• BB&DPS – Best Balance & Distance Per Stroke: 5 strokes or less in the 4 styles in a short course pool, 10 strokes or less in long course – “Tai Chi Swimming.”  Please go to T.I.P.S. for a more detailed explanation.
  • OB          Over Best:  # of strokes recommended over your BBDPS count
  • TOR        Turn Over Rate
  • Y             FlY
  • K             BacK
  •              BreasT
  • E              FreE
  • uw           Underwater
  • kk            Kick
  •  ‘              Minutes
  • “              Seconds
  • w/            with: utilized to indicate a number of seconds of rest between repetitions
  • on:          to indicate that everyone will do a repetition on a set send-off
  • Description of Training Set:  25’ x (5 x 100 /10”)w/30” – During 25 minutes, you swim sets of 5 one-hundreds taking 10 seconds to rest after each and taking 30 seconds rest after 5.


EKTY 1, 2, 3, 4 – Free, Back, Breast, Fly.  Swim the number of laps, in each stroke, written at the end the four strokes, i.e. 1, 2, 3, 4 means that you swim 1 lap of each stroke, then 2 of each, then 3 of each, and finish with 4 laps of each stroke or 25, 50, 75 and 100 for each stroke.  Pay attention to what distance needs to be done at BBDPS, 1 OB (over best), 2 OB, 3 OB, etc.


Fins {EY: b, s, b, s – This kicking set requires the use of fins, alternating sequences of flutter (E) and dolphin (Y) kicks; one length each on the belly, right side, back, and left side.  On the belly and back try to stay underwater and streamlined the whole length, if you need a breath on the belly take a stroke, breathe and dive in again; on the back, float up and kick the rest of the way at the surface.  On the sides, remain on the ‘I’ position, (trailing arm down on the top leg – shoulder to the sky, leading arm extended above the head – armpit to the bottom).  For more explanations on body positions described with letters, go to TIPS and see The Letters of the Strokes.  Observe the distances, (200’s, 100’s or 50’s), and time intervals of rest recommended.


SCULL # 4:  Streamline off the wall on your back, press both arms down to the sides, and continue sculling, figure “8” motions with the two hands, slightly below your buttocks.  Move the arm from the shoulder; do not push the water by bending the elbows.  Since you are on your back, breathing is easy.

SNAIL SCULL:  Travel down towards the feet in supine position, scull with your hands from the shoulder as in position #1, with the arms right under the buttocks, fingertips point to the bottom and draw the figure “8” in each hand.

During warm-up triathletes are encouraged to swim the 4 styles, it is warm-up for the entire musculoskeletal system; furthermore, swimming breaststroke can help in a race situation in the event of a foot or calf cramp, the breast kick requires to flex the foot, the way to get rid of said cramps; swimming backstroke will help the triathletes to ‘find core’, connecting the hands to the power source, the hip rotation, while keeping the head set, (no need to turn the head to breathe); the butterfly, will make you more aquatic.  When swimmers do Individual Medley:  Y, K, T, and E:  FLY, BACK, BREAST, FREE; Tri-athletes swim: N, P, F, B: Naked (no equipment), Paddles, Fins, Both

1 stroke in Y and T is one extension to the front end; count the letter at the breath and the number at the “glide.”

1 stroke in E and K is counted when both arms have completed a revolution, the letter for one hand, and the number for the other hand; count when the revolution is completed at hand entry.

The recommended “Number of Strokes OB” over best is for short course pools, if you train in a long course pool double the recommended number and add a stroke.  Obviously, the lack of turn and the extra distance makes a difference.  For example if the set reads swim at 1 ½ to 2 ½ OB, it means that in the long course pool you will swim at 4 to 6 strokes over your best stroke count.  We know that when you take more strokes you swim faster, up to a point that your style may suffer or tire you too quickly.

Pay attention:

Count strokes.  When equipment such as paddles and/or fins are used deduct ½ stroke from the OB for each accessory that you wear.

Count your strokes and monitor your heart rate you will optimize your training. If you know your time, you are really paying attention.  Training is about going FAST at the right times, as fast as YOU can, easy enough so you last every set, all out!  Swimming “hard” all the time can be hazardous to your style and speed. Know at what pace you need to train every set.

Date:  10-23-2023 Workout Today
Energy System Exercise Set Exercise Description
Warm Up EN1 20′ x EKTY x 1, 2, 3, 4 100 @ BBDPS, 200 @ 1 OB, 300 @ 2 OB, 400 @ 3 OB, for additional explanations please go to Basics
Sprint Set SP3 2 x (6 x 6 str on 1:20) w/50 drill


2 sets of 6 repetitions of 6 strokes ALL OUT, no breath; swim easy to the 50, restart on the 1:20; after 6 rep’s, do a 50 drill of the week.  See Basics
An. Threshold EN3

Broken 200’s and 400’s @ 3 to 4 OB <Olbrecht ¾ up to 5½>

30′ x {(2 x 100 w/ 15”) w/30″ A to D

{(4 x 100 w/15”) w/45”  A to H

 Repeat 1x (2 x 100), 1x (4 x 100), until 35’ finish.  Observe the resting interval.

In every 3rd 25 of each 100 up the TOR to 4½ to 5½.

Kick Set 15′ x 200 w/20″ Fins EY {b, s, b, s 200’s w/20″ rest until 15′ finish
 Date:  10-24-2023 Workout Today
Energy System Exercise Set Exercise Description
Warm Up EN1 15′ x EKTY x 3, 2, 1 300 @ BBDPS, 200 @ 1 OB, 100 @ 2 OB, for additional explanations please go to Basics
Prolonged Sprint SP3

The first set freestyle; then, the second set if you do:

2 x {4 x (5 + turn + 3) on 2:15 } w/50 drill

100 or (50)

a)       Fly you will breathe at the wall

b)       Breast rhythm requires to breathe every stroke

c)       Back your face is out of the water

2 sets of 4 repetitions of 5 strokes + turn + 3 strokes ALL OUT, NO BREATH.  Start from “mid pool” or a distance from the wall at which you need 5 strokes to get to the wall.
Aerobic Training EN2

Count: (A to K) x 3

1 1/2 to 2 1/2 OB

Paddles and Zoomers or Fins

45′ x {(2 x 500 w/30”) w/1:00 rest

{(7 x 150 w/20”) w/ 1:00

{(20 x 50 w/10”) done

Swim 2 or 3 broken 1000 meter or yards, count (A to J) x 2, then (A to U) 3 letters each time, and (A to T) 1 letter at a time, observe the resting intervals, swim a linear set, maintain your pace, and keep your stroke count constant.  Work your walls: perfect streamline glides after every wall.
Kick Set 10′ x 100 w/15″ Fins EY {b, s, b, s 100’s w/15″ rest until 15′ finish
Date:  10-25-2023 Workout Today
Energy System Exercise Set Exercise Description
Warm Up EN1 15′ x EKTY x 2, 2, 2… 200 @ BBDPS, 200 @ 1 OB, 200 @ 2 OB, 200 @ 3 OB, for additional explanations please go to Basics
Aerobic Training EN2

Intensity:  1½ to 2½ OB

45′ x (4 x 50 w/5”) w/15” Swim 200’s broken, one of each stroke and one IM, observe the rest intervals.  One each: Y, K, T, E, and IM.
Lactate Anaerobic Resistance SP2 Intensity:  6 to 7 OB 2 x {1 x 100 on 6’

{2 x 50 on  3:30

Swim 1x 100, and 2x 50 dive-in and race, try to make it breathing every 2 strokes, including no breath for the more advanced athletes in and out of the turns.  You may choose any style.
Warm down Swim until H.R. < 100 in 60″ Easy swimming check heart rate every 3′ to 5′
Date:  10-26-2023 Workout Today
Energy System Exercise Set Exercise Description
Warm Up EN1 20′ x EKTY x 3, 3, 3… 300 @ BBDPS, 300 @ 1 OB, 300 @ 2 OB, for additional explanations please go to Basics
In Motion Speed SP3 2 x {(6 x 25 on 1:00) w/50 drill

6 str

2 sets of 6 repetitions of 25’s, sprint into the wall ALL OUT, NO BREATH the last 6 strokes
An. Threshold EN 3

3 – 4 ½ OB

Paddles optional

30′ x  {(1 x 100) w/30”

{(2 x 50 w/15”) w/ 30”

{(4 x 25 w/10”) w/30”

100’s broken observe the recommended resting intervals.  Stroke choice, prefer NO free, except triathletes.
Kick Set 20′ x 50 w/10″ Fins EY {b, s, b, s 50’s w/10″ rest until 20′ finish
Date:  10-27-2023 Workout Today
Energy System Exercise Set Exercise Description
Warm Up EN1 15′ x EKTY x 1, 1, 1, 1… 100 @ BBDPS, 100 @ 1 OB, 100 @ 2 OB, 100 @ 3 OB, 100 @ 4 OB and restart at BBDPS if time permits for additional explanations please go to Basics
Aerobic Training EN2

1½ to 2½ OB

<Olbrecht ¾ up to 4½>

40’x (5×100 w/10-15”)w/20-30” E

Count A to J

Every 3rd 25 pick up TOR

Swim 500’s broken into 100’s with 10 to 15” after each, take 20 to 30” rest after 5, repeat until 40′
An. Threshold EN 3

3 to 4 OB

Fins optional

25′ x (4 x 50w/15”) w/45″ Y

Count A to D

Swim broken 200’s butterfly w/15” between 50’s, take 45″ at the end; repeat until 25′ are finished.  Use fins, if you want to.
Kick Set 10′ x {(1 x 200 w/15”)

{(2 x 100 w/10”) w/20”

{(4 x 50 w/ 5”) w/20”

Fins EY {b, s, b, s

1x 200, 2x 100, 4x 50, watch the recommended rest in the middle of the swim and at the end.
Date:  10-28-2023 Workout Today
Energy System Exercise Set Exercise Description
Warm Up EN1 20′ x EKTY x 4, 4, 2 400 @ BBDPS, 400 @ 1 – 1½ OB, 200 @ 2-2 ½ OB swim, for additional explanations please go to Basics
Aerobic Training EN 2 45′ x {1 x 100 rev. IM w/15”

{2 x 75 str-E-str w/15”

{2 x 50 kk sides w/fins w/15”

{2 x 25 no breath uw on 45”

Repeat each swim taking 15″ rest between each.  Restart the set until 45′ are finished.  The rev. IM is ETKY, the 75’s are 3rd best and 4th best strokes in each.  The 50’s are kicking on the side, bottom arm leading, top arm trailing.  The 25’s are underwater.
Sprint Set SP3 4 x 5 strokes on 1:30 w/50 drill


4 repetitions of sprint ALL OUT, NO BREATH for 5 strokes, swim easy to the 50
Lactate  Anaerobic Tolerance SP2

5 ½ to 7 OB

4 x 200 w/10’ rest

Try to swim an easy 200 after each effort.

4x 200’s dive-in, choice of stroke.  Interval as shown, as fast as you can.  If at any repetition you slow down more than 5% compared to the fastest one, then you are finished.
Warm Down EN1 600 E, K, E, T, E, Y Very easy swim