So I trained; and got fit. And behold, I *was* slower!
When I returned to rowing last autumn I'd been going to the gym for
almost a year. A bit of cross-training and some resistance machines,
but mostly the ergo. Doubtless with execrable style I'd been
thrashing through 2K pieces three or four times a week, and by degrees
managed to crank my PB down through 7:30 and 7:20 to an all-time best
of 7:12 last November some time.
Then I took advice from the novices' coach at the club, and read some
things, and started to get scientific. Longer, slower pieces: 2 X
20m, 40m, 3 X 12m and so on. I got a pulse meter at Christmas and
became acquainted with UT2 and UT1 and made a reasonable estimate of
my own MHR. I did some AT pieces (3 X 6, 2 X 8) as the winter went
on. The head-race season came and I made the crew; I managed to stay
the course through HORR and one or two other long ones - we had some
success too - "Not bad for a fifty-year-old", I thought.
Now the regatta season is upon us and I'm trying to train
appropriately. I'm back to 2K pieces and with better style. But it's
a massive effort -- eyeballs bulging, chest heaving, incandescent leg
muscles, 98-100% of my MHR -- to get below 7:30! Aaagh! All that
work for what looks like deterioration! And it feels like that on
the water too (though I don't tell the other guys ...)
Did I do something wrong? Is there something I should be doing now
to put things right? It's really discouraging, and since I'm not
good at pain I'm looking at the prospect of racing with more than a
little dread -- almost as much dread as the prospect of being left out
of the crew!
Henry Law <>< I'm henry (at) thelaws.demon.co.uk