Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Should You Sprint or Swim for Distance?

For as long as I've been a lap swimmer, I've always had a bad taste in my mouth for wall hangers - people who take up a valuable pool lane lying against the wall, usually chatting, when they could either get out or use the lane as it was intended. I am one to get in, swim and get out. I'm not much for chit chat. Now, today I read, that maybe I ought to join in. What's that about?!!!

I found this article about running on abcnew.go.com. Upon reading it, I wondered how it could not but also apply to swimming. In a nutshell, it quotes a university study that says that "30-second all-out sprints improved their (runners) cardiovascular fitness and muscle endurance as much as those who did 40 to 60 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise."

So does this mean, that I could just do a few sprints and get in the same value that I get in my 50-60 minute daily workout? I don't want to think that, but it appears to have some academic validity. I'm too addicted to the long laps thing to give that up. I guess I could do both. Looks like I'll be joining in with the wall-hangers for at least a few minutes now.

1 comment:

  1. Swimming finsJuly 05, 2008

    I've done quite a bit of swimming at a high level and I would strongly suggest doing both sprints and long distance.

    They both work different types of muscles. You will find they help each other improve.

    ReplyDelete

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