With both of my daughters being swimmers, I started adding swimming into my routine. My daughter and I wake up almost every morning to swim. Being a triathlete, I usually only swam freestyle and didn’t get the full benefit of how good of a workout swimming could be. Focusing on swimming can make your workouts more effective.
Swimming has the ability to build up your endurance and improve your lung function. Though you may be able to run a fast mile, swimming one will involve more endurance. Many athletes use swimming as endurance training for other activities that require it. Swimming efficiently and effectively uses the oxygen from your lungs. Since you are using the oxygen in a more efficient way, your body could be storing more energy and in turn, can keep you more alert after the activity.
Swimming can be used as a form of strength training. Since swimming requires you to be in the water, it adds resistance to the training. Unlike running, walking, or hiking, swimming gives you much more resistance since water is denser than air and gives your body more of a weight training work-out than just cardio. Swimming twice a week is similar to lifting light weights during your normal toning routine. Doing the breaststroke for thirty minutes up and down the length of the pool can tone your entire body instead of having to do multiple exercises.
When people hear “low-impact” in terms of exercise, they tend to think it won’t be an effective way to burn calories. In terms of swimming, this couldn’t be more wrong. Swimming absolutely saves your joints from the high-impact that can come from running and walking but it doesn’t cost you the calories you think you might not burn. Swimming can burn at least 500 calories during an hour session. It all depends on the intensity in which you are swimming.
You may be looking to switch up your workout routine by adding something new or you need a low-impact workout due to an injury, no matter what your reasoning, swimming is a perfect workout. After running multiple triathlons, I thought I was in amazing shape. Then I get into the pool to race my daughter and start figuring out that I am out of shape in the water. Once we consistently added swimming into my morning routine, I started building the endurance and strength to push through and come close to beating her. I continue to push myself and swimming is definitely benefiting my health. So no matter what your end goals are, swimming could be the perfect workout for you!