Tag Archives: Holiday Training

ES – Learn to Swim Camp

folks you may have noticed a new Page on the Blog advertising a Learn to Swim Camp, that is scheduled for the first week of the holidays.  This camp is will not really suit a majority of our squad 2 and 3 Sailfish Swimmers, it is more focused on beginner swimmers, the upper levels may suit our level 1 swimmers.   It is open to Kindergarten to Grade 4 swimmers who have not had any swimming instruction right through to swimmers currently participating in the After School Activities Aquatics beginner and advanced program. The aim is to bring a significant number of swimmers up to the standard of being technically good enough to join the Sailfish Swim Club in the new school year.


So If you have a younger sibling or a friend who is in need of a crash course in learning to swim send them the link to the Camp.



Nutrition for Recovery

Nutrition for Recovery
From http://www.usaswimming.org/ViewNewsArticle.aspx?TabId=2159&itemid=3979&mid=11504


Knowing how much carbohydrate, protein and fat to get in a day is good. But knowing when you should be getting those nutrients is even better. In general, follow these guidelines for incorporating carbohydrate, protein and fat into your day.

¨ Spread carbohydrate intake out over the course of the day (i.e. smaller meals and frequent snacks). This keeps blood sugar levels adequate and stable.

¨ Eat some carbohydrate before morning practice. Note: This can be in the form of juice.

¨ Eat carbohydrate in the form of a carb-electrolyte drink, such as Gatorade or Powerade, during workout IF workout is 90 minutes or longer. Gels are also acceptable.

¨ Eat carbohydrate and protein within the first 30 minutes after practice. This enables the body to replenish glycogen stores and repair muscle tissue. This is perhaps the most important time to eat!!!!

¨ Eat again (something substantial, like a real meal) before two hours post-practice has elapsed. This is critical to maximizing recovery!!!!

¨ Incorporate fat into the day at times that are not close to workout. Fat is necessary, but contributes little to the workout or immediate post-workout recovery period.

Part of the reason good nutrition is critical during recovery has to do with the fact that the body is extremely good at making the most of what it is given. Following exercise, the body is very sensitive to the hormone insulin. Insulin is that hormone that rises every time blood sugar rises. In other words, every time a swimmer eats carbohydrate, which causes blood sugar to rise, insulin goes up. Well, it’s insulin’s job to remove sugar from the bloodstream, and it does so by facilitating its storage as glycogen. Glycogen, the storage form for carbohydrate, is what the body taps into for fuel when exercise is very intense. This can happen quite a bit during a tough workout, which is why it’s important to see that glycogen is replenished before the next practice.

The American College of Sports Medicine, American Dietetic Association and Dietitians of Canada Joint Position Statement on Nutrition and Athletic Performance states that:

“After exercise, the dietary goal is to provide adequate energy and carbohydrates to replace muscle glycogen and to ensure rapid recovery. If an athlete is glycogen-depleted after exercise, a carbohydrate intake of 1.5 g/kg body weight during the first 30 min and again every 2h for 4 to 6h will be adequate to replace glycogen stores. Protein consumed after exercise will provide amino acids for the building and repair of muscle tissue. Therefore, athletes should consume a mixed meal providing carbohydrates, protein, and fat soon after a strenuous competition or training session.” (ACSM, ADA, Dietitians of Canada, 2000, p 2131)

In addition, research (van Loon et al, 2000) has implicated immediate post-exercise carbohydrate ingestion (1.2 g/kg/hr for 5 hrs) in the enhancement of glycogen re-synthesis.

Body Weight in lbs (kg)

Carbohydrate Required (g) to meet Intake of 1.2-1.5 g/kg

120 (54.5kg) 65-82g
130 (59.1kg) 71-89g
140 (63.6kg) 76-95g
150 (68.2kg) 82-102g
160 (72.7kg) 87-109g
170 (77.3kg) 93-116g
180 (81.8kg) 98-123g
190 (86.4kg) 104-130g
200 (90.9kg) 109-136g
210 (95.5kg) 115-143g
220 (100.0kg) 120-150g

Swimming Nutrition

Recovery Nutrition During Hard Training



Thanksgiving Dinner Illustration.



During hard training cycles, like Christmas training, it is imperative for athletes not only to eat promptly (within a half-hour) following a hard training session, but eat the right amount of carbohydrates and protein as well. A sound recovery plan will be based on an athlete’s body weight.

  • Athletes should eat .5 grams of carbohydrates for every pound of body weight
  • Athletes should eat 15-20 grams of protein
  • Athletes should drink 24 ounces of water for every pound lost
  • Athletes should include electrolytes (sodium, potassium) from food with salt or a sports drink

The dieticians at the USOC have compiled some suggested recovery meals based on body weight:


110-132 Pound Athlete

  • 16 ounces of chocolate milk and water, or
  • 6 ounces of non-fat Greek yogurt, fresh fruit, and water, or
  • A natural ingredient sport bar (fruit/nut), a glass of skim milk, and water

154-176 Pound Athlete

  • 24 ounces of chocolate milk and water, or
  • Sport bar (45-50 grams of carbs/15-20 grams of protein) and 16 ounces of sport drink, or
  • 12 ounces of non-fat Greek yogurt, one cup of fruit juice, and water

198-220 Pound Athlete

  • 24 ounces of chocolate milk, water and a banana, or
  • Sport bar (50 grams of carbs/15-20 grams of protein) and 24 ounces of sport drink

Not only must an athlete eat their recovery snack within a half hour of completing practice, but they must also have a meal within an hour of eating their recovery snack, and add another snack an hour after the meal. Obviously this is not a recovery plan for every day of the year, but it will certainly make a difference when the coach pulls out their special New Year’s 10,000-yard set to cap off an intense week of holiday training

Holiday Work Out Design

Who is going to go for a swim on their own or with a friend this summer holiday?

What do I do, I’ll just e-mail my coach and ask them to make one for me, easy!

No, not this holiday, I’ll help you design your own workout.

Warm Up

  1. How much time do you have? aim for an hour of swimming, break the workout into 15 minute segments, 15min for warm up, 2x15m segments for the main set, then a 15minute cool down set, If you are going to swim for only 30 minutes, break it down to 10min warm up, 15min main set, then a 5 minute warm down.
  2. Warm up your muscles and tendons slowly: You probably have been sitting at your computer all day, and decide you need to get some exercise, the warm up is designed to get your blood flowing to your swimming muscles, before you start swimming fast. Typically spend 10 minutes swimming slowing but technically well, mix up the strokes, Freestyle, Backstroke, Breaststroke.  We’ll do some butterfly a bit later.
  3. Get to know you environment: Have you swum in the pool before? If not the warm up is an opportunity to get to know your new environment, is it a 50m or 25m pool? are the walls slippery? Is there lane ropes? Is the pool busy?  Is there backstroke flags, diving blocks? Is it cold or warm water.  Some of  your answers here may change your work out, if there is no backstroke flags you won’t be doing any backstroke.
  4. Practice skills early in the work out: The warm up is also an opportunity to practice some skills or drills.  Later you may be tired and won’t be able to physically and mentally concentrate on practicing the drill well. Spend about 15 minutes practicing a drill or skill, concentrate hard and try to do it well as you can. Drills are designed to fix a fault in your stroke, you don’t need to do a drill if you don’t have a problem with your stroke.  Do a drill that you know that is helping you to improve a weak area of your stroke.  You don’t always have to do drills now, you could practice a particular swimming skill, diving, turns or with a partner relay change overs.  Do you know how to do a cross over turn? Its a Individual Medley backstroke to breaststroke turn, it a tough one to learn, check out the video on the technique/turn page to see a swimmer demonstrating it.
  5. Drink Water: Do you have your water bottle with you? sip water all workout. don’t wait till you get thirsty.  Our body is made up of 70% water, our body depends on a well hydrated body, if you become dehydrated, you can’t operate as well as you should. Your blood is made up of fluid and your blood carries oxygen and fuel to your muscles and brain.  If you become dehydrated your muscles won’t work very well, and you will slow down, you will feel tired, you could get cramp, you could even get a headache.  Your body won’t recover quickly either, you may be tired the next day as well.
  6. Main Set: The main set typically takes 30-60 minutes. It depends on how long your total work out will be. What type of workout are you looking for?  You should swim
    • Endurance set – typically you will swim long distances at a constant speed with short rest,aim to swim for 20 to 45 minutes. It should not be exhausting.  Endurance sets, develop your heart, lungs, and circulatory system.  This type of workout, helps you swim for longer, more efficiently, which means your body will be able to swim faster for longer amout of time.  A majority of this type of swimming freestyle , backstroke, kick, pull or whole stroke.
    • Fast Endurance – Typically this type of work out takes 20-30 minutes.  It’s like the previous set, but you swim at a faster speed, take a little more rest, this type of swimming is more exhausting so you won’t be able to do swim as far or for as long as a straight Endurance set. You can do this set doing any stroke, kick or pull.  Fairly exhausting, you will be tired after this set.
    • Race Pace/Sprint Swimming – Usually you can effectivly swim at this speed for 400-600m. Pick an event, and practiced swimming at that the speed you would swim that event at.  Even better swim slightly faster than your current best time, so you body gets used to swimming that speed.  Break the event up into small parts and swim, if you pick the 200m Freestyle event, break the 200m int 40X50m take about 30 seconds rest between each interval and keep track of how fast you swim each 50m.  This set should take about 20mintues to complete.  You will be exhausted after this set, it is physically very hard to swim at race pace for an extended time, even if you have a rest between intervals.
  7. Cool Down: Your body will recover quickly from a workout if you cool down properly, you muscles produces lots of waste material when you exercise, it if stays in your body, especially in the muscles, you used it you will get sore the next day.  A cool down is d esigned to lower you heart rate, and to flush your muscles of those waist materials. Typically you should swim about 400-800m in a cool down

That’s it for now, good luck with designing your holiday workouts.

it’s great if you swim over the summer, but make sure you have permission to go to the pool by your parents, and never swim along, always swim with a lifeguard or have adult watching over you. .

If you design your onw workout, sent it, I may give the workout to somebody else.