The answer has been staring my in the face. #indoorrowing woes

It’s Sunday. Which means I’m in ‘over-thinking mode’ after another week of not being over the moon with my training. 

Yesterday was ok. The original plan was to have another go at this week’s Rowseries event – 8 x 300m with 30sec rests. But as next weekend I’ve got the Scottish Champs 1K event, I figured I’d be better off doing some 1K prep work. So I plumped for 12 x 250m starting at 1K rate and pace. And hoping to hold it. I don’t think I did too badly. I’d have hoped to have held 1:35 for the whole 12 intervals, but this was a good session, and although I was KO’d by the end, it felt like something that if I did it again this week, would be useful mentally before next week’s race.


Today, I wanted to have a proper go at this month’s IRL distance – 6344m. I’d had a go at it earlier in the week, holding 1:52 – and at about 4K in, just stopped. Not because I was particularly tired, but just that I worked out I still had about 9 minutes of rowing to go, and couldn’t face continuing on for that long.

Sometimes, my head is not a great place to be in!

So I set up a RowPro session for this morning instead, hoping that some company would keep my honest, and wouldn’t lead to me stopping halfway through out of boredom. Well, it worked in that sense, but I still wanted to stop at 4K. Why? Because I was knackered!!

Now, there’s always a chance that yesterday’s workout took a larger toll on me than I originally thought, and that’s why the result was this, but looking at the times, and stroke rate, it tells a story (and one that shows I didn’t even row that last stroke).

It certainly felt ok – for the first 4K. But suddenly, it all started to feel like a lot of hard work. Not particularly muscular, but certainly, from a cardio point of view. So I backed off the stroke rate a little and settled for 1:53’s – then had to back off the effort level too and start settling for 1:54’s which eventually plopped down to 1:55.

The last 500m I started to pick up to around 1:51’s – but you can see by the final split (not counting the 01.1) that I was at too low a rate, and if 500 of that was at 1:51 – how bad was the rest of the interval?!?!


So what’s going on? Well, I think the truth has been staring me in the face, or on my back, on my T Shirt, shorts, Facebook feed, everything.

Simply, I’ve been ignoring the bare truth of the name of the team I row for:



Simply. Fitness Matters. And I don’t think I’ve been paying enough attention to that for a long time. Since cutting my hand, I’ve been focussing more on getting my power back – getting the strength through my hand, being able to hold 1:40 for sprints etc. But when I look at the training load I’ve been doing – I haven’t been pushing the fitness thing. 30 minute sessions have been at r20 mostly – and even a couple of months ago I wrote about the importance of the fast 30 – and then didn’t do any!

After the Scottish Champs, I have to take a couple of weeks off to recover after a small op. Those weeks will hopefully sort out my head in terms of not being so focussed on the negatives – as I’ll have to build up again – and I’ll use this opportunity to get back into the longer standard sessions instead of doing lots of short sprints, or mid range intervals. Yes, they’ll have their place. But I think the time to get back into the saddle for hard 30 / 60 / HM sessions that I used to do is upon me again.

I look at when I was near by ‘best’ and it was when I was doing single 30/60/HM sessions more than I am now – cycling a lot more, and basically have a much fitter engine. I think my fear of not being fit enough, or not enjoying the long stuff has meant I’ve stayed away from it and it’s been a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Or, like I said, I’m overthinking it all again…
























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