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One-Hour Workout: “Downward Spiral” Swim Set

  • By Jené Shaw
  • Published Nov 5, 2013
  • Updated Jan 31, 2014 at 1:45 PM UTC
Photo: Shutterstock.com

Every Tuesday we’ll feature a different coach’s workout you can complete in 60 mins (or less!).

This week’s swim workout comes from Atlanta-based coach Andrew Shanks, who is pursuing his Masters in Exercise Science at George State and works for Dynamo Multisport. He deemed this workout the “Downward Spiral,” with shorter (2,800) or longer (3,800) options of descending distances to accommodate various skill levels. “This is a pretty solid distance workout that doesn’t seem that hard, but if you keep yourself honest on the ‘push’ efforts (90%), then it will burn by the end,” Shanks says.

RELATED: Haley Chura’s Hardest Workout

“Downward Spiral”

*Longer option: 3,800*
Warm-up
200 choice
4×100 w/fins and 20” rest
• Odds: 50 kick/50 swim
• Evens: 50 drill/50 build swim

Main set (3000)
All on 30” rest
• 1000 pull at 60% effort. Mellow effort, allowing a good opportunity for you to focus on form, hand entry, high elbows and an early vertical forearm.
(Swim the rest of the set with no gear)
• 800—no gear the remainder of the set—every 4th 50 push (150 cruise/50 push, repeat)
• 600 every 3rd 25 push (50 cruise/25 push, repeat)
• 400 every other 50 push (50 cruise/50 push, repeat)
• 200 FAST!

Cool-down
200 kick

RELATED – Steal This Swim Workout: Shelley Harper’s “Get Out” Ahead Workout

*Shorter option: 2,800*
Warm-up
200 choice
4×100 w/fins and 20” rest
• Odds: 50 kick/50 swim
• Evens: 50 drill/50 build swim

Main set (2000)

All on 30” rest
• 800 pull at 60% effort. Mellow effort, allowing a good opportunity for you to focus on form, hand entry, high elbows and an early vertical forearm.
(Swim the rest of the set with no gear)
• 600 every 3rd 25 push (50 cruise/25 push, repeat)
• 400 every other 50 push (50 cruise/50 push, repeat)
• 200 FAST!

Cool-down
200 kick

Pull: This can be done with paddles and a buoy, or just one of them, depending on your equipment. Be sure not to use a paddle that is much larger than the size of your hand, as it will slow your turnover, create lazy habits and put unnecessary pressure on your shoulders.

More swim workouts.

More one-hour workouts.

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FILED UNDER: Swim / Training TAGS:

Jené Shaw

Jené Shaw

Jené Shaw is a senior editor at Triathlete magazine, a four-time Ironman finisher and a USAT Level 1 certified coach

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