never enough

We rowed yesterday, for the first evening row this spring and the first time in a boat together in a few weeks. I have a new nom de blog for my doubles partner: Roeiste, which would be a female rower in Dutch. (I think they usually just say roeier for either sex, though.) I thought it was going to be horrible, because it was raining hard when I left work, but by the time I got off the bus it was barely drizzlng, and the sun had come out by the time I rode to the boathouse. It was a cold day, but otherwise calm and clear. We didn’t row far, unfortunately, because Roeiste had plans for the evening, but as she said, rowing a short distance is still beter than not rowing. However, it wasn’t quite enough to give me a free pass for this morning, so I got up at exercise tim (5:45 as opposed to 6:45 when I’m not working out) and did a fairly hard 6k piece working on changing rates.

They shifted our offices around at work, which puts me in closer contact with a few different coworkers. We like each other, but one of them especially seems to be just baffled by my training. She’s commented on how hard I’m training, and I explained that this is a pittance by the standards of a serious masters or collegiate rower, never mind the national-level people. I’m being pretty good about sticking to 5 training sessions a week, but often only one of those is on the water, and generally at least one is along the lines of “I feel like crap and my body really doesn’t want to do this so I’ll at least grind out an moderate 5K because it’s better than nothing.”

That seems funny to me, because the race we have coming up is the biggest in the Netherlands, and I expect that we’ll be totally outclassed by at least some of our competition. Still, they emphasize that it’s for “all ages and all standards” and if we row a race we can respect ourselves for I’ll be happy.

I’m not getting in as much distance as I was when I was on the water 3x/week. When I was doing that consistently I’d get maybe 35km/week; right now it’s more like 25 (plus weight-lifting and stretching, both then and now). On the other hand, a higher proportion of my workout is actually spent working out. On rowing days I’d get up at four and get to work by 8, and I’d actually only be on the water from 5 to maybe 6:20. The rest was getting dressed for rowing, driving there, carrying boat and oars to the water, carrying the boat back up, washing it, driving to the gym, stretching, showering, driving to work. I’d get up at 5 on gym days. Now I can get up at 5:45 to get to work by 8 on days when I erg or lift. Both are in the house and our commute is shorter. Also, on days I row on water I ride to the boathouse, so the commute counts as both a bit of extra exercise and warmup. What I ought to do is get up at 5 to have more time to erg longer distances – hands up, who thinks that will happen? Yeah, me neither. Also, I’m convinced that the extra sleep and having more time with unwind inthe evenings are also contributors to overall fitness. (Though most of the evening time is spent in restaurants because going out for dinner is so much slower here. Still, it’s face time with Rudder, so still counts as unwinding.)

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