The rest of my testing

Sunday – Oct 21: 10″ peak power test

Started with a Fletcher warm up, as one does.

Then I got myself ready for a wild ride.  Damper up to 10, feet strapped in tight, crank some good tunes and get ready for action.

I set the erg for 1′ work and 2 minute rest intervals.  I only rowed hard for the first 10 to 15 seconds of each interval.

Well, that’s not very satisfying.  Here’s the pace, power and rate as different charts

The point of a peak power test is to see the maximum power (or lowest split) that you can get over a 10 second blast.  The test protocol is defined here.

I did 5 sprints with the erg on the floor, which is the test standard, and then 2 sprints with the erg on slides, which is a f&*^ing blast!

I discovered something interesting with this test.  Under some circumstances, painsled does not log every single stroke. Here’s the data…

foo

The last column is the stroke count and there is no data for stroke 1,2,3,4,7,9.  So that means that the data that I have is somewhat unreliable.

What I saw on the monitor was a minimum split of 1:18 on most of the static reps.  I saw one pull with a 1:17.   That is 1 split off my all time best low pull.  I took the highest wattage of any of the recorded strokes and that was 1:17.8 or 742W.

On slides, I saw 1:12 on the monitor in both reps, that’s a whopping 923W.  Of course I could rate up to about 60 spm on slides which helped out a bit.  Needless to say, the static results are the ones that will be used for planning training.

Monday, Oct 22 – 1K test

I hate Monday’s.  I never get enough sleep, and I am working out first thing in the morning, usually after working out in the afternoon the day before.  This Monday was no exception.  But I really wanted to get this set of fitness tests behind me.

What was left?  The 1K test.  The soul of simplicity.  Row 1000m as fast as I can.  Use the average power as a proxy for my VO2max wattage.

To begin, the ritual fletcher warmup must be completed.

Apparently, Monday morning’s don’t suck.  I was a bit faster, with much better HR response than on Sunday.  Buoyed with new confidence, a strapped in for 3 minutes of hell (the first 15 seconds aren’t really so bad).

Actually, the first 250m was just fine.  I set out with a goal of matching my test from last year.  This was an average split of 1:39.4.  I guess I was pretty juiced because my average pace was a 1:37.6 over the first 250.  In the second 250, I started to really feel the burn and I dialed it back, just a hint to 1:38.6.  When I crossed the 500m mark, I was in respiratory distress, but I found I could tweak the rate up just a little and calm my breathing down.

Around 700m, my legs were burning, but with only 30 or so strokes to go, I closed my eyes and counted to 10.  I opened my eyes and I there was about 210m to go.  I did it again.  120m to go.  And the splits were getting better, not worse.  I counted down the last ten, and then there were two strokes to go.  Done.  3:15.2.  Boom.  Fastest 1k that Ive done since my 3:10.5 PB back in 2014.

I did a slow 2k to cool down.  I had a nasty erg cough the rest of the day, but it was totally worth it.  I ranked it on the C2 logbook.  19th out of 403 for the men’s 50-59 heavies.  3rd best for USA.

So that concluded the fitness tests.  The results…

Screen Shot 2018-10-28 at 3.19.35 PM.png

Compared to a year ago.

  • Peak power:  +21W
  • 1000m: +20W
  • 20′ test: +15W
  • 75′ test: +13W

I’ll be trying to figure out what that means for winter training with Marlene over the next couple of weeks, but looking at the numbers, my strongest performance was at 1000m.  Since my focus is head racing, I will need to work on aerobic capacity, and lactate threshold.

 

 

Tuesday: 1K Test

Monday:  The test protocol called for a rest day, and that was a good thing.  I was in meetings from 7am to 7pm.

Tuesday:  Today’s goal was a 1K test.

This test measures your VO2 max. Row 1000 meters at racing pace at your absolute best effort. Record your average watts. Stroke rates may range from 26-28 up to above 34. Also note in your data the average 500-meter split, total time, and stroke rate for future reference. Make sure to warm up properly and do a cool down row for at least 15 minutes easy after the test to help recovery.

So, scary words…absolute best effort.  The question is what is my pace or power target.  The CP pace predictor said that I should target about 300W.  This is about a 1:45 pace.  I felt pretty sure that I could do better than that.  Looking at the test results so far.

  • Peak power:  1:18.6 vs 1:16.9 PR in 2015 ( 721W vs 770W – 94% of PR)
  • 75′ test: 1:59.2 vs 1:53.6 HM PR in 2016 ( 206.7W vs 238W – 87% of PR)

So, it I thought it would be reasonable to look at targeting something like 90% of 1K PR watts.  That PR dates from 2014 and was 3:10.5, 1:35.2 pace, 406W.  90% of that would be 365W which translates to 1:38.6 pace.  That, frankly was a little bit scary for me.  So I decided to start off around 1:41 and see if I had the oomph to speed up in the second half.

So, that was my plan.  I started off with an aggressive Fletcher warmup.

          Workout Summary - media/20171031-1140300o.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|05011|19:59.0|01:59.7|213.7|21.0|157.4|175.0|11.9
W-|05013|19:59.0|01:59.7|212.2|20.9|156.7|175.0|12.0
R-|00000|00:00.0|00:00.0|000.0|00.0|000.0|175.0|00.0
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
00|00940|03:54.0|02:04.5|176.7|17.9|129.7|146.0|13.4
01|00995|04:01.0|02:01.1|196.8|19.9|151.1|156.0|12.4
02|01040|04:01.5|01:56.1|223.9|22.3|161.3|166.0|11.6
03|01036|03:58.5|01:55.1|250.0|23.2|168.9|175.0|11.3
04|01001|04:04.9|02:02.3|212.7|21.2|171.5|175.0|11.6

This was a bit disconcerting.  It seemed like my HR was a bit too high, and I was breathing hard.  I decided this was nerves.  I waited a bit more than 5 minutes after finishing to get set up for my 1K.

For some reason, the HR monitor lagged significantly.  Not sure why.  I’ve seen that with the Wahoo, but I hadn’t yet for the Polar OH1.

As for the row, it basically went to plan.  I focused on just hitting 30 spm and 1:41 at first and counted strokes.  I felt good at 250 and I pushed a bit.  At 500, it was stinging, but I started to feel ambitious and I pushed the rate up a bit and managed to work the splits down so 1:38 and 1:39 were dancing on the screen.  I did pretty well, because I thought the world was ending around the 750m mark.  But I kept counting my strokes and knew that I had about 30 to go.  I just closed my eyes and counted down.  With 5 to go I opened my eyes and finished it off.  3:18.9.  356W.  Not so bad.  I guess the stretch target wasn’t far off.

I was pretty well shattered by that.  It took a couple of attempts to get going with a cool down and an hour to stop sweating.  Now I have a nasty erg cough and a glimmer of pride.  This workout ranked in the 93rd percentile (31st of 429 for my age bracket).

Tomorrow: Scheduled rest day.

Thursday:  20′ Test.  Gotta figure a pace for that one too!

 

 

Thursday: 4 x 1000 / 5′ Open Water

Weather:  Sparkling sunshine, perfect temperature, around 70F.  Light wind from WNW which built from nearly calm when I launched about 9:15 to about 10mph by the time I finished.  This was a cross wind.

Screen Shot 2017-08-18 at 10.13.23 AM.png

The tide was ebbing.  This was against me on the odd intervals and with me on the even intervals.

Plan:

  • 4 x 1000
  • 5 minutes rest (roughly.  I paddled 500m and took a drink.  I didn’t actually measure how long the rests were.
  • Stroke Rate Target: 28spm
  • Pace target:  I wanted to be faster than the 15×3′ session (2:34)

I rowed out to Buoy 10.  This seems to be a good starting point for these kinds of workouts.  I did some 10s and 20s to get used to rowing at 28.  My hip/back felt a bit tight and sore through the warmup, but seemed to be loosing up by the end.

I got lined up and started the first interval with 2500m on the speedcoach.  Doing these intervals in a Maas Aero is a different experience from doing them on an erg.  On an erg, they are over in a about 3:30-3:40.  In an Aero, it’s a lot closer to 5 minutes.  So, I found that I had to pace myself a bit more.  There is also a lot to think about.  Steer a good course, react to the waves, look for boats, row with good form (especially, clean finishes and getting good clearance o recovery).

I felt like I was pushing hard, but my HR was lower Thursday than it was on Tuesday.  Not that it mattered much, this was a good workout.

Screen Shot 2017-08-18 at 10.24.22 AM

Screen Shot 2017-08-17 at 3.52.14 PM.png

8-17a

8-17b

        Workout Summary - media/20170817-194615-Greg Smith 20170817 0919amo.csv
--|Total|-Total-|--Avg--|-Avg-|Avg-|-Avg-|-Max-|-Avg
--|Dist-|-Time--|-Pace--|-Pwr-|SPM-|-HR--|-HR--|-DPS
--|10423|66:48.0|03:12.3|000.0|23.8|145.5|175.0|06.6
W-|04000|19:12.0|02:24.1|000.0|28.2|162.8|175.0|07.4
R-|06423|43:36.0|03:23.7|000.0|20.6|132.9|175.0|10.2
Workout Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-Pwr-|SPM-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
01|01000|04:45.7|02:22.8|000.0|28.3|163.5|173.0|07.4 
02|01000|04:43.8|02:21.9|000.0|28.0|160.5|173.0|07.5
03|01000|04:59.4|02:29.7|000.0|28.0|164.6|175.0|07.1 - not sure what happened here
04|01000|04:43.6|02:21.8|000.0|28.5|162.4|175.0|07.4

I was pretty tired when I finished, and I took it easy rowing back to the beach.  I took a couple pictures of the beach where I launch.

Later Thursday, we headed back home.  We might head back to the cape this weekend.  On Friday, I think I will do an L4 maybe 60 minutes or so.

 

Wednesday: November CTC

After my cortisone injection yesterday morning, my knee felt better almost immediately.  I think the combination of getting the excess fluid out of the joint, and the anti-inflammatory effect of the steroid made things a lot better.  There is still a lot of instability in the joint.  I have a vicious clicking if I fully flex and although the pain is much reduced, I still notice that my joint has two modes of operation; good and not so good.

Needless to say, I want to avoid the not so good mode of operation.  And as far as I can tell that is done by avoiding  fully flexing my knee.

Yesterday evening, I went and had an MRI done of the joint.  That was a new experience for me.  The imaging center (Metrowest MRI) was prompt, professional and friendly. They did 4 image sequences.  Each took about 4 to 5 minutes, during which I was instructed to keep my knee perfectly still while the machine banged and buzzed.  I looked at the pictures, which were very clear, but I don’t know enough about knees to figure out if there is anything good or bad going on.

This morning, I was pain free and so I headed off to workout in the morning.

The Plan:

  • 20 minute warmup on the stationary bike
  • If I was pain free, try some erging
    • 1k at 2:00
    • 1k at 1:55
    • 1k as hard as I could tolerate for the CTC
  • Strength training

Here is heart rate data for the bike warmup and the 3 intervals on the erg

Here’s the details on the erg stuff.  I was concerned about bending my knee too far so I put a bandaid on the rail at a point before my knee would click.  This provided enough of a bump when the seat rollers hit it that I was reminded to keep my strokes shorter.  Over the intervals, I was able to modify my recovery timing so that I would be fully rocked over before I hit the bump.  This enabled me to get a bit longer drive.  On the last interval, I pushed past the bandaid with no significant pain.  That was heartening.

myimage11-30c

I was interested in looking at my drive length.

bokeh_plot-66

So, for the first interval, I was pulling about a 1.3m stroke.  For the second, around 1.35m.  For the final interval, it was about 1.4m.   Compare that to the 8x750m workout that I did last week.

bokeh_plot (69).png

For this workout, I was maintaining over 1.4m for all but the last interval.  It looks like I had gone back to just about my full stroke in the final rep.

A couple of other interesting plots.

The left shows the peak and average force.  This shows a very consistent increase in both peak and average.  The right is the drive time.  You can see that the drive time was slowing down as my drive length increased.  I was surprised by this since the pace on the last rep was much faster.

After that, I went and changed my shirt and did a few strength exercises

Chin ups
unassisted x5
red band assist 3 sets of 4 reps

standing dumbell press
2×25 10
2×30 2 sets of 10 reps

Bent over barbell rows
45 x 10
95 x 10 x 3 sets

dumbell bench press
2×30 x 10
2×35 x 10 x 2

Tomorrow:  Slow HM (limit compression)

Sunday: Cromwell Cup

Weather:  misty rain.  Temp around 65F.  Light winds.  Flat water, except for some launch wakes.

I got to Riverside around 6am.  I unloaded and parked my car close by.  I was all settled in time for the 6:20 racers meeting.  Then I waited around to launch.  My start was at 8:43, so I launched just after 8AM, and made my way up river to the warmup area above the start.  I did a version of my normal warmup with increasing rates, and then did some starts.  The first couple were pretty horrid, but I settled down and eventually shook off the nervousness.  Then it was pretty much OK.

Were called to the line 5 minutes before our start and lined up across the river.  No bouys marking lanes or the start line.  There was just a tent on the shore and a person with a megaphone calling alignment.  As soon as she called it aligned, the starter on the launch behind us called out.  “This is the start.  Ready.  Attention.  Row!”  I’m very glad that I setup at the catch when alignment was called, because there was no screwing around on this one.

My start was clean, but uninspired.  I was in lane 2, which share the center span of the two bridges with lane 3.  I was side by side with the guy in lane 3 through the first bridge and there was only about 5 m between us.  It was exciting stuff, but he was faster than I was and I was flying and dying trying to stay side by side with him.  After the first bridge, I settled in at about r30 and just tried to hold on to some semblance of technique.  The launch was aggressively calling steering commands to all of us, and I found it a bit disruptive.  I lost stroke count a couple of times because I was trying to listen, steer, watch the pace, count and row cleanly.  But the main thing was that I had gone out too hard and I was paying the price now.

The second bridge is only about 300m away from the first, but I felt like time was passing in slow motion.  That’s what happens to me when I don’t have a good stroke count to keep me centered.  I went under the second bridge, finally, and looked at Crewnerd.  Crewnerd told me I had 350m left to go.  In my head, I translated that to another forty strokes.  Two sets of 20.  I can do that.  I started pushing the pace again and got through 20 strokes.  At this point, I got some more steering suggestions.  I had drifted over into lane 1, by the docks of the Riverside Boathouse.  I took a couple of hard port strokes, and then counted out the remaining 20 strokes to the finish, but no beep!  I kept on going for a couple more strokes and the finish horn finally went off.  I was massively disappointed with my time, 4:01.3.    I finished 3rd in my 4 person race.

Screen Shot 2016-07-10 at 1.17.20 PM.png

Here are the results of the other heat.

Screen Shot 2016-07-10 at 1.45.33 PM.png

After the finish, I rowed down to the BU bridge for a cool down, and that was it for the day.

Here’s the whole row.  The race was from LAP002 to LAP003.

Screen Shot 2016-07-10 at 1.25.08 PM.png

Here’s a zoomed view of my course.  You can see that my steering was way less than ideal.  I started off going toward lane 1, eventually got my point on the bridge and went through it side by side with the guy in lane 3.  After that bridge, I veered away from him, but it looks like my course was reasonably straight toward the second bridge.  Coming out of the second bridge, I started veering toward lane3, and was pointed back by the launch following us.  I guess I must have overcorrected because you can see how I drifted out into lane 1.  The guy in lane 1 was well behind at this point, so there was no interference,  but I added some extra distance and slowed myself down to steer at the end.

Screen Shot 2016-07-10 at 1.25.47 PM

Here’s pace, spm and heart rate.

Here’s a zoomed view of the race.

race

I covered an extra 10-20 meters over the 1k due to my lousy steering.  The slow down at the end was me steering back to lane 2 away from the dock.

Start_|_Dist_|_Split_|_Pace_|_Strks__|_Rate_|_DPS_|_AvgHR_|_Remarks

00010_|_3489_|_22:34_|_3:14.0_|_381___|_16.9_|_09.2_|_142___|_warmup

03498_|_1012_|_04:00_|_1:58.6_|_126___|_31.5_|_08.0_|_173___|_race

04510_|_1416_|_09:38_|_3:24.2_|_153___|_15.9_|_09.3_|_134___|_cooldown

So, what am I to make of this race.

  • The pace that I managed was what I should have been expecting based on the prep work I had been doing.  I was doing an all out 500m at a 1:55 pace, so a 1K should have been between 1:58 and 1:59.
  • My steering was bad.  I think that was mainly because I have been trying to make up for a lack of good specific preparation by trying to push very close to my limits.  Last year, I was very disciplined about looking every ten strokes and it was a better race.
  • With regard to race specific training.  Between my travel schedule, my lack of a boat until a month ago, and not having a good specific training plan, I was not well prepared for this race.  I did enough training on starts, but I did not do enough heavy lifting.  I needed more 4x1Ks, 6x750s and 8 x 500s.
  • My base fitness isn’t as good as it has been either.  My 2mmol power is around 185w right now on the erg.  I think last year it would have been about 10 watts higher.  That’s about 4 seconds on pace, and I think it made a big difference in the second half of the race.

Based on all of that, I did as well as I should have expected.  And I’m fine with that.  Honestly, I’m not completely fine with it, but I understand it, and I will use it to define my training from here on out.

Now I set my sights on head racing season.  Here’s a preliminary race schedule.

  • Sept 17: CRI Fall classic (5K)
  • Oct 2: Textile River Regatta (6K)
  • Oct 9: Quinsigmond Snake Race (4K)
  • Oct 22: Head of the Charles (5K) (If I get in the lottery)
  • Nov 5: Merrimack Chase (5K)

I need to put together a more formal training plan, but for now, I will be focusing on aerobic base.  Lot’s of 2mmol rowing.  It’s also time for some video and RIM feedback.

 

 

Sunday: 2 x 1K on Quinsig

Weather:  Sunny, cool (60f), a bit of wind from the West, about 5-10mph.  This was a mostly cross wind, but a little bit to the bow when rowing north, at least I’d like to think so.

Plan:

  • Warmup
  • Practice Starts
  • 1000m Race Simulation
  • recovery
  • 1000m Hard Interval
  • Cool down

Screen Shot 2016-07-03 at 10.07.21 AM

2x1k

summary

I guess I’m OK with how things went.  I was hoping for faster times, but with the cross wind and chop, I was having some trouble rowing long.  It was a bit tippy at the catch.  The pace variations were mostly caused by gusts.  Especially the big drop off about 3/4 of the way in to the second 1000m.  In terms of effort, the first one was all out.  The second one, I started out a a bit lower stroke rate, and when things seemed to be going OK, I started pushing harder.

But the main point of today was to dig deep, experience the pain, and carry on.  From that perspective, this was a very good session.  It hurt like hell, but I eased up just a little and carried on.  I have a good idea of what I can do in the race.  target pace is right around 2:00 for the first 500m, and then go for broke in the second half.

While I was doing the 1ks, I noticed that the speedcoach was reading a bit faster than Crewnerd.  I had not recalibrated after reattaching the impeller, and I think it was giving me a couple of seconds on the pace that I was not earning.  So, after I got to top of the lake, I did one final 1K, this time trying to keep the rate around a 26 to do a speedcoach calibration.  To do this, I set up a 1000m piece on Crewnerd, and put the Speedcoach in to calibration mode.  You start them both up, and then you push stop on the speedcoach right when Crewnerd hits zero.  The cal factor ended up being 0.971.  My old cal factor was 0.983.  The change takes away about 1.5 seconds of pace.  Whew.  I feared it was more.

This afternoon, my wife and I are heading off to Cape Cod to celebrate July 4th out in Provincetown.  Tomorrow will be a rest day.  Tuesday, I will do an easy erg session in the afternoon.

 

Saturday: 6 x 1K

Weather as warm (mid 60s), cloudy at first, but then the sun broke through and a light 0-3mph breeze from the NNW.  This was a headwind going down river, but only a slowed me down a bit.

The plan:

  • 6 x 1K intervals
  • rate r24 to r28
  • long rests, maybe 4 or 5 minutes.  Enough time so I could get myself to a good start point
  • Head race pace

It was one of those workouts that makes you feel intimidated before you even start it.  I have done very little harder rowing in the boat, only a few 1′ pieces and some longer pieces where I started slow and sped up.  I know that I need to get going if I’m going to feel at all comfortable doing any sprint racing.  My stomach didn’t feel all that great either.  Arriving at the river, I had a vague feeling like I wouldn’t mind going to the bathroom and sitting for a while, but I ignored it and got out on the river.

Screen Shot 2016-06-05 at 9.26.42 AM

I did a Rojabo style warmup, and I felt pretty good during it.  I was winded after the last 20 stroke set at >34SPM, but that’s the point.  Then I spun around, had a quick sip of water, and psyched myself up for the first interval.  I got up to speed and noted the distance on the speedcoach.  My rowing felt nice and smooth, all that r18 work seems to be helping, at least a little.  This rep took me across the Moody street basin, up the channel, through the Prospect Street bridge and then finished up in front of the watch factory.  I kind of like navigating through the bridge for pressure work.  It really makes you think about steering in race-like situations.  When I finished the rep, it was clear I wouldn’t be able to maintain that level of intensity for 5 more reps.  I gave myself permission to do the reps at r24, but I was not going to quit.  My bathroom urges were lurking in the background as well (sorry for the TMI, but I think it’s a pretty standard issue for rowers).

I paddled all the way to the downstream end of the straight 1K shot back to the start of the course, had a drink, and off I went.  I felt a bit more relaxed in this rep.  The speedcoach said that I was getting less run, but I felt like I was rowing with greater length.  I sure was tired at the end of it though.

I paddled around a bit and then did rep #3 down stream.  Uneventful, but slower because of the light headwind.  I then paddled through the S-curve and did rep #4 in front of the watch factory, through the prospect street bridge, and finished at the end of the channel leading out to the Moody street basin.  Turn the boat, have a drink, get lined up, and then rep #5 back under the bridge and finishing up right after the watch factory.  I was really tired by this point, but I only had one rep to go.  I set up at the end of the straight 1K and started nice and easy.  I just rowed for length and form through the first 500m or so.  I was counting strokes.  Around stroke 50, I was at about 450m in.  I took “10 for length”, really trying to keep my back straight, but reach wayyyy out to the catch.  At Stroke 60, I took “10 for finishes”, trying to go early enough at the finish to not touch my shirt, and avoid too much layback.  At Stroke 70, I took “10 for recoveries” and tried to keep my blades totally off the water on recovery.  Now I was at 80 strokes and I had 40 left.  I started pushing more intently to the finish.  I started to push the rate higher and worked on steering.  Its easy to misjudge the approach to the end of the 1K.  There is a slight starboard turn that if you take it too soon, you end up in the weeds, and if you wait too long, you end up having to turn to sharply and lose speed.  Once I had my line to the finish I had 20 strokes left and I noticed that my right calf was cramping up.  Every time I compressed at the catch, it would cramp up, and then ease when my leg was fully extended.

It’s interesting how my brain works at moments like this.  It hurt like hell, but my leg still seemed to be working, and I knew that I only had about 40 seconds more to go.  My heart rate was up in the anaerobic zone and my vision was narrowing.  It felt like time was slowing down.  But I was able to stay focused on placing my blades, driving smoothly, finishing and recovering clean as I counted down.  As soon as I finished, I was worried that I had cheated the distance by 100m, but the speedcoach says that I didn’t.  Also when I finished, my calf cramped hard, and so did my abs, right under my rib cage on my right side.  I got my feet out of the shoes, stretched out my legs and torso as best I could, and rowed with feet out back to the dock.

My paces were terrible, but I am really thrilled to have gotten through it.

Start_|_Dist_|__Time_|_Split Pace_|_Strokes_|_SPM__|_DPS__|_Remarks
00000_|_4100_|_25:29_|_3:06.5_____|_461_____|_18.1_|_08.9_|_warmup
04100_|_1000_|_04:22_|_2:11.0_____|_119_____|_27.3_|_08.4_|_Upstream/tailwind
05100_|_0750_|_06:27_|_4:18.0_____|_088_____|_13.6_|_08.5_|_
05850_|_1000_|_04:23_|_2:11.5_____|_121_____|_27.6_|_08.3_|_Upstream/tailwind
06850_|_0300_|_05:01_|_8:21.8_____|_025_____|_05.0_|_12.0_|_
07150_|_1000_|_04:31_|_2:15.5_____|_119_____|_26.4_|_08.4_|_Downstream/headwind
08150_|_0350_|_03:58_|_5:40.1_____|_039_____|_09.8_|_09.0_|_
08500_|_1000_|_04:32_|_2:16.0_____|_122_____|_26.9_|_08.2_|_Downstream/headwind
09500_|_0460_|_04:40_|_5:04.5_____|_049_____|_10.5_|_09.4_|_
09960_|_1000_|_04:33_|_2:16.5_____|_119_____|_26.2_|_08.4_|_Upstream/tailwind
10960_|_0590_|_04:59_|_4:13.4_____|_074_____|_14.8_|_08.0_|_
11550_|_1000_|_04:36_|_2:18.0_____|_119_____|_25.9_|_08.4_|_Upstream/tailwind
12550_|_1356_|_10:12_|_3:45.7_____|_160_____|_15.7_|_08.5_|_Feet out

Distance_|_Time__|_Pace___|_Strokes_|_SPM__|_DPS__|_Remarks
4100_____|_25:29_|_3:06.5_|_461_____|_18.1_|_08.9_|_warmup
6000_____|_26:57_|_2:14.7_|_719_____|_26.7_|_08.3_|_Main set
1356_____|_10:12_|_3:45.7_|_160_____|_15.7_|_08.5_|_Cool down

2450_____|_25:05_|_5:07.2_|_275_____|_11.0_|_08.9_|_rest meters
13906_____|_27:43_|_3:09.2_|_1615_____|_18.4_|_08.6_|_Total

After that,  jumped in my car, drove up to Marblehead, bought a boat (more on that later), drove back to Hopkinton, unloaded the boat, put the canoe on the car, went canoeing with my wife and some friends of ours for a couple hours, and then went out for dinner.  By the time we got home, I was exhausted!

Sunday:  Rest day.

4 x 1k / 5′ rest (and data problem sorted for the erg)

To try to decide if I would race this sunday, I decided to do the universal predictor workout, the 4 x 1K / 5′ rest.

In the past, I have generally been able to race at a pace about 1 second faster than this workout.  I decided to go out hard and see if I could hold a 1:41 pace.

I pushed the first rep a bit too hard and paid the price in the later reps, but it all worked out OK.

Here’s the HR plot.  It shows that I have certainly worked harder in this workout in the past, but boy the reps hurt a lot.  I guess my lactate tolerance has been negatively impacted by a lack of speed work over the past few weeks.

Screen Shot 2016-02-23 at 10.16.01 AM

I decided to try the Concept2 ErgData app, and it worked flawlessly!  Here’s what you get in the online log if you upload from ergdata to your logbook.

Screen Shot 2016-02-23 at 10.02.02 AM

So, details on each rep, plus a stroke rate and pace graph for each rep.  Even better, there is a very simple csv export that I can adapt to my excel tools to track HR.  There are rumors that the log book will be enhanced to include HR on the graph.

Now I just need to convince C2 to open up the ability to upload workouts from speedcoach, crewnerd or RIM and I can really simplify my life.

So, this workout today predicts somewhere around 6:40 to 6:45.  Not the performance I was hoping for, but not horribly shabby.  I think I will race.  I think I’d regret not going.

Tomorrow:  Start of the taper.  Fletcher warmup and 4×500 at race pace.

Monday: 4 x 1000 / 5′ rest

Plan:

  • Fletcher warmup
  • 4 x 1000
    • 5′ rest
    • pace target: 1:40
    • rate: 30 spm
  • 2K cool down

I felt like crap today.  The fletcher warmup was really hard, especially at first.  Within about 20 pulls, I knew I wasn’t going to be able to hit my targets.  It really just turned into a game of survival.  I had terrible post rep shivers after the first interval and slowed in the second.  I had a mini-HD in the third rep while I was experimenting with using high rates.  The fourth rep, I hatched a plan to do the first 250m at 1:44, the second at 1:43, the third at 1:42, the fourth at 1:41.  I stuck to the plan through the first 500m, and accelerated from there.  The last 250m was very difficult.

My heart rates were lower than in past sessions, but the RPE was higher.  I was knocked out after each rep.  The session average was 1:42.3, which is way off the 1:40.4 from last week, but a touch better than the 1:42.7 from two weeks ago.

The warmup.

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Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 9.05.12 AMScreen Shot 2016-02-01 at 9.04.50 AM

The main set

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Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 9.06.27 AMScreen Shot 2016-02-01 at 9.06.08 AM

The cool down

2016-02-01 08.17.08Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 9.07.56 AM

Tonight I fly to Munich.  Training this week will be problematic.  I spend Tuesday night in Munich, then drive to Stuttgart.  Fly to Milan on Wednesday evening and sleep there Wednesday night.  Then I fly from Milan to Amsterdam and sleep there on Thursday night.  Finally, I return to the US on Friday night.  So, 4 nights, 3 different hotels and a coach seat.  I’m thinking that I will focus on maintenance of my aerobic base with 60 minute low intensity sessions where I can squeeze them in.

 

Tuesday: 4 x 1K / 5′ rest – Progress

Plan:

  • Fletcher Warmup
  • 4x1K / 5′ rest
    • Pace: <1:42
    • Rate: 30
  • 2K cool down

This morning I paid a visit to the good folks at Crossfit Del Mar.  $20 for a day pass and I had my choice of any of the well used and nicely maintained Model Ds to choose from.  The people were nice and the crashing of weights certainly provided a good distraction.  I could tell this place was well run by just how good the form was on all the folks in the class doing a cool power clean/jerk combo.  They must be serious about coaching proper form on these lifts.

The workout was tough.  I was out last night for dinner with a customer.  It ended early, but still a gigantic steak and couple of glasses of wine probably didn’t help.

The warm up felt sluggish and hard.

2016-01-26 06.34.36

The main event was interesting.  I felt awful in the first rep.  I went out hard an I was looking at sub 1:40 pace about halfway through, but I felt like I needed to ease up.  I bled off a bit of pace and cruised to the finish.  I was still more than a second ahead of target for the rep, but I felt significantly more damaged than I did last week after rep number 1.

For rep 2, I chatted with myself and reminded me that the target was 1:42, and that’s OK.  I big improvement over a week.  So, this time I settled more quickly and played around a bit with rate keeping the pace dancing between 1:40 and 1:41.  I was looking at 1:41 with about 20 strokes to go, and I pushed the finish a bit.  Aww crap, I finished it faster than rep #1.  I felt honor bound to try for a negative split session.  Actually, I felt a little better after rep #2 than rep #1.  And 5 minute rests are luxuriously long.

So, into rep 3.  I knew I wanted something faster than 1:40.7, but I was reluctant to push it too hard.  I basically cruised along around 1:41 and goosed the last 20 strokes. 1:40.4

Now the finale.  I busted out of the gate pushing 1:38s.  That lasted about 10 strokes.  I drifted to 1:39s.  By the time I was 30 strokes in, I was in survival mode.  I was not going to let the rep go, but I was in deep trouble,  I dropped back to 1:41s for nearly 500m and the avg pace climbed up to 1:40.5 or so.  With about 30 strokes left, I started pushing really hard and I saw the avg start dropping.  With 10 left, I saw the avg dip below 1:40, and kept pushing.  I finished with 2 strokes at 1:35.

So, a 1:40.4 avg pace for the workout.  That’s 0.6 faster than when I did this workout before the 2014 crash-bs and with a lot less drama, and that year I went 6:37.6.

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I did a 2K cool down and headed back to my hotel walking a bit taller.

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Here is the HR profile for the workout.  Lower HR than I expected to see.

Screen Shot 2016-01-26 at 9.12.02 AM

Tomorrow:   3×20 plus peak power at anaerobic crossfit in Newport Beach.