The weather was beautiful. There was a very flukey breeze, building from nothing to about 5 mph. It felt like a head wind while we were rowing uplake, but it wasn’t much of a factor.
The lake was buzzing with activity today. Tomorrow is the Eastern Sprints, which is the most important east coast regatta for Men’s Division 1 Collegiate rowing. All the big name teams were here. Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Navy, Penn, Cornell. We lend out our little boathouse to Navy. Their rowers are tall and lean. Very impressive.
We had a good group today, 11 people. 3 of us in singles, 2 doubles and a quad. I was pretty much rowing with Bob in another one of the singles.
One confusing thing is that the lake run a reverse pattern on race weekends. So, we headed up lake along the worcester shore and down lake along the shrewsbury shore. It’s very weird because you get very used to steering the other pattern and you have to find all different points to use on the reverse patterns.
I was in a reasonably nice Drew Harrison single. The boat is a good fit for me weight wise and it’s rigged pretty well for my height. Bob and I headed up lake first along the outside of the buoyed course. I tried to hold about 18 SPM and get out over my oars. I was also trying to keep my oars off the water on recovery. About halfway up lake, I needed to stop to fix the foot stretcher. One of the wing nuts was not properly tightened and it slipped noisily as I started to push the pressure up.
I finished fixing that as Bob was right beside me and we basically rowed side by side all the way up to the rt 290 bridge. I put in a little burst at the end to see if I could hold technique as I pushed up the rate. It was a really beautiful morning for a row.
We puttered around a bit until the quad showed up, and then we headed over to the buoyed lanes. I was in the lane closest to the shrewsbury shore (Lane 6). It looked like Bob was over in Lane 4. The wind was behind us now, but pretty light. I just wanted to work on technique at r18. I tried to see how fast I could go at r18 without pushing my HR up past 155. You can see the GPS spike where I went under the Rt 9 bridge. From there, I kept doing the same thing for another 2K, which took me through the narrows. Then I started to push the rate up to something resembling head race rate and pressure and did the final 2K down to the bottom of the lake. I have a lot of work to do. It was exhausting and I was remarkably slow.
After hanging around and reassembling our group, we took off back up lake. For this section I rowed alternating square and regular strokes, trying to work on finishes. I also tried to keep up with Bob who was doing low rate steady state. I did this for about 2K up to the narrows. After the narrows, it is about 1K to the bridge, so I pushed the rate up to 22 and tried to keep my finishes clean and keep reaching out for the catches. There was a little bit of head wind. Again, it was a lot more tiring than it should have been for the pace I was getting.
When we got back to the boathouse, it was madness. People everywhere. Very cool to see some of the best rowers in the country here.
Tomorrow: Probably a steady state session. Very easy though. I’m a little freaked out by Friday.