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The Pete Plan blog

5000m – half way to the Farnborough 5k race

Posted by thepeteplan on April 12, 2011

We finished the first week of the 5k training group by doing a baseline 5k trial. I managed a 17:13.0 by rowing 1:44 pace for the first 3k then speeding up. Since then we have done 5 weeks of training, and have 5 weeks left to the Farnborough 5k race. So the 5k this week marks the half way point on that training journey. This is really Friday’s session, but as Andy Baines was doing this on rowpro today I decided to join him.

My plan was to go for 1sec quicker than the last 5k, and so pacing the first 3k just under 1:43 pace with a minimum target of breaking 17:10. Mentally I rowed the whole 5k relating it to the 900m reps I had done on Saturday. So for the first 900m I’d done rep 1 at 1:39.9 on Saturday, and today was rowing 1:42.9. 3seconds slower pace is no issue whatever your head might tell you about having another 4100m to go afterwards. 4100m to 3200m to go and it’s rep 2. I’d done 8 of these on Saturday all under 1:40 pace, and I’m still looking to sit on 1:42.9. Again this can’t physically be an issue going 3sec slower pace, even without a rest between. 3200m to 2300m and the same deal between body and mind – we’re still rowing around 3sec slower pace, we’re still only on rep 3 and we did 8 of these on Saturday at faster pace. Now getting into the mentally easier stages approaching 2k to go, but again take another 900m rep down to 1400m. And again down to 500m to go…

5k in 500m splits:
1:42.9 / 30
1:42.9 / 29
1:42.7 / 29
1:42.6 / 29
1:42.8 / 29
1:42.6 / 29
1:42.7 / 28
1:42.7 / 29
1:42.0 / 28
1:37.4 / 31

5k = 17:01.2 / 1:42.1 / 29

I decided approaching 500m to go that I wasn’t quite close enough to be able to push for a sub 17, but then approaching 200m to go the projected time was sitting on 17:03 so I had to push and try for it. I left it a bit late to get there, but finished strongly.

No clear cut 3k / 2k split as I had intended, but rather than try to be overly strict on the first 3k I just went with a target of keeping each 500m split under 1:43, but no faster than 1:42.5. This put me enough ahead of where I needed to be that there was no need to increase pace till 1k to go. With another 5 weeks of training to go before race day I’m happy with the point this points me.

Interval training is as much about mental preparation as it is physical, training in general is really. I like to be able to relate any hard erg session to a recent session in this way, knowing that the target I have set myself is realistic because of something else I’ve done. By making small progressive gains with the training this is always possible, and the trick simply comes in being able to read the training in the right way to set the right target for the next row.

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