Apr 7 2018
Wednesday – Fun in the Eight
Wednesday, April 4, on the very first training day for the CVK Brno Masters Eight, I arrived at the club and we were complete! The eight core rowers of the team were all there, and we even had my son Robin as a coxswain.
The session itself was just a steady state row, to get used to each other. We took the old Empacher eight and set out, starting with only the bow four rowing, then changing that to stroke four, and finally getting all eight together about 2km in.
The row itself was nice, despite the big waves. If I was alone, I wouldn’t have gone out in a single, but in the eight it is doable. We are not quite the shock, awe and terror inciting eight person rowing machine that we were last season (were we?), but it was a good start. If we can keep this up, our competitors should start to worry.
I wanted to start with a OTW “How To” this week, but as I was a bit disorganized, this row was a mess, from the data perspective. As I have no good place to fix the NK SpeedCoach on my place at 2 seat, I decided to take the waterproof Samsung phone and the RAM mount, which is attachable to almost any boat, and run BoatCoach. That was a good idea, but I failed to get it connected to the Wahoo Tickr X heart rate belt that I was wearing.
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Luckily, this heart rate belt has a standalone mode, so I used that.
The other complication was that it was pretty choppy weather. Good that BoatCoach has a “splashguard mode”, preventing splashes to activate the touch screen. Well … except when a drop hits the “back” button, which happened about 200m in on the first 3km leg after the warming up. The waves were fierce, and I was getting a good deal of water sprayed over myself as well.
Rowing is a great sport. You go backwards slowly while ice cold water is thrown at you. What can be more fun?
I was trying to concentrate on rowing sweep, but I do confess that the splashes doing random touch screen presses on the BoatCoach app were a bit of a distraction. This being sweep rowing, I cheekily used my left hand on a few strokes to try to contain the damage. The drops had managed to get to the window which asks if you really want to shut down the app, and I really didn’t. It requires a bit of timing, but I managed to hit Cancel just before the catch, then exit from some menus.
Then there was another annoyance after the row. I have programmed BoatCoach to offer sending Raw Data per Email before closing the app. This is a great feature. Back at the dock, you exit the app, accept the offer to email the raw data, and send them to email@example.com. Before you start your shower, the workout is on the site.
It doesn’t work like that when you row in an eight. Arriving at the dock, I exited the app, but then we had to get out of the boat in a synchronized way, and carry the boat up to the boat house, all the while with the email window open. By the time I had removed the phone and the mount from the boat, the window and the BoatCoach app had already closed.
It took some time to locate the raw data file on the phone when I was preparing for this blog. I also had to sync the Wahoo Tickr X with the phone to get a TCX file, which I uploaded to rowsandall.com to try and Data Fusion heart rate data into the workout. I also had to run the Rowsandall rowing physics module to get estimated power data. All that to be admired in the resulting plot:
(I think each data channel is slightly time shifted with respect to the other. I didn’t do a particularly good job at aligning them.)
So lots of data talk, but no real data “how-to”. Rather a “what not to do”, I would say.
It was a nice technique row in the eight though, despite the ice cold splashes.
Apr 7 2018
Saturday – A Confrontation with my Single Rowing Skills
This was another planned hard workout. On Thursday and Friday, I had to work long and I didn’t have time for rowing. I felt pretty bad about missing two sessions and was prepared to make this an extra hard one to compensate.
A nice 2x3km, with a 5 minute break in between. Instructions from the coach. First one in 26spm, second one in 28spm. He writes instructions for pairs and fours, and has explained me many times that singles rowers subtract 2 from the SPM values. So I was supposed to do this at 24spm and 26spm. Of course I forgot.
It doesn’t work like that.
I arrived at the club at 9:30, just in time for my sons to start their training. I quickly changed to rowing gear (shorts, it was only 9 degrees but very sunny).
When we arrived the lake showed its mirror flat side, but the weather forecast had predicted a pretty strong wind, so I wasn’t sure it would remain flat. When I launched and during the warming up, the water was still nice, and I didn’t notice that the tailwind slowly increased in strength.
I turned around at Rokle and got ready for my first 3k. Go!
A few minutes later it was the 20th minute in the chart below.
With around 1.6km to go, this wasn’t going well. My heart rate was very high and I was having difficulty holding the stroke rate. Also, I was rowing very hard on the first part of the drive and I had the feeling this wasn’t sustainable.
It was a head wind and it was stronger than I had expected, and little waves were starting to build.
All this was adding up in my brain, and I stopped abruptly. Then continued technique drills at low stroke rate.
At Sirka, I turned around and drank some water, then got ready for Plan B – do the second 3km in 24spm and focus on taking a light catch. Even in the tailwind, the rowing wasn’t easy. The waves were getting bigger, and I was not as fresh as I wanted.
I held that for 10 minutes, then stopped.
It wasn’t to be, today.
I did run the Quiske app during the “intensive” parts of this session, and the charts are shown above. The lines are averages over pretty short time intervals. I think they are the average over about 10 strokes maximum, perhaps fewer. The Black line is the average over the entire session. The curves look pretty close to the single stroke ones that the Quiske RowP app shows during the row. I started an interesting discussion on the in-stroke data over at the Rowing Data Analysis Facebook Group. I am thinking deeply about that first acceleration bump around 7% into the stroke. According to Kleshnev, having this bump, i.e. a local maximum in the acceleration, is good.
The wiggles around 45% of the stroke are bad. These are my fast hands away. At the end of the second 3km stretch, I did a little photo shoot. First, the selfies:
Then, the scenery:
And, finally, the rowing kit:
You cannot see the Android phone with the RowP app, because I had taken it out of the RAM mount (on the right, behind the wing rigger) to take the pictures. Also invisible is the RowP pod under the seat. Seat dynamics didn’t reveal any interesting insights, so I didn’t bother adding the pictures to the blog.
Yes, this was a confrontation with the skills of a rower who has spent more than four months on the erg. I am missing the subtlety in the catch. I am not able to dose my power wisely. I get thrown off by little waves. I guess all this will improve in the coming month.
It has to.
By sanderroosendaal • Uncategorized • 0 • Tags: 1x, fail, hard distance, OTW, rowing, single, training