Monday: 4x1km/5min – 16 minutes of pain

I didn’t do my weekend homework – so I had to get to work early and do it in the morning. Visits from the US and I got to play my boss. It all went very well, except that the A/C broke down in our building and it was 28 degrees in the meeting room. We should have moved to the patio, where it was just 26 degrees.

So after a long day I waved goodbye to my guests and headed to the rowing club. I was going to do a 4x1km and tried to get some of the Masters crews to row it alongside me, but nobody fancied this training. I don’t blame them. It is quite hard. But I am doing a mini cycle with threshold training and intensive distance, hoping it will move my anaerobic threshold a bit, which should help me at the Masters Worlds, if I manage to convert that to boat speed.

That’s the theory. Besides that, the 4x1km is just a hell of a session. The big advantage of rowing with a power meter is that you can take the average power of the last time as a target, and then try to improve. There is still a weather influence. It will be harder in choppy conditions, but it is still a lot more quantitative than trying to row to feel or a target pace.

I was tired and worried that I would have low grit to complete the session, but everything turned out better than expected. The target power was a bit lower than the first three intervals of last week (because the overall average was lowered by a dramatically slow fourth interval), so it was tough but doable, and I was able to focus on technique as well.

A slight additional difficulty was the fact that the place I chose to row the workout brought me in near collision course with big tourist boats on all intervals except the first one. In the second interval I managed to cross in front. In third and fourth interval I had to row through the wake. That explains short drops in power.

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Interesting that my heart rate graph shows more red in the third interval. The fourth one was definitely a harder one.


Work Details
#-|SDist|-Split-|-SPace-|-SPM-|-Pwr-|AvgHR|MaxHR|DPS-
01|01000| 04:12 |02:06.2| 29.2| 293 | 169 | 180 | 8.1 - headwind
03|01000| 03:58 |01:59.0| 30.5| 294 | 173 | 181 | 8.3 - tailwind
05|01000| 04:08 |02:04.4| 30.6| 292 | 173 | 182 | 7.9 - headwind
07|01000| 03:57 |01:58.5| 31.1| 296 | 172 | 183 | 8.1 - tailwind

I set average pace on the lower right of my SpeedCoach and rowed this like an ergo training. Static start. Off you go, a few start strokes, then drop the pace immediately. Row slightly under the target until the average power hits target, then keep holding target power.

Here are the metrics charts. I include all of my regular ones this time. You can click on one of them to see a bigger version and then browse through the image gallery. The point I am trying to make is that it looks like pretty consistent rowing.

I am still fascinated by the trend flex charts. Here is this row, pace vs power, split by stroke rate:
For comparison, here is the power/pace behavior with every individual workout stroke:

Most of those high stroke rate strokes are from the final 250m in the final interval:

Those 250m really really hurt. I think I haven’t been that deep in the pain box in training, recently. Again, that is the power of training with a power meter. Having a target and wanting to improve is what really kept me going.

I improved by 1 Watt. One tiny Watt. In terms of energy expended, that is 1/200th of an Apple. The progress is that the way I rowed it, it felt easier.

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