Jun 2 2015
Jun 2 2015
On Monday we rigged our double and Romana and I took it for a leisurely 6km steady state. Just recreational speed:
This morning I went for the annual medical checkup. It’s still not compulsory but I find it interesting.
Morning urine: OK
Blood: Waiting for lab results
Fat: 7.9% (0.1% more than a year ago). A bit more fat on the belly and on the thighs. All within the measurement error if you ask me.
Weight: 71.8kg (0.2kg more than a year ago)
Lung vital capacity: 5.45 L – exceeding last year’s value by 2% but I believe this is all in the measurement error. Anyway, I was told it is a good value.
The doctor recommended to see a physio more often (well I never go, so perhaps I should start) because of some hard spots in my back muscles. Also she recommended to strengthen my lats. Funny, one would think that rowing would strengthen them.
Should do more stretching as well.
Blood pressure before exercise OK. Electrocardiogram OK.
Then it was time for the spiro test on the cycle. Before the test, I asked what my last year’s results were. Apparently I stopped at 355W and 182 bpm heart rate. OK. Challenge.
I reached 370W, at roughly the same HR (don’t remember by “heart” now, so will have to wait for email with test results).
But the doctor didn’t like that I had a slightly high blood pressure at one point during the exercise. Also they didn’t like how long it took (10 minutes) to drop. Hm.
So I bought this beauty, the Omron M6 AC, and will measure regularly:
Arriving at work, I had two cups of strong coffee, than sat down and measured myself. Values were OK. I think the high values during the test were an anomaly, or perhaps some fatigue, or “white coat hypertension”. The doctor asked if I had stress at work. 🙂
Difficult to judge how stressful their work is, but it looked more relaxed than what I do. 🙂 🙂
Anyhow, will keep measuring and looking forward to the complete test results.
What stresses me out is that my single is still in Hodonín. I agreed to have it on the second trailer load, assuming that he would turn around to pick up the remaining boats on Monday evening or Tuesday morning, but this didn’t happen. God knows when he will pick them up. It’s time to buy that small trailer.
May 31 2015
Went to the Italian restaurant in Hodonín again, a pre-race dinner with double partner Radek and his girlfriend. Our older children Lenka and Dominik spent the night at the Hodonín rowing club. Lenka had a good day, I think. She came in fourth in the toughest Girls 15/16 1x heat and third in the double toughest double heat. In the single, she gave it all. In the other heat, she would have qualified for the final. Dominik came in third in the boys 11 year old single, beating one other boy. In the other races he would have beaten one or two others as well.
So we had a lot of rowing to talk about over dinner. Our youngest son Robin fell asleep after finishing his desert. So we had to carry him home.
Back in the hotel there was some noise from the courtyard. There was a handball tournament in town this weekend and we happened to share the hotel with the coaches of an East Slovakia handball club. Alcohol flowed freely. We had to sleep with the window open because of the heat, so we spent some time listening to Slovakian complaints about handball referees. 🙂
Luckily we were tired enough to fall asleep despite the noise.
Men Masters Single
My Masters single race was on at 9:21 AM. I like morning races. You arrive at the race venue when the music starts, when the first crews start to carry their sculls to the dock, and you get a feeling of how the other clubs spent the night. You see people waking up, rubbing the sleep out of their eyes, and getting ready for a nice day.
My back was relatively OK.
I did my usual routine. Running a bit. Stretching. Checking sculls, boat, slide, etc. Then rowing slowly to the start.
There would be two races in the 1x mM. I was between the younger ones, in lane 4.
The river we race on is the international border between the Czech and Slovak Republics, so my lane 4 meant racing abroad, together with the guy in lane 3, in contrast with lanes 1 and 2 who would race a home race. Well, despite the seriousness of international borders the important thing was that lanes 2 and 3 were in the middle of the river, with more current, and lanes 1 and 4 were close to the slower banks.
Did a 10 stroke set at race pace and a practice start to test my back. It didn’t hurt but I still felt it isn’t 100% ok. Still, good enough to race as long as I wouldn’t force it.
Just three of us, so they put us in lanes 2, 3 and 4. I was in lane 4. As the race is a big turn, the starting line is diagonal, with me in lane 4 ahead of the two other boats.
I led out of the start. After ten strong strokes I focused on technique and was leading by a boat and a half pretty soon. Then I started to row away from the two other scullers.
I think trying to save my back doesn’t really impact my boat speed.
With 150m to go I started a sprint, so the public wouldn’t complain that I didn’t sweat.
I enjoyed listening to the moderator calling my name when I rowed the last 10 strokes.
I won with 12 seconds on number 2, Michal Doubek from my own club who put in a nice final sprint to shake off nr 3. My end time was 3:28 (helped by the current), Michal came in 3:40. The other final (older guys) had times above 4 minutes.
An easy win. I won a medal and a bottle of hand soap. Yay!
One race before me, my son Dominik finished 2nd in the boys 11/12 year old 4x+. He was the youngest and rowed in the bow seat. He thoroughly enjoyed his row, so we were both happy.
Here are the stats:
|01688|20:05|05:56.8| 19.0 |warming up
|00082|00:17|01:43.1| 36.2 |race
|00103|00:22|01:46.9| 33.9 |race
|00105|00:23|01:49.3| 32.6 |race
|00090|00:20|01:50.6| 31.5 |race
|00103|00:23|01:51.9| 30.7 |race
|00108|00:25|01:55.5| 30.2 |race
|00107|00:25|01:57.3| 30.0 |race
|00102|00:24|01:57.4| 30.3 |race
|00111|00:25|01:52.4| 30.2 |race
|00629|22:58|18:14.5| 18.9 |post-race
So the race distance is a bit shorter than 1km, which explains the fast time. Still happy with race pace and stroke rate, given that I was rowing at 95% and didn’t have to throw in the kitchen sink.
After winning the single, I rowed past the crowd. My masters double partner Radek shouted at me that I should be happy with one medal. I answered that I certainly want a second one. This only added to his nerves. He’s a self-taught rower and I guess he feels he isn’t up to guys like me who row since childhood. I think this is BS.
Anyway, he was pretty nervous for our race. Rowing being for a large part in the head, it worried me.
All lanes occupied. Olomouc in lane 1, Ostrava in lane 2, ourselves in lane 3, and Břeclav in lane 4. We did a practice start in front of Ostrava before the race. They commented that we were beatable. 🙂
They didn’t know I did this practice start just to test my back and I wasn’t rowing full force.
I didn’t know what to expect from this race. I expected all boats to be pretty close, with Ostrava in front, us probably fighting for second place with Olomouc, possibly fighting for first place with Ostrava.
Ostrava guys had big muscles and looked impressive against us skinny lightweights.
Also, I didn’t know how Radek, in bow seat, would deal with rowing the big turn. You have to row in your lane, passing a few buoys on the right side, or you would be disqualified.
Ready – go.
As we were in lane 3, we were looking at lanes 1 and 2 and had a tactical advantage at the start. On the other hand, they would have the shorter turn.
We lead the race after 5 strokes, Břeclav in lane 4 falling behind quickly.
Passed the first buoy perfectly. When we had done our turning I called a 10 stroke set on concentration.
We quickly rowed away from the pack. Both of us relaxed.
Now the boat really started to run.
With 500m to go we were certain of our win.
Still, I called a 10 stroke set at 450m to go and another one at 150m to go. We won in 3:15, with Ostrava in second place in 3:30. I could have beaten them in the single.
The first prize was a medal and a voucher for a weekend in a hotel in the Austrian Alps. Nice, better than hand soap!
After the race I we had a photo shoot organized by Radek’s girlfriend, then 2 beers in the sun, and then we prepared our boats for transport.
Here are the stats:
|02280|28:42|06:17.7| 20.7 |warming up
|00092|00:18|01:38.3| 34.8 |race
|00099|00:20|01:41.5| 34.6 |race
|00103|00:21|01:41.6| 32.9 |race
|00090|00:18|01:40.3| 32.5 |race
|00103|00:21|01:42.2| 31.8 |race
|00111|00:23|01:43.5| 31.1 |race
|00103|00:22|01:47.1| 30.8 |race
|00090|00:20|01:50.7| 30.1 |race
|00141|00:30|01:46.6| 30.0 |race
|00503|16:53|16:46.2| 16.3 |post-race
All in all a great weekend.
May 20 2015
Not quite a good training in the eight. I am advocating for doing steady state and technique exercises before doing any “real” training, but we have some team members who don’t believe in the training effect of steady state.
So we started doing a number of 2 minute pieces with 3 minutes rest, but half way the second interval our nr 2 seat called a stop and gave his opinion on the quality of our rowing. After that we did steady state and technique, mainly rowing in 4s, with 4 holding balance, and rowing with pauses during the recovery.
Focus. Focus. Focus.
Tuesday was an evening training, which was followed by a restaurant dinner for a team celebration (work related). In bed at 11pm, alarm clock at 5:30 to be in time for our morning training in the double.
The plan was 2x(250m/R1 + 500m/R2 + 750m/R3 + 500m/R2 + 250m/R1)/R5 and we were rowing alongside another double. These trainings work best with a sparring partner. The problem was that we didn’t realize that if you mix distance exercise and time based rest, and the two boats are not equally fast, the speedcoaches/CrewNerd will start to get out of sync. Good training anyway.
Radek and I were the slower double. However, because of working on technique we didn’t go higher than 30spm, while Eda + Ludek were doing the shorter pieces at 35spm and the longer ones at 26spm. So you could say that we were rowing more effective. 🙂
|Dist_|Time_|Pace__|_SPM__|avg HR|max HR|DPS|Remarks
|02018|14:44|03:39.0| 20.5 | 123 | 157 |06.7|warming up
|00250|00:55|01:50.0| 30.0 | 140 | 160 |09.1|250m
|00499|01:48|01:48.2| 27.8 | 167 | 172 |10.0|500m
|00748|02:46|01:50.9| 27.4 | 166 | 176 |09.9|750m
|00500|01:54|01:54.0| 26.9 | 155 | 171 |09.8|500m
|00249|00:56|01:52.3| 26.9 | 152 | 165 |09.9|250m
|00247|00:56|01:53.2| 27.9 | 153 | 166 |09.5|250m
|00504|01:56|01:55.2| 28.2 | 167 | 175 |09.2|500m
|00753|02:50|01:52.9| 26.6 | 165 | 176 |10.0|750m
|00504|01:49|01:48.1| 28.5 | 164 | 176 |09.7|500m
|00251|00:54|01:47.7| 31.2 | 164 | 177 |08.9|250m
|02633|14:06|02:40.6| 19.5 | 144 | 177 |09.6|cooling down
May 15 2015
Double with Romana today. BB King died. I realize we go faster together than Radek and I yesterday … looking forward to racing the mixed double with her.
Special atmosphere on our lake. The International Youth regatta coming weekend, so lots of youth talent training today.
May 14 2015
Went out in the double with Radek today. He’s a self-taught sculler and he thinks he’s not good, but in fact he’s an eager learner and a pretty good rower.
As we are racing together in two weeks, I decided we would do some rate ladders. We would do 1 minute on, 1 minute off, the “on” minutes starting at low rate and gradually increasing.
In the first run there was tailwind, but there also were pretty big waves in the second half of the lake, so we stopped at 28spm in the tailwind part. When we turned around we discussed technique a bit and we agreed to focus on “hands away” and try to get it right >70% of the strokes. We succeeded. The wind gradually calmed down during the practice but we weren’t able to take the stroke rate much above 30. Still, I think this was a great success given it was the first time we were pulling hard together.
After the two sets of “1 minute” we did start practice, and then we fartlekked back to the finish, turned around and rowed to our boathouse. A very nice session.
| Dist_ | Time_ | Pace__ | _SPM| avg HR | max HR | DPS | Remarks
| 01974 | 11:01 | 02:47.4 | 19.4 | 130 | 155 | 09.2 | Warming up
| 00342 | 02:51 | 04:10.1 | 23.5 | 138 | 158 | 05.1 | 24spm, tailwind
| 00259 | 00:59 | 01:54.1 | 24.9 | 159 | 168 | 10.6 | 26spm, tailwind
| 00270 | 01:00 | 01:51.1 | 27.3 | 165 | 173 | 09.9 | 28spm, tailwind
| 00280 | 01:00 | 01:47.1 | 28.0 | 170 | 175 | 10.0 | 28spm, waves. tailwind
| 00286 | 01:01 | 01:46.6 | 27.4 | 172 | 176 | 10.3 | 28spm, waves, tailwind
| 00263 | 01:00 | 01:54.0 | 27.2 | 166 | 177 | 09.7 | 28spm, waves, tailwind
| 00219 | 00:59 | 02:14.5 | 21.8 | 152 | 165 | 10.2 | 22spm, waves, headwind
| 00223 | 01:00 | 02:14.2 | 24.4 | 172 | 176 | 09.1 | 24spm, waves, headwind
| 00247 | 01:01 | 02:03.7 | 25.4 | 172 | 179 | 09.6 | 26spm, waves, headwind
| 00246 | 01:00 | 02:02.0 | 27.2 | 177 | 180 | 09.0 | 28spm, headwind
| 00253 | 00:59 | 01:56.7 | 29.0 | 177 | 183 | 08.9 | 30spm, headwind
| 00256 | 01:00 | 01:57.3 | 29.6 | 178 | 182 | 08.6 | 30spm, headwind
| 00265 | 01:01 | 01:55.1 | 30.4 | 174 | 182 | 08.6 | 30spm, headwind
| 04259 | 25:51 | 03:02.1 | 21.6 | 154 | 181 | 07.6 | starts, fartlek & cooldown
May 8 2015
Meetings in Brussels. No training.
More meetings in Brussels. At 3pm, my old friend Arjan picked me up and we drove to Eindhoven, through rainstorms.
When we arrived at ERV Beatrix, my old club, the rain and wind had disappeared. The Eindhovens Kanaal was quiet as always. We took the club double that we always used to row in, adjusted the footstretchers and off we went.
We hadn’t rowed together in 7 years. The secret plan is to start in the C category at the Masters Worlds. First 2km warming up and drills. Then 4×12 minutes “L4” style:
| Dist_ | Time_ | _Pace__ | _SPM___ | avg HR | max HR | DPS | Remarks
| 04020 | 17:05 | 02:07.5 | 19.7 | 125 | 166 | 12.0 |
| 00450 | 02:00 | 02:13.3 | 18.1 | 137 | 155 | 12.4 |
| 00461 | 02:01 | 02:11.3 | 19.8 | 155 | 160 | 11.5 |
| 00481 | 02:00 | 02:04.8 | 20.9 | 158 | 161 | 11.5 |
| 00622 | 03:00 | 02:24.8 | 18.3 | 148 | 161 | 11.3 |
| 00456 | 02:00 | 02:11.7 | 19.6 | 150 | 159 | 11.6 |
| 00231 | 01:00 | 02:09.8 | 20.8 | 158 | 167 | 11.1 |
| 00240 | 00:59 | 02:03.0 | 21.9 | 165 | 169 | 11.1 |
| 00428 | 02:00 | 02:20.3 | 18.6 | 157 | 167 | 11.5 |
| 00451 | 02:01 | 02:14.1 | 20.0 | 153 | 164 | 11.2 |
| 00477 | 02:00 | 02:05.8 | 20.7 | 162 | 165 | 11.5 |
| 00646 | 03:00 | 02:19.4 | 19.1 | 155 | 163 | 11.3 |
| 00447 | 02:00 | 02:14.2 | 20.3 | 157 | 164 | 11.0 |
| 00065 | 01:00 | 07:44.1 | 12.4 | 155 | 160 | 05.2 |
| 00965 | 09:52 | 05:06.8 | 18.4 | 135 | 153 | 05.3 |
| 00419 | 01:59 | 02:22.1 | 20.3 | 148 | 154 | 10.4 |
| 00408 | 02:00 | 02:27.1 | 18.2 | 150 | 153 | 11.2 |
| 00441 | 02:01 | 02:17.1 | 19.1 | 151 | 163 | 11.5 |
| 00672 | 03:00 | 02:14.0 | 19.8 | 161 | 167 | 11.3 |
| 00431 | 02:00 | 02:19.1 | 18.3 | 151 | 158 | 11.8 |
| 00216 | 00:59 | 02:16.4 | 19.7 | 155 | 159 | 11.2 |
| 00220 | 01:01 | 02:18.9 | 19.8 | 156 | 158 | 10.9 |
| 00344 | 01:59 | 02:52.9 | 20.8 | 150 | 164 | 08.3 |
| 00412 | 02:01 | 02:26.9 | 18.2 | 149 | 157 | 11.2 |
| 00437 | 02:00 | 02:17.2 | 19.2 | 155 | 160 | 11.4 |
| 00524 | 03:00 | 02:51.7 | 21.1 | 160 | 169 | 08.3 |
| 00171 | 02:00 | 05:51.3 | 18.9 | 125 | 128 | 04.5 |
| 00152 | 01:00 | 03:16.9 | 19.7 | 122 | 127 | 07.7 |
| 02481 | 15:01 | 03:01.6 | 20.8 | 136 | 169 | 07.9 |
I guess the short summary is more useful:
It was good fun. Arjan remarked that he was feeling the zen of rowing again, so that made me happy. We discussed technique a lot and were working really hard and concentrated to get our strokes together.
What worked: We managed to get a nice swelling stroke and make the boat run. Arjan managed to time the finish better with me.
What didn’t work: We didn’t stick to the prescribed stroke rates. Instead, they tended to drift up by 1 or 2 spm. Sloppy tap-downs were not solved successfully. He didn’t pay me 1200 EURO for a successful rowing clinic. May not become a rich freelance rowing trainer. 🙂
What I would do differently next time: Nothing I can think of now!
I was scared by how narrow the Eindhovens Kanaal is. I guess I have really become a lake dweller:
Then we drove to his home in Weert, picked up some Chinese take away for dinner (another traditional thing that we used to do in our student days) and ended up spending a nice evening with his family.
Noisy GPS data because I had left the XGPS160 at home.
Took the 6:29 train to Amsterdam.
No rowing training but something that may come in useful in rowing as well. For a change I can write about my business trip. This day I was in a coaching training at Honeywell in Amsterdam. The training was given by Inside Out, and it was excellent. Their founder is a tennis coach, and the guy who was training us was a qualified ski coach. So of course I chatted with him about coaching and self coaching in sports. It was very energizing.
A very simple thing that works is to write down after each session what worked, what didn’t work and what you would do differently next time. May try to implement it in my blogs.
At the end of the day I took the 8pm flight to Vienna and the take off from Amsterdam was great. The weather was very clear and beautiful, the plane flew right over the area where I grew up and of course with my seat nr 6A I had a fantastic view of Amsterdam, Diemen, Weesp, Naarden, the IJmeer, Gooimeer, IJsselmeer, all the way up to the Noord Holland and the Wadden Sea. An unexpected present.
The view was something like this, but much more beautiful:
Arrived home at midnight.
Now I need to pack for three days of racing and drive to Piestany.