First OTW 8×500 – Are my hard days too easy?

Time for the first 8x500m training of this season. I spent some time on Sunday to prepare the training plan between now and the next race, which will be a 1000m sprint on May 30. Time to get accustomed to the high stroke rates. My training being based on the Pete Plan, from now on I will push for short intervals rather than long intervals. I want to replace the “hard distance” with 1km or 2km efforts with long warming up and cooling down steady state.

I did the last OTW 8x500m a year ago, on 18 April 2014, achieving roughly 2:00 pace on average, roughly 28spm, in light wind (0.8m/s average). The temperature was 16 degrees C.

In June 2014, I did a 10x500m/500m rest which looked roughly like this:

The 10x500m done in 2014
The 10x500m done in 2014

That really looks painful1.

Today’s session had to be early in the morning, because there is stronger wind predicted for the afternoon. So I pushed off at 6:18 which is early for me.

The weather was slightly different than a year ago. Average temperature during the session 3 degrees C, and a wind speed of 1.1 m/s. So colder and slightly stronger wind. My year old report doesn’t say anything about waves. Today there were some, and there was some varying wind. Rowing from Rokle (northwest corner of lake) to Sirka (south) I had both tailwind and headwind conditions.

Here are the data:

8x500m HR and SPM
8x500m HR and SPM
8x500m HR and pace
8x500m HR and pace
8x500m Google Map View
8x500m Google Map View

|Dist_|Time_|_Pace__|_SPM__|avg HR|max HR|DPS_|Remarks
|02059|12:37|03:03.8| 19.0 | 132 | 145 |08.6|Warming up
|00499|01:58|01:58.3| 28.3 | 159 | 168 |09.0|#1; tailwind
|00500|02:00|01:59.9| 28.6 | 163 | 172 |08.8|#2; tailwind
|00498|02:06|02:06.5| 29.5 | 165 | 174 |08.0|#3; varying wind
|00501|02:03|02:02.8| 28.9 | 166 | 175 |08.5|#4; varying wind
|00500|02:16|02:15.9| 26.9 | 165 | 174 |08.2|#5; headwind
|00501|02:10|02:09.8| 28.2 | 171 | 176 |08.2|#6; headwind
|00500|01:57|01:57.0| 31.0 | 171 | 179 |08.3|#7; tailwind
|00499|01:59|01:59.2| 30.8 | 171 | 178 |08.2|#8; tailwind
|01006|06:52|03:24.8| 18.3 | 139 | 178 |08.0|cooling down

And the overall summary:

3998_____|_16:29____|_2:03.7_|_166_|_29.0_|_8.4_|_Main set
1006_____|_06:52____|_3:24.8_|_139_|_18.3_|_8.0_|_Cool down
3532_____|_20:58____|_2:58.1_|_149_|_19.0_|_8.9_|_rest meters

Hm, so I am a bit slower at a bit higher pace, but at lower HR. Should I be worried that my hard days are too easy? Whatever the answer to that question is, this a good marker for the season, although I am wondering if I should keep the 8x500m / 3:00 rest format or switch to the 10x500m/500m format. I want to see the red next time1.

I can also happily report that I made some additional changes to my CrewNerd TCX spreadsheet and above summaries are now almost produced automatically. XGPS160 and CrewNerd were well behaved today. I did “swipe up” to completely switch off CrewNerd before the row, as Greg suggested.


1Yes, I am aware that my TR/AN boundary was set 5 beats lower in April 2014. Still, I want to see more red. Red is good for me!