Fat Noob needs starting advice

Rowing for weight loss or weight control? Start here.
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Rumping
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Re: Fat Noob needs starting advice

Post by Rumping » April 16th, 2013, 10:33 am

I just wanted to weigh in and congratulate everyone on their accomplishments.

As far as heart rate goes: Don't worry about it unless you have heart problems. Once your rows get longer, you'll find you can only maintain a certain heart rate for so long before you slow down because you just can't go on at the pace you're going. Generally it's quite high (for me right now, I slow down when I get past 180 bpm, but that's mostly because I'm out of shape again and just got back onto my erg a week ago. Eventually I'll be back down to where I can't get my HR to 180 even if I try). It's a lot higher than any guide has ever told me it should be. As a reference: I'm 42, 6'3", and weigh 197lbs. Not sure what my resting heart rate is (just trying it here at my desk it seems it's below 60, but I'm terrible at finding my pulse).

The erg helped me lose 25+ lbs, and early last year I was in the best shape of my life.

As far as plans and training schedules go: I go with the flow and what I have got time for. Right now I'm just doing 30 minute rows, and try to get a little further each row or at least tie my previous row. It's a simple goal, but it works for me. However, if I get on my erg and see that someone in RowPro wants to do something different (and I have the time), I'll gladly join them in their row(s) and make up the difference later.

It's all about doing something you like/enjoy. Once you burn out it's all downhill from there so try to avoid that and change things up a bit when you feel like it. I've tried rowing at 140bpm and doing my best to stay below it early on when I got my erg. I hated it as it didn't feel like I was getting a good workout. So I changed the way I worked out. I'll never be a pro athlete (I kinda missed that window), but as long as I get in shape (again) and don't hate doing it, it's all good.
Wim (attempting to get back into rowing shape).

shichtm
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Re: Fat Noob needs starting advice

Post by shichtm » April 16th, 2013, 11:39 am

I have to say congratulations to Wayne (wphunter). 10,000 meters in 41:41 is a really good pace! I am doing around 6,500 meters in 30 min and thats about a 2:20 pace. Man, your rowing at what has to be a low 2:00 pace. Thats great. I hope I wind up there by the end of the year. I would love to be rowing a 10k in 40 min.; and to be able to do that three times a week would be fabu! lol
Congratulations again.

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wphunter
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Re: Fat Noob needs starting advice

Post by wphunter » April 16th, 2013, 8:19 pm

Hi shtm, thank you! Logbook shows my pace as exactly 2:05, I was exhausted for the next two days after, but was really happy as the first 2k was a personal best, and so was the first 5k. I'm keen to do a 2k trial next as I am sure I can get down to 8 minutes, having said that, my goal is weightloss so I am not too worried about increasing personal bests as I am sure that will happen as the weight goes down. Must be close to 20kg off since New Year now, still a long way to go though.

Couldn't agree more Rumping, I like to mix it up and do a lot of training directly from the "workout of the day" and follow it up with something simple like the 500m/1min to increase the total for the day.

Wayne
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DavidA
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Re: Fat Noob needs starting advice

Post by DavidA » April 17th, 2013, 3:55 pm

TheGreatFatsby wrote:Hi everyone!


For the good news.. despite not breaking 2500m on 3 days last week, I decided to go for my first ever 15min session today, and I finished it only moments ago. I must say I feel FANTASTIC right now. I decided to go for power on my stroke rather than the most strokes per minute as I had previously, and I think it really paid off. I concentrated as best I could on every phase of the stroke and tried to really focus on giving my all in every individual phase, trying to isolate each muscle group in my mind as I completed the stroke. Slow, but with power.

As you can see, despite only having an average of 14.5 spm, only half a stroke above my LOWEST spm ever, I managed to maintain a speed of 7.6mph, my third HIGHEST speed ever! All while doing 3 minutes more than I've ever done on the rower, but still maintained a split time of 2:25.4!

Most importantly, I kept my sustained average heart rate at 147bpm, tied for my HIGHEST ever. In fact, looking through my stats, i've only ever kept that heart rate up ONCE before when doing a 1k time trial, and that was only for a duration of 2 minutes! After the row I felt completely wiped, but also pumped and really proud of what I had just done. It really felt like I had never put so much effort into a row before, it felt like one of my most honest and accomplished rows so far and I am really psyched to share this with everyone.

I also weighed in this morning and am down another 2lbs for a total loss of 54lbs since new years!

I am just so happy to have done a solid 15min session. I thought I could make it through the 15min but I thought I would completely bomb out at the end and have much worse stats all around. Looking back at that first day when I literally fell off the rower after less than 3 minutes it is so hard for me to believe how far i've come. I know people here outrow me by thousands of miles but I can't truly express how far away this day seemed when I was laying on the floor barely able to breath that first day back in february.

Thank you everyone here for all your support, it has been such a big help for me and I promise to keep rowing and keep improving performance and health.
Woo hoo! It looks you are really progressing nicely in many ways.

David
57 y / 70 kg / 173 cm / 5 kids / 11 grandkids :)
Received my model C erg 18-Dec-1994

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wphunter
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Re: Fat Noob needs starting advice

Post by wphunter » April 21st, 2013, 9:18 pm

Just one week left to add meters to your total people before the season finishes and a new one begins on May 1.

Wayne
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wphunter
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Re: Fat Noob needs starting advice

Post by wphunter » May 1st, 2013, 7:42 pm

Day one of the new ranking year and I completed the Global Marathon Challenge half-marathon section. Very happy, but butt is sore! Need to get better cushioning for the long row.

Wayne
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Bob S.
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Re: Fat Noob needs starting advice

Post by Bob S. » May 2nd, 2013, 12:19 am

wphunter wrote:Day one of the new ranking year and I completed the Global Marathon Challenge half-marathon section. Very happy, but butt is sore! Need to get better cushioning for the long row.

Wayne
Good time to enter the new season nonathlon. You can legitimately put in nine of the ten events, based on the HM pace, and end up with a whopping first day total score even though the short race times will be extremely slow. Then you can work your way down, filling it in with faster paces as you do the shorter pieces. They will seem easy after you have done a big one.

Just realized that there might be a problem in that. The 2013 season still comes up, so the new season is not yet ready for entries. It appears that last season it was opened on May 10th, so no first day bombshells possible. 10th of May - now that presents a real challenge - doing all 10 events individually in the first 10 days of May.

Bob S.

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wphunter
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Re: Fat Noob needs starting advice

Post by wphunter » May 6th, 2013, 8:09 pm

Bob, I loathe to put in slower times, so will work at each one separately. Last night I bettered my 10k by 8 seconds, one down...
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wphunter
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Re: Fat Noob needs starting advice

Post by wphunter » May 11th, 2013, 3:30 am

Health check today, lost 20.5kg (45lb) and tomorrow will bring up my first million meters.

Wayne
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closer
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Re: Fat Noob needs starting advice

Post by closer » May 20th, 2013, 3:06 pm

First off, let me just say that this thread (and a few others like it) are an extremely good motivator.

I started rowing in April and have just gotten around to joining the forum and reading up on different training approaches, and there is a TON of information here in general. I've hit up this sub-forum first since my original reason for starting rowing was 2-fold: weight control (6'3", and a year ago about 315# now down to 250#) and therapy / recovery from a minor lower back strain a few months back. Rowing has been a big help on both of those fronts, as well as increasing my overall cardiovascular fitness level.

So, to everyone in this thread, good work - keep it up! I'll be checking back in this sub-forum frequently to see how my own progress stacks with those in similar boats.

... which actually brings me to a question. I noticed in some of the screen shots in the prior pages (of different logbooks) that some people had the "rank" link available for certain workouts. What do you have to do to have a qualifying workout? I have had some better times than what was in at least one of the screenshots, but I get no ranking link. Do I have to upload my workouts from the PM4 itself for it to qualify? I've just been unsuccessful in figuring out why I don't have the option...

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Citroen
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Re: Fat Noob needs starting advice

Post by Citroen » May 20th, 2013, 5:16 pm

You can rank any of the following: 500m, 1K, 4', 2K, 5K, 6K, 30', 10K, 60', HM (21097m) or FM (42195m).

You must program the workout as a fixed time or fixed distance.
Main menu --> Select workout --> New workout --> Single time / Single distance.
Then row it until the monitor stops.

You can't rank a "Just Row" workout.

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Re: Fat Noob needs starting advice

Post by closer » May 20th, 2013, 9:01 pm

Citroen wrote:You can rank any of the following: 500m, 1K, 4', 2K, 5K, 6K, 30', 10K, 60', HM (21097m) or FM (42195m).

You must program the workout as a fixed time or fixed distance.
Main menu --> Select workout --> New workout --> Single time / Single distance.
Then row it until the monitor stops.

You can't rank a "Just Row" workout.
You know, that just makes a whole lot of sense. Sorry for the basic question - just had trouble finding that info elsewhere.

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wphunter
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Re: Fat Noob needs starting advice

Post by wphunter » May 21st, 2013, 8:41 pm

You can also have a combined total ranked, if the total matches a ranking category. For example, if you set the monitor for a workout consisting of 4 sets of 2,000 meters with 500 meter intervals, the total is exactly 10,000 meters, which can be ranked. I began doing this when I couldn't complete 10,000 meters without taking some lower paced intervals but wanted to have some times ranked.

Wayne
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wphunter
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Re: Fat Noob needs starting advice

Post by wphunter » June 18th, 2013, 8:34 am

10 days off with the flu, 5 days off hosting my best man for a visit to Japan, good to get back on the boat tonight!
Wayne
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Re: Fat Noob needs starting advice

Post by peters0 » June 20th, 2013, 10:13 pm

Hi everyone, I've been reading this thread with interest as I'm just coming back to rowing after a year or so off due to work constraints and have a few pounds to lose and a significant amount of fitness to regain. Not much weight to lose by some peoples targets here, I've always been in reasonable shape, but the last few always seem to be the hardest. I've been rowing for over 7 years now so thought I'd pass on some lessons learned during that time and make myself available to help answer anyone's questions should they have them, based on my own experience. There's a couple of experienced rowers on this thread, which seems to be the most active, so I thought I'd jump in to share the burden and provide another perspective on things. I'm English, so apologies to the Americans for my spelling :D

1) Rowing till you feel you have to stop is the same for everyone, regardless of weight or fitness level. My favourite quote is from the cyclist Greg LeMond, but it applies to rowing also, "It never gets easier, you just go faster". So, the pain you feel when you row for 3 minutes for the first time, 10minutes, or 30 is just the same as I feel when I push myself to row for an hour or do a half marathon. The fitter you get, the harder you will (or should) push yourself to go faster or further - so don't expect the pain to go away, if it ever does you're getting soft on yourself - but know that every single one of us feels the same! It's the effort that binds us together as a community, not the result.

2) If you don't use a heart rate monitor, get one. For me this has been the single most important investment I've made to my training. Your mind and body lie to you when you train, they try and persuade you to stop and give up, your heart rate is the true level of effort you are making, so you can trust this to tell you how you are doing. Heart rate, and especially maximum heart rate, has been discussed in many places on the forum. The "simple" formula of 220 - Age to determine maximum heart rate is wrong, do not use it. I'm 46, my actual max. heart rate is 195. I'd like to think I look and feel like a 25 year old but unfortunately that's not the case. Someone forgot to tell my heart. A previous poster gave some great advice, you'll know when you are approaching your maximum, because your body won't let it go higher and you'll have to stop. Note I say HAVE to stop, not feel like you want to stop, if you've ever really pushed yourself right to the limit, as in feel like throwing up, you'll understand the difference. Finding your own personal HRmax is important, for me at least, since I then do all my training based on a percentage (e.g. 85% = 165 bpm) of this suggested in many of the training programs you can find on the C2 website.

3) Keep a log book. The online C2 log book http://log.concept2.com/log.asp is fantastic, since it then can be used to update you total distance in an affiliation you might, or should, belong to. http://log.concept2.com/challenge/univStandings2014.asp Joining one of these teams is a great motivator. Depending on how you want to track your performance can determine what you put in the comments. I've seen some people here using MPH and stroke rate to track speed, and that's OK, but just to give you some other ideas, here's what I enter.

D5. HR 165 to 30m then <=2:15/500m to end. HR 170. Fast last 2m. HR 180 at end.

Damper setting of 5, heart rate allowed to rise to, but then held at 165 until 30 minutes, then I switched to holding my rate to 2:15/500m for the remaining 30minutes of my 1 hour row. My heart rate near the end was steady at 170, but then I pushed hard for the last 2 minutes and finished with a HR of 180.

Capturing this sort of data for each row allows me to see progress and look back at previous distances and times and get a good understanding of how much effort I had to put in to get there. Your heart rate numbers are your own though, you need to get familiar with your body and what you can sustain and after while it will all start making sense. For instance, if I now want an easier "recovery row" the next day, I can choose to do a steady state row at a fixed HR of say 155 or 160. My distance will be less of course, and the effort I put in will be less, but that's the idea of a recovery row, you shouldn't be looking to set personal best times each time you get on the rower - and I'd suggest you might do more hard than good if you try. Looking back at the log entries though I can see the reason i get a lower distance was because i rowed at a lower HR, so I can make some sense of it. If I'm feeling good after a rest day (and i suggest if you are new to rowing you row on alternate days with a rest in between and gradually build up to around 5 days a week with a couple of rest days) then I can vary my work out by targeting a do not exceed rate, say 2:13/500m and allowing my HR to do whatever it likes, or target a heart rate, and simply see what distance I get. I stage up my effort by starting say at 160 bpm for the first 15 minutes, then allow my HR to rise to 165 for the next 15, then 170 and finish the last 15 minutes of a 1 hour row at 175 - doing this I know, for me, allows me to keep a constant rate /500m throughout. If i still have energy towards the end then I'll "empty the tanks" and go flat out for 1,2, 3 or 4 minutes if I can make it - doing this very easily establishes what you maximum heart rate actually is - and as you get fitter it will change, by coming down, so once a month I look then to reset my HR limits as a percentage of my new HRmax.

OK, the post is already too long, I'll stop here and will add more over the coming days - tell me to shut up if this is waste of time for you, or if not, let me know if you have any questions and I'll try to answer them as best I can.

Happy erging! No pain, no gain...

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