Cherishing routine – 3/10 to 3/12

I got back from California last Tuesday night and since then, I’ve trained every day.  It’s been so nice being able to go to bed at an OK time, drive to work, get my session in and then do my job.  I have to cherish this, because I’m heading out to China, next Monday morning.

Sunday – 3/10 – 15 x 3’/1′ L3 on slides

I worked hard in the waterfall session on Sunday, but I wanted to get in my 3rd “hard” workout of the week.  I felt like I didn’t have the fortitude to hold up in a long continuous piece like a 10K, so I opted for one of my favorite short interval/short rest sessions from the Wolverine Plan.  This workout tends to be bit faster than other L3 workouts, and it gets pretty intense in the last 5 reps, but having the 1 minute breaks makes it pretty manageable.  Even if you blow a rep, you have a chance for redemption coming right up.  So, I think it gives a similar physical training effect, but is a lot less taxing mentally.

I haven’t done enough middle distance work on slide to have a great idea about pacing, but I don’t like it when I do less than 800m per rep (1:52.5), so I used that as my goal.

I fell short of 800m on reps 11, 12, 13 and 14.  Average distance per rep was 806m.  Average pace was 1:51.7.

It was quite a workout.  Over 30 minutes in TR and a nice little touch of red at the end.

Monday – 11 March – 3 x 18’/2′ L4 (static)

My ass was dragging on Monday morning.  But, I was hoping to do a nice long 4 x 18′ session.  I ended up stopping after 3 reps because I was feeling pretty worn out.

       Workout Summary - media/20190311-1235390o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|13861|60:00.0|02:09.9|167.1|17.1|140.0|159.0|13.5
W-|12947|54:00.0|02:05.1|179.6|17.4|140.8|159.0|13.8
R-|00918|06:00.0|03:16.1|054.0|14.9|132.7|159.0|10.5
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
00|01429|06:00.0|02:05.9|177.1|16.5|121.7|134.0|14.4
01|01444|06:00.0|02:04.6|180.9|17.6|136.9|140.0|13.7
02|01427|06:00.0|02:06.1|174.6|17.1|139.7|142.0|13.9
03|01433|06:00.0|02:05.6|180.2|17.2|132.9|146.0|13.9
04|01442|06:00.0|02:04.8|180.6|17.7|144.5|150.0|13.6
05|01442|06:00.0|02:04.8|180.6|17.6|147.8|151.0|13.6
06|01421|06:00.0|02:06.7|173.4|16.7|139.2|147.0|14.2
07|01442|06:00.0|02:04.9|180.0|17.7|148.8|155.0|13.6
08|01465|06:00.0|02:02.8|189.1|18.3|155.2|159.0|13.3

Tuesday – 12 March – Pyramid L1

I felt like I had been hit by a truck this morning when my alarm went off.  I barely dragged myself out of bed.  But today is L1 day and L1 day must be respected!

The schedule called for the pyramid.  Last time, I managed a 1:42 pace, so this time the goal was to try to hold 1:42 until the last two reps and then go faster.  It didn’t end up turning out that way.

I started with a 2k warmup.

I think I need a longer warmup.

Then it was time to program the session into the PM.  It made me think that Concept2 should offer a more expensive, fancier PM that would make this easier.  I would buy one in a heartbeat and get the gym to upgrade.  Actually, if they just added the ability to download programmable workouts from ergdata, that would work too.  It was a lot of button pressing.

Here’s how it went.

  • 250.  (1:41.2 split) Felt good, but I was a bit worried that it started to bite with about 10 strokes left.
  • 500 (1:41.3) Ooo.  That was a bit more work than I had hoped.
  • 750 (1:41.4) I struggled through the last 250.
  • 1000 (1:46.5).  I held a 1:41 split through the first 250m, and when it started to bite, I chickened out.  I wasn’t in distress yet, but my thighs were burning and my breathing was a bit ragged.  I was counting strokes, but I went out too hard and didn’t manage pace very well.  Anyway, I basically stopped rowing for about 2 seconds and then started up again.  By that time, the average split was around 1:55.  I held about a 1:45 pace and watched the average slowly come down.  Then with about 250m left to go I pushed harder.  Not my best work.
  • 750 (1:40.7).  I was kinda mad at myself, I didn’t want to blow another rep.  I rowed this one carefully through the first 500m and then emptied the tanks in the last 250.  I coasted into the last stroke feeling really gassed.
  • 500 (1:38.1).  Now we’re getting into “fun time”.  I consciously tried to rate up and hold the split under 1:40.  This was pretty much OK through 300m, but the last 200 were very close to the edge.
  • 250 (1:33.4).  All out.  I used to do this one well below 1:30.  Sucks to suck.

I need to harden up and stop bailing on reps like this.  It’s a bad habit.

 

Working hard – 2/28 to 3/9

Thursday – Feb 28 – Inclined march / recumbent cycle

30 minutes each

Treadmill on 15% grade.  3.2 mph

Screen Shot 2019-03-09 at 7.28.53 PM.png

Recumbent cycle.  Random on level 15.

Screen Shot 2019-03-09 at 7.30.20 PM

Friday – March 1 – 3 x 20′ / 2′ L4 on slides

I love doing these on slides.

       Workout Summary - media/20190301-1855360o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|15349|65:59.0|02:09.0|166.8|18.9|142.4|164.0|12.3
W-|14321|59:21.0|02:04.3|179.2|19.3|143.3|163.0|12.5
R-|01033|06:00.0|02:54.3|057.1|16.2|135.0|163.0|09.4
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
00|02355|09:44.7|02:04.2|175.0|18.8|126.4|137.0|12.8
01|02302|09:36.7|02:05.3|178.0|19.0|140.1|145.0|12.6
02|02423|10:00.0|02:03.8|177.9|19.1|140.9|147.0|12.7
03|02407|10:00.0|02:04.6|180.6|19.5|151.0|156.0|12.3
04|02410|10:00.0|02:04.5|181.7|19.5|147.8|157.0|12.4
05|02423|10:00.0|02:03.8|181.8|19.5|153.3|163.0|12.4

Saturday – March 2 – 4 x 18 / 2′ L4 on Slides

Even more fun. 6′ ladders.  18/20/22.

       Workout Summary - media/20190302-2045370o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|18333|79:59.0|02:10.9|165.9|19.3|139.4|158.0|11.8
W-|17193|71:51.0|02:05.4|178.9|19.3|140.1|158.0|12.4
R-|01147|08:00.0|03:29.3|051.1|19.4|133.1|158.0|08.0
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
00|01450|06:00.0|02:04.1|180.9|19.0|119.0|134.0|12.7
01|01422|06:00.0|02:06.6|180.9|19.2|133.1|140.0|12.3
02|01440|06:00.0|02:05.0|179.4|19.3|140.0|144.0|12.5
03|01432|06:00.0|02:05.7|179.1|19.4|130.8|141.0|12.3
04|01407|05:52.4|02:05.2|178.7|19.3|141.1|148.0|12.4
05|01470|06:07.6|02:05.0|178.8|19.4|145.3|151.0|12.3
06|01432|06:00.0|02:05.7|179.7|19.6|136.9|150.0|12.2
07|01437|06:00.0|02:05.2|178.3|19.4|146.5|150.0|12.4
08|01400|05:51.6|02:05.6|177.0|19.3|147.6|153.0|12.4
09|01429|06:00.0|02:05.9|177.5|19.3|139.1|151.0|12.3
10|01436|06:00.0|02:05.3|177.8|19.3|149.6|156.0|12.4
11|01436|06:00.0|02:05.3|178.3|19.5|152.0|158.0|12.3

Sunday – March 3 – No Training

I flew out to San Jose (again) for another customer meeting on Monday.

Monday – March 4 – Fitness Center

30 minutes inclined march.  Felt tired.  Needed to slow it to 2.8 mph (from 3.0) and HR was still quite high.

Screen Shot 2019-03-09 at 7.39.33 PM

Recumbent cycle.  random. level 15

Screen Shot 2019-03-09 at 7.40.45 PM

Tuesday – March 5 – No Training

I caught a flight at 6 am, got home around 7pm.

Wednesday – March 6 – 3 x 20′ / 2′ L4 (static)

Not as lovely as doing it on slide, but still pretty relaxed.

       Workout Summary - media/20190306-1345400o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|15207|66:00.0|02:10.2|169.4|17.0|139.1|159.0|13.6
W-|14468|60:00.0|02:04.4|181.9|17.4|139.9|159.0|13.9
R-|00744|06:00.0|04:02.0|044.7|12.9|131.1|159.0|09.6
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
00|02395|10:00.0|02:05.3|177.3|16.8|124.1|136.0|14.2
01|02404|10:00.0|02:04.8|180.4|17.1|138.6|142.0|14.1
02|02401|10:00.0|02:04.9|179.1|17.2|136.3|144.0|14.0
03|02419|10:00.0|02:04.0|184.0|17.6|147.8|153.0|13.7
04|02416|10:00.0|02:04.2|183.6|17.4|144.2|152.0|13.9
05|02433|10:00.0|02:03.3|187.3|18.2|148.4|159.0|13.4

Thursday – March 7 – 4 x 1000m / 5′ L1 (static)

Back to the real workouts.  Here’s my L1 History

  • 30 Jan – 4 x 1k – 1:47.7 (static)
  • 4 Feb – Pyramid – 1:42.0 (static)
  • 11 Feb – 8 x 500 – 1:39.7 (static)

So, there’s a 4 week gap in doing an L1 because of vacation and business travel.  That’s not very good.  So, what should I aim for on the 4x1k?  It’s the hardest of the L1 workouts, and I am usually slower on it.  I decided to aim for 1:45 and see if I could push it faster as I went.

I started with a 2k warmup.  Hitting sub-1:45 felt really good.  I was aiming at r28 and the strokes felt nice and light.

Then the fun began.

Boom!  I was thrilled.  Negative splits.  An average of 1:43.8 and a nice faster last.  I felt in control in every rep.  I got a bit of a lactate rush after  each interval, kind of a wave of nausea and shiver, but I felt OK after about a minute of the rest.  I walked around in a happy haze all day after this.

Friday – March 8 – 3 x 18′ / 2′ L4 (static)

A little pressed for time because I had an 8:30 meeting to get to.

6′ rate ladders. 16/18/20.

An absolute joy.

Saturday – March 9 – Waterfall L2 (slides)

My L2 History:

  • 1 Feb – Waterfall – 1:52.4 (static)
  • 9 Feb – 4 x 2k – 1:51.6 (slides)
  • 15 Feb – 5 x 1500 – 1:49.2 (static)

So another gap of almost a month.  Today, I was doing the waterfall on slides.  I decided to try for the ambitious target of 1:50.  The waterfall tends to be a bit slower than the 4 x 2k, and the slides tends to be slower than static for me, but I guess I was feeling a bit cocky after the 4x1k.  It didn’t go that great, but I’m getting ahead of myself.

The warmup.  2k with bursts at sub-1:50 trying to get the feel for 1:50 and r28 on slides.  It felt a bit heavy.

bokeh_plot (75).png

Then the main event.  I managed to hold the target split for the first rep, but it was massively hard.  I got about 500m into the second rep and I knew I was cooked.  I broke form for a stroke and retargetted at about 1:54 for a little bit to get back in control, then through the last 500m, I sped up a little.  The last rep was another struggle, but I managed to hold on to a 1:52 split and managed a tiny sprint at the end.  It was hard fought and it was not as fast as I wanted, but it was a good, tough session.

bokeh_plot (76)

Not horrible, I ended up with a 1:51.9 pace.  And every single rep ended with my HR above 95% of HRR.

Tomorrow:  I owe myself an L3.  I’ll see how I feel, and maybe I’ll do a 15×3’/1′

 

Life is about choices

I choose to focus on my career.

It is very important to me to continue to exercise.  I have found that having training goals and identifying competitions to test myself is the best way to stay motivated about maintaining a healthy lifestyle, but when I step back and look at priorities, there is no question where I need to put my energy.  I love my job and there are a lot of people that count on me to do it well.

At the same time, it makes no sense to focus on career to the exclusion of everything else.  I am better able to focus and I am more productive if I maintain a regular training schedule.  I think (with only circumstantial evidence) that being in good shape means that I can handle punishing travel schedules better.  And frankly, I am a more pleasant person to be around if I have had a tough workout sometime in the past 24 hours.

That whole soliloquy was motivated by the fact that I missed two days of training.  I did a nice L4 on Sunday, then flew out to California very early Monday, and had very early meetings on Tuesday.  I managed to work out this morning, but part of me feels like I’m slacking off.

Anyway, onto the details

Sunday – 24 Feb – 3 x 20′ / 2′ L4 on slides

I looooved this session.  I love rowing on slides.

Remarkably, this was exactly the same stroke sequence as Saturday and the Heart rate was a lot lower and it felt a lot easier.  Here’s Saturday’s HR pie.

       Workout Summary - media/20190224-1920360o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|15402|65:59.0|02:08.6|169.0|19.2|137.2|158.0|12.1
W-|14366|59:49.0|02:04.9|179.1|19.2|137.9|157.0|12.5
R-|01041|06:00.0|02:52.9|072.1|19.0|130.0|157.0|11.1
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
00|02394|10:00.0|02:05.3|173.9|18.9|122.1|133.0|12.7
01|02390|10:00.0|02:05.5|177.3|19.0|133.2|137.0|12.5
02|02388|10:00.0|02:05.6|176.7|18.8|134.9|145.0|12.7
03|02363|09:49.5|02:04.8|180.5|19.4|147.3|154.0|12.4
04|02409|10:00.0|02:04.5|181.3|19.4|143.0|153.0|12.4
05|02422|10:00.0|02:03.8|184.8|19.9|147.2|157.0|12.2

Monday – 25 Feb – No training

Caught a 6:50 am flight to San Francisco, so I was up at 4:30.  After arriving, I went straight into meetings that continued to 7pm.  I was not in the mood to train after that, I went to bed by 9.

Tuesday – 26 Feb – No Training

I was staying down in San Jose, but I had an 8am appointment up in San Francisco, so I needed to be on the road by 6:15am to be sure to get there with the local traffic.  I made it with time to spare.  That lasted until around 1pm, then I drove back down to our offices in San Jose and worked until around 7pm.  Again, I was not very motivated to train by then.  I was asleep by 10.

Wednesday – 27 Feb – 30 minutes inclined march / 30 minutes recumbent bike

In the fitness center at the Doubletree.  Totally not motivated, but I dragged my ass to the gym.  HR was unnaturally high during the march.  The bike was easier.

Tomorrow – I have meeting starting at 6am local time.  I am hoping to get to the gym for a short workout.   I fly home tomorrow afternoon.

Aruba!

I last posted on Feb 13.  That was the day I visited the SDRC and went out in a quad.

Thursday, February 14 – No Training

I flew home on the red eye, and arrived in the early morning.  I went home and slept for a few hours, and then dashed around to get ready for valentines day and my wife’s birthday, which was on Friday the 15th.

Friday, February 15 – 5 x 1500 / 4′ – L2

Despite the travel, I  wanted to maintain some momentum on the training plan, and Friday is L2 day, so I did the scheduled session.

What about pace?  I did the waterfall in 1:52.4 on a static erg.  I did the 4x2K on slides at 1:51.6.  The 1500s are usually a bit quicker than the 2000s, and I’m quicker on static, so I thought a 1:50 pace was doable.

It was.  I started with a 1500 warmup rep.  Then I just tried to stay on or below a 1:50 pace.

        Workout Summary - media/20190215-1255390o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|11995|57:29.0|02:23.8|163.9|20.3|144.6|177.0|10.3
W-|07500|27:22.0|01:49.5|268.2|26.2|162.6|177.0|10.5
R-|04496|26:05.0|02:54.1|058.1|14.3|129.9|177.0|10.4
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
01|01500|05:30.5|01:50.2|265.4|26.0|155.9|168.0|10.5
02|01500|05:28.3|01:49.4|267.1|25.8|161.0|170.0|10.6
03|01500|05:27.9|01:49.3|268.3|26.4|163.4|173.0|10.4
04|01500|05:28.7|01:49.6|268.6|26.5|165.4|175.0|10.3
05|01500|05:26.7|01:48.9|271.5|26.2|167.7|177.0|10.5

On the PM, that’s a 1:49.2.  On rowsandall, a less happy 1:49.5.

Saturday – 3 x 20′ / 2′ L4 (on slides)

After years of complaining, I decided to do something about my home erging situation.  I decided to get a model D and set of slides instead of being stuck erging on the dynamic.

Saturday was my maiden voyage.  I set up the erg on slides in the basement on some interlocking foam pad squares.  I was a bit worried when I set them up because they were squishier than I expected.  My concern was that the erg would sink in a bit.  It was a valid concern.  When I was rowing, the erg was drifting to the back end of the slides and would bump every once in a while.  I checked the alignment and it looked ok, so I just kept going.

The workout itself was fine.  HR a little bit high.

        Workout Summary - media/20190217-0145360o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|14953|65:59.0|02:12.4|166.3|18.8|145.0|168.0|12.0
W-|14362|59:53.0|02:05.1|178.8|19.5|146.4|168.0|12.3
R-|00594|06:00.0|05:02.9|043.5|12.5|131.9|168.0|08.8
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
00|02346|09:43.5|02:04.3|176.8|18.9|131.9|144.0|12.8
01|02424|10:09.7|02:05.7|177.0|19.2|142.6|147.0|12.4
02|02383|10:00.0|02:05.9|175.9|19.2|143.9|149.0|12.4
03|02397|10:00.0|02:05.2|179.2|19.7|152.5|157.0|12.1
04|02394|10:00.0|02:05.3|179.2|19.8|149.9|160.0|12.1
05|02418|10:00.0|02:04.1|184.7|20.1|156.9|168.0|12.0

Even with the banging, it was a lot more pleasant than rowing on the dynamic.

Sunday – No Training – Flying to Aruba

Monday – 5km Barefoot beach run

It was slow.  I was hot.  But it was glorious.  All data collected by my apple watch, and then exported to Strava using RunGap.

Screen Shot 2019-02-24 at 10.06.54 AM

Tuesday – 20 minute treadmill march / 30 minute run on the beach.

Treadmill, 15% grade, 3 mph.

Screen Shot 2019-02-24 at 10.28.02 AM.png

Then out to the beach for another run.  I wanted to go easy, so I walked through the soft sand around the ends of each of the piers.

Screen Shot 2019-02-24 at 10.52.59 AM

We were staying at the ritz, and as you run along the beach, the major milestones are the piers.

First is the fishing pier

Screen Shot 2019-02-24 at 11.03.48 AM.png

Then comes Pelican Pier

Then Peit’s Pier.

Then finally, the best pier…DePalm Pier.  Home of Bugaloe’s  the best place to drink a Balashi and watch the sun go down.

After DePalm pier, there is a longer stretch of beach until Palm beach terminates at the breakwater at the Divi Resort.

Then you turn around and run home.

Wednesday – The vacation tri. 20 min treadmill. 20 min stationary bike. 20 min swim.

Treadmill – 20 minutes, 15% grade, 3 mph

Stationary bike – 20 minutes, random resistance

Screen Shot 2019-02-24 at 11.17.50 AM.png

Then I walked out to the beach, set my apple watch to record a swim and went for it.

It turned out that the swimming area at the hotel is a bit too shallow.  My hands would brush the sand or grass on the bottom at times, which was disconcerting.  Since I don’t swim very much, I had issues with technique, style and pacing.  I was OK heading in one direction where I was breathing on the downwind side, the sun was on my non-breathing side and I was able to watch the rope line.  Going the other way was a lot harder.  The wind would blow spray in my face, and I had trouble navigating without seeing the rope line clearly.

None the less it was a blast!  And the apple watch worked great!  One cool feature is that the watch locks itself for swimming, and when you spin the digital crown to unlock, it actually expels water from the speaker.

I am so glad that I went swimming.

Here’s what the RunGap application shows you about a swimming workout.

The apple activity app takes this a step further and tells you what stroke you were using.  I mostly did freestyle and a little bit of breast stroke to keep my bearings.

2019-02-24 11.39.10

Thursday – Outdoor run and swim.

It was our last full day, and I didn’t want to spend any of it in the fitness center.  So, I decided to go for a run, and then a swim.

The run was nice.  I found a comfortable pace and cruised the beach.

Screen Shot 2019-02-24 at 11.37.26 AM.png

And the swim was awesome too.

Screen Shot 2019-02-24 at 11.41.54 AM.png

I did about the same distance, but mixed freestyle and side stroke.  And I found out the the apple watch doesn’t know the difference between sidestroke and breast stroke.

2019-02-24 11.34.37

Friday – No Training – Travel back home

Saturday – 3 x 20′ / 2′ L4

Easy session to get back into rowing.  I decided to test my foam compression theory of why the slides were banging.  I put a piece of 1/2″ plywood under the back end of the back slide.  Problem solved.  The slides stayed very nicely centered.

It makes sense.  With a rower on the erg, more of the weigh is on the back slide than the front.  If the slide is on a surface that is compressible, it will sink more than the front slide.  As soon as the back is lower than the front, then you get a little bit of gravity pulling the whole system to the back end of the slides.

Long term, the solution is a floor surface that doesn’t compress.

The workout was a bit harder than I would have hoped, but I guess for the first erg session in a week, not so bad.

        Workout Summary - media/20190223-1825390o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|15241|66:00.0|02:09.9|166.3|18.8|146.6|167.0|12.3
W-|14403|60:00.0|02:05.0|178.2|19.1|147.5|167.0|12.6
R-|00840|06:00.0|03:34.3|046.7|16.4|137.2|167.0|09.2
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
00|02389|10:00.0|02:05.6|173.2|18.4|130.4|143.0|13.0
01|02392|10:00.0|02:05.4|177.6|19.1|146.4|151.0|12.5
02|02392|10:00.0|02:05.4|176.5|18.9|146.5|153.0|12.7
03|02398|10:00.0|02:05.1|178.7|19.3|155.4|161.0|12.4
04|02412|10:00.0|02:04.4|180.8|19.3|150.6|159.0|12.5
05|02420|10:00.0|02:04.0|182.6|19.5|156.0|167.0|12.4

So this L4 uses

  • r18/160w
  • r20/180w
  • r22/200w
  • r24/220w

The stroke sequences were 188/192/192/196/196/200.  From the SPM in the summary, you can see I understroked each section.  The power for each section should have been 168/172/172/176/176/180.  So, I was a bit over on power.  I’d like to get this to be more precise.

Today, I will do another L4.

 

A brief escape from endless erging

I am in San Diego on a business trip.  I arrived last night and didn’t have any meetings until late this morning.  I saw an opportunity, and I reached out by email to the fine gentleman from the San Diego Rowing Club who I rowed with last winter to see if I could maybe jump into a boat on Wednesday morning.

I got a positive reply from the master’s coach, and was invited to show up at the boathouse at the ungodly hour of 5am.  I arrived and they decided to put me in a quad with Dan, Mark and Kyle.  I was in the three seat, and Kyle was stroking.  I had the good fortune to show up on a morning that was a reasonably low intensity day.

The session plan was split into a warm up and two 25 minute chunks.  The warm up was feet out rowing.  The first 25 minute piece was 5 – five minute segments of 4′ steady state and 1′ of drills

  • pause at the finish
  • pause at body over
  • pause at quarter slide
  • quarter slide rowing
  • heels down rowing

Then for the second 25 minute piece, a 22/24/26/24/22… rate ladder.

I was really glad for the technical focus.  I have not been in boat since November, and I was sure I would be really rusty.   I was pretty worried that I’d be a lousy person to have in the boat.

It was a good boat.  Kyle in stroke was a metronome.  He didn’t have a speedcoach, but he was hitting the rates.  I had some trouble matching up to his stroke just because he had an enormously long reach.  I would hit the front stops and he would seem to keep going forever afterward.  I had to literally slow my roll to get in sync.  Some times I was OK, but it came and went.  I hope it wasn’t too annoying for them.

The drills were really useful and it was great to get some coaching from the launch.  The coach (Patrick) nailed my technique problems right away (not rocking over completely before breaking my knees on recovery and then lunging at the catch), and provided good real time feedback.

The ladders were not as neat.  The boat was not set very well, and I suspect that I was the main problem.  I was having trouble sitting vertical in the boat.  I was tending to drag my port oar on recovery and my oar work was sloppy in general.

Having said that I was delighted to be on the water and I had a total blast.

Screen Shot 2019-02-13 at 12.07.08 PM

I hope I didn’t wear out my welcome.  I’d love to get back out with this group of guys again.  With all the time I spend alone on an erg or in my single, getting into a quad is a fantastic, fun experience.  It’s a great challenge to get synched up with another rower.  It’s great to get into a boat that is so stable that I can work on getting my blades way off the water on recovery.  And the whole tempo is much faster, even at low rates because the oars are going a lot faster through the water.

Now I’m sitting in the airport waiting to occupy my middle seat on the red eye back to Boston.

Tomorrow:  The schedule calls for a 3 x 20′ L4, but we’ll see how I feel after this flight.

 

Tired today – 3 x 20′ / 2′ L4

I slept well last night, but woke up feeling tired.  I dragged myself to work and got into the gym around 7.  I spent a little while foam rolling the kinks out of my thighs and then settled onto the erg.  I did the same power sequence as I did on Sunday, but dropped the stroke rate by 2 spm because I was on the static erg instead of slides.

The first 20 minutes were a breeze.  The second 20 minutes were noticeably hard and the last 20 minutes were tough.  HR ended up too high, but was under control through almost the whole workout.

        Workout Summary - media/20190212-1320380o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|15214|66:04.0|02:10.3|168.3|17.1|142.0|167.0|13.4
W-|14393|60:00.0|02:05.1|180.1|17.5|142.7|167.0|13.7
R-|00826|06:04.0|03:40.4|051.2|13.8|134.3|167.0|08.4
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
00|02374|10:00.0|02:06.4|175.5|16.9|123.2|135.0|14.1
01|02391|10:00.0|02:05.4|177.3|17.5|137.9|143.0|13.7
02|02386|10:00.0|02:05.7|177.6|17.1|138.4|149.0|13.9
03|02413|10:00.0|02:04.3|182.8|17.9|151.2|156.0|13.5
04|02404|10:00.0|02:04.8|182.3|17.4|148.3|157.0|13.8
05|02425|10:00.0|02:03.7|185.3|18.1|157.5|167.0|13.4

Now I am on my way out to San Diego.  I’m heading over to the SDRC boathouse tomorrow morning at 5 to see if I can get in a seat for a session on the water.

 

Long and fast

Not at the same time.

Sunday:  4 x 20′ / 2′ L4

Down on the Cape.  We went down to see how things were holding up over the winter.  The house looks to be a good shape, but the stairs that I built last spring have taken a serious beating.

The damage is much worse than last winter.  It appears that pack ice must have entrapped the bottom of the stairs and when it broke free, carried the stairs with it.  Next time I go down, I will see what I can salvage and once it warms up, I’ll rebuild.

The workout had a much better outcome.  Sometimes, it just happens.   You do a workout where you feel great.  That’s how I felt on Sunday.  I had pushed really hard on Saturday and for Sunday’s session, I just wanted to bank the meters.  So, I set up to do the same L4 as I have been doing.  But it just felt so easy.  And my HR never really went up.  I’ve been doing 3 x 20s lately, but 4×20 was no problem.

        Workout Summary - media/20190210-1840400o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|20119|87:59.0|02:11.2|167.1|19.2|132.4|151.0|11.9
W-|19165|79:25.0|02:04.3|181.0|19.5|133.6|150.0|12.4
R-|00957|08:00.0|04:10.8|038.9|16.3|122.3|150.0|08.8
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
00|04761|19:53.2|02:05.3|174.1|19.0|129.2|138.0|12.6
01|04766|19:46.4|02:04.5|179.1|19.2|133.6|144.0|12.5
02|04797|19:51.6|02:04.2|183.5|19.6|134.3|147.0|12.3
03|04842|19:53.9|02:03.3|187.1|20.1|137.0|150.0|12.1

Notice the summary is a bit ragged.  I have seen this before and almost always on the erg down on the Cape.  The reason it looks that way is it is missing lots of strokes.  This is a quick graph to show what I mean.  The captured data includes stroke number.  This is just a graph of the stroke number minus the prior stroke number in the file.  There are 9 times where more than 10 strokes are missing from the data.

foo

The question is why?  There are lots of possible suspects.  The data is communicated from the PM5 to my iphone by bluetooth.  At the same time, my iphone is streaming a podcast over wifi, and using a bluetooth connection to my earphones.  My wifi on the cape is really bad (Thanks directTV!).  It’s possible that the streaming is the cause.  Someday, I might try to sort it out.  Definitely if I am going to do an online challenge or ranked piece.

We headed home around 3 in the afternoon.

Monday – 8 x 500m / 3’30” – L1

I slept badly last night.  It’s a Sunday night tradition.  But I was up at 5:15 and in the office by 6:20.  The planned session was an 8×500, and I was hopeful that I could hold a target pace faster than the 1:42 from the pyramid session last week.

I started with a 2k warmup.  Pick drill, then 20 stroke bursts at target pace.

Then the main event.

        Workout Summary - media/20190211-1315390o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|08603|41:22.0|02:24.3|158.5|22.1|140.0|172.0|09.4
W-|04000|13:20.0|01:40.1|351.3|29.5|146.4|171.0|10.2
R-|04607|28:02.0|03:02.6|066.7|18.5|136.9|171.0|09.6
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
00|00500|01:39.7|01:39.7|339.7|29.0|130.2|158.0|10.4
01|00500|01:40.5|01:40.5|356.1|29.7|146.5|163.0|10.0
02|00500|01:40.6|01:40.6|342.9|29.1|145.6|163.0|10.2
03|00500|01:40.7|01:40.7|345.5|29.1|148.5|165.0|10.2
04|00500|01:40.3|01:40.3|349.3|29.3|147.3|166.0|10.2
05|00500|01:39.2|01:39.2|354.8|29.5|149.2|168.0|10.3
06|00500|01:40.5|01:40.5|352.0|29.4|150.7|168.0|10.1
07|00500|01:39.3|01:39.3|370.5|31.0|153.3|171.0|09.7

Nailed a 1:40 pace.  Happy with that.

Tomorrow:  3 x 20′ / 2′ L4

Hard 10K and 4 x 2K

Tuesday:

I already posted about my session on Tuesday morning, but on Tuesday night, I did something fun.  My wife’s niece play Hockey for Northeastern.  Northeastern is a legit women’s hockey powerhouse.  They are ranked third in the NCAA division one.  They have an olympian on the team.  Anyway, we went to see her team play in the first round of the Women’s Beanpot, a hockey competition between the 4 powerhouse schools in Boston (BU, BC, Northeastern and Harvard).  They were playing BU and it was an incredible game.  The quality of play was very high and my niece in law played well getting an assist and a ton of shots.  She was very bummed that she didn’t get any goals.  The game ended in a tie and was settled in a shoot out, with BU coming out on top.

Here’s a picture of her right after she scored the winning goal in overtime against BC in a game earlier this year.

mia.png

Wednesday:  No Training

I had scheduled a plumber to come fix a problem with a sink Wed morning and he blew me off.  Supposed to show up at 8:30 and didn’t.  I called to follow up and found out he wouldn’t get to the house until at least 10.  I gave up rescheduled and headed to work.

I hoped to find time during the day to workout, but no luck.

Thursday: Hard 10K – L3

I had limited time because I had an 8 am meeting.  I was scheduled to do the 10K on Wednesday and then an L4 endurance session on Thursday.  With the short window, the 10K fit in better, and is a higher training priority so I did that.

No time for a warmup, so I just settled right in and went for it.  Last time I did a 10K, I fell apart at the end.  The cause was butt pain, lack of fitness and lack of toughness.  On Thursday, I was hoping to address the butt pain and the toughness.  Fitness is what it is.

For the butt pain, I have made an investment.  The Citius Remex.  The world’s most expensive butt pad.  Endorsed by Eskild Ebbesen.  I imagine that elite rowers must treat their behinds with the care that a violinist lavishes upon their hands, or a dancer on their legs.  My wife has heaped ridicule upon me for buying this gold plated butt pad, but it will all be worth it if it solves my problems.

There is actually a theory behind this butt pad and it make some sense to me.  The seat on the C2 rower is basically flat and this puts all the stress on your Iscial Tuberosities (aka your sitz bones).  Other butt pads attempt to mitigate this by either cutting out material where the sitz bones are, or by providing cushioning to spread the pressure over a larger area.  But this has potential problems as well.  The edge of the cutouts can cause pressure points (and they did for me) and this can lead to pain.  And a squishy pad can cause problems with circulation on the back of your thighs.  The Citius Remex has a different shape to it.

2019-02-09 14.44.06.jpg

It is designed to spread the pressure between your perinium and your ITs.  A bike seat basically puts all the pressure on your perinium, and the C2 puts all the pressure on your ITs.  This butt pad basically tries to balance the pressure between the two.  It also has three different insert for the middle part so you can “adjust” the balance between support on your perinium and sitz bones.

Anyway, it felt a bit weird at first, but I sat up straighter, was able to keep my knees down better, and my ass hurt a lot less at the end.  So, I am happy to have bought my gold plated butt pad and recommend it for aging rowers with delicate buttocks.

Back to the 10K.  Last time I averaged 1:57.2, but I was holding around 1:56 before I wimped out.  So I decided to try to target 1:56.  I ended up feeling a bit better at 1:55, so I hung in with that.  Around the 7K mark, I began to feel like that might have been a real problem, but I eased up the pace, counted out the strokes from 7k to 8k and held on.

It was a max effort.  I was above 95% of HRR for almost the last 2000m, about 7:30.  A very long time to be on the ragged edge.  So, I am simultaneously happy with the effort that I put in, and sad that it wasn’t faster.  I finished with 38:25.7, a 1:55.2 pace.  I ranked it and it’s 89th percentile.  Trained, I have the potential for 95th percentile performance.  And it’s a long way off of my best 10K (36:33, 1:49.6 pace).  I guess it’s something to shoot for.

        Workout Summary - media/20190207-1245380o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|10000|38:24.0|01:55.2|228.5|24.0|167.5|184.0|10.8
W-|10000|38:24.0|01:55.2|228.5|24.0|167.5|184.0|10.8
R-|00000|00:00.0|00:00.0|000.0|00.0|000.0|184.0|00.0
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
00|01000|03:50.2|01:55.1|226.8|23.7|132.9|151.0|11.0
01|01000|03:49.3|01:54.7|232.0|24.1|154.9|159.0|10.9
02|01000|03:48.6|01:54.3|234.2|24.0|161.6|164.0|10.9
03|01000|03:49.1|01:54.6|232.9|24.0|165.8|169.0|10.9
04|01000|03:49.1|01:54.5|233.0|24.1|171.5|174.0|10.8
05|01000|03:50.0|01:55.0|230.0|24.0|174.2|175.0|10.9
06|01000|03:52.0|01:56.0|224.1|23.8|176.6|177.0|10.8
07|01000|03:53.9|01:57.0|218.9|23.8|177.4|178.0|10.8 - crisis!
08|01000|03:55.0|01:57.5|215.8|23.8|178.9|179.0|10.7
09|01000|03:47.6|01:53.8|237.5|24.8|180.9|184.0|10.6

I logged this as an entry for the rowsandall “Tough Ten” regatta.  And it puts me firmly in ….last place.  bummer.

Friday: No Training

Today was the make up appointment with the Plumber.  He showed up on time, but took my workout window.  I was booked the rest of the day.  In the evening, we headed down to the Cape for the weekend.

Saturday: 4 x 2000m / 5′ on slides – L2

I am trying hard to do the three “hard” workout per week, even if I miss sessions.  Today was the right day to do the L2.  Last week I did the waterfall for an average pace of 1:52.4.  This was on a static erg.  Trying to figure out a target pace, there was a lot to consider.

  • 4 x 2000 is usually a bit faster than waterfall
  • slides are usually a bit slower for me than static
  • I was not feeling super aggressive, but I didn’t want to fail at the workout

So, I decided to start around 1:54 and see what happened.  What happened was that I was able to do a bit better than that.  I did the first 2000 as warmup, then ended up with the first rep coming in right under 7:30 (1:52.3).  I felt pretty good so I pushed the second rep a bit more (1:51.5).  I had a problem in the rest after the second rep.  Somehow I nudged the back of the erg on  the slide and it was scraping.  I only noticed when I started the 3rd rep and the slides were massively misbehaving.  I stopped, worked it out and started up a fresh 2000.  It gave me an extra 1:30 of rest.  The third rep was challenging.  Fatigue was starting to set in, but I wanted to keep it under 7:30, so I pushed hard and finished at 1:51.5 again.  I was worried about the fourth rep.  My legs were feeling a bit empty.  In the first 3 reps, I was aiming at a rate around 27 and trying to pull right on 10 meters per stroke.  I was essentially trying to start the drive right as the distance clicked down to a “0”.  In the last rep, I found that I was having trouble maintaining that and holding the rate around 27.  I struggled through the first 1500m, and then just buckled down to attack the last 500.  I was happy to finish, and even happier that I managed a slight negative split (1:50.9).

I am happy to be back at the wolverine plan.  I just have to keep the targets reasonable and I think this is a good plan to take me into the spring.

Tomorrow:  4 x 20′ / 2′ L4

 

 

 

Tuesday: 3 x 20′ / 2′ L4

Just a really nice workout.  On static, I was trying to hold:

  • 16spm – 160W
  • 18 spm – 180W
  • 20 spm – 200W
  • 22 spm – 220W

        Workout Summary - media/20190205-1325420o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|15025|66:00.0|02:11.8|165.9|16.7|138.2|160.0|13.6
W-|14358|60:00.0|02:05.4|178.1|17.4|139.4|159.0|13.8
R-|00672|06:00.0|04:28.0|044.2|09.4|127.1|159.0|10.2
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
00|02375|10:00.0|02:06.3|172.8|16.7|123.0|136.0|14.2
01|02385|10:00.0|02:05.8|176.2|17.3|136.5|141.0|13.8
02|02384|10:00.0|02:05.8|176.3|16.9|136.3|145.0|14.1
03|02407|10:00.0|02:04.6|181.1|17.7|148.0|154.0|13.6
04|02393|10:00.0|02:05.4|179.3|17.7|142.9|152.0|13.5
05|02414|10:00.0|02:04.3|183.0|18.2|149.4|159.0|13.3

Sure was more comfortable on a static erg.

One fun comparison.  I used the Trend Flex Plot to look at the power versus stroke rate for today’s L4 and Saturday’s, which was the same stroke sequence, but shifted up by 2 spm, and down by 10W. (Saturday on the left)

Tomorrow:  Hard Distance – 30′.  Last time I did this session, I managed a 1:53.8 pace.  Tomorrow’s target pace 1:53.0

New plan!  There is an online 10K race on rowsandall that opens up tomorrow.  I’ll do that for my hard distance piece instead.  Last time I did a 10K, my avg pace was 1:57.2, but I was holding 1:56 through a lot of it.  I think I will aim at that.  stroke rate 24.

 

 

Weekend L4s and Pyramid Monday

I am feeling very grateful.  Over the past week, my work schedule has been reasonable, my various injuries are getting much better, and I’ve been able to string together some good training sessions.

Saturday – February 2 : 3 x 20′ / 2′ L4 Dynamic

Started a bit too aggressively at 160W/18spm.  I should have stuck with 150W/18spm like last weekend.  I dropped back in the second 20 minute piece and it was a lot better.

        Workout Summary - media/20190203-1800500o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|14970|66:00.0|02:12.3|162.0|19.5|140.5|165.0|11.6
W-|14218|60:00.0|02:06.6|172.6|19.5|141.7|165.0|12.2
R-|00755|06:00.0|03:58.4|055.9|19.7|128.0|165.0|09.2
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
00|04753|20:00.0|02:06.2|173.6|18.9|133.6|147.0|12.6
01|04715|20:00.0|02:07.3|170.1|19.5|142.3|153.0|12.1
02|04750|20:00.0|02:06.3|173.9|19.9|149.2|165.0|11.9

Sunday – February 3: 3 x 18′ / 2′ L4

Sunday was my scheduled rest day, but I’ve been missing so much training that I wanted to get a lightish session in.  I was also worried about sleeping Sunday night if I didn’t exercise.

I did 6 minute sequences today, and at a bit higher intensity.  I ran out of gas in the last 9 minutes.  I was fine with easing up in this session.  I had my eyes on the Monday session.

        Workout Summary - media/20190203-2330370o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|13770|60:00.0|02:10.7|160.3|19.3|145.0|162.0|11.9
W-|12723|54:00.0|02:07.3|169.9|19.3|145.9|162.0|12.2
R-|01052|06:00.0|02:51.1|073.6|18.8|137.3|162.0|10.5
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
00|01434|06:00.0|02:05.5|175.8|19.7|121.5|140.0|12.1
01|01428|06:00.0|02:06.0|175.6|19.9|139.0|147.0|12.0
02|01430|06:00.0|02:05.9|175.6|19.8|145.3|152.0|12.0
03|01427|06:00.0|02:06.2|175.3|19.8|142.8|153.0|12.0
04|01430|06:00.0|02:05.9|175.9|19.9|151.5|159.0|12.0
05|01429|06:00.0|02:05.9|175.9|19.8|156.4|162.0|12.0
06|01387|06:00.0|02:09.8|160.2|18.4|148.1|155.0|12.5
07|01386|06:00.0|02:09.8|160.2|18.6|154.2|158.0|12.4
08|01372|06:00.0|02:11.2|155.0|17.7|154.2|155.0|12.9

Monday – February 4 : 250/500/750/1000/750/500/250 – Pyramid

I really like this session.  The 1k and the second 750 are really tough, but the last 500 and 250 are a blast.  I set a pace target of 1:45, and I ended up beating it.

Started with a 2k warmup and finished with a 2k cool down.

My HR monitor didn’t work right in  the last 500.  I’ve seen this in other workouts, when my HR rises very quickly, the HR monitor gets confused.

        Workout Summary - media/20190204-1316240o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|06855|36:09.0|02:38.2|145.4|19.5|138.1|172.0|09.7
W-|04000|13:37.0|01:42.2|329.0|28.3|153.5|172.0|10.4
R-|02857|22:31.0|03:56.6|034.3|14.3|128.8|172.0|00.0
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
00|00250|00:50.5|01:41.1|317.0|28.1|135.5|146.0|10.6
01|00500|01:44.4|01:44.4|317.2|27.4|153.3|162.0|10.5
02|00750|02:34.5|01:43.0|318.1|27.7|158.0|167.0|10.5
03|01000|03:26.9|01:43.5|317.6|27.7|161.4|172.0|10.5
04|00750|02:34.4|01:42.9|322.2|28.1|158.5|171.0|10.4
05|00500|01:38.9|01:38.9|361.8|29.8|135.8|145.0|10.2
06|00250|00:47.9|01:35.8|405.5|32.1|145.4|158.0|09.8

1:42 will be a very challenging target for the next time I do this workout.

I did a quick flex plot of power and pace versus stroke rate.

bokeh_plot (69)

I was surprised to see my stroke power increasing as steeply as it is.  The slope is roughly 18W per SPM.  In endurance workouts, I am a lot closer to 10W per SPM.

Digging deeper, I could see that the stroke force was getting a bit higher as the rate went up, and I was able to maintain consistent drive length.

As the result of the steep slope in the power vs SPM curve, my work per stroke was increasing as I went faster.

bokeh_plot (72)

I am not sure how I feel about this.  I like the fact that my stroke length stayed consistent, but I think I need to lighten up a bit at higher rates to be able to maintain them for longer pieces.

Tomorrow:  3 x 20′ / 2′ L4