Katie Ledecky

Saturday Swim Session: Yuri’s Broken Set For Mortals

Katie Ledecky dominated female distance swimming setting the World Record in the 400m, 800m and 1,500m Freestyle, and won five Olympic Gold Medals and 15 World Championships, more than any other female swimmer. This session was a staple leading into major championship events, and will benefit any triathlete or open water swimmer.

Last week I wrote an article about the version of this workout that Katie Ledeck conducted:

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. This weeks sessions are a little longer than normal.

The inspiration for today’s workout comes from an article from Swimming World Magazine about the workouts Katie Ledecky’s coach Yuri Suguiyama set for her, you can read the article here.

Option A

  • 200m WU;
  • 400m -ve Split 20sec RI;
  • 2x 200m FAST 20sec RI;
  • 200m -ve Split 20sec RI;
  • 2x 100m FAST 20sec RI;
  • 200m CD (1,600m)

Option B

  • 400m WU;
  • 16x 25m 10sec RI;
    • 4x Drill,
    • 4x Pick Up,
    • 4x Perfect Technique,
    • 4x FAST,
  • 400m -ve Split 20sec RI;
  • 2x 200m FAST 20sec RI;
  • 200m -ve Split 20sec RI;
  • 2x 100m FAST 20sec RI;
  • 200m CD (2,200m)

Option C

  • 400m WU;
  • 16x 25m 10sec RI;
    • 4x Drill,
    • 4x Pick Up,
    • 4x Perfect Technique,
    • 4x FAST,
  • 600m -ve Split 20sec RI;
  • 6x 100m FAST 20sec RI;
  • 400m -ve Split 20sec RI;
  • 2x 200m FAST 20sec RI;
  • 200m -ve Split 20sec RI;
  • 2x 100m FAST 20sec RI;
  • 200m CD (3,400m)

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

Options B & C have a set of sixteen, 25m reps with a ten second Rest Interval (RI) between them. The first four, are done as drills. The first drill I recommend is Kick On Side, do a rep on each side, then for the third rep do 25m of 6/1/6 and then for the fourth rep use 6/3/6. The next four reps are Pick Ups. For a Pick Up you increase your speed as you swim your length, getting faster as you get closer to end of the rep. You pick up your pace within the length. The next four reps, focus on maintaining perfect technique. Then for the final four reps, swim them as fast as you can.

All three options (A, B & C) all have broken sets, that decrease in distance as you work through the session. Option C has the longest and then the other two options slightly shorter options.

Option C starts has the longest broken set. The Broken 600 commences with 600m swum as a negative split. A negative split means you swim the second half (i.e. 300m) faster than the first half of the swim. Take a 20 second Rest Interval (RI) then get into a set of six, 100m-reps. Swim these FAST and take a 20 second Rest Interval (RI).

Option C continues with the next broken set, and this is the first Broken set for Options A & B.

Next up is the Broken 400. Swim a 400m effort as a negative split and take a 20 second Rest Interval (RI) before a set of two, 200m reps swum FAST with a 20 second Rest Interval (RI).

Finish off with a Broken 200. Swim 200m, as a negative split. Take a 20 second Rest Interval (RI) prior to a set of two, 100m reps swum FAST with a 20 second Rest Interval (RI).

For the Cool Down (CD) swim 200m. 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.

I’ve recently launched a new swim training plan that will improve your swimming. If your goal this year involves swimming faster with limited time to train. Complete the form below and get more information about this great plan.

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