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The Pete Plan blog

Suicidal interval session

Posted by thepeteplan on September 26, 2008

With the month drawing to a close, and the MAD team sitting behind Team Oarsome on the CTC (, the orders came out this morning for those in the team who hadn’t done the challenge yet to have a go, and those who had to improve their score if they could. This month’s challenge is a 2k restricted to 24spm. My previous time was 6:35.9, and I really wanted to break 6:30. I didn’t want to waste a session just doing a restricted rate 2k though, so decided to do it as part of an interval session, the 4 x 2k that I should have done earlier this week anyway.

I decided the second rep was the best place to do the CTC, and so targetted 1:50 pace for the first as a warm up, 24spm and hopefully 6:30 for the second, 1:50 again for the third to recover, and as fast as I could at free rate for the 4th, hoping to maybe be able to break 1:40 pace. It went like this:

7:19.0 / 1:49.7 / 26

6:32.6 / 1:38.1 / 24

7:19.3 / 1:49.8 / 27

6:36.3 / 1:39.0 / 32

Totals = 27:47.2 / 1:44.2 / 27

The CTC effort on rep 2 although not the sub 6:30 I really wanted was all I could do. With the drag at 130, and being only 5’11, my power and stroke length maxed out at 1:37 at this stroke rate, and so a 1:38 average was pretty good. The third 2k started off pretty tough after the hard 2nd one. I was thinking for most of the first half that the third would be the last, but kept telling myself not to decide that yet. At half way through the third with the average on 1:52.5 I decided to get the average back down to 1:50, as I wanted to average under 1:45 for the 4, and I didn’t want to have too much left to do on the final rep. Then although the final rep was about all I could do, it felt really good. All in all a good session today.

Helen the marathon rower:

I should give a special mention to a lady from my gym, Helen. Up until a couple of months ago Helen hadn’t really used the erg before, but was challenged by the gym instructor to do a 10k once a week for 5 weeks. Helen completed those 5 lots of 10k, getting gradually faster each week, and was then ready for another challenge. The crazy idea was to do a sponsored marathon in mid October (with a little prompting I think from Tom, another gym erger). Helen built up over a couple of weeks to a half marathon, rowed I believe a little faster than she was doing the 10k’s (around 2:25 pace I believe). For most people that would be enough, but Helen wanted to be sure she could complete the marathon, and complete it well, for the charity. So over the last couple of weeks she has continued to build the distance. When I arrived at the gym at 11am this morning she was about 10k into a 33k row, and when I left she had about 8 or 9k to go. After around 2 months of erg training Helen rowed for a longer duration today than I have ever rowed! And she still plans on two longer rows (something like 36k and 39k) before the marathon! It is truely inspirational, and there was no way I was going to do less than the 4 reps today with that sort of effort going on 3 ergs down the line!


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