17,104m 1:15:00 (NOMAN Ibiza-Barcelona, row session 7)
*36 days until the race*
I fell asleep on the train home from work this afternoon which is unusual so I knew this workout was going to be tough in one way or another! Originally I thought of doing a ‘power hour’ and trying to keep the pace below 2:00/500m for as long as possible and following it with a 1km pool session. But, well, this went out of the window when I sat on the slider – I tapped in 1:15:00 for a set time workout and set the splits to 15:00. I was tired before I sat down but I as soon as I put in the splits I thought ‘I know, why don’t I do ‘Power 15s’?! 15 minutes at 2:00/500m or under followed by a 15 minute ‘recovery’ at a more sustainable ocean rowing pace of 2:08-2:12/500m. What a great idea I thought I’d had as I set of hard on the first 15…
It was still a great idea as I headed into the second 15 but I soon realised that after 5 minutes I was having to put in a fair amount of effort to keep at 2:08-2:12/500m – by the end of the set I was feeling pretty whacked but I vowed to carry on and attempt a power set…for about 3 minutes! Then I kind of resigned myself to rowing within my ocean rowing pace zone and throwing in the occasional quicker section during each set.
A couple of things aside from tiredness were plaguing me whilst I was rowing too! Number one; I forgot my gloves so my hands were sliding everywhere. Number two; the foot straps kept loosening which annoyed the hell out of me! Number three; I couldn’t help notice people in the gym chatting on their mobile phones, lounging around and generally being lackadaisical about their workouts and by the end of my last set I found that this was beginning to really, really wind me up! I think those three things plus the fact I was hungry and realised I’d gone out way too hard made this workout the hardest one yet on the ergo. But, well, if I wanted an easy life I’d stay at home and watch TV!
Yeah it was tough going mentally, yeah I overcooked the first set and set myself up for a struggle but all of this just conspires to make me a better rower and a better endurance athlete – learning to suffer physically and manage the mental aspects of endurance are the basic building blocks and I don’t think anyone who runs marathons, ultras, takes part in triathlons or rows ever stops learning new strategies. It’s why I keep on keeping on!
Pace: 2:11.5/500m average