Weather: Really dark. Just the hint of a cresent moon on the eastern horizon, and lots of bright stars. Cold as hell. 32F. Wind 8-9mph from the NNW. This was a nasty headwind for my long piece and kicked up a bit of chop in places.
The plan: The original plan was a 4 x 2000m. But once I got going, I decided to change it up. When I setup the speedcoach, I didn’t have a field for distance. So, I decided to replace the 2k intervals with 9 minute intervals. Then when I was doing the first interval, I was feeling pretty good. The wind was behind me and I was in a section of the lake where the water was nice and flat, I decided to extend it to 10 minutes. I got to the south end of the lake and waited for the double that I had launched with. While I waited, I looked at the stars. Venus was very bright in the east, Orion was in the western sky, and I saw a shooting star.
My rest extended longer than the 5 minutes, and I decided that instead of continuing with the planned workout, I would just do the whole lake. This is a little bit longer than the HOCR course, so it would be a good way to see what power I can target for the race. Also, with the head wind, it would be a test of character! Could I keep it up while looking at miserably slow splits?
I set off and settled into a rhythm at 26 spm. I was annoyed to see that my HR monitor was stuck at 111bpm. After a couple of minutes, it got unstuck and slowly climbed up to the expected number around 171bpm. Then a couple minutes after that, the power and angle readings from the empower oarlock disappeared as well. I took this as a further test of character. Now, I had no power readings or heart rate readings to make me feel better about the miserably slow splits. I had no choice but to focus on rowing clean and just count strokes. It’s between 600 and 650 strokes to do the 5k. I counted every one of them.
I found that I would get sloppy and tired at r26, and decide to “take 10 for length”. My stroke rate would drop to r24/r25 and my pace would improve a bit. Then over the next couple of minutes, my rate would creep back up again and I would do it all again.
The section from 400 strokes to 500 was probably the toughest. The head wind was most noticeable, and the chop was at it’s worst. I was very tired and getting sloppy. It was a real confidence boost to persevere through it and once I got past 500 and the end was in sight, I was able to start cranking it up.
The finish point is right in front of the QRA docks. I paddled from there up to the north end of the lake and met up with the double again. I did the section going south with my feet out of the shoes focusing on finishes.
You can see the problems with the HR and power numbers in this plot.
Here is a close up plot of the pace and stroke rate, since that’s the only stuff that was accurate through that piece.
Workout Summary - media/20171017-182015-Greg Smith 20171017 0540amo.csv --|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg --|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS --|11792|73:14.0|03:06.3|192.8|24.0|161.0|173.0|06.7 W-|09136|44:08.0|02:24.9|209.7|24.7|166.1|173.0|08.4 R-|02660|29:06.0|05:28.3|139.7|20.7|147.7|173.0|03.2 Workout Details #-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS- 01|02240|10:00.0|02:14.0|222.8|25.3|164.3|173.0|08.8 02|05115|25:13.2|02:27.9|206.5|25.7|165.0|171.0|07.9 03|01782|08:55.2|02:30.2|204.0|21.4|171.0|171.0|09.3
So, after this workout, I was delighted to see an email from rowsandall.com saying that I had had a “breakthrough workout”. This is a workout that is significantly better than the power profile that you have built up over time.
Here is the before/after view of the profile.
The difference is all in the long workouts. There is a chance that the power meter malfunction is driving the long flat plateau, but based on the pace through the piece, I think that power did not fade all that much. Using this data and the predictor functionality, rowandall thinks that I can target 211W for my race. I think I can probably target 220W.
After the issues today, I hope that the speedcoach works in the race.
Tomorrow: Another session of 2′ SBR/2’Alt/2′ 26spm. This time 4 reps.