3 Swim Workouts for Runners

Workout #2: Lung Builder

This exercise will strengthen your lung capacity by limiting the number of breaths you take during the set.

Please note: Do not hold your breath during this exercise. Instead, practice controlling your breath so that you exhale slowly when your face is in the water. Take a controlled breath as indicated below.

Warm-up: Swim 200 to 400 meters at an easy pace.

Main set: Complete 12 x 100 meters. For the first 25 meters, take a breath every three strokes. From 25 to 50 meters, take a breath every five strokes, and from 50 to 75 meters, take a breath only every seven strokes. Sprint for the last 25 meters of the set.

Cooldown: Swim 100 to 200 meters easy.

More: 7 Cross-Training Exercises for Runners

Workout #3: The Kicker

The kick in swimming works to strengthen the hip flexors, IT band and hamstrings without adding the pounding you would get on the road. If you want to increase your ankle flexibility during this workout, use a pair of short-nosed flippers.

Warm-up: Swim 200 to 400 meters easy.

Main set: Complete five sets of the following interval: 50 meters easy, 100 meters fast kick, 50 meters easy, 100 meters fast swim, followed by 15 to 20 seconds of rest. Repeat.

Cooldown: Swim 200 to 400 meters at a recovery pace.

You'll notice that these workouts are only 1600 meters in length. For a swimmer, 1600 meters isn't much, but for a runner it should be more than enough. You'll stretch your legs and get in a great cardiovascular and muscular workout.

More: 10 Running-Specific Strength-Training Exercises

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