Cook Strait Swim, New Zealand

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Countdown to English Channel Swim

I am so excited that 2011 is finally here.... I've been training hard for my English Channel attempt in August. I've had several emails from swimmers asking about my training program so I will try to give a brief outline of my schedule. Like many other swimmers I work (4 days a week as a nurse) and have a very busy family life (husband, kids, grand kids), so I have to carefully plan my training. Currently, I've been training six days a week.....three days a week are 4+ hours of swimming each day with cross training of one hour, the other three days are 2+ hours of cross training and 1 hour of swimming. Also, I weight train every two days and it includes upper body and core strengthening. My cold acclimation is easy living here in Maine where it's currently 30 degrees....my cross training is outdoors and I wear very lightweight clothing so I am intentionally COLD. I take one day off for rest. NOW for the confusing part......every two weeks I add one hour to "one"of the long day workouts. I make sure it's added to a "back to back" workout days....for example: On Saturday I will swim 5 hours and Sunday I will swim 4 hours. A few weeks later I will increase by one hour the Saturday workout.... Saturday 6 hour swim and Sunday 4 hour swim. This will continue each month until I reach a 10 hour swim on a Saturday and 4 hour swim on a Sunday. I continue with my routine workouts on the other days. A marathon runner doesn't run a marathon everyday likewise a marathon swimmer doesn't have to swim a marathon distance everyday. But it is very important that every week,a long distance of swimming should be met. I will start my transition from pool to ocean in April when the water temp is mid-forties. It will be a gradual transition where I will swim mornings at the pool and ocean swim in the afternoon. I will have a few night swims in July. Early August I will continue to train hard and I will start my taper when I board the plane to England. I will be celebrating my 60th birthday in a few weeks and I have surprisingly discovered that my endurance has improved again this year....Go figure!!!!!

2 comments:

Mark said...

nice new layout Pat
looking forward to watching your progress
best wishes for 2011
Mark

Bonnie Smith said...

Can't wait to follow your countdown closely this year, Pat. Your dedication is inspiring and gives us all the courage to train ourselves, whether for a marathon, family struggle or career change. Hopefully knowing we're supporting you in every way will help keep you warm as you try to stay cold!
To quote a famous fish...."just keep swimming....just keep swiming....just keep swimming"!