Pool Workout For {Injured} Runners

So many of my running friends are experiencing overuse injuries right now. Boo! What the heck? While I don’t want to speculate as to why this is happening, I DO want to help. So, you’re injured. You can’t run. You can’t speed walk. You can’t cycle (maybe). And you are GOING CRAZY BECAUSE YOU CAN’T RUN.


With most injuries, swimming is still an option. Well, an option so long as you have a pool to swim in. That is sort of hard to come by in NYC unless you shell out a million dollars for Asphalt Green or don’t mind a 25 meter pool everywhere else. So, assuming you have a pool, here is your workout. I don’t really specify your stroke because I do freestyle exclusively, but far be it from me to deny you the butterfly if you can bring it. The whole point is exertion, not stroke. Bring your swim cap and goggles.

Not appropriate swim workout wear. Also, I need a beach vacation, like, yesterday.

  • 10 min warm up, easy
  • 100 meter 80% max speed x 4 (full recovery in between)
  • 10 min easy swim
  • 10 lengths (in a 25 meter pool, 4-6 in a 50 meter pool) of one length all out fast, one length slow recovery–NO STOPPING IN BETWEEN
  • 10 min easy swim

Swimming is a great way to get a true cardiovascular workout in while giving your legs a little bit of a rest from the pounding. I swam a lot when my gluteus medius was learning how to pull its own weight. These workouts made it sooooo much easier for me to get back into running because I lost no cardiovascular fitness in the process. Plus, swimming is crazy hard and a killer workout.

A good rule of thumb is to swim for as long as you would have run and at the same intensity with the same intervals. That way, you’re rocking out for the same duration and reaping all the cardiovascular benefits you can.

We know why I don’t do it often. My hair. I dye my hair and cannot, in good financial conscience, subject my freshly dyed locks to chlorine. Hair Goddess would never speak to me again.

Pretty hair > swim workout (unless I am injured). Priorities.

If you’re injured, chin up! You’re not out of the game entirely! Jump into the pool and kick your own butt froggy-style.

Now go out and run (or swim).