Coach Ray

Training for Excellence, with Excellent Training

Swim Session
Swim Sessions Triathlon Training

Saturday Swim Session: Mini Goldilocks

The Mini Goldilocks is a key session of Swim Smooth. It helps to develop your ability to sustain your swim pace. This session is perfect for Ironman and Olympic distance triathletes or people doing longer Ocean Swims.

Each week I will load three options up for you to do. Option A is for swimmers who are after a workout less than 2,000 metres. Option B is for swimmers who are after a workout between 2,000 and 3,000m and Option C will be greater than 3,000m.

The inspiration for these workouts came from an article by Myffy on, you can read the article here.

Option A

  • 200m WU;
  • 4x 50m Drill/Swim;
  • 3x 50m, 30sec RI;
  • 100m, 30sec RI;
  • 3x 50m, 30sec RI;
  • 200m, 30sec RI;
  • 3x 50m, 30sec RI;
  • 300m;
  • 200m CD (1,650m)

Option B

  • 400m WU;
  • 8x 50m Drill/Swim;
  • 3x 50m, 30sec RI;
  • 100m, 30sec RI;
  • 3x 50m, 30sec RI;
  • 200m, 30sec RI;
  • 3x 50m, 30sec RI;
  • 300m, 30sec RI;
  • 3x 50m, 30sec RI;
  • 200m, 30sec R;
  • 3x 50m, 30sec RI;
  • 100m;
  • 200m CD (2,750m)

Option C

  • 800m WU;
  • 12x 50m Drill/Swim;
  • 3x 50m, 30sec RI;
  • 100m, 30sec RI;
  • 3x 50m, 30sec RI;
  • 200m, 30sec RI;
  • 3x 50m, 30sec RI;
  • 300m, 30sec RI;
  • 3x 50m, 30sec RI;
  • 200m, 30sec R;
  • 3x 50m, 30sec RI;
  • 100m;
  • 200m CD (3,550m)

Start the workout with a Warm Up (WU) covering 200m (Option A), 400m (Option B) or 800m (Option C). During the warm up feel free to stop and stretch as needed.  It doesn’t need to be a continuous swim.

Next up is a drill/swim set. There are four (Option A), eight (Option B) or twelve (Option C) repetitions of 25m Drill, then straight into 25m normal swimming. Feel free to use fins whilst doing this set.  Do the drills below once through for Option A, twice through for Option B or thrice through for Option C:

  1. Kick On Side (KOS) left side 
  2. Kick On Side (KOS) right side 
  3. 6/1/6 
  4. 6/3/6

I wrote an article about swimming drills previously. Click here to read and watch it.

The main body of the workout is made up of three main sets. Each set starts with three 50m repetitions with a 30 second Rest Interval (RI) – modified from the one beep on a tempo trainer as not everyone owns or uses a tempo trainer (although I would recommend it) – and then a long rep (one of the three bears) also with a 30 second Rest Interval (RI).

Do the first set of three 50m reps with the 30 second Rest Interval (RI). The first sets bear is the Baby Bear of 100m, take a 30 second Rest Interval (RI) after the 100m.

Then the second set of three 50m reps also with the 30 second Rest Interval (RI). The bear for the second set is a Mama Bear of 200m, also take a 30 second Rest Interval (RI).

The third set of three 50’s is next, take the 30 second Rest Interval (RI) between reps and then it’s time for Papa Bear which is 300m, then take a 30 second Rest Interval (RI). At this point Option A moves to the Cool Down (CD) and the other options continue with the workout.

Another set of three 50m reps is done next with the corresponding 30 second Rest Interval (RI) before doing a Mama Bear of 200m with a 30 second Rest Interval (RI).

The final set of three 50m reps with a 30 second Rest Interval (RI) between reps is conducted next. Finish with another Baby Bear of 100m before the Cool Down (CD).

To finish, complete the session with a 200m. Unlike the previous sets which have to be freestyle, the cool down (like the warm up) can be any stroke you wish to swim.  You can also stop and rest after any length.  I encourage you to stop and stretch during the cool down.

If you would like further advice feel free to contact me.

I am the Head Coach & Director of Qwik Kiwi Coaching.

I specialise in assisting first timers and recreational athletes to achieve their sporting goals. I can be contacted at and 021 348 729.

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If you enjoyed this workout, here is a similar session I published 12 months ago.

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Ray has competed in triathlons from sprint to ironman distance (both IM Taupo and Challenge Wanaka). Consequently he is aware of the importance of balancing training with lifestyle, thus complimenting other important aspects of an athlete’s life (family, work, study commitments etc…). • Entering your first triathlon? • Stepping up to a longer distance? • Looking to go faster? • Wanting to turn previous negatives into positives? Ray has coached athletes to achieve these and more. Training programmes are accessible online, so athletes can be located anywhere and still reap the benefits of Ray’s coaching. Contact him to discuss how he can assist you to achieve your goals.
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