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Weekend Swim Workout: Stroke Mixer

Try this new workout from Triathlete contributor and swimming all-star Sara McLarty.

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When was the last time you mixed up your strokes in the pool? Though you may be racing with freestyle, that doesn’t mean you should only train with freestyle. Mixing up your strokes in training can help you correct imbalances, strengthen complementary muscles, and identify a safety stroke should you need to take a breather on race day (hey, it happens).

That’s why this set from coach Sara McLarty incorporates the individual medley, or IM. In swimming competitions, the IM use all four competitive swim strokes in one race: butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke and freestyle (in that order). If you’re not up for doing a full IM in the “A” set below, opt for the “B” or “C” set, which allow you to select just one non-free stroke to mix in during the set. Choose a workout that fits your fitness level and schedule, and dive in!

RELATED: Why Triathletes Should Swim Different Strokes

A:
200 swim/200 pull/200 IM/200 kick/200 swim
12×25 IM order @ :40 (1 kick/1 drill/1 swim)
3x[2×100 IM @ 1:40, 4×200 pull @ 3:00 (descend 1-4)]
300 cool-down w/fins
*4600 total*

RELATED: The Benefits of the Backstroke for Triathletes

B:
200 swim/200 pull/200 kick/200 swim
12×25 @ :50 (1 kick/1 drill/1 swim)
3x[2×50 @ 1:05 (25 free/25 non-free), 4×150 pull @ 3:00 (descend 1-4)]
300 cool-down w/fins
*3500 total*

RELATED: How to Breathe When Swimming

C:
200 swim/200 pull/100 kick/100 swim
12×25 w/ :15 rest (1 kick/1 drill/1 swim)
2x[4×50 w/ :15 rest (25 free/25 non-free), 4×100 pull w/ :30 rest (descend 1-4)]
300 cool-down w/fins
*2400 total*

Looking for more swim-spiration? Check out our complete archive of Weekend Swim Workouts from Coach Sara McLarty.

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