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Pyramid Swim Workout

by Meghann on June 20, 2011

Happy Monday everyone!

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How was your weekend?!

Last night I got a text message from Courtney asking if I was hitting the pool this morning. Umm… heck yeah – especially if she was joining me! Courtney has been competitive swimming since she was 10, having her hit the pool with me was a freakin’ honor!

Once had the pool Courtney quickly designed a pyramid workout for us.

Warm Up

  • 250 yds easy

Main Set

  • 16 x 25 (aiming for 30 seconds) w/ 5 sec rest
  • 8 x 50 @ 1:10
  • 4 x 100 @ 2:20

Cool Down

  • 100

She came up with the pyramid style when I made a face about 3 sets of 4 x 100. For some reason so many 100s seemed far to me, but when she broke up the same distance (400) into 25 and 50 increments it didn’t seem as scary.

The Breakdown

16 x 25

For the first sets of 25 Courtney gave me the goal of hitting 30 secs for each length and resting for 5 seconds no matter when I hit the wall. So, if I hit the wall at 26 I would wait 5 seconds and go or if I hit at 32 I would still wait 5 and go.

I’m still working on figuring out what certain paces feel like, so I was afraid I would be all over the place. I took it at what I thought it could be and went from there. Somehow I was able to stay relatively consistent hitting each length around 26 seconds.

8 x 50

For each 50 (or one full lap of the pool) I had the interval of completing it in 1:10. I’m not sure why, but this intimidated me at first. I was afraid I wouldn’t hit the lap before 1:00 and wouldn’t have enough time to rest before doing it again.

I think those fears pushed me to keep my pace steady. When I saw my first lap at 55 I was pleasantly surprised and relieved.

4 x 100

I’ve been achieving 2:05 100s pretty consistently, so I was a little surprised when 1:56 kept showing up on the watch after each 100. I was on fire!

I’m super proud of all my times today! Having Courtney near there to coach me through really helped and I could really feel a difference from when I first started consistently swimming a couple of months ago. Training and consistency really do pay off! 🙂

After a quick change I headed to the weight room for NROLFW 1B. I was only able to get 2 strength training sessions in last week – it felt good to finally get another session in.


Between swimming and lifting, I had a couple of pieces of dried fruit to hold me over until I got home to eat.


Recovery Cereal

  • 1/2 cup Kix
  • 1/2 cup Kashi Honey Sunshine
  • 1/2 cup Uncle Sam
  • Chia Seeds
  • Plain Greek Yogurt
  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries


TIme to get to work!!

1 michelle June 20, 2011 at 10:54 am

That’s awesome that you have a swimming buddy who knows what she is talking about.
michelle recently posted..Vancouver USA Marathon – Expo and the Day Before the Big Day

2 Gina @ Running to the Kitchen June 20, 2011 at 10:56 am

I hate running with other people, but I’d imagine liking a swimming buddy, especially one who knows what she’s doing!
Gina @ Running to the Kitchen recently posted..Bloggers Greek festival

3 Kelli June 20, 2011 at 10:59 am

Thanks for the swim workouts! It is always nice to have something to shoot for in a swim workout, instead of just counting laps. I will be testing the pyramid workout tonight (without a swimming genius to help me)…so hopefully I will not lose count of my laps 🙂

4 Ali @ Ali Runs June 20, 2011 at 11:01 am

Awesome workout! I would love to have a swimming friend to help me out. I can doggy paddle with the best of them, but when it comes to free style I am very inconsistent (I think it’s a problem with my breathing).
Ali @ Ali Runs recently posted..Thursday Track Day

5 Julie @ Wearing Mascara June 20, 2011 at 11:07 am

Nice job keeping up with the strength training! I’m going to hit the weights today too! Have a good day!
Julie @ Wearing Mascara recently posted..Weekend away on a budget

6 Cat @Breakfast to Bed June 20, 2011 at 11:09 am

It’s great motivation to swim with a friend!! I find it so easy to just take it sooo casually when I get in!
Cat @Breakfast to Bed recently posted..Hell No! GMO! Hell No! GMO!!!

7 Hope June 20, 2011 at 11:25 am

I find exercising with a friend can be so motivating! Breakfast looks yummy! I haven’t had Kix in years! 🙂
Hope recently posted..Cupcakes &amp A Trip to Maryland…

8 Jordan P @ food, sweat, and beers June 20, 2011 at 11:28 am

Looks like a killer workout. Our new community aquatic center’s opening up soon, I think I might finally get up the chutzpah to dive into swimming.
Jordan P @ food, sweat, and beers recently posted..Six Pack Sunday

9 Cara June 20, 2011 at 11:31 am

Awesome workout! I’d love to get into swimming again, it is def better when you have someone who knows that they are doing! Great job on your pacing!

10 Monika @ Powered by Paprika June 20, 2011 at 11:36 am

Great workout!!
Monika @ Powered by Paprika recently posted..11 Miles Later…

11 Sarah June 20, 2011 at 11:52 am

I know you said that you ate a few snacks during the workout but do you eat before? I can never workout on an empty stomach so I’m curious what you do.
Sarah recently posted..Sunday Review

12 Meghann June 20, 2011 at 3:28 pm

I usually have half a Z-bar or something equivalent before my workouts in the morning. If it’s a longer work out – it’s usually a larger snack and i’ll document it. 🙂

13 Shannon June 20, 2011 at 12:38 pm

I love swimming with friends, it makes everything go by so much quicker
Shannon recently posted..Change of Plans

14 Jamie aka "Sometimes Healthy" Girl June 20, 2011 at 12:48 pm

Looks like a great workout! I wish I knew how to swim! Love the recovery cereal mix – especially the kix. mmmmmm.
Jamie aka “Sometimes Healthy” Girl recently posted..Ode to Sometimes Healthy Dad

15 Molly June 20, 2011 at 12:50 pm

ah I need to get back in the pool! I miss those full body workouts!
Molly recently posted..Good food- good people- good times –

16 chelsey @ clean eating chelsey June 20, 2011 at 1:17 pm

That’s a great pool workout – I usually do pyramid workouts when I swim too!
chelsey @ clean eating chelsey recently posted..crazy day at the vegan cafe

17 Sana June 20, 2011 at 1:49 pm

Working out with someone else is always more fun!
Sana recently posted..The Elbow Diet

18 Annette @ EnjoyYourHealthyLife June 20, 2011 at 2:42 pm

Woot. I love that you get to do swim workouts. Best thing ever!

19 Jamie Walker June 21, 2011 at 3:27 am

Thanks for posting your swim workout – I will definitely be trying this next time I get my butt in the pool. Also the recovery cereal looks AMAZING.

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