Threshold Series Part 6: “Going Postal”

Every year, USA Masters swimming offers a chance to participate in Postal Swims, i.e. a 3,000 or 6,000 for time! While I think postal swims are “crazy” that is not where their name is derived. The only thing “postal” about it, is that you’re posting a time.

I bring up postal swims for two reasons:

  1. If you’re a triathlete who doubles as a masters swimmer, there is still time to participate.
  2. You can calculate threshold based on postal swims!

All you have to do is keep track of your time and calculate your average pace per 100. The reason postal swims are an accurate tool to determine threshold pace is because they take a half hour or longer to complete… you just have to make sure you pace them as fast as you can.

Tip: Other than bragging rights, there is no threshold time benefit to doing a 6,000 over a 3,000 postal swim. If you’re using a postal swim to determine threshold pace, go for the 3,000.

Tip: Any distance that takes a half hour or longer will work. Swimmers use 3,000 and 6,000 because they’re the standard for “postal swims.”

Here is an information packet for anyone who is serious about completing a postal swim as part of USA Masters Swimming’s annual challenge.

Will you being going postal?

Categories: Threshold Pace

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1 reply


  1. Threshold Series Part 5: Finding Threshold Via “White, Pink, Red” | The Water Blogged Triathlete

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