Swimming is a great form of exercise, it is light on joints and hard on fat. You can lose a pound a month by dipping at a moderate pace for 30 minutes four times a week. Now that’s a compelling reason to hire pool contractors in Orange County and install a pool for fun and exercise.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), between March 2017 and March 2020, the obesity rate in the US was 41.9%. Both obesity and severe obesity rates are increasing—making losing weight a priority for nearly half of the country’s population.
Orange County Pool Contractors Have Pool Sizes to Facilitate Weight Loss
One of the reasons swimming is so effective at helping you lose weight and belly fat—is the resistance you feel when moving through the water. Every movement you make in water has to work against it, and the longer, faster, and more often you move results in weight loss, toned muscles, and cardiovascular fitness.
While all of the swimming strokes work all of the major muscle groups in your body, specific strokes or exercises also target specific areas. For example, flutter kicks are great for your lower abs, while butterfly kicks are great for your obliques.
How Long Do I Have to Swim to See Weight Loss Results?
Everyone has a different body, and everyone loses weight differently. On average, a hard and fast swimming session burns 800 calories an hour. If you keep it up for four times a week, you could lose three or four pounds a month.
However, you’ll have to build up to that level of fitness. Start slowly and build up to a moderate rate before burning 800 calories per hour. Typically, a beginner’s workout is 15-yard x 24-yard laps, but if this is the first time you’re swimming seriously, you’ll have to build up to it.
What Swimming Stroke Must I Start With?
The two easiest swimming strokes are freestyle, also known as the front crawl, and breaststroke. Just remember that the latter is the slowest stroke, so while it’s a great introduction to swimming for exercise, it burns the fewest calories.
One good idea is to start with breaststroke and practice flutter kicks in between laps. The flutter kicks are fast and will strengthen your legs and increase your heart rate, and using breaststroke for laps will start to build your endurance.
Switch to freestyle as soon as you think you can manage 15 laps. Then, you can introduce interval training. Intervals are one of the best ways to lose belly fat. This is when you swim as fast as you can for one lap and then have two slower recovery laps.
You can play with it a bit; for example, swim one fast lap and one recovery lap or two fast laps and two recovery laps—the options are virtually endless.
The two most important things are:
- Safety first. Never swim alone, especially if you swim in lakes or the ocean. Learn the right techniques, including breathing.
- Go at your own pace. If you push too hard too soon, you could damage or strain your muscles.
Treading water is also a great exercise for the abs. Your core engages when you kick your legs in a treading movement.
Different Strokes for Different Folks
What muscles do the different strokes target specifically?
Most people starting out with a swimming exercise regimen are comfortable with breaststroke. It’s a gentle introduction to swimming laps. Some sources say that breaststroke has the most cardiovascular benefits because it targets your legs, arms, and upper back. However, it only burns 150 calories to 250 calories in 30 minutes.
Freestyle is considered the second easiest stroke to learn. It’s also the fastest stroke and burns 250 calories to 350 calories in 30 minutes. Freestyle targets your shoulder muscles, abs, and glutes.
Backstroke is easy to learn in theory but is tricker in execution. You must be comfortable swimming on your back. Many people aren’t, and that’s fine. Backstroke can burn 200 calories to 300 calories in 30 minutes. It targets your abs, arms, legs, shoulders, and glutes and is also great for hip flexibility and improves posture.
The butterfly stroke is considered a powerhouse as it burns 400 calories to 500 calories in 30 minutes—and targets the arm, chest, and back muscles. However, it’s considered the most difficult stroke to learn. You have to coordinate arms, legs, and breathing.
Some people find that they gain weight when they start swimming due to their post-swim appetite. It’s common, and some people think that because they worked so hard, they can reward themselves with chocolate or fries. In the end, they put more calories in than they burned off.
If you know you won’t be able to resist it, pack some healthy snacks, like fruit, trail mix, or veggie sticks.
Several pieces of equipment are available to take your swimming to the next level. They can also provide a variety for people who get bored easily.
- Swimming goggles – Swimming goggles protect your eyes from the chemicals in the swimming pool, especially in a public pool that may use a lot of chlorine.
- Swimming cap – A swimming cap keeps your hair out of the way and protects it from pool chemicals.
- Kickboard – You can use a kickboard to practice kicking techniques for the different strokes and to build strength in your legs. It’s a good way to practice breathing and can even teach you how to swim in a straight line.
- Pull buoy – A pull buoy performs the same role for your arms as a kickboard does for your legs. Place the buoy between your legs and hold it there while you practice the arm movements for each of the strokes. Like a kickboard, it enables you to practice breathing, improve your technique, and build arm strength.
- Pool noodle – You can use a noodle for specific exercises, like underwater lunges, and as a swimming flotation device to practice kicking. Depending on how you use the noodles, you can burn 200 calories to 400 calories in 30 minutes.
Install an Endless Pool With a Reputable Pool Contractor in Orange County
Installing a pool so you can exercise in your backyard is a great idea, but sometimes there isn’t space. When you’re faced with this situation, an endless pool is an option. It’s a small pool with a strong counter-current jet that is so powerful you can swim freestyle or any stroke against it endlessly—without moving forward at all.
If you want an endless pool or any type of pool, experienced Orange County pool contractors can get the job done for you. To learn more, reach out to our team, which is composed of experts in all pool installations. Contact us at 714-235-3294 at Calimingo Pools today!