Saturday Swim Session: Margaret Cyphers’ Pace Setter - Coach Ray

Coach Ray

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Swim Sessions Triathlon Training

Saturday Swim Session: Margaret Cyphers’ Pace Setter

Conducting reps with changes of pace and minimal rest between reps will help build your stamina. This session is great for swimmers and triathletes preparing for longer, open water swims.

Each week I will load three options up for you to do. Option A is for swimmers who are after a workout between 1,000 & 2,000 metres. Option B is for swimmers who are after a workout between 2,000 & 3,000m and Option C will be greater than 3,000m.

The inspiration for these sessions came from a former college swimmer and high school assistant coach, Margaret Cyphers. Click here to view the original article.

Option A

  • 200m WU;
  • 4x 50m Mod Pace, 10sec RI;
  • 4x 50m Fast Pace, 20sec RI;
  • 4x 100m Build 1-4, 20sec RI;
  • 4x
    • 75m FAST, 10sec RI;
    • 25m SPRINT, 20sec RI;
  • 4x
    • 25m Mod Pace, 10sec RI;
    • 25m SPRINT, 20sec RI;
  • 200m CD (1,800m)

Option B

  • 500m WU;
  • 8x 50m Mod Pace, 10sec RI;
  • 8x 50m Fast Pace, 20sec RI;
  • 4x 100m Build 1-4, 20sec RI;
  • 4x
    • 75m FAST, 10sec RI;
    • 25m SPRINT, 20sec RI;
  • 8x
    • 25m Mod Pace, 10sec RI;
    • 25m SPRINT, 20sec RI;
  • 200m CD (2,700m)

Option C

  • 1,000m WU;
  • 8x 50m Mod Pace, 10sec RI;
  • 8x 50m Fast Pace, 20sec RI;
  • 8x 100m Build 1-4, 20sec RI;
  • 4x
    • 75m FAST, 10sec RI;
    • 25m SPRINT, 20sec RI;
  • 8x
    • 25m Mod Pace, 10sec RI;
    • 25m SPRINT, 20sec RI;
  • 200m CD (3,600m)

Start the workout with a Warm Up (WU) covering 200m (Option A), 500m (Option B), or 1,000m (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 set of four (Option A) or eight (Options B & C) 50m reps swum at a moderate pace with a ten second Rest Interval (RI).

Follow that with another set of four (Option A) or eight (Options B & C) 50m reps swum at a Fast pace with a 20 second Rest Interval (RI).

The next set is four (Options A & B) or eight (Option C), 100m reps with a 20 second Rest Interval (RI). The set is swum Build 1-4. This means that as you complete each rep you swim it faster than the previous rep. Starting with a Moderately paced rep, then a Fast rep, then a Faster rep, and your fourth rep will be your Fastest. If you are doing eight reps, repeat the cycle reverting back to a moderate pace for your fifth rep and building with each rep to finish with your eighth rep being the fastest.

Next up is a set of four 100m reps. But each 100m gets broken into 75m swum FAST, followed by a brief ten second Rest Interval (RI) before finishing off the 100m with a 25m SPRINT. Take a full 20 second Rest Interval (RI) before the next rep.

Move onto a set of either four (Option A) or eight (Options B & C) 50m reps split into 25m sub-reps. The first 25m swum at a moderate pace with a ten second Rest Interval (RI) before the second 25m swum as a SPRINT with a 20 second Rest Interval (RI).

For the Cool Down (CD) swim 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 coachray@coachray.nz 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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