New to rowing and how to improve

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manxman
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New to rowing and how to improve

Post by manxman » Tue Aug 08, 2017 1:46 pm

Hello everyone!

I'm really glad to have found a place to discover more about indoor rowing :)

First off I hope you don't mind me creating a new thread about this topic but I am looking to get faster and wondering what I should be doing to improve technique and times. Having never rowed before my reason in starting was to build my general fitness and to lose weight, previously I've always run but I find the stress it puts on my body prevents me from doing it regularly.

I'm a 31 year old heavyweight (105kg / 6ft 5in) and starting from no recent aerobic base, although I have done a bit of rugby and swimming in my time. I started rowing in my local gym 20 days ago and tried my first '2k test' on day 4 (16 days ago) on my first attempt I recorded a 7:01.4. I've since done six more 'tests' during the past couple of weeks and regularly cause nearby PT's to panic when I flail onto the floor afterwards in the gym :oops:

1st: 7:01.4
2nd: 7:03.3
3rd: 7:03.8
4th: 6:57.3
5th: 6:50.4
6th: 6:41.5

In my earlier rows I found it hard to hold my pace throughout so dropped back considerably at the end, my last row I felt strong throughout and managed a small sprint at the end.

I'm happy with my progress but concerned I will plateau now without a good training plan. I haven't done any longer rows yet and was wondering how they might help improve my 2k times. I've been watching a few YouTube videos to try and learn technique and tips but I am also looking for advice on training plans. I've heard of the Pete Plan but unsure if anybody has any other thoughts?

What kind of realistic target should I be aiming for in the 2k and what pace should I be looking to hold on longer rows? Thanks!
Last edited by manxman on Wed Aug 09, 2017 12:04 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Wolfmiester
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Re: New to rowing and how to improve

Post by Wolfmiester » Tue Aug 08, 2017 6:49 pm

Hi Maxman, and welcome.
With your stats your potential is huge (no pun intended), although 20s in 20 days is already one hell of a start :shock:
There are several plans available, and it would depend on what short/med/long term goal/s you have as to which plan you go for.
Improving sprint times would differ greatly from improving base fitness for a 1/2 marathon for example.
Wolfie

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RdGkA
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Re: New to rowing and how to improve

Post by RdGkA » Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:16 pm

Welcome!

When it comes to Spits, most people prefer negative splits, which means that you start a bit slower than what you plan to achieve as an average and then get faster every 500m. I for one start fast and slow down after 1/3 or 1/2 distance. Both tactics are IMHO mostly psychological, because wattage would be the lowest in average if one does even splits.

If you have a race planned as a target I like the Interactive 2k Plan or the Pete plan but if you are in it for the long haul a base build with long distance rows and low SR might be better while actually more boring :)

Regards
Ralf
♂ - 1971 - 6"8" - 103kg

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manxman
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Re: New to rowing and how to improve

Post by manxman » Wed Aug 09, 2017 12:00 am

Thanks @Wolfmiester & @RdGkA

I'm interested in competing but I want to be competitive. Not sure how I transition from a general gym workout to this though.

With you @RdGkA I start faster and gradually slow but feel incentivised to hold my pace for as long as possible. I work hard for the first 500 with 5/6 strong drives at the very start then transition into a rhythm, trying to hold onto a pace that I feel comfortable and can maintain. From 1300 to 1800 I'm in pain and the last 200 I'm just getting to the end, trying to muster a sprint.

Do you think it would be possible to get towards a low 6:10.00 range?

I like the look of the Interactive 2k plan but I feel I should build a base. What kind of distances would you recommend and what sort of times should I focus on (SR/500m)?

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RdGkA
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Re: New to rowing and how to improve

Post by RdGkA » Wed Aug 09, 2017 6:15 am

Long distance is a personal thing as is fast speed :)
Start with maybe 45 minutes and check your HR, if you can hold a pace you like (wether this is 1:55 or 2:25 is up to you) and can stay in UT2 go up with the time. By the time you do HMs you are investing serious time in you workouts per session so that might be the upper limit and your have to decrease your pace, but then you can ask David :)

6:10 is quite a good time, maybe check the c2logbook rankings for your age and see where you are and where you want to go.
♂ - 1971 - 6"8" - 103kg

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