not getting enough air. Years of sitting at a desk and hunching over a computer compromised my breathing--I was only filling the top part of my lungs. He suggested some breathing exercises, which seemed to help me.

Another suggestion that was posted in a blog by Mat Hudson was that when you feel tired, try nasal breathing. This also was a very aha moment for me. Worked like magic.

Assuming you have read the breathing thread, maybe your problem is just psychological? That was also some of my problem too.

Then trying to complete 2 lengths without hugging and puffing, I discovered that I was exhaling so hard that I could hardly see ahead because of all the bubbles I was creating. Maybe you are putting too much effort in the first length and have little to give when it comes to the second length.

The other problem was that when I was using the TT, I sort of panicked trying to hear the beat and to time it with the hand entry. Decided to do without the TT and just try to swim as relaxed as possible. I am now using the TT and it seems to be working out.

These are only a few of the problems that I discovered, but progress is slow. Keep at it and hope others give you suggestions.

Sherry
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  #5  
Old 02-11-2016
OllieMackJames
 
Posts: n/a
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What helped me is using a snorkel.

I got into TI swimming in december last year, started swimming in november, not very fit at all and having trouble doing freestyle for more than 2 laps in one go, then I needed to take a breath.

In december I got the ebook and videos from TI and in one of the images or videos I saw Teryy using the snorkel, immediately bought one and now I can keep going much longer.

I got the finis freestyle snorkel and now just focus on swimming technique and keeping my SPL as I swim further and longer.

Apart from the snorkel I noticed I did not breathe out under water, so every time I breathed left or right, I would first push out and quickly breathe in, which did not help either.

Maybe try a snorkel and see how you go!
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  #6  
Old 02-11-2016
lloyddinma lloyddinma is offline
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[quote=glider;57141]Hello dear swimmers

However, when I'm getting to the end of the pool, I have an unpleasant feeling of breathlessness, and therefore usually I wait half a minute or even longer before I embark on the next length. If, rarely, I can bring myself to do 2 lengths in a row, I kind of get a feeling of near-drowning by the end of the 2nd length.

When trying to analyze the reason(s) of my breathlessness, I'm not very successful. I am obviously thinking about a) technical flaws, such as too much drag due to insufficient balance, but I do not believe that this is the main cause, as I'm observing lots of other swimmers who seem to "work" more than I do (at least that's what it looks like for me) but who swim length after length. I also think of b) psychological issues (such as fear of lack of air or, don't laugh at me now, fear of water in general), or of c) an unknown factor. Physically I am in quite a good general condition by the way, and I am also able to do open turns (and even isolated flip turns), so it's not that.

Therefore:
- Who has experienced a similar thing?
- What is your advice for me?

Thanks!

Nico[/QUOTET

Initially, when learning how to swim with TI, in 2014, I had that elevated heart rate/ breathlessness issue after just a 25 yard length. I would need an average of 3 mins rest time. Now I can do sets of 10 X 25 yards with 2 minute rests before getting a feeling close to that. Doing consistent drills has also helped. Yep a 25 yard length feels effortless. In my case, I think the variables at play have been technique, body type and patience.

I recently found out that after a few lengths, my stroke "melted" and I was not rotating poorly on my left side causing me to take in very little air. Since I breath bilaterally every three strokes, effectively, I was only breathing every six.

There is no substitute for patience:over time you become more efficient with air-intake.

Finally, regardless of what anyone tells you, different body types have different challenges. It is my opinion that people of leaner and denser frames (myself) require more energy/exertion to stay afloat than others. Consequently, this will have an impact on stamina.

I think to be on the safe side just keep working on all the variables. I still can't swim a mile continuously like that gentleman from India, but I am inching there slowly. :)
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  #7  
Old 02-18-2016
glider
 
Posts: n/a
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Dear everybody

Thank you very much for your thoughts. I will try to follow your suggestions, and I will keep you updated about their success.

Best-

Nico
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  #8  
Old 02-21-2016
CoachSuzanne CoachSuzanne is offline
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How unpleasant is your breathlessness? When you go for a jog and stop at a stoplight, is your breathing slightly breathless?

When I made the realization that it was Ok to be breathing heavily and continue on another interval, I was able to progress my training signfiicantly. What I found was that prior to that I wanted to be breathing at my resting rate before starting any new interval again.

I realized that I felt just as fine on subsequent lengths.

Physiologically, your breathing will reach a balance when your'e exercising any where above a "marathon effort" pace, and respiratory rate will remain elevated.

If you have trouble exchanging air when swimming you'll run into technical problems like breath holding or using a lot of extra energy to get air in, and that's a different type of problem.

Can you figure out which type you have? A techinical problem with air exchange or an emotional problem with not wanting tos tart a swim when your breathing rate is up?
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  #9  
Old 02-23-2016
jenson1a jenson1a is offline
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Location: Southwest Florida
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CoachSuzanne View Post
How unpleasant is your breathlessness? When you go for a jog and stop at a stoplight, is your breathing slightly breathless?

When I made the realization that it was Ok to be breathing heavily and continue on another interval, I was able to progress my training signfiicantly. What I found was that prior to that I wanted to be breathing at my resting rate before starting any new interval again.

I realized that I felt just as fine on subsequent lengths.

Physiologically, your breathing will reach a balance when your'e exercising any where above a "marathon effort" pace, and respiratory rate will remain elevated.

If you have trouble exchanging air when swimming you'll run into technical problems like breath holding or using a lot of extra energy to get air in, and that's a different type of problem.

Can you figure out which type you have? A techinical problem with air exchange or an emotional problem with not wanting tos tart a swim when your breathing rate is up?
Your second paragraph really resonated with me. I think that I am feeling the same thing--the need to get back to my resting heart rate.

But just for the heck of it, regarding breath exchange, (besides holding your breath), what symptoms do you look for--raising head to breathe and any others?

Sherry
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  #10  
Old 02-25-2016
Georgina Georgina is offline
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I can relate to Suzanne's comment around realising that it's normal for breathing to be elivated. Also realising that I did not need to be completely emptying my lungs between breaths. Just like the difference between fast walking or easy running as opposed to sprint intervals or stair climbs.

With regard to technical issues, yes any head lift as opposed to roll, any downward pressure on the lead arm in an attempt to push the body up to find air. If legs are 'busy' then the body will need more air.
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