10 Indoor Rowing Workouts to Kill 10K

Last updated June 21, 2018

10 indoor rowing workouts that will make short work of a 10,000-meter piece. 3, 2, 1 go! http://ucanrow2.com

 

When your indoor rowing workouts call for a larger number of meters, or you’re trying to hit a big number in the Concept2 online challenges, how do you keep it interesting?  By breaking the workout up into smaller chunks and changing it up.  Longer indoor rowing workouts don’t have to be boring.  You just need to have a plan that brings variety into the mix.

 

 

Below we’ve given you 10 ways to kill 10k in your indoor rowing workouts, plus one bonus workout.  You’ve got options that will take you from an easy row all the way through, to a calorie-torching blast.  It’s up to you, pick the plan that works for you based on how you feel that day.  Do one round or put several of them together for a monster meter rowing workout.

 

As always, if you’re new to indoor rowing get your doctor’s OK before taking on a rowing workout like these.  Listen to your body and decide if it’s a good day for higher volume.  If you’d rather do something shorter, check our indoor rowing workouts pages for more choices.

 

 

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10 Ways to Kill 10k (+1)

  1. Set the monitor and go: Find your happy place — that point where you’re sweating but you know you could keep up this pace for a long time, and row. Put on some good tunes and lean in to the Zen of the flywheel. Use this workout to find your steady-state target pace. You should be able to talk but prefer not to, and feel that you could stay at that pace for a long time. To easily set up the workout, from the main menu hit New Workout>Standard List>10000 meters.
  2. SteadyState With Power Bursts: Row 10,000 meters at the pace you found in the workout above. Drop in 10 or 20 hard strokes every 500 or 1000 meters. Aim to drop 10 seconds or more off your split every time you do the power strokes, but always return to your base, steady-state pace.
  3. Rolling 1000s: Warm up through the first 2-3000m, then row 100 meters hard, 100 meters easy for 1000m. Paddle for 1-2 minutes and repeat for 3-5k. This is also a great way to get used to harder effort on the rowing machine.
  4. Power Intervals: Like the rolling 1000s but longer intervals. For example 250 hard meters every 750 or 1000 meters.
  5. Negative Splits: Start out at a fairly easy pace and aim to drop your split per 500 meters every time over the course of the piece. Using the split window on your monitor, aim to drop it progressively over the course of the rowing workout. For example take 5 seconds off your warmup split every 2000 meters. Use the last 500-1000m as your cooldown.Rowing a long piece doesn't have to be boring! Here are 10 ways that you can make the most of a 10,000-meter row, and keep it interesting. Let us know how you like them! www.ucanrow2.com
  6. Stroke Play: Vary your strokes per minute (SPM): 2 minutes at 22-24-26-28 SPM, with the same amount of paddle rest, 2 minutes. Do this until you have completed the 10k. Bonus points if you can do rounds 18 and 20 spm (Hint: sloooow your recovery).
  7. Rolling Intervals: Row repeating cycles of 3 minutes at 22 strokes per minute, 2 mins at 25, 1 min at 28. Paddle in between if you need a break, or challenge yourself and keep on row-ling.
  8. Watch the Watch: Row rounds of 1:00 on with effort/1:00 off, 2:00 on/2:00 off and so on up to 5:00 on/5:00 off, then work your way back down. Increase your intensity as you come down the pyramid. Continue until you have completed the 10k.
  9. Vary the Intensity: Use this one to practice adding more intensity to your workouts. Row intervals of 4:00 on, 2:00 off, keeping your stroke rating the same (we suggest 24-26 spm) but varying your intensity through the 4-minute intervals, from sustainable to highly intense.
  10. Salad Bowl: Mix it up and choose up to 5 of the options above. Do something different every 2000 meters.Example:  First 1k: Warm up
    1k-2k: Steady-state, half pressure
    3k-5k: Rolling 100s
    5k-6k: Steady state
    6k-7k: Hard 1000m
    7k-8k: Recover
    8k-9k: :30 on / :30 off. 26 spm on the work, 22 spm on the rest
    9-10k: Cool down
  11. BONUS ROW-SKI for those with access to a SkiErg.  Use the undefined rest feature on your monitor to keep both machines going without having to reset.  If you’re a complete badass (and in our book you are if you do this), switch the row and ski numbers so you ski more than you row.

Row                          Ski

1000m                     1000m

1200m                      800m

1400m                      600m

1600m                      400m

1800m                      200m

 

Which one did you try?  Let us know what you thought in the comments, or if you have a question about endurance rowing, in general, let us know!

 

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Bite This: Candy Themed Halloween Workout

Candy-themed Halloween workout

Candy-crazy season has begun! You can’t walk into a grocery store without seeing row upon row of delicious-looking treats, all of them perfectly packaged with Halloween shapes and colors, and in tantalizingly small servings.  Those fun-size Snickers bars and Reese’s pumpkins couldn’t have THAT many calories, could they?

Well, not if you only eat one or two, but who does that??  We’re more likely to “parent-tax” the heck out of our children’s Halloween candy stashes, sneak two or three or four pieces every day, day after day, and before you know it we’re full-on into the Holidays and it’s Christmas candy calling your name.  We’re not saying don’t eat the candy (ok maybe don’t eat ALL the candy), but a Halloween workout featuring candy that also makes us think first? We’re down for that!

Stop the Madness!

UCanRow2 to the rescue, for Halloween and beyond to help you make smarter choices, or at least think before you bite.  Below we offer two variations on candy-themed Halloween rowing workouts.  One can be done as an individual rower or with a group, the other is a partner workout.  Both will help you burn off a few fun-size bars, or fend off overconsumption with good reminders of how hard torching those calories really is.

Prep the Workouts

For both workouts you’re going to need some Halloween candy wrappers.  Either use the wrappers themselves or tape them on a piece of paper.  That way you can make multiple copies, particularly useful if you’re doing this with a group.  Then you can cut the paper in strips and write the calorie count on each one.

To help you plan and time the workout, know that a 10-second change in 500m split is equivalent to about 100 calories per hour: A 2:30 split is about 650 calories per hour, while a 2:10 split works out to about 850 calories per hour.  A fun-size Snickers has 160 calories, so it will take about 15 minutes to burn at 2:30 and 11 minutes at 2:10.

NOTE: As we’ve mentioned before, we don’t usually like to use calories to track our workouts.  That’s because we don’t want our athletes thinking that the number they see on the screen is an exact reflection of the calories they’ve burned.  The erg’s monitor is more accurate than a treadmill but it’s still more of an educated guess than an exact reading (You can get a better read if you use a heart rate strap, but that’s not completely accurate either.).

Let’s begin!

Halloween Workout #1

Pick one or two pieces of “candy,” either choosing them blind or grabbing your favorites.  Total the number of calories in each piece, then row to that amount on your monitor (press the “change units” button on the monitor until the screen shows calories).

When you’ve hit the calorie target, get off the rowing machine and do:

10 push ups
31 sit-ups

Repeat the above for 2-3 additional rounds if you want more work.  Obviously you can vary the off-erg moves, too, depending on how much variety and challenge you want.

Halloween workout #2 – partner rowing workout

Partner A chooses 1-2 pieces of “candy,” and rows to the total number of calories (Hit “change units” on your monitor until it shows calories.).  While Partner A is rowing, Partner B does a series of moves for a total number of reps that equals the number of calories.  For your fun-size Snickers you might do:

40 sit-ups
40 push-ups
40 air squats
40 jumping jacks

Or if you want to ramp it up you could do:

50 sit-ups
40 burpees
40 air squats
30 push press

 

Sounds fun, right?  And it should certainly help people think carefully about how much candy they really want to tear into. Try the workouts and tell us how you did in the comments.  Did you do them as prescribed, or make up your own variation?  We’d love to hear, too, if you have another favorite Halloween workout.  Need more SkiErg or indoor rowing workouts? Go here and grab one, or find a certified indoor rowing instructor in your area who can take you through an awesome rowing workout.  Happy Halloween, and don’t bite off more than you can chew!

Post Workout Recovery Food: Pancakes Three Ways

Delicious post-workout recovery food: Pancakes!

(Post updated March 31, 2016)

Did you just finish a long workout, or a particularly intense one? An endurance row like a 10k or a marathon?  There’s nothing better after a long, hard workout than getting a little sustenance from a great post-workout recovery meal.  And what’s better for recovery than pancakes … or waffles?

We have three great recipes for you, all of which are served often in the UCanRow2 kitchen.  All of them taste great, and provide a combination of carbs and protein, both of which are important for proper post workout recovery and rebuilding the muscles you’ve taxed in your workout.

The first option, plantain pancakes, is grain, nut, and dairy free, made with green plantains and a perfect paleo recipe.  The second is made with oats, a favorite recovery food with many athletes.

We thank Certified Indoor Rowing Instructor Leeny Hoffman for pointing us to the plantain pancake recipe.  Leeny authors the Paleo Curious blog and teaches indoor rowing at CrossFit St. Louis.  She’s tried her fair share of Paleo/recovery pancakes in her time and says these cakes, which came from the Paleo Mom, were some of the best she’s had.  We agree!

The second recipe, for more traditional oatmeal pancakes, comes from UCanRow2’s very own Terry Smythe.  For years these cakes have been both on her training table as an elite rower, and that of her Michigan Tech Crew.

Our third and newest option, chickpea flour pancakes or waffles, comes from Chef Dawn Ludwig of the Always Hungry? eating plan.  These are not Paleo as they use chickpea flour as their base ingredient.  They are, however, delicious and gluten-free since they contain no wheat.  They are also incredibly satisfying, freeze beautifully, and make your house smell amazing.  Truth be told, they’re our go-to right now, served with berries on top and a little unsweetened whipped cream.

Regardless of your nutritional template, these pancakes will give you the nutrients you need to rebound from that hard workout, without spending hours in the kitchen.  Whip up a batch in less than an hour (with leftovers to eat or freeze), maybe add some extra protein, such as plain Greek yogurt or a couple of eggs, and take on the rest of the day like you own it.

All of these recipes would be great to make ahead of time and grab on your way to the gym, so you can instantly start replenishing yourself in that golden window of the first hour or two after your workout.  Give them a try and let us know what you think in the comment section below!

Green Plantain Pancakes (Paleo Version)

1 large green plantain (about 200g cut up without skin)
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons of vanilla  (I like Mexican vanilla)
1 ½ tablespoons of melted coconut oil
Pinch of salt
¼ teaspoon of baking soda

Peel plantain and cut into cubes. Place in food processor or blender and puree.   Add eggs, vanilla, coconut oil, salt and baking soda and continue to process until it looks like pancake batter.  In a small skillet, heat up a teaspoon more of coconut oil on med to low.  Add pancake batter and cook about 3-4 min on that side, until it is bubbly and starting to dry.  Flip over and cook about 1 more minute on the other side.  Enjoy with almond butter, pure maple syrup or honey.  Makes about three 7-inch pancakes.

Vermont Oatmeal Pancakes (Non-Paleo Version)

2 ½ cups of milk
1 ½ cups of rolled oats (uncooked)
1 cup of flour
2 ½ teaspoons of baking powder
2 tablespoons of sugar
2 eggs, beaten
¼ cup of oil

Pour milk over oats and set aside, let them stand for 5 minutes.  Sift together flour, baking powder, and sugar.  Add eggs to oat mix.  Quickly mix in flour combination.  Add oil last.  For the best experience, top with real Vermont syrup.

chickpea flour pancakes/waffles

(From Always Hungry? As printed in the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel)

Makes 6 to 7 (6-inch) waffles

Ingredients

2 cups chickpea (garbanzo) flour
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 eggs, separated
1 ½ cups whole-milk plain Greek yogurt
½ cup unsweetened soy, almond or whole milk
½ cup neutral-tasting vegetable oil, plus more for waffle iron
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Fruit, whipped cream or a little maple syrup for serving

Preparation

Preheat waffle iron.

In a large bowl, whisk together chickpea flour, salt and baking soda.

In a medium bowl, whisk together egg yolks, yogurt, milk, oil and vanilla. Stir wet ingredients into dry.

In another bowl, beat egg whites with a whisk or hand mixer until they hold firm peaks. Gently fold whipped egg whites into batter — it should be on the thick side.

Cook batter in heated waffle iron following manufacturer’s instructions. Serve warm with fruit, whipped cream or maple syrup.

 

Yum!  Which one are you going to make?  Tell us in the comments.

Rowing Recovery Workout – Burn Fat, Get Back on Track

Updated June 22, 2018

 

Have you been struggling to get into a fitness routine? Get back on track with indoor rowing with these recovery workouts from UCanRow2. #rowingmachineworkout #indoorrowing http://ucanrow2.com

 

How do you get back on the rowing machine after a time off?  Easing into it will allow you to do some rowing recovery.  If you’re a regular reader you know that many of our indoor rower workouts involve getting on and off the Concept2 rowing machine or SkiErg.  The idea is to give you a high-intensity workout that will build strength and burn as much fat as possible in the most efficient amount of time.

 

As The New York Times has noted, intensity is a critical component of an effective workout.  Not to mention lots of other benefits research has found from high-intensity training: reduced appetite, better stress management, possibly even a longer life span.

 

And if it takes less time you’re more likely to be able to do it consistently, right?

 

True, one would hope.  But we all have times during the year where we can stray from an otherwise stellar fitness program.  Vacation, the Holidays, a busy time at work, summer at home with the kids, can all move fitness to the back burner temporarily.  Hey, it happens to the best of us!  Just get back on the rowing machine as soon as you can and you’ll be back up to speed in no time.

 

Read on for a couple of rowing recovery workouts that will help you get there.

 

How to Get Back On the Rowing Track

 

Before you even get back on the erg, take your fitness “temperature.”  Have you put on a few pounds or feel like you’ve lost strength?  How’s your energy?  Are you raring to go or would you rather crawl back into bed?  You’ll be able to tell in your first 10-15 minutes of an erg warmup if you’re going to be able to hit your rowing workout hard post-break (or any day, for that matter).

 

Group rowing instructors, this is an important step for you to take every time your students come to class.  Ask them how they’re feeling, and be ready to dial it back if need be.  Maybe your energy and enthusiasm will be all they need to get through, but you need to also watch for signs that the intense workout you’d planned is too much today.  If your students’ mood and energy level isn’t picking up as you go through your warmup, for example, that’s a dead giveaway that today’s not the day for high-intensity intervals.

 

If you feel like the tortoise, start with a low-and-slow steady-state row.  Keep it to 20-30 minutes and go at a conversational pace where you’re sweating but can keep up a conversation.  22-24 strokes per minute, no higher.

 

Side bonus: Slow rowing is a great time to practice technique.  Do rowing drills like the pick drill as part of your practice, or try rowing with your feet out of the straps.

 

If you find you’re feeling good and want to go a little harder at the end go ahead, but consider this permission to be done.  It’s OK if you’re not always in overdrive!  Pat yourself on the back for having moved and get yourself revved up for the next workout.

 

Drills for a More Fluid, Powerful Rowing Stroke from UCanRow2

 

If you feel more like the hare, try the Holiday Recovery Row below.  Longer, with more opportunities for effort, but still in the general mode of going lower and longer than you would in a high-intensity workout.

 

NOTE: This workout assumes that you were able to row longer distances before your break.  If the longest row you’ve ever done is 5000m, coming back from a break isn’t the time to try your first 10k, no matter how slow you go.

 

ROWING RECOVERY ROW

Row for 20-30 minutes at a stroke rating no higher than 24 strokes per minute.  Your goal is to stay at a conversational pace, where you’re sweating but can keep up a conversation the whole time.  Throw in some rowing drills if you like.  The pick drill, pause drill, and rowing with your feet out of the straps are all good choices for working your technique, but leave the sprint intervals and Power 10s for another day.

 

HOLIDAY RECOVERY ROW

Row, SkiErg or a combination for a total of 8000-10000m (24 spm on the row and a comfortable but challenging pace on the SkiErg). Add 10 hard strokes at 26 spm every four minutes.

10 pushups (or more)
1 min. plank core hold

Stretch and DONE!

If you need help with any of this, find a certified indoor rowing instructor near you, or get in touch with us.  Don’t see an instructor near you?  Maybe it’s time for you to get certified, or take our certification course to ramp up your own rowing.

Did you try one of these workouts?  How did you do?  Share your results – or questions about the workouts – in the comments.

 

Want more workouts like this?

Download our FREE workout set #GetFlywheelFit.  11 workouts you can do in 25 minutes or less. 

 

GET THE FREE WORKOUTS

 

Biggest Loser Rowing Offer: Home Users, Buy an Erg, Get Trained Free

Logo of The Biggest Loser After a long hiatus the Concept2 rower is back on The Biggest Loser for the current U.S. season.  And this season you’ll be seeing the SkiErg as well. Great news!  For the most part…

If you saw the first episode you saw some rowing (not on Concept 2 machines), but unfortunately virtually none of it with good technique or cuing from the trainers.  And viewers noticed.  Twitter users, for example,  had a lot to say about it: “It kills me watching people erg on The Biggest Loser,” wrote @kdbug313.  “Like that’s not how you do it.” “I truly cannot watch people on the biggest loser erg because they all have the worst form and do it wrong,” said @laurenndriscoll.

It’s a shame that the Biggest Loser contestants don’t get a better chance at learning and using proper technique.  Properly done, there’s no better machine for fitness and weight loss than the Concept2 rowing machine. But it’s like everything else, you have to do it right to get the best results.

So to support Biggest Loser viewers across the United States and Canada,  and as part of our mission to Stamp Out Bad Rowing we’ve created a new deal: Buy your Concept2 erg or SkiErg from us and we’ll give you a free Skype training session with a master instructor to get you set up and rowing/skiing right.

Here’s what to do to get the deal: Contact us, either by email (info@ucanrow2.com), or phone (906-482-8748) during business hours, mention that you want the Biggest Loser deal and let us know if you’d like to buy a rowing machine or a SkiErg (or both!).

Money saved on a UCanRow2 remote training session: $65.  Weight loss and fitness results from learning to erg correctly: Priceless.

Questions?  Post ’em to the comments.  Row on!!!

 

 

MyFitnessPal Calorie/Exercise Tracker Gets a Huge Upgrade

The MyFitnessPal app for tracking calories and exercise, already our favorite, has just gotten even better.  MyFitnessPal wrote on their blog today that the tracker, which with 30 million registered users and 2 million food listings is one of the most popular and complete diet trackers there is, will now synch with some of the most popular fitness devices.  That includes scales (like Withings), activity trackers (BodyMedia FIT and Fitbit), run tracking apps (think Endomondo, runtastic), and cardio devices (like FINIS’s Swimsense).

Woohoo!  Finally two important tools for weight loss and maintenance working together.  As my mother might have said, “Was that so hard?”  Ok yes, probably it was.  We love MyFitnessPal for several reasons: First it has entries in the cardio section for both on-water and indoor rowing at different intensities and seems to do it reasonably well.  That’s rare indeed.  Second, it has a huge database of foods so very often whatever you’re looking to log is already in the system, and third you can track what you’re doing either from your computer or your mobile device, and everything syncs automatically.  Voila!

Now add on top of that the ability to have this topnotch food tracker talk to your activity device and it’s a fitness nerd’s dream come true – at least for those of us (like Sarah) who need to keep close tabs on energy consumed and burned in order to keep everything in line.

If you want to see the full list of apps that MyFitnessPal is synching with, visit their app gallery.  They’re also looking for suggestions of new apps to add, so don’t be shy if you have a suggestion!

Do you use MyFitnessPal or one of the other tools already?  Has it motivated you with your rowing or weight loss, or that of our clients and members? What would you like to see done differently? Tell us in the comments!