Thursday, 31 October 2013

Another crack at the mile

This time I had a plan  :-D  - but not the result I wanted  :cry:


So with the Mile TT on Monday lunch and the 30r20 PB on Monday eve - even though I played protection on my legs - last night when I went to bed they were still feeling like lumps of lead - so much so I coated them in deep heat in the hope the body would repair overnight - I think it helped - but maybe not enough - I even avoided the stairs in work and used the lift up one flight  :oops: still last chance saloon to down I went and carried out the race warm up - throat dry from the bug I've been carrying and breathing not the best. Took a moment to compose and set up the mile - focussed on the plan which I had posted in front of me and set of.

The plan


First few strokes a bit erratic (must do some practise on this) then after bumping around I found my pace for the first 400m and sat on it – hit target – OK next 400m and target reduced so backed off – hit the split bang on again – third 400m time to put a little squeeze on – but this is where the legs started to fight back – OK just keep it going – slightly off target (by 0.3) now time to call in the big guns and see what wulfy could do – not as much as I hoped – I did drive down to 1:26’s and 1:27’s but couldn’t find the 1:25’s I wanted to really fire home – thin this was more down to the bug than the legs – maybe both – finished and tried to release the straps – took a moment and then went through a very slow 1k cool down.

The result

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Play it again Sam - 30r18 with bumps

but a lot heavier today - second set of 14r18 really slow in comparison to yesterday - hoping this will finally shift the bug though - that is how it works yes?


Nearly a hundred meters less for the same work load hmmmm - and I had a decent nights sleep last night

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

30r18 with bumps - protection racket

Well yesterday’s 2 PB's certainly brought the "bug" in my system out - sound like Barry White today :lol: at least that might mean I am getting over it. So today with that in mind and the potential for a more aggressive attack on the mile I dropped the planned distance to a simple 30min with two 1 min "bumps" at 14 and 29 minutes. Gentle 2k warm up with the foot plate showing two holes instead of one quickly came to a halt as it was evident that the ankle (with the recently torn tendon) was under pressure at the catch - so dropped back to one hole showing and carried on - the ankle definitely didn't like it though and remained "niggly" throughout.


So 14min 1min 14min 1min set up with targets of HRR 72% for the 14minutes @18 and 1:29.0 pace @33 for the minutes. All well apart from the new tear in my butt skin which caused a little discomfort - more so in the minute bump where I found myself readjusting my seating as I went along. Took about 3minutes for the HR to drop back to 72% after the bump and the split was showing 1:50.7 at that point. Wasn’t looking forward to the last minute due to empty legs and butt tear - but found myself in an almost zen like place when it came about - just sat there starring at the monitor showing 1:29 split ... hmmm maybe the mind has turned a corner


Hopefully that will keep the blood pumping while allowing the old legs to recover a bit now

Monday, 28 October 2013

30r20 PB - I seem to be ok at these

So although my "race pace" (2k and mile) is absolutely shocking at the moment - it would seem the engine and power is ticking nicely - may need a chat with Q to see what's going on,

This was planned to be an online dual with Andrew Jones - although he ended up bowing out due to social commitments - I don't have that particular issue - so as I'd already cleared the time with the mrs due to a bank holiday here - which although I worked I was able to get out early - then home and built her a blazing fire which I was sitting in front off all comfy - but managed to drag myself upstairs so to change into the long sleeved cold gear top and full length leggings - it's cold in my erg shed!

Oh the row - yes - well like I said had planned this with Andrew - he had his target - I had mine (1:43.3 8706m) - so after the warm up I plugged in the pace man and set off - took me a good few minutes to settle - worrying that the mile PB (although a slow one) was going to come back at me from lunchtime - it didn't - pumped along quite nicely (although 13 minutes from the end the toes started getting cold lol) then I realised that I could beat what was the old free rate Irish 30min record if I dug in (8737m) - so I did - ok 602 strokes in the end - but checked with the official adjudicator and that is good to go for PB no.2 today 

Poor little sick boy - CS Mile - PB

Well I do not seem to have travelled well - Bristol was a disappointment time wise - and after getting back I've felt pretty crap - put this down to the trip and the booze on the Sat night - but towards the end of the week it was still lingering - then Friday the baby got sick - poor thing sounds like she's been out smoking and drinking all night as she's completely lost he "voice" either that or she's been doing some TT's on the erg and got ergers cough - that meant Friday and Sat night I slept in her room in a single bed and by Sunday I had not had much sleep - had a crick in my neck and my own cough and cold - lovely - during the three days I managed to HD on both Friday (11 min into a 30min TT @1:40pace) and Sunday (3k gone on the second set of 4by4k @1:40 pace) suffice to say confidence is shot ..... but there is a small matter of the challenge series - and while the wulf may be more gummy than fangy at the mo - I need to keep in contact with Ollie - that meant anything under 5min would see me keep the lead - but I wanted to try out my bravery badge and see if I could hold 1:31's for the first 1200m and then wind it in - almost but not quite - for some reason in my last few rows I've found my heels catching on the seat when I come in to the catch - that along with not feeling great means I've bagged a time - will I go again .....

Thursday, 24 October 2013

10k r18 HRR 70% - My ankle - My Bolts

Firstly the row - 10k @18 HRR 70% - sub1:50 split (just) - got to like that - heart pumping like a good un  :-D



the ankle report - apparently rest would be good - anyone know what "rest" means?



My new bolts for the model C came - oh no wait - i ordered a seat - two nuts and two bolt hanger things but no bolts FFS! Of course the funny thing is - I only ordered the seat cos I didn't want to pay 7 for postage for just two bolts - so thought I might need a new seat soon and got it  :lol:

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

4by750 3r PB - first red post Bristol

Q decided we'd had enough rest from Bristol - well he gave us one day of for travelling and then two 70% HRR sessions - lucky us - so back into the red sessions today - 4by750's - last time I did these was 5th Oct where I did two lots back to back - but PB'd the first session at 1:30.7 ave and Q wanted us to hit the first two reps at PB pace - and what Q wants I try to deliver.


Legs still have an ache in them from either Bristol or the floor laying which cost me seconds in Bristol - but i managed to grind through that - which left me with carbon poisoning to deal with as the lungs tried to cope - luckily they managed it and on the final rep I was able to dig in a little - had to back off slightly when I felt a small twang in my knee - but then drove on again as it was just old age and nothing more.

(ignore the stroke length on the photos - that seems to keep going in the rest period although everything else stops - well apart from the HR)

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

60r18 HRR 70% - too much going on in my head

Which resulted in the HR bouncing up and down all over the place – felt like dumping the handle a few times but managed to crack on with it – got to at least try and keep in contact with the Q-Power ladies as they pile the meters on :lol:


Had to get in work early - combine morning - lunch - afternoon breaks and will leave late to get this in  :roll:  :lol:

Monday, 21 October 2013

Back on it after Bristol - 40r18 + 2x1min

Reflections on the weekend – I’m tired – other than that I think I may have the answer to the legs feeling soo empty on the first 2k – I spent 8 hours laying floors last Saturday (something I don’t do very often – maybe yearly?) and as I had a back back/hip I took most of the load (getting up and down) on the thighs and remembered this morning that it took me a good three/four days to get that ache away – coupled with the 30r20 that was probably enough to take the edge out of me. So lesson learnt and not to be repeated.


So on to today – session was 3by20min 70% then 2x1:00 [1:00] at 2k -2 rr +1 (so1:28 @34) – as I can’t fit that into my lunch I coupled together the first two 20’s and made a 40min r18 70% (146) then hit the sprints. Still have a bit of an ache in my hip/back but hopefully that will clear up in time. Still haven’t had the full results back on the ankle – Dr called me last Thursday but I lost signal half way through convo – she mentioned a torn ligament/tendon – must call back again.

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Bristol Indoor Rowing Championship

Firstly a massive thanks to the City of Bristol Rowing Club for putting this on - and all the people at the sports hall who helped out - without these guys and gals there would be know racing. Also a big "hi" to all those who I talked to yesterday - the day flew by as we all chatted away - and for me it had the potential to be long as my first race was at 10:00 and last at 16:10.

Also a beyond massive thanks to Q (James) without whom there would be no Beowulf - without whom there would be no "Q-Power" yesterday was the first time the team got together in such a large group to race (Ollie and Carolyn having raced together in the Worlds - and Eddie, Ollie, James, Jason and myself had got together for row24) and I think it would be fair to say it was a success (you can read about the teams haul here [url] [/url] ) well done to all the team and all of those who raced yesterday.
OK - so what actually happened from my point of view - well this day last week I wasn't even sure I would be racing - back/hip issues having flared up on top of a bad ankle and training not exactly going to plan meant it was going to be an interesting run in :lol: luckily I settled some nerves on the Monday with a PB in the 30r20 and then just cracked on with training. Friday morning it was also a close call as to whether or not I'd be racing as due to local floods and torrential rain I was struggling to make it to the airport on time - in the end I had to drop the dogs at my in-laws and the Mrs had to get them to the kennels (if you don't know I have 4 large dogs - they weigh in at a combined weight of 130kg - and so need to be kennelled when I am away) but I did make it and met up with Dave Sheehan (recent Q-Power recruit) and we flew to Bristol and then got to the hotel and the team began to assemble along with Mat from sub7. 

We had a short training session at the hotel - 4 model E's in the large gym and two model C's (one of which didn't survive a bit of relay training - see previous blog entry) then it was a team meal and bed.
Race Day

So race day – up for a quick paddle about 7:30 – myself and Dave managed to blag our way into the gym 15 minutes before opening – must have been the gift of the gab – well I have kissed the Blarney stone ;o) we did a 3k paddle and finished before the rest of the team managed to get in :lol: then breakfast and got ready to go to the venue. Once there I registered (I think I confused them having entered 2 2k’s) and had to jump on the warm up machines – I lucked out as the one I got was one of only three where the monitor was working. Through the race 5k warm up and the sweat was pouring – seemed very warm at the warm up machines ….. Then onto the race machines – which luckily where in a lot cooler area of the hall. I was lined up in the middle – there where in fact three heats of the open and we were unsure if they were seeded or not – I was in the middle heat – so settled and waited for the start – the plan was to hit the first 500m at 1:30/31 and see what the old body had – I got to about 200m to 300m in and I knew it was going to be a difficult day in the office – the legs where complaining far too early and I took the decision to back off to the safe zone of 1:33’s early. At this point a cox decided to input some advice – I most politely turned to them and mentioned that I would be OK for now thanks (OK – they were not exactly the words I used :lol: ) I think at this point I may have been 6th or 7th in the race - the 1:33’s though turned to 1:34’s and just before the 1k came up and Jon Goodall (who did a fantastic job on the commentary I must add) started walking towards us and said something along the lines that we had to stop – I figured out that the software had gone down – nothing on the race part of the screen – but the monitors where still recording and as soon as Jon spotted that he said carryon and we did. Through the 1k now and I was aware that before the monitors had gone I was leading – so I carried on with the 1:34’s (maybe 1:35’s)  with the intention of picking it up at 500m to go – which I did – I think I pulled it down to a 1:30 split for the last 500m which was good enough for a 6:11.4 – miles off what I wanted – miles of my PB and 2 seconds off my time from July. But it turned out good enough to win the Open – which I suppose wasn’t too bad for a nearly 40 year old ex-gym rower. Not 100% sure why it wasn’t there – I wasn’t deliberately holding back for the second 2k or the triple challenge – it just was not there on the day – lungs and heart where fine – legs where the issue.

As soon as I finished I knew I would be racing the second 2k (30-39H) not to win it – but just because I wanted to see what it felt like to race 2k’s in one day – had no idea if I could get through it so the idea was to sit on 1:36’s and see what was left – that turned out to be 1:36/1:37 until 500m to go – it was quite a surreal race for me – no pressure – no expectations – and I just found myself listening to the commentary on Ollie’s race – was aware of him picking it up at 500m to go and thought I might help him race home if I went as well – which I was going to do anyway – but it gave me the impetuous to drive it home thinking it might just help push him through that 6:10 barrier – I have no idea if it did help or if he was completely unaware – but it was fun and I got 1:30.5 for the final 500m at r34 (having rated 30 for the first 1500m at 1:37.1) and grabbed the “bronze” (although there was only a “medal” for first). Ollie bagged himself a PB and the Gold with the fastest time of the day at 6:09.4 which I was delighted for him as he’d worked so hard for it. Dave managed Silver and so Q-Power had a clean sweep.

So then there was the relay which we brought in Sean Dickinson for (rather a good call I thought :o) ) we had a quick practise in which I made it quite clear that if anyone missed the seat they were to get off straight away and let on another rower ….. err we’ll wait for the video on that - :lol: Q-Power won the Gold with a time of 5:17.6 – about 18 seconds slower than we intended due to change overs we think :lol:


Next for me was the 1k as part of the triple challenge – Ollie hadn’t entered this and my attention was focused on Sean who came second in the Open – but then I realised that Dave was actually in second place as he’d pulled a 6:16.9 in the 30-39. So that meant again I had to box clever – so 1:35 for the first 500m - started well and then another "cox" decided to interject and again I kindly spoke to them and asked them to stop .... :lol: and then I thumped it for the second 500m to grab a 3:02.0 1K.


Finally came the 500m – this was going to be interesting to see what was left in the legs – seems I had enough as I pulled 1:21.9 and secured the triple challenge Gold.

In summary – 5 races (2by2k – 650m of the 2k relay – 1k – 500m) with 4 “medals” on offer and I won three “golds” and a “bronze” not a day day – knowledge learnt and a great day meeting great people and a wonderful Q-Power team event with beers and laughter to follow until 3am – jee’s I’m tired – I bet you are if you just read all that !! :lol:


Friday, 18 October 2013

Q-Power meet in Bristol - plus guest star

So Q-Power meets up in Bristol (and also Matt from sub7 - guest star  ;-)  ) and after a quick bite to eat - Ollie, Dave, Jo, James and myself pop down for a quick session - race warm up then a race start - then we went through the relay and errr .... well this happened *no ergers where harmed*