Tag Archives: Rowing

Retraining the mind and body to push themselves

Well my second men’s training session since Christmas. Last week it really was a struggle, a good warm up just over 2km and then a 10km Row where my energy levels fell apart between 6 and 8km but I finished in what I consider a slow time at 44min 40ish seconds. This week I wondered how I would hold up to a better attended session and mention of our first race ahead on March 10.

A good start with a warm up of 2.1km. We go through a stepped series of exercises to loosen up for using the ergs (indoor rowing machines later in the session). Then a 5km Row on 25spm and I managed 20min 43 seconds. Again I need to keep working on developing my muscle memory when it comes to inhaling and exhaling at the right time. Then we swopped with others and did a series of weights based exercises, most focusing on developing our explosive start to the rowing stroke / catch and using our legs much more than our arm strength.

Back to the ergo for a pairs exercise 500m each to simulate a racing start on 10 x 3/4 strokes at 28spm, then lengthen to 10 full length strokes at 28 spam, then drop to 24spm for remainder of 500m. Pairs swop after each 500m. We did 4 each so I had rowed 9km in tonight’s session. I got my 500m pace down to 1 min 47.8s which was very pleasing.

Final exercise and one I do not do well at – 70 press-ups and 70 sit-ups. No opting out, I did easier versions of each but managed the full count at last and then some stretching. I know I had worked out hard this evening. The title comes in because I want to gradually raise the limits I can perform to again, this is both a mental and physical challenge to calm the mind and breathing while exercising harder. I have done it previously and I want to again.

Proud to be a teacher

Yesterday, Friday 22nd March saw our school indoor rowing club achieve their second long. Distance target as a group. They have now rowed over 2,000,000 metres as a group on the Concept 2 rowing machines. The first million came up in just under 4 terms. The second million at the end of the 8th term. Individuals moved their personal totals to; 400,000m; 200,000m for our top 2 rowers.

The group also participated in the National Junior Indoor Rowing Championships (NJIRC) on Fri. 15th March. They are not the fastest of rowers in most cases but we seem to have built a reputation for “bonkers” distances. This was never my intention when I took over the club in September 2010. We have introduced over 80 pupils to rowing at the club. The machines are also used for house competitions and in curriculum PE time inc. a GCSE sport option with outdoor sessions at Fairlop Waters with London Youth Rowing.

As a teacher seeing such dedication from a small but dedicated group sends me home most Fridays with a sense of awe ending my week on a high note. We have won the PE award for club of the year for the last two years based on our dedication. Our eldest member is now rowing with a club in London and is looking to go to MossborneAcademy which specialises in rowing for his sixth form education.

The best bit is they still have to complete over 430,000m more to ver take my personal total. It is a target they are keen to beat and that is a good motivator for me to keep extending their challenge.