Adding swimming to fitness routine
December 2, 2018 11:59 AM   Subscribe

I have been working out 3 mornings a week for a couple months. Currently my routine is to do a circuit of 3 sets of 12 reps on a variety of weight machines and hand weights. I have not been able to add cardio due to time and because I hate the feeling of increasing my heart rate. I would like to add swimming to my regime because it actually makes me happy, but I'm not sure how to adjust my schedule to work swimming into my routine.

Currently I work out Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays for about 45 minutes. Fridays I have a bit more time and flexibility. I think I could add a 45 minute morning workout on Thursdays, and could get another longer one in on either a Saturday or Sunday, but I do worry about over-committing and feeling like I've failed when I need to skip a day.

My fitness goals are to improve strength and endurance for general health, as well as improved energy and mental health. I am not actively trying to lose weight, and am not dieting beyond attempting to eat intuitively and mindfully. Workout regimes that focus on weight loss trigger body image issues in myself that are not helpful.

I guess my questions are: How can I maximize the benefits of my workout routine given my scheduling limitations? I can manage 3-5 workouts a week. What would be a good swim v. weights ratio? Or, are there resources I should check out to educate myself on this topic? Are there things I could do at home to build strength so I could get more swim days in at the gym?
posted by deadcrow to Health & Fitness (2 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I think you should fit in swimming wherever you ca, mainly because you find it fun. My times of greatest fitness always revolves around doing things I really enjoyed - rock climbing, swimming, cycling, roller-blading, running, hiking etc. if you mix it up, you won’t get bored as easily, and will come to see “fitness” as less of a goal, and having fun as the real goal.
You can add to your swim workout by using pull buoys between you legs, so you are only using your arms to propel yourself. There are also paddle-like gloves you wear to increase resistance (pretty much what weight lifting does).
Be aware that you may get some of that feeling you don’t like -increased heart rate, but you may enjoy it anyway.
posted by dbmcd at 12:17 PM on December 2, 2018

Just because there are so few answers... Fwiw, I usually swim three mornings a week and workout two mornings. Which mornings depends on my schedule, weekend plans, etc. If I tried to do more than five mornings total then I think I'd end up missing my target more frequently, and feeling like I'm overdoing it - a couple of mornings off is nice, even though I enjoy going.

I think the ratio depends on your goals and time. I mainly want to keep fit, so I started off with just swimming, adding weights later. I swim for about 30 minutes. A workout takes longer for me, over an hour with warm up and stretching.

Good luck and have fun!
posted by fabius at 1:32 PM on December 3, 2018

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