Request a consult

Cross Training – Swimming with Fins

So winter is coming, and some days I simply will not run. I won’t do it. I won’t. And I am limited on the number of days I can spin on my cycling trainer too. My mind gets angry at me every time I spend more than 30 minutes on a trainer or a set of rollers. No matter what TV show or music I attempt to entertain my mind with, or no matter how many mirrors I prop in front of me, after 3o minutes I feel my mind slowly beginning to drip out of my ears. “I’m bored” it tells me. So I need another method of cross training.

My FAVORITE cross training activity is actually swimming. Before you groan and moan and tell me that “You swam in college so of course you like it” and “I’m a runner, I sink” hear me out. You feel this way because you have never used fins. Fish love them and so do I. Here’s why.

Fins make you go fast. First and foremost, swimming with fins is fun and fast and “easy”. (I will explain why “easy” is quoted off in a little.) Second, fins will keep your lean running legs afloat. They are buoyant where you are not.

Now, “easy”. The first few laps will feel fast and easy and awesome. You will say “OH MY GOSH I CAN SWIM”. And then you will get a burn in your legs like you never, ever, ever felt on the track. You will feel your muscles SCREAM! And it feels terrific. It almost feels like you ran when you are finished. But it’s cross training!

Fins remind you to kick. They get you a terrific workout but making you and reminding you to kick harder. They strengthen your core. If you have poor range of motion in your ankles or are injury prone they improve the range of motion in your ankles and they strengthen the muscles around them. If you have shin splints or Achilles Tendonitis or Tendonosis (depending on your itis/osis belief!) or knee pain using fins will help you strengthen the muscles to help treat and/or prevent these injuries.

Now, tell me you can’t breath in the water? No problem. Use a kickboard. No fancy technique needed. Portland, ME city pools cost $4.00 for lap swimming and have both fins and kickboards available. So no fancy equipment needed. And the water is warmer than the outside temperature!