Cross training - swimming

I used one training session this week to swim instead of run. How do I calculate the 'equivalent' mileage?


  • Id like the answer to this too
  • I once read an article in running mag. that quantified the different types of exercise by quoting the amount of calories used per hour of running,cycling,swimming and so forth.Not really much help, but, it may be a start in answering your question.
  • Helen, just looked this up in Bob Glovers book today as my training log also demands I put something in! He said 1 mile swim is equal to about 4-5 mile run. Obviously the training effect also depends on how hard you're working.
    Swimming also has other benefits of course, in my case the only time I ever do anything resembling upper body work, relaxing, stimulates blood flow to sore/tired muscles, cooling etc.
  • A good swimmer will do 3k in the time a good runner does 10k

    Hope that helps
  • Found this after I posted the question:

    WW - htta is a 'good' swimmer. I managed 2.33k in my 10k running time last night, but wasn't sure if the CV benefit was the same as my heart rate would have been a bit lower.
  • Do you really need to compare them?

    If i swim i compare that with my other swimtraining and if i run i do the same with my runninglogs.

  • LizzyBLizzyB ✭✭✭
    Depends on the type of swimming you do as well - I can do a mile of breast stroke in my 10k time (ish) with little effort, but as for front crawl ... usually drowning and collapsing in a heap after 100 metres.

    I log my swimming (and everything else I do) in my running log, but only as a record - I don't calculate equivalent mileage as I don't think that it is really possible to compare two activities.
  • used to have Q&A facility and I once asked this question for swimming and biking there. Their answer was 1 mile swim = 4 miles run and 4 miles bike = 1 mile run.

    Not sure how you compare training effort and effect though.
  • I use swimming for what it is swimming, knowing that it's helping my breathing technique and upper body strength along with easing any muscle stiffness. There is no need to use it as an 'equivlent' to running. All I need to know is that it complements my running and after even 30 mins of continuous swimming front crawl I've had a good workout.
  • Oh this is interesting since I now have to swim owing to injury.
  • I tend to base swim sessions on hear rate and do reps with measured rests as in a running speed session. So rather than focusing on the distance covered, I'm more bothered about the intensity of the workout and the training effects, e.g. an endurance session/speed session/easy, etc.
  • Freakette

    That is actually how i do my swim traing - each session has a purpose - so train to fulfill that purpose
  • In the summer i like to go and wim in the sea - here i spend about 60-90mins just having fun in the water :o)
  • ;) I swam in the sea once and got stung by a jellyfish so never dared again...though I was on holiday somewhere nice and warm at the time! Where do you swim? There's nowt quite like a paddle in the sea to get you going - it's soooooo much better than the pool!
  • A place called Cullar Coats on the north east cost - nice bay protected by 2 large piers - it comes in as good practice for open water races
  • Hmmmm, might give it a go this summer...
  • Wet suits help
  • Aaaahhh - that could be useful; cheers!
  • My physio is a very experienced long distance swimmer having swum the Channel and trained last year to swim the Thames.He told me that a pool swim is equivalent to 4 times the running distance and a sea swim is approx.6 times depending on the currents etc. He also stated that swimming training is far more beneficial to runners than most people realise, but that running does not have the same effect on swimming!!
  • You're right about running not having the same effect on swimming as I certainly can't swim as well as I run! I do enjoy swimming though, since learning to do it properly!
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