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Choosing the right lane can be confusing, especially in a new program. Do you swim with the faster group but barely make the interval, or go with the slower group and get more rest? The best answer is to choose an intensity that fits your current training plan. Maybe two days are at a higher intensity (go in the faster lane) and one is a recovery day (head to the slower lane).
Don’t be afraid to change position within your lane when applicable. If you’re a strong kicker, be vocal before the kick set starts and ask to lead. If you’re not the best sprinter, head to the back for all-out 50s. The same goes for catching a swimmer ahead of you; don’t hesitate to ask if you can go in front. It will make both swimmers happier to not deal with tapping feet every other stroke.
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Literally test your feet in the water of the faster group if you are considering moving up. Talk to the coach and choose a couple of sessions when the main set is not super fast. Start conservatively and pace yourself to make the whole workout at this new speed. You can also start in the faster lane and drop back halfway if the workout is too intense. Keep in mind that one of the best ways to get faster is to swim with faster people!