Saturday Swim Session: Margaret Cyphers’ Up Down Up Down Workout - Coach Ray

Coach Ray

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Swim Sessions Triathlon Training

Saturday Swim Session: Margaret Cyphers’ Up Down Up Down Workout

Descending sets can provide both stamina and speed as you build your swimming fitness. 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;
  • 100m Br K;
  • 8x 75m Swim/Drill/Swim;
  • 3x 100m 20sec RI;
  • 100m Easy;
  • 3x 100m Pull 20sec RI;
  • 2x 25m SPRINT 20sec RI;
  • 200m CD (1,950m)

Option B

  • 300m WU;
  • 100m Br K;
  • 8x 75m Swim/Drill/Swim;
  • 3x 200m Pull, 30sec RI;
  • 3x 100m 20sec RI;
  • 100m Easy;
  • 3x 100m Pull 20sec RI;
  • 2x 25m SPRINT 20sec RI;
  • 200m CD (2,650m)

Option C

  • 600m WU;
  • 100m Br K;
  • 12x 75m Swim/Drill/Swim;
  • 4x 200m Pull, 30sec RI;
  • 4x 100m 20sec RI;
  • 100m Easy;
  • 4x 100m Pull 20sec RI;
  • 4x 25m SPRINT 20sec RI;
  • 200m CD (3,700m)

Start the workout with a Warm Up (WU) covering 200m (Option A), 300m (Option B) or 600m (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 100m of Breaststroke Kicking. Use a kick board if you need to.

Follow this set with a 100m Individual Medley (IM), this is made up of 25m of each of the competitive strokes starting with Butterfly, then Backstroke, Breaststroke and then finishing with Freestyle.

Next up is a set of either eight (Option A and B) or twelve reps of 75m. The first and last 25m is normal freestyle swimming, with the middle 25m being a swimming drill. For this wear fins and do the following drills in order twice through for Options A & B, thrice through for Option C:

Next up is a set of swimming with a pull buoy for Options B & C only. Complete three (Option B) or four (Option C) reps, of 200m. Take 30 second Rest Interval (RI) between reps.

The next set involves swimming three (Options A & B) or four (Option C) reps of 100m, with a 20 second Rest Interval (RI) between reps.

Swim 100m easy prior to the next set.

A set with Pull Buoy is next. This is made up of three (Options A & B) or four (Option C) reps of 100m with a 20 second Rest Interval (RI).

The final set is a sprint set of two (Options A & B) or four (Option C) reps sprinting 25m 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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