October CTC – A season’s best by default

It was easy to expect a season’s best. With all the splashing around in boats, I hadn’t done a serious hard 10k since the start of the erg “year” on May 1.

Normally, I do a 6k around this time of the year, as a baseline to measure progress against through the winter. But then the PaddyPower October CTC came along, a straight 10k, so I changed my plans. I will do the 6k in a few weeks time. I consulted my pace predictor:

rowsandall.com pace predictor

rowsandall.com pace predictor

The blue line predicted a 1:54.0 pace, the green line even suggested a 1:53.1 pace. Given that my PB from last March is 37:45.4, which is 1:53.3 pace, I figured I would definitely be closer to 1:54, if not even slower. So I started conservatively, at 1:56 pace, and gradually turned up the heat as the row went along.

The 1:56 pace in the beginning meant that I fell into a low stroke rate groove, which I didn’t like. I always feel that I am tiring the legs too much, and if I could lighten up and rate up slightly, and row this pace at 25spm insteady of 23/24spm, I would arrive at the half way mark fresher. But somehow this is a very difficult thing to do on fresh legs.

The hardest part with between 7km to go and 3km to go. After that I set smart intermediate targets. I arrived at the 3km to go mark with a 1:55.5 average pace, and I tried to get the average down by one tenth at a time, taking something between 500m and 700m for each tenth.

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Of course I did manage to rate up as the row continued. Here is the stroke cloud:

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I basically moved from the left part of the cloud to the right part as time passed by.

And just because we can calculate it, I will throw in a histogram as well:

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Histogram of entire session, including warming up and cooling down

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