Another 4 Workouts - Quality Speed

Workout #1 - Halloween Special
**NOTE: this is a little more fun with a group, but you can still perform by yourself. Bring a deck of cards to pool, or shuffle/'deal out your workout' ahead of time.

w/u: 200 swim
        200 as 2 x [25 scull/25 non-free/50 free]
        6 x 50 ZOMBIE KICKING w/ FINS
                     - 50 kick on back with arms straight up in the air/shoulder width apart. KICK LIKE HELL!

PS: 12 x 25 @ :30/:35
- IM ORDER; focus on technique and FINISHES



The “WHAT”
- DEMON DIAMONDS - 25 sprint Kick
- BLOODY HEARTS - 50 Pull (descend)
- MURDERING CLUBS - 75 Stroke/IM (No Free), with middle 25 FAST
- SHARPEN SPADES - 100 Free, middle 50 FAST
**All with :10sR

- JACKs - 12
- QUEENS - 15
- KINGS - 20
- ACE - 1

 - 4 x 100 Free + 8 x 25 kick + 6 x 75 Non-Free + 6 x 50 Pull

*Shuffle cards and swim as much yardage as desired

Workout #2
w/u: 10 minutes choice

PS: 12 x 75 w/ FINS @ :10sR as 25 freestyle - 25 BIG FISH DOLPHIN KICK on your side - 25 freestyle

MS: AT LEAST 3 ROUNDS OF THE FOLLOWING, with either 50 EZ or 2:00 rest in between each round:
Swim as many 50's (either choice or freestyle) as you can with interval decreasing by :05s every time. Here are the send-offs when starting on the top:
Interval - Send-off
1:15 - :00
1:10 - :15
1:05 - :25
1:00 - :30
:55 - :30
:50 - :25
:45 - :15
:40 - :00
:35 - :40
:30 - :15
:25 - :45, must make it back by :10

c/d: 100 EZ

Workout #3
500 freestyle w/ FINS, bilaterally breathing entire way
200 breaststroke kick

PS: 300 IMO as 50 drill + 25 FAST swim of each stroke
       300 IMO as 50 kick + 25 FAST swim of each stroke

MS: 8 x 200 freestyle or mix of strokes @ 3:15/3:30/3:45
- within each 200, 50 EZ/50 FAST/50 EZ/50 FAST

c/d: 100 EZ

Workout #4

w/u: 500 choice

PS: 10 x 50 as 25 fist/25 build free @ :50/:55/1:00

2 Rounds of the following:

     5 minutes Kick - FINS OPTIONAL (moderate; every 3rd length is ALL OUT)

     5 x 100 free OR IM @ 1:30/1:35/1:40

     8 x 25  free (start from tread; do NOT push off wall) @ :30/:35


c/d: 200 EZ

Posted on November 1, 2016 .

4 Workouts To Help You Get Better

Workout #1
w/u - 500 freestyle w/ FINS

PS: 16 x 50 @ :15sR as follows
- 12 1/2y FAST FLY, remainder EZ free
- 25y FAST FLY, remainder EZ free
- 37y FAST FLY, remainder EZ free
- 50y FAST FLY, reaminder EZ free
**Repeat this cycle of 4 for backstroke, then breaststroke, then sprint freestyle to equal 16 total 50s

MS: 8x200 w/ FINS @ :15-:20sR as follows
- 2 freestyle
- 2 freestyle kick
- 2 freestyle
- 2 freestyle kick
**For ALL 8, make the MIDDLE 100 FAST!!!!!

c/d: 200 EZ
*If more yardage desired, add more rounds of the PS or add more 200s, but only if you're able to maintain FAST for middle 100.

Workout #2
w/u: 12 minutes choice

16 x 25 @ :35
- BURST off the wall into fast breakout/first few strokes, then EZ remainder of way

16 x 25 @ :35
- 3 x 25 freestyle drill, then 1 x 25 SPRINT FREESTYLE; repeat 4x

MS: 10 x 100 @ 1:45/1:50/1:55
- For all, swim 75 smooth freestyle, then rest at wall for :05s, then SPRINT choice to finish the 100
**Perform an EZ 100 scull after 5th 100

c/d: 200 EZ

Workout #3
w/u: 200 freestyle NO WALLS/200 kick on side with FINS/200 FRIM

PS: 12 x 75 at 1:15/1:20/1:25
- 25 freestyle/25 FAST Stroke choice/25 freestyle

MS: 500 LOCO swim
-continuous 500 freestyle as 25 FAST/25 EZ, 50 FAST/50 EZ, 75 FAST/75 EZ, 100 FAST/100 EZ

500 LOCO KICK (fins optional)
- same pattern as swim

4 x 50 STROKE - Descend 1-4 @ :50/:55/1:00

c/d: 100 scull

Workout #4
wu: 300 IM as 25 kick/25 drill/25 swim of each stroke
      300 freestyle as 25 kick/25 drill/25 swim free

PS: 10 x 50 kicking w/ FINS @ 1:00
- USE BOARD on this. Kick several beats, then forcefully dive underwater with your board and continue kicking underwater. Aim for 2 dives per 25 of each 50.

MS: Descending Pull
9 x 100 pull - 3 @ 1:40/1:45/1:50
                    3 @ 1:35/1:40/1:45
                    3 @ 1:30/1:35/1:40

9 x 50 pull - 3 @ :55/1:00/1:05
                   3 @ :50/:55/1:00
                   3 @ :45/:50/:55

9 x 25 SWIM! - 3 @ :30/:35/:40
                       3 @ :25/:30/:35
                       3 @ :20/:25/:30

c/d: 200 EZ

Posted on October 18, 2016 .

Breaststroke Onward!

Hi, everyone! Thank you for being such an awesome team!  Not too much in the form of updates today, but we continue on with our stroke work to kick-off this Fall/Winter season. We've done a good job of sharpening up our freestyle attributes and worked on backstroke technique, while this week and next we tackle the breaststroke.

As I mentioned in practice, even if you have no intention of ever swimming/competing in the breaststroke, it's always refreshing to use other muscles in other ways than you're used to in your 'comfortable' strokes. Also, whenever I swim a different stroke I inevitably learn something about the way that I'm connecting with the water that I can then apply to my 'favorite' strokes. So, if you're not a breaststroker, just bear with us the next 2 weeks, but actively try to get the most out of it.

On Tuesday, we worked on the breaststroke kick. The kick is unlike the other 3 strokes in that there is NO flutter or dolphin action. The first step, which we practiced, is bringing your heels to your bum. At that point, the feet flex out and snap around into a streamlined glide with pointed toes behind you. Sounds simpler than when it's actually done, but, in essence, that's what we practiced. Key things to keep in mind with a powerful breaststroke kick -

- keep your knees AT MOST at hip width.
- initiate the kick with your heels up to your bum, NOT by bending your knees outward.
- frequent ankle flexibility/stretching exercises can help in the way of being able to bend your feet outwardly more comfortably and effectively.
- Keep your hips high in the water (ride high). You want the effect of swimming downhill, NOT uphill.
- finish your kick! Snap your feet together, don't just lazy-dazy let them float together at the end of the kick.

Tomorrow we'll introduce the arm motion of the breaststroke. Until then, my friends. :)

Posted on September 14, 2016 .

2016 U.S. Olympic Swimming Trials

I was blessed enough to attend the U.S. Olympic Swimming Trials in Omaha, Nebraska last week. The entire event was so overwhemingly inspiring, I am still settling back into reality. Not only did the big guns such as Michael Phelps, Ryan Lochte, and Katie Ledecky perform well, but the most eye-opening celebrations came in the form of the random heat 1 swimmer who knocked out a best time.

Seeing someone far from the top of the pack celebrate and be happy with their own success, meeting their own goal is so motivating for me. As I always say as a coach, swimming is You vs. You. Each individual, even at the elite level, has goals specific to his/her abilities and commitment. Even if we are nowhere near the Olympic Trials level, we can still apply the goal-setting and celebrative attitude to our everyday lives.

Swims of the meet for me included Ryan Held's 100m freestyle, Tom Shields' 200 fly, and Cullen Jones 50 freestyle. Cullen didn't make the team, but he threw down more than respectable sub-22's to get him through to the final.

Posted on July 9, 2016 .

15 Workouts To Try, Courtesy of YourSwimBook

YourSwimBook creator Olivier Poirier-Leroy posted some great workouts on his site recently. He describes the 15 unique workouts as applicable for sprinters, distance swimmers, butterfliers, IMers...essentially any competitive swimmer who is looking for some variety.

You can find his post here

Take a look and pick one out to try before your next pool adventure.

Posted on June 15, 2016 .


I read this question on social media this week and it is a good one. To me, the question is asking, if one is simply at a practice in body, going through the motions and following directions; Or, is the person engaged IN practice....actively taking part, applying instruction, pushing himself with every effort.

Next time you get in the water, ask yourself what you are doing TODAY to make yourself better TOMORROW? Are you simply AT PRACTICE or IN PRACTICE?

Coach Retta

Posted on May 31, 2016 .


Congratulations to Mark Gutowski, who nailed his swims at the 2016 USMS Spring Nationals Meet in Greensboro. A personal best 100 freestyle time kicked off his competition, which continued with solid performances in the 50 fly, 50 free and 100 fly. 

Congratulations, Mark!


Posted on May 3, 2016 .