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I said a few weeks ago that I was going to pull on my big girl panties and actually do a speed swim workout (instead of just lazily swimming laps).  And guess what?!













Said big girl panties aren’t on yet, but at least they’re out of the drawer.  Smile 


Admittingly, this is a pretty simple swim workout – and it ended up being relatively short because I cannot follow my own instructions – but it was perfect for me today because I’m also going on a run later. Tip:  Write your workout on a Post-It and stick it in a plastic bag – TADA!  You can keep it by the edge of the pool, check as needed, and it won’t get soggy and ruined.


If you can’t read my chicken scratch:


200 yard warm-up

2 sets of 50 yards 10 seconds faster than normal, with 10 seconds rest in between

2 sets of 100 yards 10 seconds faster than normal, with 10 seconds rest in between

Repeat both sprints

200 yard cool-down


However, I ended up doing 1 set of each sprint – instead of two – and repeating it once.  Whoops.


Okay – I’ll say it.  I LOVE SWIMMING SO MUCH.  Swimming is > than running.  It is my favorite exercise ever.  It’s cool, it’s refreshing, it’s fun.  And although sometimes, it’s difficult to jump in the cold water, I always warm right up and am glad I am there.  Can’t always say that about running!  Heh.




Toast with goat cheese, tomatoes, and basil.


Crackers + hummus.


And a refreshing beet and spinach salad.


This begs the question – what is your favorite workout ever and why?



  • Annette @ EnjoyYourHealthyLife October 14, 2011, 2:28 pm

    I LOVE swimming too! Running is great though as well -I like the sweaty feeling!

    I teach BodyPUMP and Zumba (among other classes), and I’d have to say, right now, those are my FAVorite by far!! I want to try out some other classes and get certified in them as well…we’ll see what next year brings!

    • Caitlin October 14, 2011, 8:04 pm

      I really really want to try Zumba!

  • Katie October 14, 2011, 2:36 pm

    My favorite workouts definitely ebb and flow and I go through phases. I am definitely like you right now. When running once was my drug of choice, now not so much. I am really enjoying other forms of exercise including biking. I <3 biking and cycling right now.

  • Gaby October 14, 2011, 2:40 pm

    I love Body Jam! On days when I want to take it light and have fun this workout is perfect!

  • Katy (The Singing Runner) October 14, 2011, 2:40 pm

    I’m just getting back into the running game after 3 months off due to a stress fracture, but in my time off, I fell in LOVE with cycling! It challenges and pushes me, but doesn’t make me feel like I got hit by a truck afterwards. 😉

    Running will always be my #1, but cycling is creeping on up. 😉

    • Caitlin October 14, 2011, 8:05 pm

      I love cycling, too!!!

  • Tricia October 14, 2011, 2:57 pm

    I would have to say yoga. I don’t do it nearly as much as I could but I’m starting to regularly add it into my workout schedule. I started a new job and I love how yoga can be done at home. I sadly don’t have time to stop at the gym after work anymore, but doing vinyasa yoga at hone (through on demand) is really helping me – mind and body.

  • katie @ KatieDid October 14, 2011, 3:00 pm

    My favorite workout changes about twice a year usually. Running was my happy place last year, and right now I’m so content with just lifting and some leisure bike riding. So mine definitely changes with where I’m at with my life!

  • Grammar Police October 14, 2011, 3:01 pm

    That’s not what begging the question is. Gah.

  • Chelsea October 14, 2011, 3:02 pm

    I need to buy a one piece to start running at my gyms pool! I really want to do a tri one day 🙂 Do you swim in a onsie at your gym pool for training?

    • Caitlin October 14, 2011, 8:06 pm

      Yup! All my bikinis are like, laying in the sun string bikinis 🙂 If I had a workout bikini I would prob swim in it!

  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat October 14, 2011, 3:04 pm

    Glad you re-found your love for swimming Caitlin! I think running is actually my favourite, but it depends on the day. Overall, running. But I LOVE a good Body Step class, and I love teaching spin – mainly because I sweat buckets and my class participants are great!

  • Samantha October 14, 2011, 3:07 pm

    Yoga is my favorite workout by far. I’ve always been a bit overweight and I’ve never really liked exercise. From age 11 I’ve exercised and dieted because I HAD to, but never really liked it. I took my first yoga class 2 years ago and since then I’ve taken 300 yoga classes/workshops (no joke). Yoga taught me that my body is not my enemy and that it can do amazing things. Before yoga, I never would have believed that I was capable of headstands, arm balances, or even touching my toes. When I’m having a bad day and I go to yoga, even stepping on to my mat fills me with joy and excitement. I have lost weight, eliminated my anxiety issues, strengthened my muscles, increased my cardiovascular capabilities, and become so much more flexible that people come up to me after class and ask how I got so limber (Again, couldn’t touch my toes for years!!). I could basically go on forever about how much I love yoga- philosophy, meditation, and asanas included. I guess it’s a good thing I’m starting teacher training in a week!

    • Amanda@BlueDrishti October 14, 2011, 3:55 pm

      Yoga is amazing. So many great benefits. I always feel like refreshed and energized after a class.

      • Caitlin October 14, 2011, 8:06 pm


  • Gina @ Running to the Kitchen October 14, 2011, 3:07 pm

    I think I’d feel the same way about swimming if I had a place/chance to do it! I want to swim so bad but am really too cheap to buy an expensive gym membership just for it. So for now running is my fav 🙂

  • Jen October 14, 2011, 3:09 pm

    My favorite workout ever is definitely dancing at weddings! 🙂

  • Victoria (District Chocoholic) October 14, 2011, 3:13 pm

    Swimming > running? No. Swimming > everything

  • Kate October 14, 2011, 3:13 pm

    I definitely prefer swimming over running too. I’m actually thinking about dropping my 5k cause I can’t get motivated to train for it. But let me at a swimming race, I think I could get into that!

  • Amanda@BlueDrishti October 14, 2011, 3:16 pm

    My favorite workout is yoga. I like tough classes that get me sweating and breathing hard. Walking and biking would have to be a close second. I have never lived near a pool but I think I would like swimming if I got the chance. I love the water!

  • Janelle October 14, 2011, 3:17 pm

    My favorite workout is BodyCombat. It is SO much fun yet you do actually learn some combat-ish moves. You have to have an awesome, upbeat instructor though! The one I always loved brought his own music and we’d do these crazy-fun moves to musicals and Scottish songs. ha!

    I wish I could swim half-decently. Good for you!

    • Caitlin October 14, 2011, 8:07 pm

      I want to try BodyCombat!!!

  • Andrea October 14, 2011, 3:18 pm

    Oh my gosh, I feel the exact same way about swimming! I have to work myself up before I go and the thought of jumping in the cold pool is not fun, but I warm up within 10 seconds of jumping in, it is so relaxing, and I never feel like I want to leave once I get started. I just went for my first swim in a few weeks this morning!

    That being said, my favourite workout is definitely an intense, challenging dance class, or even better – actually performing for an audience!

  • Jen October 14, 2011, 3:21 pm

    As far as swimming vs. running, I’m definitely a runner. I’m trying to improve my swimming and use the pool on campus about once a week because it forces me to work my upper body, but I really hate putting my face in the water.

    I’m also such an outdoors exerciser; I went swimming in Walden Pond this summer, and I just swam all day, while I have to really force myself to swim laps.

  • Coco October 14, 2011, 3:28 pm

    YOGA. Works the body AND mind. Spiritual + physical = best workout ever.

  • deva @ deva by definition October 14, 2011, 3:31 pm

    Weight lifting is my fav workout EVAH. When I was eating “clean” and lifting regularly, I had a rockin’ bod. Running is a veeerrry close second. I have to love it – I signed up for a half marathon…

  • Lindsay October 14, 2011, 3:39 pm

    It’s so funny you say that about swimming– I feel the exact OPPOSITE about it! :-O I swam all through high school and college and honestly, by the time college graduation rolled around, I was so burnt out I had to take a break. And I’m still on that break seven years later…heh.

    Running and kettlebells are my kryptonite right now. If you haven’t swung a bell yet…try it. You’ll be hooked!

    • Mary October 14, 2011, 6:51 pm

      Ha – this is exactly how I felt! I year round from age 7 – 18 (swam in high school but not college), and was so burnt out of swimming I didn’t want to think about a pool for about 8 years. Just now getting back into it, though, through triathlon. Swimming is finally fun again! It only took 8 years to decompress from it. Running is still way more awesome for me though – the “runners high” is where it’s at.

      • Caitlin October 14, 2011, 8:07 pm

        I think people get burnt out on the chlorine smell 🙂

  • Alyse October 14, 2011, 3:40 pm

    Trail hikes. Amazing cardio where you can enjoy a great view and quiet. 🙂

  • Sarah @ w30 October 14, 2011, 3:49 pm

    Ha – I have to admit, I was SHOCKED when I read you like swimming more than running (not in a bad way)! 🙂 Things change, huh? I bet if someone told you that a year ago you would have thought they were crazy.

    My favorite exercise has to be hiking/mountain climbing. But, alas, Oklahoma is somewhat lacking in that department – although we do have the Whichita “mountains,” which are the oldest mountains in North America and one of the oldest in the WORLD! Pretty cool.

    For now, my new favorite workout is a “5K” circuit: .5 mile on treadmill at an 8% incline, 1 mile on crossramp, 1 mile on bike, and .7 mile on elliptical.

    It’s the first workout that I’ve been excited about since I had to quit running, but it’s quick enough I can squeeze it in before or after work. 🙂

  • Katie @ Peace Love and Oats October 14, 2011, 3:50 pm

    running is my favorite because it’s a stress relief and i know i’m working myself hard. I did do a swim workout two weeks ago because my knees hurt too much to run and you’re right! I forgot how much fun swimming is! What’s not fun is thinking that it was fine to swim even though i’d lost my goggles… My vision was blurry for about 3 hours after and my eyes red the whole rest of the day. that was not fun…

  • Nicole (I have trouble with forward motion) October 14, 2011, 3:55 pm

    Hip-hop dance class! It’s not soul-crushing repetitive like other aerobics classes, the music is fun, I sweat a TON, and it’s just overall fun. My husband even enjoys going! Even if I don’t feel like going, I’m always glad I went and usually feel better afterwards. So much better than being chained to the treadmill.

  • Devonshire October 14, 2011, 3:59 pm

    Those beets look awesome! Do you have any good recipes? I got some from my CSA and i don’t know what to do with them

    • Caitlin October 14, 2011, 8:10 pm

      steam them in their skin until you can insert a fork, let cool, and then rub with your fingers to get the skin off, slice and serve – i really like them on salads!

  • Amber @ Busy, Bold, Blessed October 14, 2011, 4:02 pm

    My favorite workout is dancing my butt off! The other night my friends and I were ruling the dance floor at a local bar that had an awesome classic rock coverband. I was only drinking water (no empty booze calories) and we were dancing so hard I was a sweat machine. It definitely felt like a nonworkout workout!

  • Faith @ For the Health of It October 14, 2011, 4:08 pm

    Even though I think of myself as more of a runner/yogini, my fave workout would have to be cycling. Something about getting on my neon pink bike makes me feel like a 5 year old again and a “workout” feels more like play!

  • Shiyam October 14, 2011, 4:17 pm

    Your food photos are great!

    • Caitlin October 14, 2011, 8:11 pm

      Thanks 🙂

  • kathleen @ the daily crumb October 14, 2011, 4:17 pm

    my favorite workout EVER is a 75 minute hot power yoga class. followed closely by a kick butt distance run.

  • Paige @ Running Around Normal October 14, 2011, 4:18 pm

    i’ve thought about taking up swimming, but neither of the gyms I go to have pools! Perhaps one of these days I’ll join the local Y to swim sometime…

  • Kristyn October 14, 2011, 4:30 pm

    Figure Skating, because I did it competitively for 8 years and it was such a great time and a fun way to workout (even though I didn’t realize I was ‘working out’ at the time doing it ). It was a blast and I have fun skating bling!

    • Caitlin October 14, 2011, 8:11 pm

      You are awesome 🙂

  • Hillary October 14, 2011, 4:31 pm

    I love me some dance classes. I took tap, jazz, and lyrical for about 14 years, and there’s no greater sweat than the one you get with dance shoes on!

  • lauren October 14, 2011, 4:34 pm

    When I’m in distance mode, my favorite thing to do is to run on the bike path. When I’m doing anything over 6mi, I really slow down and take in the scenery. I’ve seen baby turtles and beavers swimming and once I came across a family of deer right ON the path. I think I froze faster than they did.

  • Sarah @ The Strength of Faith October 14, 2011, 4:36 pm

    Are you back in Charlotte yet?

    • Caitlin October 14, 2011, 8:11 pm

      Yes thank baby jesus!

  • Kelly October 14, 2011, 4:43 pm

    Wow I am impressed, I definitely like running better than swimming- less equipment and preparation (ie getting to the pool) and after running you do not smell like chlorine all day. Plus I get bored more often swimming. I do like mixing up my work outs though and I know it’s good for your body to swim especially if you have injuries.

  • Lindsay October 14, 2011, 4:49 pm

    My favorite is biking, I think. It really reminds me of being a kid…I love cruising on the sidewalk when there are no pedestrians around because it literally brings me right back to when I was a kid and used to pretend I was driving myself around the neighborhood. Its fun and a workout 🙂

  • jo October 14, 2011, 4:58 pm

    My favourite workout is swimming – no question about that! To me, it has always felt natural and instinctual, not to mention that it makes me feel weightless – like I am, somehow, flying.

    I like running too, and since I’m on the studentliest of the student budgets I have to settle for it right now because it’s free, heh. And it provides a different kind of relaxation than swimming. I always compare running to boxing because it feels like punching someone, it liberates me of the tensions of the day and allows me to clear my head.

  • Halley (Blunder Construction) October 14, 2011, 4:59 pm

    Zumba is my favorite because dancing feels nothing like working out! Also, that lunch looks FAB!

  • Katie October 14, 2011, 4:59 pm

    I didn’t know you loved swimming more than running! For me, yoga is definitely my favorite. It’s also the only exercise I’ve really kept up with for an extended period of time, hah. But it strength trains my entire body, can be relaxing or kick the crap out of me, and it works on my flexibility which I love.

  • Liz October 14, 2011, 5:02 pm

    Caitlin- Do you listen to music or anything when you swim? I get so bored easily when I work out. I need something to distract me, so I’m apprehensive about swimming. I’m going to have to take it up soon though, because hubby and I are going to do a tri after our half marathon in a month. Thanks for any advice! 🙂

  • Kim October 14, 2011, 5:35 pm

    cycling on the Katy Trail

  • Jill @ Just Focus Well October 14, 2011, 5:48 pm

    Lifting weights is probably my favorite. If I didn’t have to run to stay in shape, I probably wouldn’t do it. It takes all I have to get out there and run. I wish I could take up swimming, though. It seems to be such an amazing workout.

  • dana October 14, 2011, 6:07 pm

    I love bootcamp total body workouts! I love lifting with short bursts of intense cardio. I always feel fatigued and like I pushed my limits.

  • Ashley October 14, 2011, 6:15 pm

    I love swimming too! I swam for 10 years growing up, and got really burnt out. I just started up again and so far I’m loving it. It’s really great workout and its no impact so you don’t have to worry about an overuse injury. That being said, jumping in the cold water is the worst part, and hopefully that won’t deter me when the weather turns colder. 🙂

  • Molly @ RDexposed October 14, 2011, 6:27 pm

    I do love me some spin class. I love the instructors being fiesty!

  • Erin D October 14, 2011, 6:42 pm

    I’ve done the bag trick but ended up losing my workout!! Now, I write it on an index card w/ permanent maker (black)- get it wet & stick it on a kick board- no more losing it & i can read it the entire time

  • Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin October 14, 2011, 6:42 pm

    I’ve really fallen in love with swimming lately too. So far I’ve only been doing slow laps though – I haven’t tried doing speed work. I might not like it so much after I try that! 😛

  • Kristen October 14, 2011, 7:18 pm

    I love swimming too! But defiantly the hardest part is jumping in the cold water. I would MUCH rather swim than run ANYDAY!

  • Angela @ MyPinkyToes October 14, 2011, 7:21 pm

    I so need to get myself in a swimming pool and try this swimming thing for myself. I definitely would say that swimming period is one of my fears and I need to pull up my big girl panties…or swimsuit…and just do it!

  • Mary October 14, 2011, 7:41 pm

    I totally agree about swimming. The worst part is jumping in the pool, but once I’m in I just LOVE to swim. Nothing hurts when I’m swimming, but I can’t say the same for running or really any other workout. I would do an Ironman if it was just the swim, but the distance on the bike and run hold me back!

    • Caitlin October 14, 2011, 8:01 pm

      I agree 🙂

  • Julia H. @ The Petite Spiel October 14, 2011, 8:25 pm

    Ziploc bags to the rescue! I use them to keep my phone dry when I go running in rainy weather. Works perfectly!

  • Rachel October 14, 2011, 9:03 pm

    Swimming! My parents taught me to swim at a very early age (both of them had near drowning experiences in their childhood and were determined that wouldn’t happen to me) and I took to it like, er, a fish to water… I swam competitively from second grade to twelfth grade. I’m a bit slower these days, but nothing clears my head like some time in a pool.

  • Leah October 14, 2011, 11:56 pm

    I just started swimming again… I love the tip about bringing the plan in a zip lock… I lost count of where I was in my workout yesterday — I didn`t have it written down – Oops… I think I did 750m

  • Khushboo October 15, 2011, 12:53 am

    Running is my fave workout ever! It makes me feel strong, healthy and alive! Each run feels like an achievement and I am yet to regret one!

  • Annette @ Wellnesss WA October 15, 2011, 4:49 am

    That lunch looks absolutely incredible!!!!! 😀

  • Casie October 15, 2011, 6:20 am

    When I was training for Ironman (heh, I like the bike & the run – the swim? meh) I printed out credit card sized swim sets and laminated them. Kept ’em in my swim bag and blue-tac-ed them to the edge of the pool. I find I’d train better if I actually had a goal for the session rather than to swim 3-4km!

  • Juli D. October 15, 2011, 6:25 am

    Tennis! Sports in general will always beat just doing a repetitive motion over and over (running, swimming, biking).

  • sonia the mexigarian October 15, 2011, 11:28 am

    Solo workout favorite is swimming. I love he water, always have, always will. Like you said it’s refreshing, powerful and calming all at the same time, and no matter what you do, you are working every muscle. Water polo is my favorite group sport, but I haven’t played it in years, so .. . baseball or volleball. Favorite group exercise is Zumba or Cycle class. Love the energy in both.

  • Amber K October 15, 2011, 12:36 pm

    I don’t have one in particular, but probably dancing around my living room. It’s not “formal” exercise, but it’s the most fun! Although I also really like my slower days where I catch up on magazines on an elliptical.

  • kyla October 15, 2011, 4:30 pm

    Hiking! I always feel connected to nature like I do when I run but hiking tends to hurt less than running, for me at least.

  • AmandaonMaui October 16, 2011, 5:06 am

    I’m enjoying my Leslie Sansone walking videos at home. I’m always glad when I can get good and sweaty. I also really like pilates. Those two together, plus the occasional evening yoga stretch, have helped me back into my favorite jeans and have reconfigured my body fabulously. 🙂 I feel healthier and stronger than ever before.

  • Amy October 16, 2011, 11:25 pm

    Are those the amazing trader joes crackers?

  • Sophie @ threetimesf October 21, 2011, 4:01 pm

    I love running rolling intervals if I need to workout on the dreadmill – it just makes things go so much faster if you have something specific to focus on!

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