Jan 5 2021
November, December and year overview
Did anyone have a normal training year this year?
Of course not, but allow me to summarize what was different for me:
- The year started pretty normally, but then we had a global pandemic, featuring being in lockdown during March and April, then easing up, and back in lockdown from November until now
- With gyms closed, I needed to find alternative ways
- As a consequence, there was no racing, so I had to reset all my training targets
- No travel since March, which in principle could have been beneficial for training hours
- Changed job and moved to another country
So how does this year compare to other years in terms of training. Here’s a screen shot from the Strava/Elevate App data:
The absolute top years were 2016 and 2017. Those also happen to be the years in which I did play a lot with lactate measurements, and I put in pretty long indoor rowing steady state workouts during the winter. It’s actually my goal to get back to that level, as these were also the years in which I won the most races.
Looking at the total number of hours, 2020 was pretty similar to 2018 and 2019. One could say that without travel and without having to commute between work and how, I could have put in more training hours. But I guess these were reduced by having fewer races to prepare for (zero, actually) and the energy I put into starting my new job and moving internationally. Also, in the first half of October, I was in quarantine with my family, so I couldn’t go out to train. Let’s look at the year in detail.
So, on average, I was working out 5 hours a week, but in “good” months, I was doing closer to 6 hours. That means that if I could stick to only “good” months, I would be able to get 50 more hours of training in in 2021. So that should be my target (as well as finally competing in some races again)!
The other things I notice when looking at those charts: I thought I did much more swimming in the beginning of the year, but it is actually just a few sessions in January and February. After June I haven;t done much indoor rowing. I did more cycling over the summer months. I am making good use of the mild winters here, closer to the North Sea, and getting in a large amount of on-the-water rowing instead of erging, which I very much enjoy. My rower is in a storage until February, and unless we get some real winter weather, I have no intention of taking it out of storage.
A final way to look at the year is through the performance chart. The Performance Manager is based on scientific literature on modeling human performance. A good description can be found here. You can see that I did a pretty good build up of fitness from January to the end of April. Actually, the second half of the first lockdown, when we were allowed to row OTW in singles again, was pretty good. From that moment on, I had some stress with finishing my old job and onboarding for my new one, moving house internationally, etc, and I am happy with every workout I got in. I completely stopped training when I was quarantined. After that, it has been a gradual build-up, taking a mini break around Christmas, and now looking at how to continue building my fitness. I think the most gains are to be had from making the workouts a little longer, not by adding more training days.
November and December
Much of November and December, I have been on a simple schedule. I start the week with a run, then a weights session, and close it off with one or two OTW sessions during the working week, a long row on Saturday (mostly in the single) and a technique row on Sunday.
|17-11||Run||I ran a 10k in Twekkelo|
|18-11||Hard 10K on the water||It was windy, there was wind, I had a conflict with a angler, and a motor boat waked me.|
|21-11||Steady State||I did 20k! Nice session|
|23-11||Lunch Run 12K||I tried to do a new “regular” route at Buurser Zand but got lost a little bit|
|26-11||4x8min/4min OTW||208W, 2:12 pace, HR 168/180 (avg/max)|
|30-11||Lunch Run||At Buurser Zand, 9k had to cut it short because of time pressure|
|3-12||4x8min/4min OTW||197W, 2:16 pace, HR 172/181 – I am getting worse!|
|4-12 Morning||Muddy Mountain Bike Ride||26K, my colleagues were putting me to the test, max HR 186!!!|
|4-12 Afternoon||Slow Steady OTW||9.3K, still tired after the bike ride|
|6-12||Steady State OTW||10k|
|9-12||Steady Run||10.5K, finally did the Buurser Zand round as intended|
|11-12||A hard 8k OTW||2:22 pace at 23SPM, not very impressive. Strong wind from the east. HR 172/181 (avg/max)|
|12-12||Steady State OTW||12.5km in the single, low visibility|
|14-12||Steady Run||Second complete Buurser Zand round|
|16-12||Steady 1x OTW||Waked by freight ship, 12k|
|18-12||Steady||15k in 1x|
|19-12||Technique in the 2x||10.5K|
|20-12||Technique drills||8.5K in the 2x|
|21-12||4x8min/4min OTW in 1x||NK Oarlock battery empty, had to stop early due to barge, forgot to wear HR meter|
|24-12 to 28-12||Various easy hikes||Taking a mini break from training|
|28-12||Steady in the 1x||11.5K|
|29-12||4x8min/4min||On mirror flat water, 210W, 2:15 pace, HR 169/178 (avg/max)|
|30-12||Steady in the 2x|
|31-12||17x1min/1min||285W, 2:01 pace, HR 163/180 (avg/max)|
|2-1||Steady state in the 2x||Best row of the month.|
|3-1||Technique in the 2x||Struggle to row well|
|5-1||Lunch Run||Buurser Zand round|
They closed the gyms in the middle of December. That made sense from a Corona perspective, but I am missing the weights sessions. The gym I go to was already pretty empty (there was a maximum number of visitors), and I cleaned my hands and the machine before and after every exercise.
Some random photos from my runs and rows:
Jan 10 2021
Thursday, January 7th
A fierce 4×10 minutes at 1 minute rest. We started with a 10 minute warming up, then did four sets of 10 minutes at “hard steady state” pace.
Workout Summary - media/f655a97132-20210107-103134o.csv
This was a cold Thursday morning, and my hands were cold even when I came off the water. The advantage of rowing in the morning was that we were sculling on a mirror. I was pretty happy technique wise.
I had not charged my heart rate sensor, so the heart rate got stuck at a high level somewhere in the third interval. Happy with the power levels I sustained. This was at about my predicted level for 40 minutes, but I found it very doable. Perhaps it was the nice flat water.
I had a window between my morning meetings and the afternoon meetings, so I guarded it and was able to get out on the water. Did a steady state of 13.5km.
Minimum temperatures below zero and it was around 0 by the time I wanted to go rowing. I decided to do a run instead. I found it a little too cold. It’s going to warm up next week, so a weekend with no rowing is not a bad thing.
This was a 10k run from home. I wanted to get to trails as fast as possible, then do a loop around the east part of the town and return over Gronausestraat, but somehow I missed a turn and ended up in town again, so I had to prolong my loop through the center. As we’re in a lockdown, that wasn’t too bad. Run through empty shopping street with closed shops. The part through the farm fields was nice, but the trails were not soft. I like soft trails, they are better for my knees.
In the afternoon, Romana and I walked through the neighborhood where we will move to in February. We’re very excited to finally be in a house of our own again.
This part of Enschede, Roombeek, was destroyed when a fireworks bunker caught fire and exploded in 2000.
The area was subsequently built up completely new, and the mix of larger and smaller houses, small business and studios for creative jobs is pretty nice.
Two “sessions”. The first was a nice trail run at Buurser Zand, along the Buurse beek brook. It’s a slow run because the grassy trail is very uneven, but it’s a nice hour in nature.
I usually run this loop in the opposite direction, but I think it’s better in the direction I did today. It starts with a few straight, longer stretches on bike paths and hard roads, then a long stretch along the water, and by the time you get tired, you return through forest and heath, quickly changing views which make time seem to pass faster. Here’s a picture of the stretch along the water:
Yep, that’s uneven and muddy. Not for fast running, but a good steady state workout.
In the afternoon, the sun came out and I decided my son needed some photons and some fresh air. The lockdown and online schooling has made them very lethargic.
That was a easy bike ride, but it still made me sweat lightly, so I guess that’s some work done. If you look closely, you can see that we crossed the border into Germany. We didn’t kiss or hug anyone there, just road through it over back roads. I guess that’s ok.
By sanderroosendaal • Uncategorized • 0