Monday, December 15, 2008

Exercise tips to help survive the holidays!


Its that time of year when its really beneficial to take a little time off work and training and spend some quality time with your family and friends. That being said, you don't need to become a "couch potato" over the holidays whilst the squad sessions are on temporary "hold" either.

Even if you are preparing for the Rottest Channel Swim, you should use these 2 weeks as a bit of active recovery before we really crank it up in the New Year. My suggestion would be for Solo Swimmers to do just 3 sessions in the first week (9-12km), and 5 in the second (18-22km), Duos 3 (7-10km) and then 4 (8-12km) and Teams 2 (4-6km) and then 3 (5-8km) as a rough guide. Use this period to focus on your form and technique! Inspiration for these sessions can be accessed from over 100 sessions at for your reference.

Here our quick tips and exercise suggestions for the period Saturday 20th December to Monday 5th January:
  • Saturday 20th December = swim or paddle at 8am with the TEAM up at Lake Leschenaulta followed by a lovely BBQ Christmas Breakfast. This really is an idyllic location and will be a fun morning. If you can't make this but fancy some fun in the pool, join Ceinwen at 1pm for the final pre-Christmas squad session, guaranteed to get your HR pumping and your laughing muscles cranking!
  • Sunday 21st December = take a rest day today and get the last of your Christmas shopping done or you may prefer to do the Bicton Baths 1600m or 5km swim event at 8am.
  • Monday 22nd December = 3 days to go...have you got the Christmas dinner all sorted yet? Anything missing? if so, why not crank out your shopping bicycle, take the long way around the block and ride this in the biggest gear that you have. Don't skip on the hills now and preferably go in the afternoon so your riding against the Doctor!
  • Tuesday 23rd December = normally this morning you'd be knocking out the K's in the pool and your body still expects this. Challenge yourself today to go for a bracing swim in the afternoon AGAINST the sea breeze. If you prefer not to do a long distance swim, get out, walk back and repeat a few times. Focus on a shorter stroke with a faster turn-over, feeling like you are successfully ploughing through the waves!
  • Wednesday 24th December = have you been a good boy or girl this year? If not, Santa have one day to make up for this in order to get your stockings-worth of gifts!! Try this little routine at home: 5 x (60s of push-ups, 15s rest, 60s of sit-ups, 15s rest, 60s of burpees, 15s rest, 60s of step-ups, now go and jog around the block! Add your number of reps for each section up together). If you scored more than 60 for the push-ups (5 x 12), 100 for the sit-ups, 50 for the burpees and 200 for the step-ups, Santa will surely visit ou tonight!
  • Thursday 25th December = legendary track runner, Sebastian Coe, said he would always train on Christmas Day as he knew none of his opponents would do! Sadly, Sebastian is now very lonely man and to this day lives in a small cottage on the top of a really windy and exposed hill on Dartmoor where nobody goes! (JOKE!) As much as you might want to smash your opponents next year, take today off, or if you really must, get up really early and jog down to the beach to watch the sun come up - but beware..if you happen to see Santa and Rudolph, you might still not get any presents!!!
  • Friday 26th December = why not hit the ocean again and repeat Tuesday's little swim session. Add in a few beach sprints as well and you'll be burning off that Christmas pudding in no time!
  • Saturday 27th December = you might be planning a day out with the family today? If so, why not ask them to dangle any left-overs out of the window as you run alongside them trying to keep up! You might run out of enthusiasm for this after the first kilometre however, so why not schedule in a family hike today down south or along the beach. A dip in the ocean later on would round off your day nicely!
  • Sunday 28th December = the Sunday between Christmas and NY is always "PigBag" day in our gets dressed out of their pyjamas and we sit around watching movies all day!! Whilst lots of fun initially, this soon becomes a little tedious, so why not seperate your movie viewings with a game of cricket in the garden or park followed by a few sprint races against the kids?! I'd recommend however that you're out of your PJ's by this point and wearing something more appropriate!
  • Monday 29th December = today, turn over your arms in the pool with the following session in preparation for tomorrow's squad swim: If you're wanting to get some K's in on the bike, go and challenge Reabold Hill 6 times or if you fancy a run, try 12 repeats of Jacobs Ladder - ooer missus!
  • Tuesday 30th December = pop along at 5.30am or 6.30am to the Claremont Pool for a splendid blend of aerobic swim sets and technique work that will have you burning off those mince pies in no time! Please note, there will be no 7.30am session today!
  • Wednesday 31st December = say goodbye to 2008 with our own Cottesloe Classic 1500m handicap swim meeting in front of the Pylon at 7am. This annual affair is great fun and suitable for all levels. Nominate your time and set-off at intervals according to your ability down to North Cott and back. A HUGE amount of fun! First across the line wins a Hogmanay Special - a Haggis!! Breakfast at Daisies to follow!
  • Thursday 1st January = nurse your New Year's Eve hangover with dip in the ocean and a bracing stroll along the beach! Failing that, I find an up-tempo run through Kings Park also has what it takes to ooze the acoholo out of your pores!
  • Friday 2nd January = why not try our 5.30am or 6.30am swim squad sessions at the Claremont Pool - a great way to bring in the New Year! Please note, there will be no 7.30am or 9.30am session today!
  • Saturday 3rd January = pop along to Scarborough Beach and partake in their 2.0 or 5.0km swim events, we'll be meeting down there as a TEAM from 7.15am. Fancy an afternoon splash? The Saturday 1pm squad swim will be back with avengeance today!
  • Sunday 4th January = fancy a double-whammy this weekend? Why not complete a 2nd openwater event, this time down at Leighton Beach. Choose from 1.25km, 2.5km or 5.0km events. We'll be meeting down there as a TEAM from 7.45am.
  • Monday 5th January = full schedule back to normal as per
If I don't see you before, have a great Christmas and fantastic start to your New Year!



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