Back home: 2x3km and easter traditions

The trip home was uneventful, luckily. Here’s a picture of our trailer ready to hit the road.

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Roosendaal small trailer. Two pairs and four singles, riggers, slides, sculls and oars, slings, two bicycles and a clothes horse

Before we left, I took a final picture of the canal. Empty because of lunch time.

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Rowing canal at Račice. Mirror flat water. 

We had become used to the mirror flat water. We were spoiled.

Today’s training was a 2x3km “at head race pace”. After a full week of rowing, I am looking forward to Monday’s rest day, but this one had to be accomplished.

We headed to the rowing club, prepared the boats, and headed for the water. Romana and the girls took it to the castle, to avoid the chop. I hesitated, but then I decided I would row on the choppy lake.

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The goal was to row a 2:13 or faster average and at least 27spm. I didn’t manage to row higher than 26spm in the first 3km (tailwind). In the heavy chop the stroke rate went down and I couldn’t even get my heart rate up.

A two minutes rest and then battling into the headwind. I had done the tailwind section in 2:08 pace, so I didn’t want to be slower than 2:18 in the headwind, and I had to work hard to achieve that. Still, I am glad I gave myself that pace target, because it gave me an incentive to keep going, even on tired legs. Even managed to get the stroke rate up to a decent 28/29 spm in the final 1000m (counting strokes).

Oh, how we’ve been spoiled on the mirror flat water in Račice. I will upload a video soon to show you.

Here’s the same picture, but instead of distance I have time on the horizontal axis.

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In the cooling down I started to accelerate because I wanted to stay ahead of Romana and Lenka in a double.

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After the session, I went to our lake shore with the boys to collect young willow branches.

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Easter tradition in Moravia

On Monday, we will celebrate a special local Easter tradition.

In the morning, men spank women with a special handmade whip called a pomlázka (in Czech) or korbáč (in Slovak), in eastern regions of former Czechoslovakia Moravia and Slovakia they also throw cold water on them. The pomlázka/korbáč consists of eight, twelve or even twenty-four withies (willow rods), is usually from half a meter to two meters long and decorated with coloured ribbons at the end. The spanking may be painful, but it’s not intended to cause suffering. A legend says that women should be spanked with a whip in order to keep their health, beauty and fertility during the whole next year.[4]

An additional purpose can be for men to exhibit their attraction to women; unvisited women can even feel offended. Traditionally, the spanked woman gives a coloured egg (kraslice) prepared by themselves, invites to eat and drink as a sign of her thanks to the man. If the visitor is a small boy, he is usually provided with sweets, and a small amount of money.

You can buy the whips in the supermarket, but the idea of course is to make them yourself. This is the idea:

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Our end results were quite good. Actually better than this picture, because we did the handle part from willow branch and not with tape. The boys did most of the work themselves.

Tomorrow, I will do a nice outing in the double with Romana. Then we’ll switch on the TV in the club house and watch The Boat Race.

 

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