Mid-week 45 minute swims might be sufficient for the turbo-charged super swimmers of this world to bosh out 200 lengths [of a 25m pool], but if like me you’re more of an aspirant than a pro, it can be more of a challenge to find enough time to fit in the epic swimming sessions required to cover the distance.
‘Finding the time’ is easier said than done…
Given that my local pool is allocating a total 3 hours for Swimathon completion – which gives an indication of the size of the ‘window’ I’m looking for – it starts to get a bit tricky ‘planning in’ uninterrupted time slots into weekends, let alone in sync with the pool timetable.
So, how to find that ‘golden nugget’ of continuity?
These 4 no-brainer ‘life hacks’ should help:
I love food, and mealtimes are a very important part of my day, but eating habits are pretty commonplace to most other people too – ergo, they’re a prime time to bask in the clear waters of your local pool – hurrah!
I’ve noticed this especially in evenings, when post-work swimmers throw in the towel to head home for dinner – freeing the lanes up for less nose-to-tail, continual swimming…
And on weekends, when families head home en masse for lunch – reducing both the population and noise of the pool considerably, for a more peaceful swim!
Savour Super Sundays
I’m a football fan, I love roast dinners and spending lazy Sunday afternoons in the pub too; but when popular sporting occasions and aforementioned factors collide, it’s time to hit the pool!*[*unless of course it’s a Manchester Derby]
Sunday afternoons usually offer up two lanes for lengths or lap swimming vs the other half of the pool for recreation and ‘family time’. By selecting the lane once-removed from the anything-goes [float-throwing] half you’re pretty much guaranteed uninterrupted swimming – especially when dads decide to watch ‘the game’.
However, at all costs avoid pre-inflatable sessions – even when lanes are in place – the water is usually beyond choppy, as super-enthused younglings thrash about with anticipation of an inflatable assault course!
I’m by no means a morning person [so I’ve not personally tried and tested this tip], but a little bird told me that pre-work swimming sessions are the way forward!
Based on the fact that most people (myself included) would rather have an extra hour in bed than exercise, you’re likely to find a whole pool dedicated to laned swimming and frequented by fellow enthusiasts who are simply there to get on and swim.
Early bird sessions are usually from 6:30 AM ish, which gives enough time to smash out a solid 5K too!
This is of course great for some – but beware the turbo-charged semi-pro swimmers, who mightn’t appreciate ‘your usually fast enough for the fast lane’ approach to training. TIP: Pick an appropriate speed lane.
At the complete opposite end of the spectrum; there are some pools that cater for city-worker-type / hectic-life schedules by staying open late at least once or twice a week – which is great if you get your second wind late in the day.
Plus, most gyms accommodate late night training sessions and keep their pools open too – so while others pound the treadmill, you can treat yourself to a lengthly swim in an (likely near) empty and peaceful pool. Win!