Erg blogging — Saturday 5K and small improvements

Today is the sixth row since getting back on the erg following 120 days of recovery from a trashed sacroilliac performed while sculling in early November. Easy-does-it is the rule for the first week — with the usual sore shoulder and back muscles as my body gets back into the unique cycle of rowing.

Yesterday was a rest day — NYC and travel — so coming off the rest I was a lot faster and set my personal best for the week, 20 minutes, 20 seconds for the 5,000 meter segment, averaging 2:01 minutes per 500 meter split. Not bad for week one, and a four second split improvement from my 2:05 on day one. Keep in mind that in full shape I am generally cruising in the 1:45-1:55 range (think of splits as the basis “mile per hour” measure in indoor rowing.
I do a 500 meter warm up at a very easy pace, loosening up for the most part. The 5,000 is when I turn on the iPod and crank at a loping 24 stroke per minute pace, focusing on length, a long recovery (the return part of the stroke) and a solid drive, taking great pains to focus on posture and back alignment. I program the RowPro to keep me in a 25 spm band, and a 150 heart beat per minute band, that generally sees me peak around 170-180 bpm during the final sprint.
Feels good to be back on the wheel of pain.

Author: David Churbuck

Cape Codder with an itch to write

0 thoughts on “Erg blogging — Saturday 5K and small improvements”

  1. Dave,
    You may remember I sat in front of you, Spring of ’75. Thanks for unknowingly pointing me in the direction of the C2. I was sure I would hate it after experience with ergs of old. After pulling the dock at IRC ( for the winter, I checked out the C2s at the health club. It’s been friggin’ awsome ever since.
    One thought regarding the lower back: have you considered slides supplied by C2? It may help take some of the jerk out of the catch.
    Good Luck!

    Tom Friel

  2. Mr. Friel — ah, yes, the spring of ’75 under the guidance of David Swift … those were the days, blisters and icicles on Lake Cochichewick ….

    Funny the Brooksians I have run into while seated on ergs. Bill Davis and Geoff Bickford both raced the 2004 Crash-B sprints.

    Geoff is a big cyclist:

    So you’re rowing out of Nashua?

  3. Yes, all praise to DTS. Actually though, it was Doug Peterson who brought us up to 2nd boat. THAT was a moment.

    I met up with Bickford in NYC about a year ago. He might have steered me in the direction of your blog. Her was actually coaching crew at NYU and Fordham a couple of years ago.

    By way of answering your last question, I put this together:
    you’ll want to click ‘Rowing in Nashua’ (before all the golf course photos load, unless you like grass and hills)

    GM Website Keepers
    User Name: GMBoard
    Password: ElvisP

    BTW: I just got Xeno’s DVD (complete, I think). It’s definately worth checking out.

    Anyhoo, cheers! Good luck with recovering. Perhaps we’ll meet up here of there.

  4. I don’t think I rowed it then, but beautiful, beautiful boat. I didn’t learn how to scull until … 1988 at the Union Boat Club. I’m a one-oar guy.

    Now I row an Empacher trainer — about $4000 in the late 90s.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.