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The Pete Plan blog

English IRC – 2nd March 2014

Posted by thepeteplan on March 5, 2014

Sunday was the 2014 English Indoor Rowing Championships. Since my last race at BIRC I had been to the US twice (once on holiday, once for work), with the 4 transatlantic flights that entailed, and been out ill for a week. Despite that, training has gone well so I felt confident of being in at least as good form as I had been at BIRC when I set a 2k time of 6:26.2.

The long drive up to Manchester was done on Saturday, with dinner out from some rowing team mates then a night in a hotel due to the early race time on Sunday. I didn’t sleep well, and woke with a headache. Not a good start when you’re racing at 0930, earlier than I ever like to train. I got to the race arena around 0845, and began warming up around 0905. I good 3500m warm up and I felt ready to go.

I always like to start a race with 7 hard strokes to get the stroke rate up, get the flywheel spinning, and overcome the time lag with the race start. I over-cooked it a little, hitting 1:18s on a couple of strokes and taking the lead before backing off the pace. But it got me off to a good start, and helped me to maintain a good stroke rate throughout the middle of the 2k. Going through 500m a little under a 1:36 average I was right where I wanted to be, and continued pulling 1:37 / 1:38 through the middle of the race. I just kept strong and believed in the score I knew I could achieve, and didn’t think more than the next 20 strokes at any point. It wasn’t until I was inside the final 500m then I decided I really wanted to get the seasons best, and beat the time from BIRC. I gradually increased pace, and pushed on hard for the last 200m, hitting mainly 1:30s and 1:31s down the final stretch. The final time was my best in maybe 2 or 3 seasons.

2k = 6:25.4 / 1:36.3 / 33

500m splits:
1:35.9 / 34
1:37.8 / 33
1:37.6 / 33
1:34.0 / 35

I am happy with the time and the execution, but perhaps should have remained stronger through the middle and pulled 1:37s more than 1:38s. But I finished strongly, so that might just have cost pace in the final 500m and left me no quicker overall.

Still I am some 13.6 seconds off my race pb though, so there is a lot of work to be done. But having been there before it makes it easier to get back towards there again. I know what needs to be done, and I know how to do it.

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