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  #1  
Old 04-09-2010
kevhash3 kevhash3 is offline
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kevhash3
Default Finally Swam A Mile Non-Stop!!!!!!!!!!!

So this past week I finally swam a mile non-stop and it felt absolutely amazing. I definitely felt my stroke fall apart numerous times, but I told myself to slow down and focus on form. I remember reading on one of the "How to swim a mile" forums, someone saying "if you can swim 50m you can swim a mile." Someone take credit for this saying because I really took it to heart and it really helped me realize that I probably could swim a mile. As long as I stayed calm and focused on my form I felt great and previously, the longest swim I had accomplished was just 400m. The swim took me 40 min and I don't do flip turns so I was way stoked with my time as well. Also I tend to get panicked underwater and I start to lose my breath. This was the biggest barrier that I had to break down. I had to constantly tell myself that the air was there whenever I needed it and to stay calm. This was the hardest part of my swim, but as long as the form was good the breath was always there. I started TI about 1 year and a half ago but have actually been in the pool for about 8 of those months. I was a horrible swimmer when I started and I would have never thought I would be able to swim as far as I can with very little effort. Just want to say thanks to Terry for such a great program and everyone on here with all their great insight. I believe that I have learned just as much from all of your experiences as well as Terry's teachings. I would love to do some open water swimming this summer too, Utah just doesn't have the warmest lakes. Maybe that Half Ironman isn't too far out of reach anymore, since the swim is easily my worst of the 3 events. Well I am definitely having the happiest laps I have ever had and can't wait for tomorrow to improve some more.

Thanks everyone,
Kevhash3
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  #2  
Old 04-10-2010
CoachSuzanne CoachSuzanne is offline
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Fantastic!
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Suzanne Atkinson, MD
Coach of 4 time USA Triathlon Triathlete of the Year, Kirsten Sass
Steel City Endurance, LTD
Fresh Freestyle

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  #3  
Old 04-10-2010
Alex-SG Alex-SG is offline
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Congratulations KevHash.
Being able to swim FreeStyle continuously for 1 MILE means that:
a. Breathing is under control
b. You have muscular endurance

On my side I can swim 1 MILE but I constantly have to switch from FREESTYLE to BREAST STROKE to catch my breath again. My time is similar, about 38min.

I did swim 1 MILE FREESTYLE before when I was part of a Masters group and we were working a lot on Stamina/Endurance with Interval training. I have decided since then to just work on TI DRILLS/technique only.

What is interesting is that once you FIX your breathing and are able to swim at least 300-400m, then you just keep on going (you only have to worry about muscular endurance). ALEX
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  #4  
Old 04-10-2010
bnichols4 bnichols4 is offline
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This is an awesome post congratulations! I get the same feeling about breathing and it usually occurs during the first 300 yeards when I swim long distance and like you I have to work through it. I was swimming long distance for a while and then notced that my strok rate was increasing and I felt less comforatble even though I would finsih the laps. Now I have taken a step back and spend more time on TI drills followed by longer sets. I have adopted Terry's formula for determining how efficient I am. Using my 50 yard time plus stroke rate tells me if I am becoming more or less efficient. When my stroke rate goes up more then 10% during a 50 yard lap of what I like to think is my normal stroke count then I stop and rest. So I usually can do a 50 in 36 strokes, so when my stroke rate goes up to 40 - 41 I will stop and take a break. I have found that this methodology allows me to improve my endurance. And of course the TI drills have made me much more efficient.
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  #5  
Old 04-10-2010
Alex-SG Alex-SG is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bnichols4 View Post
..... When my stroke rate goes up more then 10% during a 50 yard lap of what I like to think is my normal stroke count then I stop and rest. So I usually can do a 50 in 36 strokes, so when my stroke rate goes up to 40 - 41 I will stop and take a break. I have found that this methodology allows me to improve my endurance. And of course the TI drills have made me much more efficient.
Interesting.
Something you can also do is swim with a TEMPO trainer. You set the SR (Stroke Rate = number of hand entries per second) at a value which:
a. Gives you enough time to glide
b. Gives you a comfortable time between breaths

In my case, for a long distance swim, this is about SR=1.5-1.7strokes/sec

In my case I noticed that after the first 2-3 LAPs my body starts running out of oxygen and starts accelerating to get air more frequently. When that happens the HEART RATE goes up even more and that's it... time to stop.

Perhaps if I forced myself to swim at the same pace (SR) after LAP 3 I would be able to continue swimming longer distances. Anyway as I said the focus right now is 90% DRILLS to improve technique, even if I have lost my endurance. ALEX
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  #6  
Old 05-28-2010
dobarton dobarton is offline
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dobarton
Default Losing breath

Alex,
I am CLEARLY not an expert (see my previous posts for proof). My usual stroke for long swims is probably (I don't count on long ones or I lose track of my lap count) 24 SPL in 25 meters. It might go down to 22. It is NOT 17 (or 13 as some of the people here can do). However, I have gotten my stroke down to 15 when I concentrate hard on good glide, good spear, good rotation (you know the drill). When I do get my count down, I am breathless in 3-4 lengths AND my stroke count climbs.
However, this morning, I finished a 1600 m swim in 29 minutes without any breathlessness or fatigue with the higher SPL!
So what's the difference? I think it's because of the number of breaths I take per lap! If I'm taking 24 strokes, I'm taking 8 breaths per 30 seconds, which is a reasonable respiratory rate for a moderate workout. If I'm taking 15 strokes, I'm only taking 5 breaths per 30 seconds!! MY personal opinion (again, I'm no expert) is that fewer breaths is KILLING me.
I'm going to experiment with this a little over the next couple of weeks by keeping my stroke counts low, but breath more often (even if it's every stroke!) just to see if I can avoid breathlessness.
I really want to get my stroke rate down over longer distances, but I've got to be able to have a faster respiratory rate, even if the SPL falls.
I hope this helps.
Good luck.
Doug
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  #7  
Old 06-29-2010
Monkeymagoo Monkeymagoo is offline
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Monkeymagoo
Thumbs up Thanks a bunch!

Awesome job! It's a great motivator for me as I am training for an olympic length tri in September so the swim portion is only 100m shy of your fine accomplishment of one mile. I can likely bang out about omly 300m continuously right now - I know, a lofty goal for September! I have just caught wind of the TI swim philosphy and today was my first attempt at trying to emmulate the TI form. I noticed a HUGE improvement in my comfort level of being in the water and just felt way less energy drained than before. The biggest difference I noticed was in my legs - previously they dragged like bricks despite my attempts to kick like a maniac! Today while attempting TI, I seemed to have a much better breathing rythym (my nemesis for sure) so I feel once I can get that aspect under control with regular training then I will be off to the races (literally). Thanks for the post and all the great words of encouragement you guys and gals give each other on this site. It makes me want to keep coming back.
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  #8  
Old 08-27-2011
gladtobedifferent gladtobedifferent is offline
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gladtobedifferent
Default NO probs

You will do great for your olympic tri in autumn.

Wish I had signed up for a 800m swim tri. I do 400m, 20k/5k - so the last two bits would remain the same.

Since March I have gone from one length to 1km non stop this week, and this week did 3 sessions (had slipped to only 2) and did 1km non stop, 1km using lots of different sets, 1200m using 400m, 200m, 4x 100, 4 x 50. THe most I have ever swum in a week.

I am really rubbish and slow - my 50 % improved time for 100m is around 2min15 to 2 min 30 !! Took me 26 mins to do my 1 km so similar to the above posts would expect it to take me about 45mins to do 1600.

Sounds like you are doing great . good luck with your tri
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