Ross Edgley explains how strength and stamina can co-exist in modern day training. It is true, or is it just gym folklore?
SCROLL DOWN FOR SAM'S GYMSHARK SWIMWEAR REVIEW...
WHEN DID YOU FIRST START SWIMMING?
As far back as my memory can go, I was in the water.
Genuinely, I can't remember my first actual memory of swimming - there's no significant 'first time' that I went to the pool, my first meet or swim practice...
What I can remember, is that my swimming journey began when I was about say, five-years-old. I was the child that never had to be persuaded to get into the water. I was a no kicks, no fuss kind of water-baby.
I genuinely preferred being in the water to being on land and as a result, I'm certain that I lack some basic co-ordination skills - purely because I'm better adapted to moving in the water...but hey, everyone has their struggles!
I think my genuine love of water, combined with an annoying, over-competitive personality tick contributed to my lengthly swimming career.
WHAT DID YOUR SWIM SCHEDULE LOOK LIKE?
I'd spend over 2hrs at swim practice before and after school; 5-6 times a week with the occasional swim meet taking up the entire weekend. This routine would be on repeat for let's say, the majority of my life.
I mean, not even Christmas was safe from swim practice - I did a 3hr training session which to this day, still haunts me.
It's safe to say that my hair was constantly chlorinated - no matter what time of day or year!
WE HAVE TO ASK, DO YOU MISS IT?
Yeah, most definitely! Despite the fact that my swimming career has effectively been over now for almost four years, I still find myself itching to get back into the pool. It was a means to relieve both stress and just physically burn out after a long day and truth be told, I do really miss it.
There's something about being completely submerged in water that awakens your senses and dulls any anxiety or pain. It seems clichéd, but it's true!
HOW HAS YOUR CARDIO LEVEL CHANGED, NOW THAT YOU NO LONGER SWIM?
It's something that I've really struggled with! Trying to incorporate cardio into my workout routine without negatively affecting my lifting...it's hard. As much as I love doing HIIT on the treadmill or stair-master, I just find myself avoiding it because it aggravates any joint pain that I have.
Swimming is unique in that it can offer a full body workout - think, low, moderate or high level intensity, all dependant upon your goals.
If you're new to swimming, I would try setting a time goal versus starting with structured workouts. Tell yourself, you'll spend 30 minutes in the pool and try to incorporate every stroke, sprint intervals, kicking etc. Anything to work up a (figurative) sweat.
And of course, proper swimming gear is essential - cap, goggles, swimsuit...
IF YOU HAD TO CHOOSE A GYMSHARK SWIMSUIT TO TRAIN IN, WHAT WOULD YOU GO FOR?
Ooh! My swimsuit picks would be the Gymshark Cut Out One Piece and the Bliss Set.
The Cut Out Swimsuit is great if you're used to a traditional one-piece, and the Bliss set is perfect if you're training outside and don't want any tan-lines!
So, whether you're a seasoned swimmer, or someone who's never done more than a couple laps - I challenge you to try something new and trade the gym for the pool!