If your goal is to swim faster then you should be putting effort into physically moving your body faster through the water and this set is designed to do that. Some of you will do some long swims on New Years Eve or New Years Day (usually a bunch of 100s) and those can be a fun event (we used to swim a 10K in a pool every 4th of July in high school). But, if you already have decent swim endurance this set of 10 progressively faster swims will probably benefit you more in the long run.
I consider this workout a “soft” test set that tests your ability to pace, your stamina at a high intensity, and your maximum speed when fatigued. Beginner and intermediate swimmers will typically “swim themselves into a hole” and be stuck there. What that means is their first few swims are too fast and they try to get faster from there but they can’t. That’s OK if that happens. You’ll be fighting tooth and nail on each rep to get faster and that’s what we want. Don’t think that you have zero chance of success in completing this workout as written though. I’ve seen plenty of patient beginner and intermediate swimmers correctly complete this workout. You can still be good at pacing while being a slower swimmer.
So have fun with this set, don’t start out too hard, employ the best technique you can on each rep to achieve the lowest times possible.