2k Test: Here's the Wash Up

Ergo Screen Splits for 2k Test Today

(Hope this makes sense as I have felt out of sort since the ergo and yet keen to do go again soon and do better)
Here's the wash up from my 2k test today. It's been a good block of training which lead me to consider setting a target for the test of 5.45min and I would have been very happy if I had of gone under 45 so to be outside that I found myself feeling somewhat disappointed.

The fact is though while preparing for the Worlds this last season in the four we did a test a few weeks out from Bled and I did 5.48min. So then I should be happy in one sense and it is very early in the season and since going to sliders for test I have found myself trying to reconcile the differences.

Today though I did struggle and that probably more the reason why I felt slightly down post the ergo. Personally I was trying not to go into the red zone to much even though this is a National test. Reason for this is I am not keen on smashing my system which I feel is pretty good currently. To really dig deep and pull out pure best performances takes a lot. The effort, motivation and the cost can be huge. So today I said to myself if I could operate right up near the ceiling with out smashing through it would be good.

Still though even with the intent of being very deliberate I found the last 600m was somewhat exhausting. It just felt heavy and as the rate slipped up I wasn't getting any more return. The first 1000m I remember thinking keep it light and in the hips. As I approached 900 I started to feel the strain and breathing while not out of my ass I was still finding my respiratory rate rising and was conscious of keeping my rhythm and breathing in harmony with the movement.

Just after 1200 I thought I would squeeze and see what it felt like but this only last until 600 and I could sense myself loosing the ease of movement. At this stage I was keen to maintain the predicted score showing on the screen of 45 but once into the last 500 it was like a bear jumped on my back. Afterwards Chris (Cobber) O'Brien my coach reminded me about staying tall and I was aware of it and tried a few times to sit up but just couldn't get my body up. Or rather as I tried I sensed the score slipping so I opted for staying low and was intent on suffering through to the end.

It was solid work and very much a full effort but I would like to think with great motivation I could go deeper into the red and produce a much better performance. The aim the season is to go sub 5.40 so this is still a long way to go, but today with the mix of emotions post test I have further reflected and considered my head space going in.

This time of the season has always been about setting up the season ahead and doing the long distance work. The 6k test was or has been more my focus so be able to do a PB was great but the time for 2k full blown efforts is still a long way off. Personally I am keen to keep building my capacity and base to ensure I can meet and exceed the demands of training and racing overseas next year. I am not meaning to look to far ahead or assume anything but I know how easy it is to eliminate the gains needed over the long term by chasing short to success or gains.

This is the ultimate challenge to get through trails and the domestic season in great shape with out running the race to soon. Peak performance is an interesting things. The find line of building capacity for the long term and trusting this process and meeting the requirements to make the team and perform well through all competitions leading up to the peak. Its still a long way to go and some great gains are to be had and yet big mistakes which might be hard to measure could cost simply in the way of 1/2sec here or there.

People wonder why or how some win Gold medals and other miss. Most athletes I know who have felt like they under perform late in a campaign speak of feeling better during some test or race in the lead up and yet not feeling as good again and quiet often I hear some describe there big races just not working or going to plan or feeling off the pace.

Again I mention all this as its a critical part of preparing to have our best race in London. Its not that I don't wish to be great all the way through it just some days like today it doesn't feel quiet right. No excuses as I felt like I got out of myself all I could today. But and here is the but, today I wasn't willing to go to the wall. Was not willing to break through a barrier of sorts.

No excuses I know I can do better and will do better. Every day we learn as so today I learned by trying a few things and will use this to be better next time. Now back to rowing the boat again as these test are done for a while so we now get back to re-focusing on how we race the boats next week.

Forgot to mention think I saw some pink elephants in the new VIS gym room with it's sprung floor. Could have been the fumes from the new paint or potentially from a little mess that was made by one for he athletes in the group prior to our test. Yep some one was sick so I guess when the elephants came out I thought I might have added to the breaking in of the room. When captain lactate comes knocking don't open the bloody door. Just hide inside and hope he goes away.


rowjohnnyrow said…
great article, thanks for putting that up! Lots of competitors are very secretive about posting their results, I'm delighted that you are bucking that trend and not only providing us w/ a score but also with a detailed blow by blow account :)
Same for the 6K test blog.

think there's a typo in the line where you say the coach is reminding you to stay talK, shoudn't that be stay tall?
NavigationHazard said…
Cheers Drew, r40 for the piece and 44 for the last 250 split are wicked insane. Did you deliberately set out to trade rate for pace over the entire 2k? Or did it just work out that way? You go 37-38-39-40-40-42-41-44, which looks a lot like a conscious strategy of raising the rate a stroke/minute every 250 and then seeing what's left in the last 500. But it could just as easily have been an accident....

Somehow I think most of the rest of the rowing world would be happy when a self-assessed 'I left some in the tank' row produced a 5:47. Think of how fast you're going to be when it all comes together. And beast the metal mistress next time out....
Paul Buchanan said…
Drew - as a pure ergo head myself (never been OTW - only took up the erg last year - 37 now - ouch) I really found your blog fascinating - it's good to see that even the best of the best feel the strain in the 2k beast ;o)
An excellent article and a great insight into what must have been a tough test. Often athletes are too concerned with self image rather than putting it out there as to how it really is on the cutting edge of sports and performance.

All the very best for your preparation into 2012!

Thank you.
Anonymous said…
Rowing Mome says:
Edit and revise!
Verbatim said…
Great write up!
Jim said…
Great article !! I am an A/S rower whose only point of comparison are my own similar experiences when erging! My winter schedule has involved long 6000 meter pieces. I have MS , have been rowing for 4 years , erging for my 2nd, so, I am experimenting with my own physical model to see what works for me!

I am interested in any other disabled rowers experiences , but, enjoy reading ALL rowers' experiences !
Anonymous said…
how much faster are sliders to stationary over 2k? roughly
Andrew said…
Hi Drew,

I've been rowing for a few years now and have found myself "STUCK" around the same erg score (6.24 for a lightweight) for a couple of years despite my water performances improving well.
Any tips on breaking the erg open?
Also I'm interested in your thoughts on foot height on the erg, I was playing around with it the other day. I get the feeling I may be too low. Have you done any experimentation in this area?

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