Weight Loss NHS

Swim when you're winning

I'm going back to the gym tonight. I've been doing some reading since injuring myself last time and I've decided that swimming is the way forward.

Swimming is low impact and awesome for speeding up

Your metabolic rate by helping to build lean muscle. Muscle burns more calories than fat so will speed up your BMR (baseline metabolic rate) faster than pretty much anything else. Swimming has the almost unique ability to be both a whole body resistance activity AND a cardio workout. The only thing that comes close to this is kettle bell classes, and that misses some key muscle groups that swimming hits.

So, the plan is:

Swim: 1 hour 3 days a week

Resistance training: 15 mins 3 days per week (after cardio)

Cardio: C25K 3 days per week (30 mins)

Dog walking: long walk (1.5 hours) once a week plus a 30 minute walk every night (ish)

If I end up with shin splints again from the C25K program I'll shelve that and join the kettle bell class instead :)

Yes, as you can see that's a 7 day a week program, it looks like this:

Monday: cardio and resistance (45 mins)

Tuesday: dog walk (1.5 hours)

Wednesday: Swim (1 hour)

Thursday: cardio and resistance (45 mins) dog walk (30 mins)

Friday: swim (1 hour) dog walk (30 mins)

Saturday: cardio and resistance (45 mins) dog walk (30 mins)

Sunday: swim (1 hour)

Before anyone gives themselves finger blisters from typing telling me this is too much to handle at my weight, I won't stick to it, I need a rest day etc etc etc. the swim days count as rest days because they are so low impact, its less than an hour per day overall and if I find it too much I'll stop, promise :)


7 Replies

I think it sounds great! I can't swim but have considered learning to, been told to do it loads over the years but I feel it's hard to learn as an adult! Good luck on your renewed attempt at C25K. Take it really slowly and carefully this time and stop straightaway if anything hurts, take an extra rest day, then come back to it, slowly but surely. Lots of luck :)


Sometimes I wish I could swim. sounds like good exercise.


I got shin splints the first time I tried couch 2 5k so I started to swim so I could exercise with the weight off my shins, it's a great idea.

Since recovering from the injuries I upgraded my trainers and it's helped so much.

1 like

Good luck with your programme. Swimming is great exercise, and it is lower impact than running. An hour of swimming is a lot even if you are already a regular swimmer. Please think about building your swimming and other activities up, rather than trying to start such a lot of things all at once. Not because of your weight, but mainly because no activity is impact free, and you really do need rest between activities if you want to avoid injury. I speak from experience. I swim 30-40 minutes, 2 or 3 times a week, every week. I also run 4-5k twice a week, I do a couple of Aqua aerobics classes and some weights and I walk quite a lot. I need to have a couple of days a week when I do very little, and if I force it day after day I soon become inefficient and these have been the times I have hurt myself.


I learned swimming for an hour is silly, I did 30 mins!


If your gym offers a Swimfit programme, it's a great way of building up your swimming. My gym runs group classes (a structured 30 minute swim, you warm up / cool down before/after) plus has session cards you can follow by yourself. It adds a lot of variety so the time passes really easily. Unfortunately for me I am now expected to do 50+ lengths in my core 30 minutes!


1 like

What a great idea. I did c25k programme and completed it then sprained my back and couldn't walk, and ended up at hospital!

I think swimming and gentle walks is the way to go for now...!


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