New Rower Where to start

Rowing for weight loss or weight control? Start here.
Post Reply
WyoJen
Paddler
Posts: 2
Joined: December 16th, 2018, 2:17 pm

New Rower Where to start

Post by WyoJen » December 16th, 2018, 2:24 pm

I just got my Concept 2 Model D PM5, This has been a dream for a long time. Now I don't know where to start. I have done rowing without a clue about 4 years ago. I am 52 yrs old 5'6 female 250 lbs. I'm not looking to be superman, just where and how to start with the settings on the monitor. I have been all over YouTube and the Google but everyone apparently is a professional rower...
Do I just start with my S/M? I just did a 5min, 30 S/M with 88 drag. Now I dont have the first clue what that means. It is a starting point. I am looking for direction on how to set and work towards reasonable goals. I own the machine so I am looking for a lifestyle not a Superman program. Any feedback is appreciated. And yes, totally changed up the diet.

Thanks ~ WyoJen

Dangerscouse
Half Marathon Poster
Posts: 2561
Joined: April 27th, 2014, 11:11 am
Location: Liverpool, England

Re: New Rower Where to start

Post by Dangerscouse » December 16th, 2018, 4:19 pm

First of all, welcome to the forum and best of luck with it all

Drag is very subjective so just play around and find what works for you. There is no right or wrong answer, apart from the accepted wisdom saying 'normal' is circa 100-120 for females, but you may like it higher or lower.

Stroke rate should probably be slower as 30spm but again if you're not trying to do anything other than get a good workout then it's not really an issue. Maybe try a slower stroke, say 25, and see how that feels? You might feel able to go further as you should use less energy to go the same distance.

In terms of workouts for now just build up your time and get used to the feel of rowing and the technique needed. Try and add more distance / time each time you row but don't worry about targets for a few months. There are no short cuts on the rower and it is hard and usually stays hard: as you progress your targets increase accordingly.

Stay patient and don't give up and it will be a very rewarding hobby.
45 HWT; 6' 4"; Liverpool 1k= 3:09; 2k= 6:36; 5k= 17:27; 6k= 21:23; 10k= 36:21 30mins= 8,356m 60mins= 16,317m HM= 1:18:40; FM= 2:49:39; 50k= 3:28:18; 100k= 7:52:44; 12hrs = 153km

"You reap what you Row"

Instagram: stuwenman

Allan Olesen
2k Poster
Posts: 370
Joined: April 27th, 2018, 6:40 am

Re: New Rower Where to start

Post by Allan Olesen » December 16th, 2018, 5:28 pm

If you are doing it for weight loss, go for long duration rows.

Long duration at low intensity gives more weight loss than short duration at high intensity.

It may feel like cheating because you feel that you are not really working out when doing a long, low intensity session. But those sessions will actually do a lot to train your aerobic fitness, which is the fitness you need in everyday situations. If you row 30-60 minutes a day at low intensity, you will probably after some time discover that you can walk stairs much faster and longer without losing your breath.

jamesg
Half Marathon Poster
Posts: 2468
Joined: March 18th, 2006, 3:44 am
Location: Trentino Italy

Re: New Rower Where to start

Post by jamesg » December 17th, 2018, 2:20 am

Suggest you start by looking at the C2 technique video here https://www.concept2.com/indoor-rowers/ ... que-videos

Learning to row can be done using arms and swing only (i.e. fixed seat). This is best done slowly to allow coordination and help it become automatic.

Leg action using the slide (after the swing forward) is introduced later. This once you've seen how rowing coordination and the length of the action can make us work hard in each stroke. Rating 30 will then be too high.

For the moment, suggest you note daily meters and time aboard only.
78y, 188cm, 87kg, last seen MHR 163. 2k (24 May 19) 8.46.6@22

WyoJen
Paddler
Posts: 2
Joined: December 16th, 2018, 2:17 pm

Re: New Rower Where to start

Post by WyoJen » December 17th, 2018, 9:17 am

Thank you

Ripples
500m Poster
Posts: 95
Joined: February 10th, 2017, 10:37 pm

Re: New Rower Where to start

Post by Ripples » December 18th, 2018, 8:47 pm

Good for you, WyoJen! Am a gal like you (but 20 years older) and was about 50# overweight three years ago and pretty much out of shape. Cut out all processed foods from my diet and started walking at least 30 minutes a day. The weight came off but I wanted more of a workout and to improve my cardio endurance, so I bought a Concept 2D in 2017.

Am now at 110# (5'5") with excellent blood pressure, take no meds, and have a resting heart rate of 59. Like you, I've no interest in the hardcore competitive racing-posting-your-stats stuff. I see my erg as a tool to stay healthy and energized and maintain my independence. Also do balance and core exercises and strength training, as well as continuing to walk since that's weight bearing and important for bone health. As you said, it's a lifestyle change.

While the Concept introductory technique videos are good, I found some Dark Horse videos more helpful. This one in particular helped me connect to the rower: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SRlXnpSNf3A

My drag factor is 100-105 and I alternate between UT2 and UT1 sessions of 45 minutes to an hour, with shorter high intensity sessions every so often, at least four times a week. When I first started out, I just did what I could and built on that. I'll admit I hated it at first.

As others have noted, it's not easy and sometimes it's hard to stay motivated. When that happens, I think of the alternative. Usually works.

Do stay in touch and while this forum leans hardcore, there's a ton of good info to learn just by reading the comments from the really experienced guys.

Best wishes!

Cccfff
Paddler
Posts: 3
Joined: December 19th, 2018, 10:21 pm

Re: New Rower Where to start

Post by Cccfff » December 21st, 2018, 6:40 pm

Was ripped, lean, 5' 98 lb in 2013, after a year of BC chemo went to 4' 10" to 115, then in last three months shot up to 130 pounds (I quit taking the oral chemo may be why). I've spent last few years relearning walk, talk, write, spell cuz bad chemo doctor. I went from 5k's before chemo to almost one minute on tredmill (no, in hindsight I would not have done chemo). I have always had gym in living room, always used it and this past couple of years releaning how to use them. I'm puzzeled, after weeks of couch potato I can knock out an awesome workout on anything be it short for a few minutes or on rare occasions 30 min. I got the concept2 on dec 16 2018, ranked last or second to last on a few things, knocked out a 2000m in 12 min, and nearly did every routine the PM5 had and never got exhausted but hitting point of having to use mental to finish. The next day not as good but not obvious, the next day worse, and today I can barely get one minute in at the same pace I was doing the 2000m on day one. Yes, hydrated. Yes, eat very healthy and organic. Yes I've tried changing pace and drag. Yes, my video of technique looks good and same now as on day 1 and so does the curve display when rowing. I have even changed to just triying almost flat curve on DF 1. I know the response is see doc (I have), and folks will say they are not comfortable or trained, etc. to reply, but I would welcome anyone having had same issues in past. I'll be 59 in april, but up until chemo I made 20 something people look elderly, my nick name was mighty mouse and hay bales where easy peasy. I realize I may have to accept not being top dog, I have no problem with motivation, I just need a routine that can be achieved. the 30m:30r 7x was easy peasy, yesterday I used as rest day thinking I could do that today, nope, could not do more than 2 min on any routine, what the heck. Cardio doc, ono, GP all give me the go and have no idea why these issues. But my opionion and confidence of doctors is pretty low, in fact DR. GOOGLE saved me from my first oncologist. In last four years, I"ve learned that forums provide the BEST feedback and have been critical to getting the correct cocktails and care. Now I'm hoping anyone has an idea what has been going on that I have to have weeks or months of doing nothing in order to have a day or two of doing something. And WELCOME a routine that can benefit weight and cardio. I have lost 5 pounds from rowing since dec 16, yay, and can see the toning and clothes fit better. Sorry long text, is part of relearning to communicate and tons shorter than those in last couple years (oh geez you say - hope you never get in position to grasp concept of relearning crap all over again). BC forums say it sounds like chemo perm hurt mitochondria in cells and that doctors are pretty ignorant of long term issues after chemo. Right now I just steal a minute or two as often as possible on the concept2 rower E PM5. But stumped as to why I cannot even get close to what I could do on day one or two or any day before the last two days. I'm not a toad on the web or this string topic, just welcome someone posting a routine that I can try, I post results, and get help with head scratching and ideas. Thank you

Cccfff
Paddler
Posts: 3
Joined: December 19th, 2018, 10:21 pm

Re: New Rower Where to start

Post by Cccfff » December 28th, 2018, 1:31 pm

Solution in case others get in same boat: google youtube dark horse rowing
1) take a few days off by only doing a slow free row without time, drag being factored with 1 min on and 1 min off,
2) ignore all the youtubes that say push with legs so hard that nearly no weight is on seat and someone could easily pull seat from under you,
3) INCREASE YOUR FAT intake or google keto, I was eating lots of greens which is my normal diet by adding fats I got fuel for the rower,
4) for reasons unknown, if barefoot I can feel I can go forever but with shoes on I struggle quickly within a minute (put padding on plastic heel thingy first or blister. AND I RASIED MY FOOT PEGS HIGHER, my heels are now dang near the bottom edge of the slide.
5) wear something with zero waist girth or just wear a long tee or no shorts or things with a waist band (assuming your rower is at home )
6 after a few days off without goals and just staying in routine to get on rower, play a dart game, or just a few 1mx1r and stopping BEFORE winded … stretch out, now you are ready
7) set drag on 4, ignore drag monitors, stroke rate, ignore it all. Now row legs, back, arms and only use enough legs you'd use to push your chair back from under a desk (ok, I did sneak a peek at watts and drag but did not let it drive me, drag was a low 100-103 and watts was a low 55) this allowed me to easily row a 2000m when before I would drop dead to get to 200m
8) FOCUS ON THE RETURN TO TAKE 2 TIMES LONGER AND TAKE THIS TIME TO CLEAR LUNGS AND GET NEW AIR AND RELAX MUSCLES ALL OVER
9) You will row further meters with better stats by taking each row slower, lower stroke rate increased my distance and decreased time to cover distance BY ALOT.
10) I'm VERY VERY short and was looking UP to see computer, this little thing turned out to be very exhausting, so either close eyes and picture a scenic row or find something else in horizon or lower to relax neck and shoulders, closing eyes with slight chin down extended endurance incredibly.
10) If it is a WORKOUT and NOT like a pleasant constant row in a beautiful scenic vacation spot then you need to take LONGER to return to the catch.

estragon
Paddler
Posts: 32
Joined: March 23rd, 2015, 4:45 pm
Location: Switzerland

Re: New Rower Where to start

Post by estragon » December 29th, 2018, 5:22 am

@Wyojen - Welcome, and well done on getting the C2. I used the rower on and off for a couple of years when I had gym membership but I had no idea what I was doing until I bought one for home and started taking it more seriously. It makes a big difference.

It's refreshing to hear you and @Ripples talk about having fairly modest goals. Nothing wrong with people aiming to break records and push themselves of course but there's also nothing wrong with just trying to establish an effective routine to get fitter and shed a few pounds. That's pretty much where I am too. I do have all my fastest times listed on a small whiteboard in the corner, and very occasionally while I'm rowing I'll glance at it to see how I'm doing. If it looks like I have a chance of challenging a time, I'll give it a go but it's really not a priority.

As for getting started, keep it really simple and build up. Read the Getting Started page on the C2 site -- https://www.concept2.com/indoor-rowers/training -- which has loads of helpful suggestions. First thing is always to learn the best technique but be warned that this process never really ends. There's always improvements we can make.

Keep your stroke rate low, about 18-22, and try to make every one of them count. I was amazed that moving down from about 28 strokes per minute to 22-ish actually made me improve my times. The rate slows but you put more intensity and effort into each stroke. Makes a difference.

Yes, check out Dark Horse Rowing on YouTube as someone mentioned, and also Training Tall. These guys are probably very accomplished competitive rowers but their videos are aimed squarely at beginners and those looking to improve. After a while, once you can row for say 20 minutes at a steady pace, it's worth checking out something like the Beginner's Pete Plan -- https://thepeteplan.wordpress.com/beginner-training/ which is a 24-week plan that gradually builds up your mileage. It's fine that you don't want to get bogged down in endless stats and constant record-breaking attempts, but it's also good to have some structure to your workouts. Personally I think it's not good to sit on the rower without any idea of what you plan to do and why. A plan like the one mentioned means that you know exactly what the next workout will be.

But that's for later. Focus first on learning to love your C2, and establishing good technique. Good luck!

Cccfff
Paddler
Posts: 3
Joined: December 19th, 2018, 10:21 pm

Re: New Rower Where to start

Post by Cccfff » December 29th, 2018, 11:04 pm

Sorry, I was told I did a troll to this post, didn't mean to and I'm unable to delete my posts. In conclusion, I'm back rocking the C2 by narrowing my focus to just using Dark Horse (DH) and he taught me how to breath at the right times to row longer via his youtube 10 minute build drill video 4 www.youtube.com/watch?v=veHwloAWq9A

I'll try to figure out how to get someone to remove my account and posts. But in case I cannot, I hope you benefit from DH like I have, I have dropped from 130 to 123 in these last two weeks and I no longer struggling after a couple of minutes, thank you DH for this video on when/how to breathe. It is so much easier to row right with you in the video. I enjoy the C2 and rowing with company just makes it better - Thank You Shane Farmer for making these training videos people can use as a rowing buddy and coach.

I also got the ergdata app on IOS which uses your actual weight/build to give you feed back by adjusting your pace time so you don't feel like a looser, for example your pace was 3:05 but then it displays an adjusted pace based on your actual weight resulting in a pace times you see in concept 2 rankings and youtube paces displayed on PM5 that your rowing with virtually, really helps from getting mentally defeated. The actual high value is posted to the concept2 log, but it is still a mental boost to see the adjusted lower value in the ergdata application.

User avatar
johnlvs2run
Half Marathon Poster
Posts: 3671
Joined: March 16th, 2006, 1:13 pm
Location: California Central Coast
Contact:

Re: New Rower Where to start

Post by johnlvs2run » December 29th, 2018, 11:38 pm

Ripples wrote:
December 18th, 2018, 8:47 pm
Am now at 110# (5'5") with excellent blood pressure, take no meds, and have a resting heart rate of 59. Like you, I've no interest in the hardcore competitive racing-posting-your-stats stuff. I see my erg as a tool to stay healthy and energized and maintain my independence. Also do balance and core exercises and strength training, as well as continuing to walk since that's weight bearing and important for bone health. As you said, it's a lifestyle change.
That's totally awesome. Thanks for sharing. :D
73 5'8 155
age 70+ world record pace per weight percentages
skierg: 100m 87.4 / 500m 86.2 / 1k 85.9 / 2k 89.4 / 5k 87.6 / 10k 89.4 / 60' 92.0 / 21k 93.6
my training log

User avatar
johnlvs2run
Half Marathon Poster
Posts: 3671
Joined: March 16th, 2006, 1:13 pm
Location: California Central Coast
Contact:

Re: New Rower Where to start

Post by johnlvs2run » December 29th, 2018, 11:59 pm

Cccfff wrote:
December 21st, 2018, 6:40 pm
my opionion and confidence of doctors is pretty low, in fact DR. GOOGLE saved me from my first oncologist. In last four years, I"ve learned that forums provide the BEST feedback and have been critical to getting the correct cocktails and care. Now I'm hoping anyone has an idea what has been going on that I have to have weeks or months of doing nothing in order to have a day or two of doing something.
First of all, congrats on surviving the chemo. Most people don't.
As to the reason for slow recovery, your body is weak and run down from the chemo.
Getting that out of your body takes time, along with giving your system a chance to recover and replenish.

A cleansing diet, and complementary diy procedures (see youtube) can be quite helpful to ease the burden.
For training, pacing is the key, making sure you don't get too tired, so your recovery can be faster, easier and more productive.

Cccfff wrote:
December 29th, 2018, 11:04 pm
Sorry, I was told I did a troll to this post, didn't mean to and I'm unable to delete my posts.
You are fine. There are unfortunately a couple of nasty people on here. Welcome to the forum. :D
73 5'8 155
age 70+ world record pace per weight percentages
skierg: 100m 87.4 / 500m 86.2 / 1k 85.9 / 2k 89.4 / 5k 87.6 / 10k 89.4 / 60' 92.0 / 21k 93.6
my training log

Dangerscouse
Half Marathon Poster
Posts: 2561
Joined: April 27th, 2014, 11:11 am
Location: Liverpool, England

Re: New Rower Where to start

Post by Dangerscouse » December 30th, 2018, 2:52 am

Cccfff wrote:
December 29th, 2018, 11:04 pm
Sorry, I was told I did a troll to this post, didn't mean to and I'm unable to delete my posts.
Your second post was informative, detailed and useful so don't worry.
45 HWT; 6' 4"; Liverpool 1k= 3:09; 2k= 6:36; 5k= 17:27; 6k= 21:23; 10k= 36:21 30mins= 8,356m 60mins= 16,317m HM= 1:18:40; FM= 2:49:39; 50k= 3:28:18; 100k= 7:52:44; 12hrs = 153km

"You reap what you Row"

Instagram: stuwenman

Post Reply