GO­ING THE DIS­TANCE POOL TOY

GARMIN SWIM WATCH

Triathlon Magazine Canada - - FEATURES - KM

NMAIN SET

N* x 200 m with 10-sec rest * equals the max­i­mum num­ber you can com­plete in the time you have. I might mix in a healthy mea­sure of pull buoy/pad­dles to the set de­pend­ing on the ath­lete and where they are in their train­ing or in re­la­tion­ship to their next “A” race.

This ses­sion may seem painfully ob­vi­ous or bor­ing, but bor­ing train­ing makes great ath­letes. As the for­mer Czech na­tional swim­mer, Petr Schmidt, once said, “If there is too much writ­ing on the board I know it’s a poor ses­sion.”

Th­ese three ses­sions ad­dress speed, strength and en­durance in a time-crunched swim pro­gram.

When your pool time is lim­ited, don’t waste that time. Get in the wa­ter, get in the work and mea­sure the gains.

Clint Lien is a high per­for­mance coach for the Vic­to­ria-based Mer­cury Ris­ing Triathlon Club. As a coach I’m con­stantly telling my ath­letes to lose their watch dur­ing group swim work­outs (“ap­proach your work­outs as if you’re a mem­ber of a swim team,” I’m al­ways telling them), but if you’re not lucky enough to have a group to swim with, the Garmin Swim Watch might be just the tool you’ll need to im­prove your swim­ming.

The Garmin Swim keeps track of your laps in the pool and can even fig­ure out whether you’re do­ing fly, back, breast stroke or free style. Where it really shines is in track­ing your swim ef­fi­ciency by fig­ur­ing out how many strokes you’re tak­ing each length. (I of­ten have ath­letes do a drill called “golf” where they add up their time and num­ber of strokes it takes to do a 50 – Garmin refers to this as a “swolf” score, and the Garmin Swim watch pro­vides that in­for­ma­tion, too.)

The Swim is light­weight and com­fort­able to wear, and comes with a re­place­able bat­tery that lasts a year. It also comes with an ANT+ adap­tor that al­lows you to con­nect it to a com­puter and then use Garmin Con­nect to up­load all your train­ing info to the pro­gram of your choice (Train­ing Peaks, etc.), pro­vid­ing the same con­nec­tiv­ity you’re used to with your bike com­puter or Garmin tri watch.

For the price, it should come as no sur­prise that this isn’t a GPS watch, and is only use­ful in a pool, not open wa­ter. For those swims you’ll want to look at some­thing like the Fore­run­ner 920 XT. If you do a lot of your train­ing alone (and in a pool that’s longer than 16.5 m) and are look­ing for feed­back to im­prove your swim­ming, the Garmin Swim is an ex­cel­lent bet.–

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