"About me" - a place to introduce yourself

Tired of talking about rowing and want to talk about the real world? Enter a forum where rowing is a rude word...

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Post by Rita »

I guess it is about time I posted some intro stuff here. During the global relay, I was nicknamed "Rita Meter Maid", and when I am at home, there is some truth to that when I do a 120K+ week.

I am a research scientist/project manager at Purdue University. Part of my job includes maintaining a large collection of corn lines by hand pollination, i.e. manually collecting pollen from plants and putting it on the silks/ears of the appropriate plant. Thus I spend about about 4-6 weeks during the summer pollinating corn, and this year about 4 weeks in Molokai (one of the Hawaiian Islands) doing the same at our winter nursery. It is hard work, usually 8-11 hour days in the field in the hot, humid Indiana summer, 7 days a week (the corn doesn't stop growing on weekends). Molokai is much better; everyday is sunny and ~ 80 F with relatively low humidity.

Along with winter nursery, I also attend several conferences a year. Although the conferences are in great locations, unfortunately an erg is not "standard equipment" for most hotel/resort excercise rooms.

I started rowing in May 2006 and may reach the 3 million meter mark while on Molokai. My first love is ice hockey, however there are very few people in the Hoosier State that know what a hockey puck is, nevermind play hockey. I finally realized that I really needed to find a form of exercise other than walking my 13 year old dog. A friend of mine told me about her "erg" that had just been delivered. I had no idea what she was talking about, so she sent me the link to the concept2 site. Our university gym had them, so I decided to give it a try. The website was key.. it had all the beginning workouts planned for you so that you got a good mix of things that you can do on an erg (sprinting and interval work, long slow rows) and the benefits of each type of workout. It made getting started very easy and not intimidating. The on-line log and ranking (and since July the FS meter board!) provide me with the "competition" that I need to stay with it. Besides, you can work out while sitting on your butt while watching football (or futbol), hockey, cricket or Kate.

My 13 year old dog, Morgan (a shepherd/hound mix), died of cancer at the end of August. At the end of October I adopted a 1.5 year old hound/shepherd mix (yeah, I guess I have my "type") from the local animal shelter. Abby definitely has more than a good dose of hound in her and thinks that one day she will indeed catch a rabbit (or squirrel).

So in short, I'm a science geek who loves sports and dogs and racking up meters on her erg.
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Post by jolo »

Greetings to all,

My name is Joe Lohman and I live in Muskegon Michigan.
I am 40 years, 6'1", 97 kg and I work as a truck driver.

I started erging in December 2006, with no experience ever on water or erg. Last summer I read an article on indoor rowing and thought this sounds perfect for me in the winter. :idea: So I bought a Model E two months ago. Now I wish I had got it last summer because I really enjoy the competition.:P

My sports background is running and weight training. I ran a marathon in September 2006. These 2 sports transfer very well to erging. :shock:

The Free Spirits are some of the most competative and fun people I have ever met. :? I am proud to be a member. 8)

Last edited by jolo on Sat Feb 17, 2007 11:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Nick Wakeford

Post by NWakeford »

Hi all,


29 - 17/4/78
About 100KG
6"5 - 195cm

Rowing History:

Started rowing in 1991, at high school in South Africa, was selected for the 1995 South African mens junior 8+ at the World Junior Champs in Poland.
Moved to Nottinham, UK in 1996 rowed at elite level for NCRA (Notts County) for a few more years, including doing a bit of racing at Henley, British Champs (1998 4- Silver), Windermere Cascade Cup 1998 - Seattle.
In Feb 1999 broke my left leg :-({|= , then just after the plaster was off was involved in a hit and run - unfortunatly I was the one hit, which broke my right ankle #-o . This kept me out of rowing for the year, and I just lost my commitment to 30+ hours of training a week, I also started to spend a great deal of time on nights out, and lost most of my fitness, and probably drank a lot to much.

Recent personal history:

After the terrible year of 1999, met my future wife (Kate) O:) in 2000 :D , we were married in Feb 2003 :D - a week before migrating to Australia.
My weight has keeped going up over the last 5 years and after trying a number of things at the gym (really enjoyed spinning) decided to purchase a Model D when we moved house last August (2006) and I finaly had a place to put it - double garage.
Since then my weight has dropped over 28KG \:D/ , and I'm starting to get some good erg speed again. I am also planning on doing the Australia Indoor champs this October 2007 - hopefully will get a sub 6:05. I also avoiding the CTC challanges as I don't want to be distracted from my training program - however will look at the longer distance ones.


Keen follower of the South African rugby and cricket teams ](*,) , enjoy cycling, gangster movies.


I work as an IT manager / Service Delivery Manager

Future Goals:

Sub 6 minute 2k
Last edited by NWakeford on Mon May 07, 2007 11:27 am, edited 7 times in total.


Post by writeclimber »

Okay, Paul.. you can stop twisting my arm now... I'm sitting at the keyboard...

So... "Hi" everyone. Thanks for poking at Paul and making him torment me to come here and say hello. So much for allowing me to lurk here.

I'm the infamous other half of this dynamic duo - Paul and I do a lot together (when we can find ways to escape our two children - aged 11 and 4). When we're not cooking up something incredible in the kitchen (didn't Paul tell you that he's classically trained?), we can be found at the gym, or at the rock gym or just out and about somewhere in the mountains. Paul is the major adrenalin junkie (okay, not true.. .but he is part of the Search and Rescue team now and has managed to land a job working as a river guide for the summer bringing people down the rapids). I'm the literary one... I spend lots of time At the Keyboard tapping away, writing articles and stories, primarily for children. I can often be found banging my head against the monitor and screaming at nameless publishers and their rejection notices, which just come faster now that they do email submissions. It makes for less paper on the bathroom walls, but that's okay with me.

I just took up rowing this year. Watching Paul was ummm.. inspiring... yes, that's the word I'm looking for. I've been battling this bulge in my middle for some time - two preganancies and years of inactivity had made me quite heavy. Actually, before I started working out at the gym a year and a half ago, I weighed close to 250 lbs (whatever that is in kilos). I managed to drop to 195 but couldn't get the rest to disappear. Since I started rowing (and following that oh so wonderful program the C2 guide came up with for me) and eating every three hours (instead of just every once in a while, three times a day), the weight has started falling off. We're talking 10 lbs in 6 weeks!

Now, when we go to the gym together, we argue about who gets to use the ONE C2 that they have there. We have to take turns But we're also doing weight training ...

So there... that's my introduction (for what it's worth).

Maude (writeclimber)
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Post by jkathios »

Hello All,

I've been lurking on the website for quite a few months now and figured it was time for me to jump on board. I'm a software engineer by trade, have been married for ~12 years and have two little ones. I played a lot of football growing up and then spent quite a bit of time in the powerlifting arena. The past few years I have been leaning away from the heavy weights and spending a lot of time on the erg and learning what endurance is. I'm amazed at the marathons/50&100k's that some of you have done. This trip to bring Thomas to the moon is also quite a feat and I hope my added meters helps the team reach that goal.

Looking forward to more of the teqm challenges....all the best...Jim Kathios

Post by ExDragon »


I've also been lurking for a while.

I had been a part of the BA Hurricanes Chinese Dragonboat Team but after 7 years gave it up due to a change in circumstances. Since then I got caught in the trap of prioritising work higher than me - which has taken it's toll on my fitness - so this year I decided to turn it around.

I joined FS on 1st Jan 2007 and, although I had used erg in gym under duress in the past, I officially started indoor rowing on 2nd Jan 2007 (couldn't start rowing on 1st - gym was closed!)

So now into my 9th week and totally hooked!! On the 1st Jan I set some targets...

~ 1,000,000 metres by Dec 2007 (I am currently on 400,000!!! :shock: )
~ 200th place on FS ladder by end April (I am currently @ low 190s!!!)
~ Sub 50 mins for 10,000 (my first effort was 57:42.3 did 48:50.5 on 12th Feb)

So feeling pretty please with things so far. Plus I have been shopping today to buy some new work trousers the next size down :lol:


PS: Am loving Free Spirits - hugely motivational :D
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Post by beegee »

Hi all

My name's Brian, stats in sig below.

Based near Cambridge, started erging seriously last November when I retired from my job in London. At 14st+ and bp creeping up was in desperate need of an exercise regime.

Some years ago I started OTW rowing to pass the time while down at the river while my son went out. Learned to scull, then joined a vet 8. Did one time trial. Unfortunately as soon as we started to up the pace in preparation for the bumps racing my hamstrings gave out. Never got the confidence to get back in and my fitness level declined even more.

My main aim is to get to LWT ( and a bit below) and improve my times without wrecking myself in the process :roll:


I have been bulldozed into this.

Post by ColinS »

Hi All

Finally Granny has conviced me that their is probably mutual benefit in me joining Free Spirits. I have been living with the training program and acting as the backroom person but now I suppose it is time for me to spend a bit more time erging.

I live in Perth Western Australia but work on a mine site some 3000km from Perth in the Kimberly area of Australia. This has me on a fly in, fly out where I spend 8 days on site and 6 days in Perth. I am involved in Safety and Training on site.

We have just purchased a concept 2 model E for home so I am sure the km's and time will change.

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Post by Dave2220 »

ah just found this thread so thought i`d better introduce myself.
My name is Dave, I`m 39 and live just outside Rugby warwickshire.
Used the C2 for a few years but really just down the gyms for warmups and warm downs etc, and as a crosstraining aid for running. April 2005 bought a model D for home, I`ve had to quit running for the moment :( due to a dodgy knee, so in the last 6 months my metres have been steadily going up. I love my rowing now and its a great substitute for my addiction to running which I had :)
Other hobbies include cycling, photography, following my beloved Manchester United and walking my 14 year old cross alsation Molly.
Goals on the erg for 2007 include completing first marathon, competing at BIRC...and breaking 1 million metres for the season....with the extra motivation free spririts will give me, I hopefully will cruise past that figure :)

49 year old man 6ft 2 71kg

Post by AshMcD »

A bit about me. I'm Ash, 22 years old (23 tomorrow), Work for E.On UK (or powergen) recently diagnosed diabetic type two and incredibly unfit.

Here are my vital stats (thanks to Pete at Nuffield Pro Active Health! Who is also the reason I discovered this)

Weight: A quite remakable 25st/159KG
Height: 6' 1 1/2"
BP: 158Sys/100Dia
BMI: 45.5
Body Fat: 35.7%
Hydration: 47.5
Waste/hip: 1.1
Lung PEF: 470
Cholesterol: 7.38
Blood Sugar: 6.8mmol

So, as we can see, wholesale changes need to be made if I want to see my 30th birthday!

After spending hours previous over websites/spreadsheets planning everything maticulously about how I was going to change, I'm stopping all that and following these simple rules...

Sun/Tue/Thu: Weights routine of chest press/leg press/shoulder press and rotary calf.

Cardio on the C2!

And maybe 1 or 2 extra rowing sessions if/when I can.

Over the next week I'm going to set my best time for 2k and re do it once a month, the cardio work between being a mixture of reasonably paced/intense (by my book!)

Eating, not focussing particularly on how much I eat, but what I eat, no more processed/crap sugary food. Just plenty of healthy stuff.

And that's about it really.

Not too complicated, fingers crossed and hopefully one day I'll be posting very good times up on here!
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Post by Paul7926 »

Forum Name : Paul7926

Real Name : Paul Ryan

Hi all. Just a little bit of background, I turned 40 in August of this year. I live just outside of Bournemouth which is roughly in the middle of the South Coast of the UK for those of you living in other parts of the world. I'm a computer programmer by trade although having done that since I left education all those years ago I'm totally bored of it all. I live with my girlfirend, who was the one who encouraged me back to gym and have a boy (10 years) from a previous life that I see a couple of times in the week and every weekend. I'm 5ft 11in and currently weigh in at 14st 5lbs (90Kg I think).

I only tried the rowing machine for the first time two weeks ago and now I'm totally hooked on it. I started with a 20 minute workout and managed to go about 4500m. The next time I was very close to the 5000m mark so I changed tactics and decided to see how long that would take. My first attempt at that was 20:25 and I was trying to search the web to see how that compared against 'real people' when I found the Concept 2 site. From there I found this site and here I am.

At the moment I have this mad notion that I might try and get fit enough for the 2008 rowathlon events (well the shortest one anyway) but we will see. If I'm to manage that at all then I really have to give up the smoking!!!!!

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Introducing Spikeola!

Post by Spikeola »

Hello all,

well my real name is Mike / Michael (don't mind which) am 35 years old (just), 6'3", 114kg (18st) and married to Eleanor - who I am trying to persuade to get on the C2; as she has seen what it has done to me over the past 3 weeks but I'm not sure it's going to be easy :shock:

I am a foot health professional - basically I re-trained as a Chiropodist (previously being a financial adviser) and then after a re-shuffle of the registration of all 'Health Professionals' was re-classified as a foot health professional.

I run my own practice (could be busier but only recently moved from a busy high st. multifunctional practice) from my front room at home whilst my wife works as a Primary School teacher.

We go abroad to france quite a lot as Eleanor's family have a lovely home over in Southern Burgundy. My spoken French is not great but I understand a lot more than I let the locals think :wink: The locals over there are such friendly people, I just wish we had their way of life in this country. Or at least a mix of the two!

I was a very keen rugby player having England schoolboy trials at U16 and U18 level then went to play Sale U21's (Plummy that's up near you I believe!) during my first year of university. Sale didn't pay my travel expenses (as they had promised) so couldn't afford to go back a second year so plumped for my college team instead and later back at the Old Coventrians RFC ( my school old boys team ).

I stopped playing 5 years ago due to a snapped medial and stretched cruciate ligaments in my left knee and becoming a Chiropodist (now foot health professional). I was apparently putting off potential customers when I turned up at their front doors holding a medical bag but covered in cuts and bruises - something had to give! :?

Since then I have been in the doldrums somewhat; looking for that something that brings out my competitive edge :twisted: . Often you here rugby players who have finished playing saying that they wished they'd played on for a few years more as there is nothing like a game of rugby in the world!

True, but I will say to them now (as they are hobbling away :roll: ) try indoor rowing;
the burning sensations in the lungs;
the dry mouth;
the knots in your thighs;
the twinges in your back and the downright gutsy sense of achievement when you've broken your last personally set challenge and all whilst never really doing yourself or anyone else any harm CANNOT BE BEATEN!

Add to this the pats on the back you get from complete strangers (at present) who just encourage you, laugh at/with you and cajole you into making yourself live a better healthier life -

Free Spirits wherever you are, Thank you

goals for the future - love my Wife a little more, keep Rowing, learn French and succeeding in all!
Michael Gough 42 (102kgs and keen commuter cyclist)

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Post by flatlander »

Flatlander: Real Name Andrew Richards 6ft3, 17st. 34Yo.

I live in the bootiful but flat (flatlander :wink: )Norfolk with my wife Sally and our 4 kids in a very rural setting. Couple of houses, church, school that's it.

No sporting background at all, though used to do a 30 mile daily commute by bike when I lived up near York years ago. Never found any sport I was good at, due to rubbish ball skills etc. Looked into OTW rowing as a student and enjoyed it, but found it hard to keep to the club/commitment required to train etc. Had various abortive attempts at keeping up a gym membership over the past 10 years, but only really enjoyed the C2.

Chucked in my career 3 years ago with Johnson & Johnson to live the dream and be a proprty developer. Lost the flab, as did the work myself. But I was eventually drawn back to the corporate world due to a low boredom threshold (can't sit still for 5 minutes) and the needs of a growing brood.

Currently I work as a Healthcare Improvement Consultant for a London based bioinformatics company :-s . The upshot is, surrounded by Danish pastries all the time, mixed with big hours in trains planes and automobiles = lard arse eventually :( . Determined that was not going to happen again, and remembered the C2. Bought an old model B (shabby chic!) which resides in the garage.

Could not believe I had found a sport which I seem to be OK at, I enjoy and you can measure the improvement. Feel as strong a horse!! \:D/ Fittest I've ever been - all after only 10 weeks :lol:

Discovering FS at the start of this month has capped it all off :D :D :D :D :D - what a great, inclusive bunch of people. Will definately come to BIRC 2008, and would be great to meet other FSers there.

If someone invents a sweat powered car, we will be onto something........

Re: "About me" - a place to introduce yourself

Post by Stefan »

Stefan Strand (Gothenburg on the UK forum)

So, I work as Sales Manager, North Europe for MTS (http://www.mts.com) and travel a lot for work, mainly in Germany, UK and Russia.

I live in Gothenburg, on the Swedish west coast (the front side). I enjoy sea kayaking in our beautiful archipelago. My fiancée lives in Oslo but has her permanent home in Torekov in the south of Sweden, needless to say, we commute a lot 

I have two daughters Linnea 17 and Liselott 19. They are great kids. Linnea lives about half time with me in the city and half time with mom in the suburbs and attends and all English language Senior High with natural science focuses. Liselott has moved to Luleå in the very north to study space physics (she wants to become an astronaut).

I like to participate in most individual sports, such as anything to do with rackets, snow, ice or mountains. I have had bonsai as a hobby for many years and still have quite a few. I still like travelling also on my free time, in the last year I have climbed Kilimanjaro, snorkelled in Hawaii and helliskied in Italy.

I got hooked on the erg as a warm up for gym but gradually realized its stand alone qualities. One day in 2002, a printed book with 2001 statistics from C2 was lying next to the erg in a gym in UK, very intriguing to me. I got very hooked when I found the C2 web page and realized it is a sport and that you can compete. In 2003, I participated in BIRC mainly in order to buy one of the ergs. Over the next year I became pretty serious and set all my “unbeatable” PB´s in 2004. I even won the Swedish open in my age class (3.11 on 1k and obviously not the strongest competition). Probably my best time was 17.46 for 5k.

I got sidetracked by a life change with divorce and trained only sporadic to keep in reasonable shape for some years. This year, I start getting back and again enjoy intervals, challenges, etc. CTC lead me to Free Spirits, you seem to be a friendly group and with the best looking gear!

Goals now include getting close to 6.50 and perhaps participating in some race again.
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Re: "About me" - a place to introduce yourself

Post by AlanS »

Alan Strang (AlanS)
33 years old, 5'11", 82kg

I'm a software developer for a Glasgow-based, government-affiliated financial services organisation. I live in Hamilton in South Lanarkshire with my partner Allison - we moved in together at the end of last year and are enjoying being in the same location. :)

Started rowing seriously at the beginning of 2006, when the gym installed some new cross-trainer equipment that just didn't 'fit' me. Unable to do my usual cardio work, I started rowing again for the first time in a couple of years. Initial target was to go sub-8, which I soon managed. Eventually got 7:28 without following any kind of training plan, but the easy gains soon stopped.

Started on Pete Plan in the Autumn of 2006, and completed five cycles before my competition debut at the Scottish Championships in February 2007. The result was a personal best of 7:13.2 - a PB that stands to this day. I then moved on to the first section of Pete Plan 2007, with a focus on 5km rather than 2km. This was also successful, and I set PBs over 5km, 6km and 30 min, all of which still remain. Switched back to the original Pete Plan in August of last year, and I will keep going until I go sub-7. Set a personal best over 1km at the Scottish Championships last month, and hope to PB over 2km before the end of the current season.

Other than rowing, my interests include movies, vodka, and online sim-racing. That is, racing against other individuals using motorsport simulations (such as NASCAR Racing 2003 and rFactor). I am the 'owner' of Team Ecosse, a virtual motorsport team that competes in various online leagues in various disciplines.

Enjoying being part of the community here, and look forward to contributing metres from the start of the new season.
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Re: "About me" - a place to introduce yourself

Post by Shang-Chi »

Mikkel Ellesøe Hansen

Schoolteacher for 10 years, unmarried father with a lovely "wife" and 2 daughters, 9 and 5 years old.

Before I became a teacher in Copenhagen near the airport, I have worked as cargo-chauffeur, truckdriver for Carlsberg, loading and unloding too, been in severel businesses as sales man, drill sharpener and taxidriver and in the civil defence as 1. driver on a firetruck.

I started to study when I was 23 years old, for 7 years to get my diploma as teacher, 3 years in higher preparation (access) and 4 year at the seminarium for teachers. Danish and art, but I also teaches english and sports.

I have trained since I did gymnastic in school 7 years old. swimming, judo, jiu jitsu, athletics, karaté, Taido, Capoeira and T'ai Chi. I have mostly trained Taido for 25 years in a row now.

I like to read, philosophies, science, comics, anything interesting and with a twist.

I started rowing in july 2006 where I became a rather distant member of FS. I haven't yet been in competition, but I train to go this year in Denmark.


Re: "About me" - a place to introduce yourself

Post by rpt1700 »

Art Grauer

I'm a Sr. Web Designer with Amazon.com in Seattle, came out here late September 2007 with my wife and two kids from Chicago, where I was born, raised, and spent most of my life. I was a Sox fan until the year before they won the pennant when I fell in love with the Cubs. Figures. Love the Bears, not too keen on the Packers.

I've been overweight since I was about nine years old. Back around 2000 I discovered low-carb dieting and went from 280lbs to 212lbs over about two years, then slowly gained much of it back. About two years ago I started out simple and began lifting weights. Then I scored a recumbent exercise bike and a video ipod and next thing I knew I was riding two hours a night watching back to back episodes of Battlestar Galactica. I lost enough weight to start running again and really hit the road in a big way. I guess my high point was May 2007 when I ran in the Soldier Field 10 Mile and finished in about the middle of the pack. Quite a thrill. Down 30lbs, finished my first big race, and addicted to running, I was a happy guy.

I ran through the summer of 2007. When we came out to Seattle I twisted my left leg in a weird way one day. I thought I'd messed up my hamstring so I took it easy but over time with rest the pain only got worse. I finally went in and had an MRI done and they found a bulging disk in my back, a remnant from an old injury. After loads of chiropractic, four shots in my spine, five sessions of traction and enough painkillers to sedate Motley Crue, the pain kept getting worse. On the brink of surgery I went in and had deep tissue massage and acupuncture and finally got relief. Turned out in addition to the bulging disk I had a series of severe muscle knots from my left glute down the back of my thigh and into my calf. I can walk now with much less pain. The sciatic pain from the bulging disk remains...

Anyhow, after sitting on my butt for the last ten months, I needed to get back into something that wasn't as high impact as running but would give me more bang for my buck than my recumbent bike. Besides, I'd ridden the recumbent into the ground. When I pedal it makes all kinds of noise and after a hard session there's a nasty burning smell coming from the bike. A buddy told me about rowing machines, how they were part of the workout that the actors used to train for the movie 300. I did a bit of research and narrowed my search to the Waterrower and the Concept 2. Once I found all the online features and stats I was sold on the Concept 2. And maintaining all that water sounds like kind of a pain in the butt.

I saved a few pennies and placed my order. The first time I ever sat on one was after I put it together in my garage. I fell in love somewhere between the catch and the recovery.

I'm all about stats and numbers and momentum. I'm aiming to do at the very least 5km/day until either I hurl or my face falls off.
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Re: "About me" - a place to introduce yourself

Post by hewitt »

My name is Jason.
6"3 18 1/2 stone

I am married to katherine and have 2 wonderful kids,Joe and Jenna.
i work for british aero-space .
live in Blackburn ,Lancashire(its true,it is one of the wetest places in the country)

I lived in South Africa for 12 years in Cape Town,were my love of rugby began.
came back to england 15 years ago.played for a couple of different rugby teams locally.broke a few bones.leg,ankle,nose....
like spike i got fed up of going to work with the cuts and bruises and broken nose.then i had a bad calf injury and decided not to play anymore for the sake of the wife and kids.needed to fill the void that rugby had left and found the erg.the sweat the pain the edrenaline,what a rush.i wait in antisipation of my first competition in october 2008. :twisted:

as for the furure : (The words Free Spirit sum it up) :D
enter more competitions!
buy my own erg!
stay as injury free as possible(now i have found a sport with no physical contact)
Everybody has a plan until they get a punch in the face.

51 years old.
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About Iain

Post by Iain »

Hi, I am Iain Greenwood, "Iain" here and on the UK/US Forums (Fora?) I have only just found this thread, so apologies for the delay. Thanks for the welcomes on the new members thread.

I am married to Joanna, 2 kids, Ella (6) and Daniel (2). I live in Twyford. Berks, UK and commute to London. So, between my job, travelling and kids I am a little time poor. Jo is a great supporter of my fitness training, but is less enthusiastic about time spent on the fora or at competitions. As a result, I have been less involved than I would like on the social side.

I am a 40 year old desk jockey who has not been involved in endurance sports before. I rowed in college but only at 3rd boat level, started training October 2006 to get fit. I restarted a little ergoing in April 2007. However my previous experience was always doing 2k tests. In September 2007 I found the UK Forum and started increasing my distances and dropped th 4kg I needed to make lightweight. Since March 2008 I have been on the PP coaching and am planning a sponsored marathon in 3 weeks. before the weekend my longest erg session was 18k. Slow at present, but raced (or perhaps more realistically "took part") at Basingstoke and Evesham this year and intend to race at BIRC with the ambition of beating someone.

I was a keen walker and scrambler before the kids and played local league table tennis. At college I climbed and used to hang glide, but haven't found the time since starting work and Jo doesn't think them "responsible; pursuits for a father". Other hobbies include an interest (but no great expertise) in military history and philosophy.

I love good arguments and the scientist in me likes to carry a "black & white" view of the world which I will defend. However, I am frequently corrected, at which point my beliefs change and I will start defending the new position. Apologies to the "Artists" out there, its not that I am unwilling to contemplate a contrary view, its just that I wish to explore my preferred option and tests alternatives before accepting them. I am incapable of knowingly holding contrary views at the same time. In a similar vein I do often wade in without the neccesary experience or expertise, please bear with me and correct the many errors I am bound to expound.

I hope I will get a chance to meet some of you in person and look forward to extending my virtual discourse with you all.

Kind regards

55 year old Lwt (in ability and in weight) trying to develop a technique that doesn't cause hysterics and continue to row regularly.
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Doc RowSlo
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Re: "About me" - a place to introduce yourself

Post by Doc RowSlo »

Only just stumbled upon this thread so posting here has been somewhat delayed. What a nice idea though.

My real name is Lee Winslow, b 1965 making me 44 for a couple more months. I'm "married" to the gorgeous Jacqueline, a triathlete and occasional rower, and between us we have six children (two girls and a boy each) ranging from 22 down to 7 years of age. Our house can occasionally be considered to be somewhat hectic and noisy!

We live in Stockport, Cheshire (up in the North West of England for our overseas members) and I work in Manchester as a Cardiothoracic Anaesthetist (so I do anaesthesia and intensive care for heart and lung operations).
The forum name of Doc RowSlo was actually given to me by one of my colleagues taking the mickey after yet another failed 2k test. I walked in one day to be greeted with, "Ah, good morning Dr Row Slow!" The name sort of stuck and several people still use it today unaware that I've adopted it as a pseudonym myself. I rather like it anyway as I'm more than a little fond of low rate sessions. 30r20 anyone?

Like quite a few others my sporting background is rugby union where I played in the back row. A string of injuries and work pressure "forced" me into giving up the sport in my mid twenties when I reckoned I was too old anyway. Not a great decision on my part but not the only one in life that I've regretted.
Exercsise stopped pretty much there and then and I became a couch potato putting on weight year by year. It was only a pretty bad motorcycle accident in 2002 which triggered my "mid-life crisis" and forced me to get off my arse and do some exercise.
Actually, the exercise had to wait a couple of years as that's about how long my leg injuries took to heal after the crash. In the meantime I lost about 40kg in weight doing the Atkins diet and watched my cholesterol fall by half into the bargain.

About 6 months after joining a gym in 2004 I had my first bash on a C2. This was provoked by a drunken conversation at a friend's birthday party with the same guy that subsequently came up with the Row Slow comment, in which he bet that I couldn't beat his 2k time (7:20) inside a month. I did 7:14, the 4th time that I sat on a machine and then 6:59.9 on the 5th. At this point I retired from rowing declaring that I absolutely hated it! To be fair, apart from the very first go where Jac showed me how to work the PM2 etc, all I'd ever done on an erg was four 2k tests!!

It was a couple of years later (February 2007 to be precise) that I ended up meeting John Davies, j.d. of the MAD team, at Manchester airport. We were on the same flight to South Africa and were delayed for 24 hours (yes, twenty-four hours), so got to talking. Indoor rowing came up in the conversation and all of the talk about the rowing community, racing and the rest got me thinking. Shortly after we got back from the holiday, and somewhat bored one morning browsing the internet, I found myself impulse buying a Model D C2.

The rest, as they say, is history.
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Re: "About me" - a place to introduce yourself

Post by SlowSi »

Just joined FS, been lurking in the background for sometime now thought i'd better start posting! Been really impressed by all of the great posts and support that is offered by everyone of the forum, I don't think i've ever seen anything negative posted!

Any way i'm a 39 yo male, living in the North West of England, married, 2 kids (boy and girl) all in all very content with life.

Started erging a couple of years ago, nothing serious just used it as a means to keep fit. Started to get more serious when I joined a new gym and they had c2's, previous gym had horrible water rowers, I thought I was getting fit until I went back onto the C2 !! Training mostly done using the IP but i've now just moved onto the PP - its going to get ugly very soon !!

I probably won't be the most frequent of posters, normally on training days or when the kids have gone to bed, but I will be hovering in the background !

Cheers, Si
41, 72kgs

The socialism I believe in is everybody working for the same goal and everybody having a share in the rewards. That’s how I see football, that’s how I see life - Bill Shankly

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Huw Thomas
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Re: "About me" - a place to introduce yourself

Post by Huw Thomas »

Hi All

Been rowing on C2 for 3 years now - and free spirit for a year but infrequent poster.
Thought I better say hello! Turn 50 in June 2010 and row to keep fit and satisfy inbuilt competitive spirit!

Married (Liz) for nearly 25 years and we have 2 grown up (college) kids (Sian 22) Chris (20) and we live in Milverton Somerset. I work as a half-time GP in Minehead and half time for a computer company (EMIS) and help run the http://www.patient.co.uk website.

Trained in Cardiff, played a lot of rugby at various levels, latterly mainly for Glamorgan Wanderers as a flanker until 1989 when I moved to Somerset. Knees called time on the rugby aged 34 but only took up rowing when i bought a C2 in 2007. Teach sailing at weekends to kids of all ages when not working or erging. Sail bigger boats (31 ft Rustler) but love skiffs and fast cats (Hobie 16 and Shadow) when I can.

Rowing is brilliant and extra muscle strength means I don't notice arthritic knees any more ...... although after a hard session I have pain everywhere!!

Targets - want to get to 6.40 2k if I can, with similar progress across the distances - with 910 plus for each (nonathon)

On row-pro most early evenings if I can.

Best wishes

Huw Thomas
Aged 61, 182 cm 80 kg.
Ut2 130-137 (1:59+) ut1 138-151 (1:53+) AT 152-161 (1:48+) TR 162-171 (1:38+) AN 172+ (<1:38)
The Pete Plan

Re: "About me" - a place to introduce yourself

Post by The Pete Plan »

Hi all,

As I might pop into this forum from time to time I should introduce myself. I know a few of you in person, and quite a few more virtually, but as I've been active on other C2 forums for a number of years you might not know much of my background.

I started using the concept2 in early 2001, soon after starting work after leaving University, as I had access to a gym on site. I did general gym work with the odd 10mins here and there on the C2 to begin with, then noticed some C2 ranking sheets on the gym wall so thought I'd have a go at all the distances (up to 5k). I got to know a couple of other people in the gym who used the C2s more regularly, and ended up having a 2000m race against them in the gym. I was completely knackerd after a 6:42, but one of the other guys did 6:38 and I never thought I'd be able to beat that. Later that year a colleague and I decided enter the British Indoor Rowing champs (2001) as a charity event, and on entering the race online noticed that there were other races, one of which was in my home town of Newark, and it was 6 weeks away, so we entered that too (it was 3 weeks before BIRC). In that first race I managed a 6:30, and my C2 racing career began. Since then I have raced at BIRC 5 or 6 times, this will be my third year at the Crash B's (2004, 2009, 2010), and have done the Euros once in Amsterdam. My race pb of 6:11.8 was set at the Cambridge race when it was a Grand Prix event in 2004.

Since 2003 I have been a member of the MAD team, which I founded with 5 others - Graham Benton, Kev Peebles, Steve Sanders, Mark Cheetham and Neil Ridge. The 6 of us trained together a few times in 2003 before expanding the team to form a squad to attempt the 100k relay world record. In January 2004 we set the (still standing) 100k world record with an average split of 1:15.4. I have rowed in 3 x 100k relays, and was in the team that set the 50k, 5k and 3k relay world records as well.

I am the author of the Pete Plan, though as is widely known it originated from my adaptions of the Wolverine Plan to my own training, and was named the Pete Plan by other people who started following my training. For a little over 2 years now I have been blogging my training at www.thepeteplan.com, and running an indoor rowing coaching service called "Pete Plan Coaching".

Aside from indoor rowing I have been married to Janice for getting on for 5 years. Janice ergs occasionally, and used to race (with a 7:40 in her first ever race to win the Scottish champs - I also won the men's open at the Scottish champs the same year). I work for a company called QinetiQ in the area of military aircrew survival and protection. Work involves the test and evaluation of military equipment in this area - parachutes, ejection seats, clothing, protective equipment, etc.

What else? I ran an erg venue race for the first time last year in Farnborough, Hampshire. The main race distance was 5000m with 1min sprints too. The event is planned again this year for Saturday 22nd May 2010.

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Re: "About me" - a place to introduce yourself

Post by zootMutant »

Greetings everybody!

I have a really hard time balancing goals in my life.

In my late teens, all I wanted to do was ride my bike. Figured with all that riding, I should be racing in the Olympics, so I joined a team, discovered I didn't really like pain so much and took up bicycle touring instead. :lol: I'd still be doing that, except, for some reason my parents thought I should get a job, and they stopped giving me money to bum around the country. Parents are so weird.

In my 20s, all I did was study. Figured I'd set my goals a little bit lower this time - nothing hard - maybe figure a way to integrate General Relativity with Quantum Mechanics until I figured out what I really wanted to do with my life. That didn't turn out the way I'd hoped, either. So after dropping out of college I started working as an Electrician... where each day I could step back and see what I had accomplished.

In my 30s, all I did was work. Not having a degree tended to give me an inferiority complex and I was determined to make up lost time. I worked as an Industrial Electrician... Instrumentation Technician... PLC Programmer... HMI Developer... Industrial Automation Specialist... and finally as a Systems Integrator, bringing together all that experience in support of the Oil and Gas industry.

Along the way, I somehow ended up with the world's most incredible woman as my wife. Not really sure how that happened, but I am eternally grateful. (My apologies to all the other fine women who might be reading this. I am sure you are very nice... it's just that my wife happens to be the best. Sorry.)

Now I'm in my 40s, trying to figure out how to balance the Big 4 in my life: exercise, education, work, and family. Maybe one day I'll figure it out.

In the meantime, I got fed up with the really loud music at the gym where I should have been working out (but wasn't... because of said music)... so I bought a Model D and stuck it in our bedroom. My wife didn't even blink. Didn't I say she was the greatest?

Exercise Goal - very simple - 15% body fat. (Oh, and a sub-7 when I'm 120 y/o.)

Everything else is simply a means to that end --- intervals... LSD... marathons... sprints... racing... lonely days ergging alone... RowPro... having a virtual brew with my virtual teammates while discussing our PBs. It's all gravy.

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Re: "About me" - a place to introduce yourself

Post by SpanishDave »

Name's David, 38 year old barrister from Cardiff.

Have been training in various sorts of ways for years, but never managed to make much progress in getting rid of a bit of a belly. Work & family commitments have meant that gym time has been reduced of late, so decided to get some equipment & train at home. At least am disciplined enough for that to be more than just a pious hope.

Went for the waterrower A1 over a Concept 2 largely for space & noise reasons. I need to train in my living room, and however (relatively) quiet later concept 2s are, the waterrower is quieter, and more easily stored.

Main goal from training is to have fun (easy as I enjoy exercise), keep fit & hopefully lose the belly. May fancy racing one day, but the most important competition to me is the one against myself.
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