How Much Does Jim Swim?

Many times when I am visiting with parents and caregivers on the pool deck one of the questions that always seems to pop up is, “How many times a week do you swim Coach Jim?” The answer is the same it’s been for over a decade, usually 2-3 times a week.  What has really changed over the years is the way I have trained both physically and mentally. 

Physically my shoulders can no longer handle the high intensity training my body endured during my competitive years up until I reached my 50s. These days my heart rate rarely exceeds 120 beats per minute when swimming a workout that ranges anywhere from 1700 – 3000 yards/meters. Mentally, I made a shift to no longer compete in Masters swim competitions in my age group but instead live for the days I can open water swim in beautiful lakes and oceans. There is something so peaceful and rewarding swimming in open water. Last September, we competed in a relay swim off Islamorada Florida called Swim for the Alligator Lighthouse. This swim was an 8 mile ocean swim that included ocean water kayaking with your team when you were not in the water. We had four members of the Montgomery family swimming out there. Ellis, who you all know is my daughter and runs the swim school, along with her sister Ann and brother Beau all participated on their own team and they beat my team by over an hour!

One of the best open water swims of my life happened this summer when I traveled to southern Bavaria to compete in an open water race. During my visit, I was fortunate to swim in one of the most iconic and pristine lakes in Europe called the Konigsee. The lake sits in the German Alps  just south of Salzburg Austria. and without a doubt  the cleanest most scenic body of water I have ever experienced. Both of these swimming adventures were extremely rewarding. Sometimes a shift from the swim meet scene to these open water swims can be just what you need.         

If you want to make progress in any sport, activity, or hobby then you need to consistently practice for at least two times a week. Becoming disciplined in practicing is what will help you to make strides and gain that progression you are looking for. This applies to swim lessons as well! Coming to lessons is a great place to start when you are wanting to learn to swim or you have a kiddo you want to learn to swim and gain technique. The first step is bringing them to us at least once a week! The second step is enabling them to practice even more than their once a week lesson. If you are able to do multiple lessons a week that is always a plus but if you have a pool you can swim in then get in with them and give them the opportunity to show you what they are working on in class! You will be amazed at how much progress they will make when you add in some extra practice time. 

Summer swimmers are made in the winter so do not hesitate to get in for lessons as soon as possible. All ages and abilities should learn how to swim! Head over to to learn more!

Coach Jim