7 Tips for a Successful Rowing Challenge!

Chances are you’ll probably be seeing a whole lot of this for the next 18 Days. We want our athletes to get more out of this rowing challenge than a free t-shirt. Over the next few weeks we can choose to hop on the rower for a half hour whenever you come in, get a few calories and leave or we can use it as a time to focus on bettering your rowing technique, increase your lung capacity with few solid high intensity conditioning workouts and maybe drop a few lbs before the holidays! Coach James and Brooks have put together a list of of 7 PRO TIPS to help you get the most out of the challenge!

 

1) HYDRATE!

In case you didn’t already notice.. rowing makes you sweat, a lot! It’s super important to drink more water when adding in a few lengthy rowing workouts on top of what you’re currently doing. We recommend drinking an additional 50oz + of water every day. Don’t push this to the point of no return, cramps are no fun and you won’t make it far in the challenge without additional hydration!

2) ROW WITH A PURPOSE!

Rowing can be boring if done for long periods of time. So if you decide to simply hop on a rower and “coast” your way through the challenge you’re wasting valuable time in the gym and at the end of the 20 days, the leaderboard will show it. If you’re going to spend extra time in the gym, make it worth your while and row with a purpose! What this means is, don’t just row, come up with a game plan and get after it! Here are a few examples:

10 x 25 Cal Repeats
with 1 minute rest in between

or

For 30 Minutes:
10 Cal Sprints back and forth with a partner

or

10-20-30-40-40-30-20-10 Calories
back and forth with a partner

 

The bottom line is, KEEP IT INTENSE! The inter webs are full of rowing workouts. Just use your good friend google! Coach B has written over 20 interval workouts used for the Competitors Class earlier this year. If you would like a copy for $10 please email brooks@crossfit406.com

3) STRETCH!

Stretch before, during and after rowing! This is a great time to also focus on increasing your flexibility. Rowing is very taxing on the posterior chain and can stiffen up the hamstrings and low back a lot! Spend 5-10 minutes stretching once you’re warmed up!

4) ESTABLISH PROPER DAMPER SETTING!

The damper is the circular device attached to the flywheel on the side of the rower that allows you to change the rower settings from 1-10. Many people think this is “resistance” when it’s important to think of it more like gears on a bike. Height/weight of the individual, rowing for distance or sprinting, rowing for meters or calories are just a few of the factors that go into finding the right damper setting. We recommend the following workout to find your “sweet spot” with the damper.

 

Row 50 Calories at a moderate pace to warm up
Hop off and spend 5 minutes stretching out the hamstrings and low back (drink some water too!)

Row 20 Calories For Time w/ damper @ 2
-Rest 2-3 Minutes-
Row 20 Calories For Time w/ damper @ 4
-Rest 2-3 Minutes-
Row 20 Calories For Time w/ damper @ 6
-Rest 2-3 Minutes-
Row 20 Calories For Time w/ damper @ 8
-Rest 2-3 Minutes-
Row 20 Calories For Time w/ damper @ 10
-Rest 2-3 Minutes-
Row 20 Calories For Time w/ damper @ 8
-Rest 2-3 Minutes-
Row 20 Calories For Time w/ damper @ 6
-Rest 2-3 Minutes-
Row 20 Calories For Time w/ damper @ 4
-Rest 2-3 Minutes-
Row 20 Calories For Time w/ damper @ 2
-Rest 2-3 Minutes-

 

Chances are 1-2 of these intervals was your fastest time. Maybe 4 and 6 was your fastest! Now that we have this information the next time you are rowing you can play around with 4, 5, and 6 to find where you are fastest! We encourage EVERYONE to try this; you are performing a workout that will┬ámake you a better rower far after the challenge has come to an end. You also just rowed 230 calories. You’re welcome.

5) PAIR WITH SOMETHING OR SOMEONE!

Keep it fun and fresh by pairing rowing with other movements and create a fun little workout. Pick something like double unders, HSPU or anything you’re bad at and get to work! Here’s an example.

 

EMOM for 20 Minutes:
Odd Min – 15 Calorie Row
Even Min – 30 Double Unders (Or practice for 30 seconds)

Now you’re not only crushing 150 calories on the rower, but you’re also working on some weaknesses! Double whammy.

Another thing to keep in mind is that we currently have 8 rowers at the gym. If 14 people show up to row don’t just stand around. Ask if you can jump in and go back in forth doing 10 cal sprints. You will get a much more effective workout and you’ll also get a lot more calories, faster!

6) FOCUS ON YOUR TECHNIQUE!

We won’t go into this in extreme detail as it probably deserves a post on its own. Most don’t think there is much technique involved on a rower but an athlete who disciplines themselves in refining their rowing will not only last longer on the rower but will be able to perform more work in less time! Click here to watch a short video on basic rowing technique.

7) CLEAN YOUR ROWERS!

These rowers get used everyday in every class and they’ll be getting a lot more abuse this month. Make sure you take care of your rower when you done. Grab a micro fiber cloth and some bleach off the utility sink and wipe down the seat, the metal track and the handle! It’s cold season, and with all this extra traffic on the rowers germs can be spread very easily. Do everyone a favor and clean your handle so these colds don’t spread. If you’re sick, please be respectful to others and stay home. We don’t care if you’re trying to be tough.

 

Thanks for reading and happy rowing! Good luck gym rats!