Monday: 14K steady state r18

Weather:  Stunning.  Sunny, cool, dry, light wind from the Northwest.  2 to 5 mph.  This was generally a cross wind, but always felt like a head wind.  :-O


  • Easy steady state
  • r18
  • heart rate: 150 absolute, ease off at 145

The objective today was best stated by Dave C. in a blog post a couple years ago.

“Don’t piss off the boat”

Basically try to row smoothly, at low rate, in such a way to maximize the run of the boat and minimize the check.  This is what that looks like in RIM.

Screen Shot 2016-08-15 at 1.55.43 PM.png

The drive has a strong initial slope, there is no negative transient as I go from legs to body to arms.  There is no negative acceleration at the finish, and the recovery is very close to zero negative or positive acceleration.

The game is to try to maintain the stroke rate, and try to minimize the split time without driving up the heart rate.  I was happy with the way things felt, but I wish the boat was moving faster.  One thing at a time.

Tomorrow:  Schedule calls for a hard row, but I’m not feeling the love right now.  I think I will do another 70′ steady state session, at r20 and a 157 HR cap.


Sunday: 10K Push

Friday:  No Training.  We closed on our new vacation house down on cape cod.  Here’s the view from the deck.

2016-08-13 10.44.08

Saturday:  No Training.  A very busy day setting up the house.

Sunday:  Started the day down on the cape.  I went for a nice walk around the island.  I decided that the stairs down to the water are too steep to carry a boat down.  I’m going to drive 2 minutes to the beach and launch from there.  Eventually, Ill figure out some way to store my boat down near the water in front of the house.  We headed home in the afternoon.

I was itching for a quick workout, so I hopped on the erg around 7pm.  I didn’t have much of a plan, so I decided to do a 10K push, but start it off slow so I could warmup and also, to be honest about it, because I didn’t want to work too hard.


  • 10K push
  • Start pace: 2:05, go 1 second faster for each 1000m, ending at 1:56 for the last 1000m
  • Free rate.  Try to inch rate up as the pace goes down.
  • Heart Rate: No cap

That was fun.  It was hot as hell outside, over 90F, and humid too, so I kept the windows closed and ran a fan.  I generated enough heat to raise the temperature in the room from 72F to 78F over 40 minutes.

I had a little trouble getting myself to row slow enough during the 2:05s, but did better tracking the paces down.  Once I was within 2K of finishing, I kind up gunned it and did the 2000 down to 1000 at 1:55.  Then I finished the last 1000m at a 1:50 pace.  Not super fast, but it stung in a good way.



Thursday: Aborted Threshold Session

Weather:  Hot and muggy.  Mid 70s, and 97% relative humidity.  Humid enough that there was a thick hazy.  There were some light shifty winds when I launched, but it seemed completely calm by the time I was really rowing.   It was like rowing in a steam bath.


  • 4 x 2700 / 4′ rest
  • pace: 2:15
  • rate: 24-26
  • HR cap: none.  Intent if to maximize time in threshold zone (>164)

I had a sneaking suspicion that this session was going to be too big of an ask.  I have been thinking that 2 high intensity threshold sessions per week with 3 LIT days between might be a better schedule for this aging athlete.  But knowing that I was going to miss at least one day on Friday and maybe more pushed me to try to do it.

Even warming up, the boat felt heavy and my HR shot up quickly.  Due in equal parts to the humidity and being under recovered.  I took a couple minutes to try to get myself psyched up and then started the first piece.  It took a tremendous effort to try to hit my pace target and my HR climbed quickly.  Before I even got to 1000m, I bailed out.  I had just dug myself in too deep and couldn’t back it off.  I paddled a bit and then decided to try to finish the downstream piece at r24 or so, and not worry too much about the pace.

That lasted for a about 500m, and then the irresistible urge to hit my targets came back and I pushed a lot harder.  The results was a pace that was slower and heart rate that was much higher than what I saw on Tuesday.  I was so hot that I felt like I was glowing.  I paddled through the 4 minute rest and then started the upstream piece.  Again, it was a huge effort to try to get anywhere near my target pace, and I bailed out after about 100m.

This was not productive at all, so I decided to just row home, nice and easy.  This was discouraging too.  I was just trying to hold around a 2:30 pace and I couldn’t do it without my HR really climbing.  I was really wondering if I had picked up some weeds on the fin or something, or maybe the speedcoach was reading wrong.  But I doubt it.  I wondered if I had forgotten how to row.  I thought I was doing exactly the same thing as on Monday and Tuesday and going 10 seconds slower on pace.

Everyone has a bad session sometimes.  Today was my day.  To top it off, as I was turning around at upstream end of the river, I passed through a patch of lily pads, and my speedcoach stopped reading pace.  This happens every once in a while.  A weed will get entangled with the impeller and keep it from spinning.  So, I reach under the boat to clean it off, and discover that the impeller is not fouled, but entirely missing.  Perhaps it was ashamed of the slow readings it was showing and bailed out on me.  A replacement is now on order..

00020_|_1184_|_06:44_|_2:50.8_|_126___|_18.7_|_09.4_|_121___|_dock to island
02025_|_1911_|_08:45_|_2:17.3_|_213___|_24.4_|_09.0_|_163___|_rest of way down stream
04500_|_2647_|_14:13_|_2:41.1_|_255___|_17.9_|_10.4_|_147___|_just paddled home

02812_|_12:44_|_2:15.9_|_310___|_24.3_|_09.1_|_160___|_Main set
00480_|_03:18_|_3:26.5_|_064___|_19.4_|_07.5_|_133___|_rest meters
02647_|_14:13_|_2:41.1_|_255___|_17.9_|_10.4_|_147___|_cool down

Here is the full row from RIM data, uploaded to