Old Newbie - getting Started

General discussion on Training. How to get better on your erg, how to use your erg to get better at another sport, or anything else about improving your abilities.
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foreverfreedom
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Old Newbie - getting Started

Post by foreverfreedom » September 8th, 2020, 10:12 am

Old, as in 74 years old; two heart attacks, 2008 and 2010; reduced lung function from previous asthma; weight 83kg and height 1.78m. I used to be a fit climber; summited Mont Blanc for my 70th birthday as a final gesture - but Covid-19 put paid to all that. How does one re-start? Medical advice has confined me to the house/garden, but I have a Model E with PM5 in the garage. I can manage 5 X 500m / 2:30min / 2min rest and 20-22 SPM / Resistance = 4. HR goes up to 135-140 and I get very breathless. I would be interested to hear the community views on what might work at my age.

MPx
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Re: Old Newbie - getting Started

Post by MPx » September 8th, 2020, 6:49 pm

Never too late to get started fef, and 5x500 in 2:30s is a good enough start!

First off you'll soon learn that we don't recognise "lever positions" - its all about drag factor which you can get to display on the PM5 under utilities. The lever will adjust the drag factor but will be different on every machine depending how dusty the fan cage is. So lever position 4 sounds like it should be right, but only if that translates to a DF in the 100 - 130 range. Outside that range and advice will be to focus on getting the DF right.

Next you need to know you're stroke is near enough the classic form - plenty of videos on that from C2 or Dark Horse or many others. You can search on here or google and if you have the facilities (eg smartphone) even video yourself from the side, put in on YouTube or similar and post a link on here to get feedback.

Once you're stroke is right, just do as many meters as you have time and inclination for. Its not about doing them fast, quite the opposite, its just about doing lots of them. And then maybe once a week do something fast (like 5x500 2r) and see how you can increase pace over time (eg by doing 4 at last times avg pace and the fifth quicker). I find it helps to do the long meters in different formats (intervals, stroke rates or ramps, pace pyramids, etc) just so they're not all the same and not too boring.

If it can become part of your everyday life, you cant help but get fitter over time, but that's measured in months and years, not days and weeks. Best of luck...
Mike - 63 HWT 183

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Dangerscouse
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Re: Old Newbie - getting Started

Post by Dangerscouse » September 9th, 2020, 12:51 am

I think Mike has covered everything you need to do. Best of luck with it all
46 HWT; 6' 4"; 1k= 3:09; 2k= 6:36; 5k= 17:24; 6k= 21:09; 10k= 35:46 30mins= 8,428m 60mins= 16,331m HM= 1:18:25; FM= 2:45:49; 50k= 3:21:14; 100k= 7:52:44; 12hrs = 153km

"You reap what you row"

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robbiep
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Re: Old Newbie - getting Started

Post by robbiep » September 9th, 2020, 1:51 am

Step 1 : With your age, your medical history : speak to your doctor / GP before starting any exercise programme

Step 2 : depends entirely on the outcome of step 1

foreverfreedom
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Re: Old Newbie - getting Started

Post by foreverfreedom » September 9th, 2020, 12:10 pm

Many thanks for the responses; some good solid advice there. The advice from my GP has been non-specific - "well, from your past activities, you seem to know what you are doing but, at your age you have to realise that unexpected things can happen - just don't do too much".

mict450
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Re: Old Newbie - getting Started

Post by mict450 » September 9th, 2020, 12:40 pm

foreverfreedom wrote:
September 8th, 2020, 10:12 am
....74 years old; two heart attacks, 2008 and 2010; reduced lung function from previous asthma; weight 83kg and height 1.78m. I used to be a fit climber; summited Mont Blanc for my 70th birthday as a final gesture - but Covid-19 put paid to all that....
Welcome.....just saw this as PG&E has shut down our electrical grid & with it, the internet....31 hrs & counting.

2 MI's, decreased respiratory function, plus recovering from COVID? I wouldn't be satisfied with your GP's non-committal response. Best at least would be to consult your cardiologist. One bad sequela of COVID is myocarditis. Nothin' to fool with.

Glad you've made the commitment to health, but you definitely don't want to go down the heart failure road. All the best to you.
Eric, YOB:1954
Shasta County, CA, small town USA

ArmchairPhil
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Re: Old Newbie - getting Started

Post by ArmchairPhil » September 10th, 2020, 4:35 am

Forever freedom
Great name and welcome to the forum.
Mike's helpful advice gives a good starting place for you and there is plenty of help here.
So good advice that I learned was to lower the damper as your leg power can soon exhaust your cardiovascular system. Setting the DF to around 100 or 110 max will help.you concentrate on technique, including breathing sequence and enable you to go for the longer steady sessions. This together with HR zone monitoring will help give you a foundation of fitness for rowing.
For your 5x500 you say that you were breathless but if that was near a max effort that's no surprise. If you search for threads on HR zone training steady state sessions are done at a pace that you can talk (sort of) whilst doing training .
HR monitoring maybe helpful for you whilst training but check the you are not on any medication that might mask such as beta blockers.
There are people on here returning after CABG surgery and other setbacks and many over 70 with incredible performances . Enjoy rowing and take the erg outdoors if you have the chance
Phil
68y 6'0" 80kg
PBs: 30m 7118m. 10k 42:45.3 60m 13626m

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