Swimmers Body?

  • bwinning

    Posts: 15

    Aug 16, 2009 6:46 AM GMT
    I was wondering, is it possible to get the full swimmers body (abs and everything) from just SWIMMING alone?! like lets say regular swimming about 3,000 meters a day (i use to do this but i wasn't giving it my all) would I be able to build muscle that way? or is it just complete cardio?!
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    Aug 16, 2009 1:34 PM GMT
    BenWin saidI was wondering, is it possible to get the full swimmers body (abs and everything) from just SWIMMING alone?! like lets say regular swimming about 3,000 meters a day (i use to do this but i wasn't giving it my all) would I be able to build muscle that way? or is it just complete cardio?!


    You shouldn't aspire to the unbalanced body of a competitive swimmer. Swimmers almost always have over-developed backs, little to no chest development, minor arm development, and minor leg development, along with a layer of fat that acts as insulation against water.

    While swimming is a form of resistance exercise, a better type to aspire to would be a gymnast (very balanced and body weight exercise, but limited to small), or bodybuilders (very balanced with the ability to generate power over a long period of time under greater loads).

    Long cardio, as in your 3000 meters, serves to burn calories, but, if your calories are inadequate, they'll burn your muscles, first, in what's called the famine response, and is highly counter productive to being lean and muscular. A better choice is HIIT, along with adequate caloric intake, coupled with balanced resistance training such as weights.
  • Bunjamon

    Posts: 3161

    Aug 16, 2009 1:51 PM GMT
    A layer of fat? Where?

    Eamon+Sullivan.jpg

    It was said that Michael Phelps only swam in his early days. He'd be doing about 9 miles a day (that's your 3000 meters times almost 5), but he was eating around 12,000 calories a day, too. As with any exercise routine, it's good to balance cardio and weigh resistance training. If you're intimidated by the gym, have someone go with you. I was a swimmer for a long time, and walking around in a swimsuit, when you think about it, is far more intimidating than going and picking up some weights for the first time. icon_wink.gif
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    Aug 16, 2009 2:14 PM GMT
    Ben, aspire to whatever body type you please. Please.

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    Aug 16, 2009 2:28 PM GMT
    I agree with badmikey
  • danisnotstr8

    Posts: 2579

    Aug 16, 2009 2:37 PM GMT
    Why not just do what you want? Do what makes you feel good about yourself. Do the sort of exercise that you enjoy.

    But, to answer your question... everyone's body is different. Hmm... when I was swimming a couple years ago, I FELT great, I looked great, and there was just about 0 fat on my body. I think you should lift weights, too, though, if you want to build muscle quickly. And eat a lot of peanut butter and other high-protein foods... Swimming is an intense cardio workout You'll burn muscle almost as quickly as you burn fat.

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    Aug 16, 2009 5:34 PM GMT
    MP actually trained like an idiot until someone other than a family friend got a hold of him, and started him on a program that included weights (which gave him better times). Phelps has a chronic disease which allows him to reduce lactic acid twice as fast as a normal person. Some would argue that's an unfair advantage. That same disease gives him longer limbs, as well. Because of the long hours Phelps was spending in the pool, he was able to eat 8000 calories a day from sources like McDonald's but, it goes without saying, that his blood chemistry was a mess. Phelps is a genetic mutation, with a disease, that is leveraged to his advantage along with a good work ethic. I can't imagine how much better he might have been (it's hard to top what he did) had he trained properly to begin with.

    Again, a swimmer's body is unbalanced and not the best training goal for most. A lack of balance can lead to lots of problems on the path. It's a lot better to achieve a balance for the long haul.
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    Aug 16, 2009 5:55 PM GMT
    chuckystud said
    BenWin saidI was wondering, is it possible to get the full swimmers body (abs and everything) from just SWIMMING alone?! like lets say regular swimming about 3,000 meters a day (i use to do this but i wasn't giving it my all) would I be able to build muscle that way? or is it just complete cardio?!


    You shouldn't aspire to the unbalanced body of a competitive swimmer. Swimmers almost always have over-developed backs, little to no chest development, minor arm development, and minor leg development, along with a layer of fat that acts as insulation against water.

    While swimming is a form of resistance exercise, a better type to aspire to would be a gymnast (very balanced and body weight exercise, but limited to small), or bodybuilders (very balanced with the ability to generate power over a long period of time under greater loads).

    Long cardio, as in your 3000 meters, serves to burn calories, but, if your calories are inadequate, they'll burn your muscles, first, in what's called the famine response, and is highly counter productive to being lean and muscular. A better choice is HIIT, along with adequate caloric intake, coupled with balanced resistance training such as weights.


    Now, Chucky Whucky Oogy Woogums. This might be a difficult concept for you, most of them are, but not everyone aspires to look like you. If we all walked around looking like constipated orange-faced over-juiced Oompa Loompas, you might be in heaven, but the rest of us would be revising Dante's work to include a 10th circle.
  • mustangd

    Posts: 434

    Aug 16, 2009 5:59 PM GMT
    beauty is in the eye of the beholder, be it the body of a swimmer, gymnast ( both seem to favor upper body development ), diver ( more leg development from springboard than a swimmer ) skater ( more gluteal and leg development ) or bodybuilder ( those who build a balanced physique ). as stated a persons genetics favors or limits the shape of their body. the key is what is healthy for you, working with your genetics, and to a degree, how a person sees symmetry, how they want their body to be shaped.

    if the shape a person wants is lean, then cardiovascular excersise and diet, what, how much, and when, should play a dominat role over weightlifting. that doesn't rule out weightlifting, it just shifts the emphasis

    its nice to have differences, variety like spice, is nice.
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    Aug 16, 2009 6:06 PM GMT
    If you want the lean, slightly muscled body of the swimmers you've been masturbating to, hit the gym and do resistance training...you'll get there pretty fast. Have a responsible diet, and get plenty of rest. Swim for the exercise and fun.

    A swimmer's body is a marketing term, not a lifestyle.
  • bwinning

    Posts: 15

    Aug 16, 2009 6:06 PM GMT
    thanks everyone for the advise... it's just that I've been swimming for 5 years so that's what I've been good at and know what to do. I'd probably look really stupid going to the gym and trying out things haha

    Yeah my body is unproportional . I have big and broad shoulders but my arms chest and abs aren't that great. my body fat is about 7% last time i checked but no abs show! I have really fast metabolism so it kind of scares me to see that swimming eats away the muscles if i don't eat enough!

    I wanted to do gymnastics but MAN i'm too scared of heights to do all that flipping on bars and such haha and i'm not that flexible anymore

    peanut butter = protein = building muscle?!
    Dang that's good news since i love peanut butter icon_smile.gif
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    Aug 16, 2009 6:13 PM GMT
    In my humble opinion, swimmers have the best type of body there is. Do whatever pleases you.
    However, if you are looking for more lean, muscle mass, do some weight training and cut back on swimming.
  • SFGeoNinja

    Posts: 510

    Aug 16, 2009 6:20 PM GMT
    For cardio training, swimming burns calories faster than just about any other workout (except perhaps maybe rowing). If getting leaner and gaining definition in your chest/back is what you're looking for, then go for it! Whoever said that swimming does not develop your chest hasn't been to his local pool lately icon_lol.gif
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    Aug 16, 2009 6:24 PM GMT
    davidp7 saidFor cardio training, swimming burns calories faster than just about any other workout (except perhaps maybe rowing). If getting leaner and gaining definition in your chest/back is what you're looking for, then go for it! Whoever said that swimming does not develop your chest hasn't been to his local pool lately icon_lol.gif


    Gosh, that's just wrong. You need to study up on HIIT, and stairs. You ALWAYS burn upwards of three times more when going uphill. Oops. You missed that one. Even rowing takes mores than swimming. Time to go find the chart.
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    Aug 16, 2009 6:25 PM GMT
    BenWin saidthanks everyone for the advise... it's just that I've been swimming for 5 years so that's what I've been good at and know what to do. I'd probably look really stupid going to the gym and trying out things haha

    Yeah my body is unproportional . I have big and broad shoulders but my arms chest and abs aren't that great. my body fat is about 7% last time i checked but no abs show! I have really fast metabolism so it kind of scares me to see that swimming eats away the muscles if i don't eat enough!

    I wanted to do gymnastics but MAN i'm too scared of heights to do all that flipping on bars and such haha and i'm not that flexible anymore

    peanut butter = protein = building muscle?!
    Dang that's good news since i love peanut butter icon_smile.gif


    Peanut butter is yummy and good for you. Don't give up an activity you enjoy. Eat more, and lift weights to balance yourself out.

    You might want to add some HIIT a few times a weak to get leaner, so that you can have the abs, too, and, I think you'll find that if you're getting enough calories, your metabolism will speed up and you'll lose the fat. The saying goes that you have to stoke the furnace.

    If you add the weights, you should find it will improve your swimming, as well as your balance.
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    Aug 16, 2009 6:27 PM GMT
    chucky you just got BURNED!

    just in case you didnt realise icon_razz.gif

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    Aug 16, 2009 6:32 PM GMT
    Low intensity training caloric burn.
    http://www.nutristrategy.com/activitylist4.htm

    http://ezinearticles.com/?HIIT-Your-Cardio-Hard&id=185964

    http://www.ehow.com/how_4498721_more-calories-using-cardio-machines.html

    I hope this serves as a teaching moment.
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    Aug 16, 2009 6:36 PM GMT
    Fable saidchucky you just got BURNED!

    just in case you didnt realise icon_razz.gif



    Actually, I didn't. HIIT still has more burn, because it's at a higher intensity level.

    However, for low intensity activity, there are a number of activities that have way more burn than swimming. See the chart above.

    It's that you don't understand the difference between the two.

    http://www.criticalbench.com/high-intensity-interval-training.htm

    http://www.freetrainers.com/FT/jsp/Message.jsp?f_ix=0&t_ix=3113

    [url]http://www.articlesbase.com/wellness-articles/hiit-for-fat-losshalf-the-time-twice-the-results-886701.html
    [/url]

    http://musclemedia.com/training/hiit.asp
    Again, a teaching moment.
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    Aug 16, 2009 6:45 PM GMT
    From http://www.freetrainers.com/FT/jsp/Message.jsp?f_ix=23&t_ix=29

    "The reason that High Intensity Interval Training works better for fat loss is this: When you do a cardio session at the same pace the whole time, your body goes into what is called steady state. This means that your body has adjusted itself to the speed you are going and tries hard to conserve energy (calories). You will be able to avoid this and burn more calories and FAT by doing the interval training.

    The easiest way that I tell people to do it is to start off at a good pace for 5 minutes. Then take up the intensity on the machine and go as hard and as fast as you possibly can for a minute and then bring it back down for a minute or two ? however long it takes for you to recover enough to do it again. ANY cardio machine will work ? I like the treadmill and the elliptical trainer the best.

    Another easy way to introduce yourself to this kind of cardio without killing yourself right off the bat is simply to keep changing your speed and intensity level every two minutes or so ? go up and down ? challenge yourself. This will "trick" your body into burning more calories since it can not achieve steady state.

    When it comes to the heart rate question? whether to stay lower or higher ? this is your answer. At a lower % of max heart rate (65%), a larger percentage of calories burned come from fat than at a higher heart rate (75-85%). HOWEVER, despite the percentages, you will burn more total calories and therefore more total fat calories at a higher heart rate. "

    You can burn up to 9 times more fat calories doing HIIT.

    At some point, smart training, and the brain, has to come into play, into making a plan for success. It's best to train smarter.
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    Aug 16, 2009 6:47 PM GMT
    GuerrillaSodomite said
    chuckystud said
    BenWin saidI was wondering, is it possible to get the full swimmers body (abs and everything) from just SWIMMING alone?! like lets say regular swimming about 3,000 meters a day (i use to do this but i wasn't giving it my all) would I be able to build muscle that way? or is it just complete cardio?!


    You shouldn't aspire to the unbalanced body of a competitive swimmer. Swimmers almost always have over-developed backs, little to no chest development, minor arm development, and minor leg development, along with a layer of fat that acts as insulation against water.

    While swimming is a form of resistance exercise, a better type to aspire to would be a gymnast (very balanced and body weight exercise, but limited to small), or bodybuilders (very balanced with the ability to generate power over a long period of time under greater loads).

    Long cardio, as in your 3000 meters, serves to burn calories, but, if your calories are inadequate, they'll burn your muscles, first, in what's called the famine response, and is highly counter productive to being lean and muscular. A better choice is HIIT, along with adequate caloric intake, coupled with balanced resistance training such as weights.


    Now, Chucky Whucky Oogy Woogums. This might be a difficult concept for you, most of them are, but not everyone aspires to look like you. If we all walked around looking like constipated orange-faced over-juiced Oompa Loompas, you might be in heaven, but the rest of us would be revising Dante's work to include a 10th circle.


    I was referring to this, (look up)



    Again 1250448090140.jpg
    a learning moment
  • dionysus

    Posts: 420

    Aug 16, 2009 6:49 PM GMT
    use swimming as a cardiovascular tool. its difficult to be just a swimmer without proper training. swimmers look good because they dont just do swimming. there's an entire workout routine set out by their coaches. try to have something balanced.
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    Aug 16, 2009 6:57 PM GMT
    It's important to have a balanced body, as well as a balanced routine, nut cases aside. It helps you grow old more gracefully, and prevents injury, as well as being more aesthetically pleasing. Nearly every activity has some form of imbalance. With the unbalanced physique of a swimmer, e.g., you can have more shoulder problems. I often see this in in young lifters who overworked the front side and don't work the back side, and end up with shoulder impingement. Swimmers are just the reverse. Having a balanced body is wise...for a long list of reasons, including an injury free lifetime of exercise. The nut cases may try to say it's wrong for some weird reason, but, it's just a common sense thing. Balance is key, in just about everything we do.

    As usual drama queens lurk. LOL. Ignorance is bliss, it's said.
  • dionysus

    Posts: 420

    Aug 16, 2009 7:01 PM GMT
    chucky's right...today...

    our rowing coach was insane about us getting push-ups in and lots of push movements because we got NONE when we were rowing for 4 hours at a time.
  • bwinning

    Posts: 15

    Aug 16, 2009 7:14 PM GMT
    thanks chucky for the links!
    but i'm trying to gain weight

    I'm only 118 at 5'8 right now i really don't like it so i was thinking if i up my swimming then maybe i'll gain more muscle but seeing how everyone says I need to start lifting weights i'll probably start incorporating that

    what techniques do you recommend to build up arms, chest, and abs. those are the ones i'm trying to target and i'll do some running for my legs.

    I've been trying to do the 100 push up challenge but i'm not seeing a lot of results :/ i'm a hard gainer sooo i don't know I just want that nice looking body while enjoying what i do which is swimming but i guess I have to do dry land work out icon_sad.gif
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    Aug 16, 2009 7:20 PM GMT
    BenWin saidthanks chucky for the links!
    but i'm trying to gain weight

    I'm only 118 at 5'8 right now i really don't like it so i was thinking if i up my swimming then maybe i'll gain more muscle but seeing how everyone says I need to start lifting weights i'll probably start incorporating that

    what techniques do you recommend to build up arms, chest, and abs. those are the ones i'm trying to target and i'll do some running for my legs.

    I've been trying to do the 100 push up challenge but i'm not seeing a lot of results :/ i'm a hard gainer sooo i don't know I just want that nice looking body while enjoying what i do which is swimming but i guess I have to do dry land work out icon_sad.gif


    Eat. If you haven't already, you can get your testosterone, thryroid, CMP, and resting glucose checked. You're in Dallas. Food is EVERYWHERE.

    Use dumbbell incline dumbbells. Do 4 sets of 8 to 15. Do it twice a week.
    Use decline dumbbells. Do 4 sets of 8 to 15. Do it twice a week.
    Do incline flies with dumbells. Do 4 set of 8 to 25. Do it twice a week.
    You want a bigger upper body? Do leg press.
    Leg press twice a week. 6 sets 8 to 20.
    Leg extensions 4 sets 8 to 20
    Leg curls 4 sets 8 to 20.
    Back and bis..do em
    Chest and tris.. do em.
    Eat.
    Rest.
    Repeat.

    You'll have a great chest soon.

    If you want to gain weight, eat more kcal than you consume. It's just that very simple. It truly is. If you want more muscle push ups aren't gonna' get it done. They'll help but you need serious resistance training in the presence of calories. Again, no reason to give up activities you enjoy, but, you have to EAT, and you need to be in a typical weight lifting routine. Weights aren't hard. There's just a few ways that a muscle works. Curls are curls are curls. Extensions are extensions are extensions. That's the way it REALLY is. The thing is the calories, no over training, and staying at it.