Swimming in Sweden is usually seen when it is time for the Olympic Games, but in order to reach that, in the cold of the pools, swimmers have to spend hours in the pool. As a handball trainer for young girls (11 years old) we train 2-3 times a week and it is unthinkable to ask them to double the trainings per week. No way says both other trainers and parents! But 4-6 times a week is not much if you are training swimming.
A swim coach once told me that you need to be in the pool every day in order to have contact with water, feel your body move into the water, it can be a training session or play in the pool, but you need pool exercise every day. Some other sports need also a very large amount of training. While I was training rowing, one told me that if you want to make it to the Olympics the rule was the 3 sevens: 7 times a week, 7 hours a day in 7 years… May be a bit over the top, but some sports require a very large amount of training. So, the question is: how do you keep motivation?
And since swimming is such a good exercise for the whole body, plus that it can save lives when you can swim, build motivation for swimming became a great motivation for us.
Rowing in a boat, at least if you are not rowing a single, you are more than one that rows. And you really need to support each other in the team since the boat goes as fast as the slowest rower. In the pool, you have your friends that you meet every day and challenge, the community you are with. That is if you have the chance to be in a club. But if you would like to swim for fitness, and have the objective to perhaps swim longer distances, faster etc… What can you do?
So here are some tricks to keep motivation.
- Have a clear goal of why you swim: if you decide to swim a lot, you must have a goal. It can be get to get your back not hurting anymore, or to swim a specific race. Just keep in mind this goal so that you can remember it and focus on the positive aspect, when it gets tough to get into the pool. Some even write it on their pool buoy!
- Vary the pleasures: do not only swim length after length for a certain time. Make intervals, make drills, compete with a friend. One example for do that is card game: each card type has a specific drill or exercise (king=100m freestyle, Queen= 100m medley, ace = 50 m kicking etc…). You never know what you get!
- Share your swim with friends. Either go in a group or create a group with a common objective. If you go for a swimrun, since it is always done as a pair, you get automatically your friend in your boat, and it gets much more fun
- Compete with other on regular basis. This does not appeal to everybody, but this other could be you: compete with yourself 3 month ago, 6 month ago, so that you can feel your progress
- Hold a swim log. By logging your swim, this enables you along with regular “tests” to check what you have done, have a receipt for your exercise.
This is only few examples of what can be done. Since we are aware of those, we will see that you get all that through our Swimlap App. But what we would like to know: What’s your trick? Share it with us obn our Facebook page or Instagram!