The 24 Hour Fitness Blog

Pooling Around

by ScottG. on January 25, 2012

Swimming is one of the best all-toning, fat-burning fitness activities in the gym.  It'll condition your entire body and is a great cardiovascular workout. Almost all of your muscles are involved, so if you’re just starting out, you may be surprised how quickly you’ll feel tired.

What’s more, swimming burns calories like a nuclear furnace. The butterfly stroke singes off more than 748 calories in an hour (based on a 150-pound person), which is as intense as running a 9-minute mile but without all the knee jarring.

For me, the hardest part was learning how to time my breathing. However, I got some advice from a friend who teaches kids how to swim, I practiced and I'm getting better - nothing like Michael Phelps or anything.

To learn the trick, first place your head face down in the water, then turn sideways and breathe in and after facing down again, breathe out through your nose. Once you’re used to that motion, combine your new breathing technique with a freestyle arm stroke and keep going. The more you practice, the better you'll get.