With all the Covid restrictions in place, it is imperative we are all on the same page. You will want to find a lane with similarly skilled/motivated swimmers. Please, don't fret if you get into the wrong lane at first - it might take a few practices for us all to figure out where we fit in.
This is not the Olympic Training Center. RELAX, HAVE FUN, DON'T STRESS - it will come in time!
This year, especially early in the season, the key word is going to be 'intervals'. Since there is no passing in a lane, we will be keeping all our swim intervals short. You will be swimming 25 or 50 meters at a time. At the end of each interval, you will take a rest period and wait for the rest of your lane to synchronize. As the season progresses, we will all work together to extend some of those intervals without risking spatial invasion.
Also, note that, this year, we're all going to have to stay aware of our lane mates. Something as simple as a toe cramp can cripple the swimmer in front of you in an instant. Be kind, be safe, be aware.
Here are some clues to the workouts.
1 length (from one end of the pool to the other) is 25 metres.
Workouts are based on and written in distances (ie 50 free means 50 metres or 2 lengths of freestyle)
The multiplier: the number of times you will repeat something (ie 4 x 50 free with :15 rest means you will swim 2 lengths of freestyle 4 times with 15 seconds rest between each 50)
About rest intervals:
You might be used to swimming continuously without taking a break. It's probably not the best workout anyway but, this year you are going to get to know the concept of interval workouts. It turns out that rest intervals are a very efficient way to maximize your workout. Not only can you manipulate your heart rate (with intervals), but you can take the rest period to think about your stroke mechanics and plan the next repetition to improve some aspect of your swimming.
If you are struggling to keep up, let your lane-mates know... they can always switch to their weaker stroke or perform a drill that slows them down. As (someone) once said "Work on you weaknesses; Maintain you strengths" and, nowhere is this more pertinent than in swimming (A trivial improvement in body position or arm mechanics can reap huge benefits). And if you're being asked to slow down, feel free (for instance) to work on your backstroke - or close your hand and swim 'closed fisted' to improve your 'catch' - or hold your breath for the entire interval to improve your vascular!
RI = rest interval (the amount of time between sets)
SL = streamline (kicking position with arms about the head and hands together)
FT = finger tip (freestyle drill where fingers walk along water's surface)
with dive= it means you get out of the pool and dive
If you're not sure what something means, You lane-mates will be happy to explain.
12 x 50 kk 1'45"/2'= kicking only, swim 50 meters at at time. Leave every minute-forty-five or every 2 minutes. Do this 12 times.
How to swim on an interval:
If the workout says 4 x 100 free on 2:00 then 2:00 (2 minutes) is the interval, this means that you have 2 minutes to swim 4 lengths of the pool and rest before you start again. If you swim the 100 meters in 1:50, then you have 10 seconds rest before starting the next one. The intervals are always written for each lane/ability level.