Pro Workout Series: Fenella Langridge’s Race Pace (& Pre-Race Swim)

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Thank you for sharing these training sets, I think I understand most of it, but what does “VO2 off” mean?

Jonathan Gorman 21 agosto, 2023

Great to share experience and sessions. Good luck in Roth. You’re a true pro, so inspirational and normal. Race well from the STC

GEORGE M GRAY 30 mayo, 2023

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Get ready for racing with Fenella Langridge's race pace training session. As one of the fastest swimmers in long distance triathlon, Langridge isn’t afraid to race from the front and it often the first athlete out of the water. Although she doesn’t come from a competitive swimming background, the British athlete could fool anyone by her incredible swimming performances that constantly set her up for the podium race after race. 


To get into “race mode,” Langridge has a stand-by swim practice she uses throughout the season. Using a tough combination of high speed sprints and race pace efforts, the main set simulates the demands of racing. “It’s a really good race specific set. It teaches you how to get out fast and settle into race pace,” she explains.

Langridge says she didn’t learn the set from one coach in particular. The set naturally evolved over time from her experiences with different coaches and swimming groups. “It’s from a combination of coaches—from the British Triathlon Team, when I was swimming at Bath University, and others. I’ve been doing variations of the set for 3-4 years.”

After a good warm up of mixed strokes, Langridge progresses into the paces she wants to hit during the main set. The first set of 50s will get your muscles ready and firing while the second set of 50s prepare your body mentally and physically for the target paces during the main set. The main set is a combination of high speed 50 meter sprints followed by longer 100 meter efforts done at threshold or target race pace. Going from maximum efforts down to a pace that is still challenging is exactly the point of the session. “The change of pace is how it feels during a race to settle back into a comfortable rhythm but still pushing the pace,” she explains.  

While Langridge primarily uses the session for training during the racing season, she also uses it as a pre-race swim: “I might do the main set only one time through as a last swim before a race, three days out. One set doesn’t leave you tired but it gets you into race pace and your heart rate up.” If you want to use this as a pre-race swim, make sure you’ve done full versions of the main set in training before. The idea behind using it as a pre-race session is having familiarity with the pacing.

Pro

1000m SKIPS (200s of swim, kick, IM, pull, swim)

8x50 (4x first 15m strong, 35m easy; 4x build to main pace set)


4x

2x50 VO2 off 50 seconds 

4x100 threshold or race pace off 1:25


400 easy warm down, mix strokes inc. backstroke 


Total: 3800 

Intermediate

1000m SKIPS (200s of swim, kick, IM, pull, swim)

8x50 (4x first 15m strong, 35m easy; 4x build to main pace set)


3x

2x50 VO2 off, 25 seconds rest

3x100 threshold or race race off 20 seconds rest 


400 easy warm down, mix strokes inc. backstroke 


Total: 3000 

Beginner

500m SKIPS (100s of swim, kick, backstroke, pull, swim)

4x50 (2x first 15m strong, 35m easy; 2x build to main pace set)


2x

2x50 max effort off with 30 second rest  

2x100 hard with 30-45 seconds rest


200 easy warm down, mix strokes inc. backstroke 


Total: 1500

Pre-Race

500m SKIPS (100s of swim, kick, backstroke, pull, swim)

4x50 (2x first 15m strong, 35m easy; 2x build to main pace set)


1x

2x50 max effort off with 30 second rest  

4x100 hard with 30-45 seconds rest


200 easy warm down, mix strokes inc. backstroke 


Total: 1400

( 2 ) Comments

Thank you for sharing these training sets, I think I understand most of it, but what does “VO2 off” mean?

Jonathan Gorman

Great to share experience and sessions. Good luck in Roth. You’re a true pro, so inspirational and normal. Race well from the STC

GEORGE M GRAY

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