Setting Yourself Up for Success in Harder Swim Efforts

Over the next two months, our athletes have the option to take part in a March Madness Swim Challenge.   They can choose between two different efforts depending on their comfort level in the water, either a 500 yard time trial or a 10 minute postal swim. They’ll set an initial time or number of yard in yearly March and will come back and do the same thing at the end of April to measure improvement.  Last Sunday morning, we had the opportunity to challenge some of our swimmers in person and did the first part of the challenge as a group.

Harder efforts or time trials can be daunting.  You can talk yourself right out of the effort or set yourself up to not have the best performance.  Here are a few tips on taking on these types of workouts:

  • Warm Up Well – don’t get into the pool and just bang out a time trial.  Spend at least 10-15 min warming up.  Do some drills and some effort work.  I always think throwing in a few mins of effort before the time trial gets the body primed for success
  • Key Words – pick a few words that you know will resonate with you during the time trial.  If you are swimming, maybe it is strong and smooth.   They have to be your words not just something someone tells you.
  • Swap the Negative Thoughts – see point #2 and when you find yourself getting caught up in the effort or how HARD this may feel, focus on the words or saying that you chose.  It will feel hard and that is okay.
  • Embrace the SUCK – we make gains when we put ourselves outside of our comfort zone.   So embrace the notion that you are able to be here, doing hard work, and making yourself a stronger athlete.

The more you try these type of challenges as an athlete, the better you become at the execution of the effort.  This becomes a skill that is important in racing.  This is a great time to take these opportunities to build a skill set that is strong for future events

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