Now, I know what some of you are thinking…”I can’t swim, I would drown, I haven’t swam in 437 years, I hate swimming.” Trust me, you have nothing to worry about. (Didn’t you hear me say “flotation belt”?) We did a short warm up of arm movements coupled with some simple kicking while floating on our backs, and “sculling” AKA paddling. No fancy technique needed.
After our warm up, we started the interval portion of the workout. We began by “power walking”; focusing on posture and moving our legs and arms back and forth in large strides. (“More pencil-like!” and “move from the hips!” Robert kept repeating.) The faster you move, the more resistance you’ll feel from the water, and the more strength you’ll gain. We also did intervals that simulated running downhill and uphill, simply by modifying the arm swing and leg stride length, along with the speed of movement. I was sweating within two minutes, much to my surprise. Switching between the different types of “running” made the workout tough but interesting. I could feel my legs burning. We even did a little core workout which proved my uncoordinated-ness (that definitely isn’t a real word) but was still fab.
Coaching from the edge of the pool, Robert demonstrated each movement every time he called it out. He made an obvious effort to remember each participant’s name, smiled and joked a lot, and made me totally comfortable. Although I’ve only met him once, he seems like one of those coaches you can ask questions without feeling like an idiot. This is important to me, as I already feel like an idiot when it comes to swimming and don’t need someone else to confirm that, ya hear me?
While it’s different from a speed workout on the track and doesn’t replace my “OMG I MISS RUNNING SO MUCH I MUST GET OUSIDE IMMEDIATELY feeling, it does ease my worries a little. I can see how consistently attending deep water running classes can benefit my actual running – especially when coming back from an injury.
Want a more visual explanation? Here’s a video:
Here’s another from USA Today – High School Sports featuring Coach Robert and a local soccer player.
I’ll definitely be trying this workout again.
Here’s some information on the dates/times/locations of each class . (Sorry if you’re not in NYC!) If you just want to work on your swimming skills, there are also coaching options. If you’re an NYRR member, you get a discount ! Lastly, if you feel so inclined, check out the Facebook page for updates.
Ever tried deep water running? Think it sounds crazy? Fill me in!