I've recently reintroduced some IM practice to my swim sessions and wanted to share what I've been doing and also invite any other suggestions or favs that others may be doing.
It's my intention to incorporate the other strokes into my regular practice and hopefully learn a little something or enhance my overall swimming.
It's my feeling this may further any insights and help in my relationship with the water and my ability to adapt to it.
Monday's practice went something like this:
Ladder set of free as: 4x50, 3x100, 2x150, 1x200 (1000 yds)
I wanted to establish a comfy spl and maintain that as the distance increased. Benchmark for the rest of the practice.
IM 4x100 (400 yds)
Reacquaint to the other strokes. 'Easy' IM, est. spl for each stroke
(avg.: BF 7, BK 15, BR 8, FR 13)
Pyramid- FR/IM inc. as:
50FR, 25BF, 100FR, 25BK, 150FR, 25BR, 200FR, 25 'perfect free' (600 yds)
This was a continuous set ( w/ open turns @ fly, bk & br).
Again I wanted to maintain spl throughout, not only on the free lengths but on the others as well (as est. on the preceding 4x100)
I then took it down as:
200FR, 50BF, 150FR, 50BK, 100FR, 50BR, 50FR, 50 'perfect free' (700 yds)
The "perfect" lengths were swum at a very deliberate pace (a cool way of saying slowly) focusing on the three major aspects of TI swimming, balance-streamlining-effective propulsion, while holding SL and breathing every 3.
Although the sets were intended for a continuous flow I did pause on occasion, usually when I came up short on a length and needed to continue ('calibrate') my breathing rhythm.
2x50FR + 100FR
100 IM (300 yds)
Picking up the tempo in free while holding within 1-2 of original spls on all.
I then focused on each stroke separately and timed each length to note for future use.
Easy IM as:
2x25BF @ 7spl :26-:27
2x25BK @ 14-16spl :25-:26
2x25BR @ 7-8spl :30-:31 (major Kaizen opportunity)
2x25FR @ 14spl :20-:19 (200 yds)
I noted I was able to sustain the same spls for each stroke throughout the entire practice even hitting 12 on a few initial free lengths and 6.5 on a couple of fly.
I finished with:
2x50 'perfect free' (100 yds)
Total 3300 yds (90 min.)
What I hope it teaches me (through another 'point of view')
* better sense of core stability
* better awareness of balance
* heightened awareness of drag, thus
* an enhanced ability to streamline
* further mastery of breathing control and timing and its relationship to above aspects.
Incidentally, I did feel that by managing the 'same' breathing rhythm through each stroke in the main set I was able to hold spls for each with relative ease. The payoff will be when I can do this automatically and at quicker tempos.
Anyway, a fun way to 'mix it up'. Give it a try and let's hear what you think!