Rowing Workouts for the Dog Days Challenge

Dog Days of Summer 2015 rowing challenge

The Concept2 Dog Days of Summer Challenge has begun!  This one starts out easily, with a goal of only 10,000 meters total skied or rowed in the whole week.  Easy peasy compared to the 40,000-meter target you have to hit in the last week of the month.  As with all of Concept2’s online challenges, it’s a good idea to have a strategy for how you’re going to approach the month.

Intrepid rowers/skiers and long-distance/rowing endurance fans may like to hit the goal all at once.  And really, why not try a marathon or half-marathon during the month if you’ve got a good base?  This is also a challenge that lets you count your on-water or on-snow meters, so if that’s an option for you definitely take advantage … and send us pics!

But if you’re a rowing instructor with classes to teach or you like more variety in your SkiErg and indoor rowing workouts, try splitting up the distance over several workouts.  Here are a couple of sample workouts we’ve done at the UCanRow2 Bodyshop during the first week of the challenge.  Obviously you can increase the distances or add more workouts to meet the goals of subsequent weeks.

Let us know what you do, and we’ll share more of ours, too!

 

Workout #1

Row, SkiErg or mix 3 rounds of 1112 meters (use the undefined rest feature on the monitor)

In between do:

15, 12, 10 reps of:

Dumbbell rows
KB cleans
Mountain climbers

 

Workout #2

Row/Ski/Mix 4 rounds of 834 meters (with undefined rest)

In between choose 3-4 of the following exercises, and perform them in descending reps:

12, 10, 8, 6 reps of:

Push press
Tire flips/wallballs
Squats/lunges
TRX sweeps
Sit-ups
200m run

What’s your challenge strategy or fave workout? Tell us in the comments, we’d love to share it with the world!

Rowing Certification Hits Central Florida!

Yessss!  It’s been too long since we last offered our indoor rowing certification in Florida.  It’s high time we fixed that, and we are!  Thanks to our kind hosts, Villages Indoor Rowing in Summerfield, we’ll be offering both our Indoor Rowing Basic Course and the follow-up Programming Intensive the first weekend in December – December 5 & 6 to be exact.

The Basic Course is your rowing instructor starter kit, and it’s the course you’ll need if you want to add your name to the growing list of certified rowing instructors around the US and the world.  The Programming Intensive, meanwhile, is a deeper dive into the fine art of programming classes for athletes of all ages and stages.  If you don’t have a lot of background in teaching rowing classes, or if you’re going to be working with seniors or weight loss clients, for example, this course is for you.

You’ll need to take the Basic rowing certification before you can sign up for the Programming Intensive but they don’t have to be taken the same weekend.  We don’t offer the Programming Intensive very often, so if you’re interested you should dive in!

More info and register here:
Basic Course
Programming Intensive

Questions? Post ’em up in the comments and we’ll get back to you ASAP.

Living With Cancer: What a Concept … 2

(This article, first posted on April 8, 2015 and updated Jan. 19, 2016, is the first in a series of occasional blog posts by UCanRow2’s Terry Smythe.  Terry was diagnosed with mucosal melanoma in November, 2013.  Exercise, especially on the Concept2 SkiErg and indoor rower, have been fundamental to her path of recovering from cancer.)

Recovering From Cancer: Fighting My Way Back to Me

A stuffed animal cheers Terry on atop her IV pump in the hospital

 

Just over a year has passed since I had major surgery for rectal mucosal melanoma.  I was diagnosed with this very rare and aggressive cancer on Nov. 5, 2013, with surgery on Jan. 9, 2014 and immunotherapy at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute beginning in August, 2014.

It’s been a roller coaster couple of years, with a background theme of questions: Frequent thoughts of WHY, HOW DARE IT, WHY ME???  I have spent my life, like all active and athletic people, doing the best I can to take care of myself so that my body can perform.  I was a US national team rower, for heaven’s sakes!  Then come the thoughts of WHY NOT?  Cancer does not discriminate.  Why am I better than anyone else?  Why should I deserve a pass with a cancer diagnosis?  Am I that special?  I am human and therefore subject to the same as anyone else, but I don’t like it.  There is anger hidden behind the game face that I am so accustomed to putting on.

The difference today as I look back on this year is the realization that came to me during a recent conversation with my business partner. She said, “You’re mad, you’re pissed off because cancer picked you when this is not how you have lived your life. You have worked your whole life to not have this happen and you went and got it anyway.”  Well put.

(Good thing this a blog because not only am I a multi-tasking, 5-things-going-at-once kind of gal, but cancer treatment has added to my challenges with focus, especially when I have a lot to say. Pardon my randomness and I will work to get better as I blog.)

The surgery

To get to recovering from cancer let me begin at the beginning:

My cancer required a full APR (abdominoperineal resection) since my cancer extended from my vaginal wall through the anal-rectal canal and into my butt!! YES! Doesn’t that SUCK? I was essentially fileted from my belly button to past my butt and I woke up with a permanent colostomy! “WHO AM I NOW?” screamed in my head.

Jan. 9, 2014 I lay in pre-op at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, MA with my sister and my best friend since age 11 at my side.  My original surgery date was Jan. 7, but pipes burst in the hospital compromising all operating rooms.  You have no idea the prep I had to do for the 7th, then be there at 5:30 AM for surgery at 7:30 AM, only to watch the clock tick past my time and sense the urgency of “something is WRONG.”  Then a nice lady walks up and offers: “There’s no easy way to say this but we will discount your parking. All surgeries are being rescheduled.”  OMG!  Breathe and let that this-cannot-be-happening-to-ME feeling pass.  Being the amazing person she is, my surgeon, Dr. Sarah Russell, called shortly after and assured me this would be OK and not to worry.  Ha!  But I trusted her and she took good care of me.

Terry's Amazing and Strong socks, the good luck charm on her path to recovering from cancer

My sister gave me socks to wear into this cancer war that said, “I am Amazing” and “I am Strong.”  The surgical staff appreciated our attitude and promised to remember who was on the table. I remember feeling scared, but confident that Dr. Russell would get it all.  I also remember completely focusing in my head that at that moment I was lying there fully capable of doing a 100-mile bike, any kind of row, Crossfitting, skiing etc. … and that in a matter of hours my life would NEVER be the same. I had to be brave, I had to dig deep into all I had ever overcome in life to crawl back to me. Not only did my family and friends EXPECT this of me, I DID.

I thought to myself, “I have my army of support and my awesome medical team and I will prevail.  I will not let that expectation down.”  Honestly, I wanted to curl up in the fetal position and just cry; I wanted to be Dorothy in Oz and wake up from a bad dream with Hazel Bear (the UCanRow2 dog) licking my face as if to say that life was just fine and the same as always.  I did not.

Let the Healing Begin

My surgeon assured me she had gotten it all and that now was all about healing.  Easy to say and HARD to do. Healing is a big word and the definition is cancer’s roller coaster of emotions, phases, treatments, doctors, family, friends, everything that gives you joy, a lot of what you hate, and it changes daily.

How my life has changed since Jan. 9, 2014. From daily visits to the gym I have gone to working out whenever I feel up to it and sometimes-daily visits to the hospital. Still, I am lucky: 5 -10 years ago the odds were not good for survival past a year but there was hope. Today there is more hope and I do cling to the thought that with each passing day more is discovered about how to give me more options to live a strong life.

We row on.

The Workout

Terry Smythe looking Terry Strong after her first post-surgery workout

My first workout back at my Bodyshop gym was a far cry from what I’m used to, but a good fit for where I was: Rebuilding my strength after major surgery.  I lasted just 15 minutes on the SkiErg, at a pace slower than 3 minutes/500 meters, close to a minute off what I’m used to.  Afterwards I needed a three-hour nap.  So be it.  I did it, and that’s what matters.  Cancer, and recovering from cancer, changes everything when it comes to fitness, too.  Even for an athlete like me.  Especially for an athlete like me.  I have progressed from where I was that first day but I am still learning to be ok with the ups and downs of the good days and bad days.  When I feel good I push myself as hard as I can.  On my less-good days I am working on being understanding and forgiving.  It’s a process.

Power TuneRachel Platten – Fight Song

 If you would like to read more about Terry’s journey please visit her CaringBridge page.  If you have questions or comments for her, leave them in the comments here.  We would love to know what you think! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Celebrate the Big Day With a Big Workout

Cosmos workout

We love birthdays and other big life events around here!  They’re a great way to celebrate those special moments and build your fitness community, which is an important part of any successful fitness business.  People never get tired of them, and in fact they look forward to that shared sinking feeling you get when you know there’s a challenging workout coming up.  Plus, they’re a great way to add variety to your workout routine.

Yes, lots of gyms like to do birthday burpees and the like, but we’d like to encourage you to take that a step farther and really get creative.  We’ll give you some examples, but we’d also love to hear how you mark those big days.

Life Events

Weddings, anniversaries, birth of babies – or grandbabies.  They all provide opportunities to do something out of the norm.  For example, when one of our members had her first grandbaby (Born 3/12/15, weighing 9.5 lbs., 22 inches long), we celebrated with this workout:

Welcome Cosmos Workout

Warm up then do 3-5 rounds of:

1215m row or ski
9 snatch jacks or jumping jacks
22-sec. plank
9 “Charlie’s Angel’s” squats with a twist (From sumo squat position, extend arms in front of body and interlace fingers as if pointing gun. Rotate ribs slowly R and L, hips facing forward)
22 split lunges or med-ball cleans or ball slams
9 hollow rocks or sit-ups

Birthday Workouts

Landmark or other birthdays are another fun one to do this way.

In our UCanRow2 Bodyshop small-group personal training studio we’ll set up a workout where our athletes row or ski meters equaling the person’s birth year, for example, then add reps revolving around their age.  Or make it harder and make the birth year a meter interval.  Usually we try to include the birthday girl or boy’s favorite moves or machines.  And yes, we always make our birthday workouts challenging.  There’s nothing like a good shared sweat to commemorate another year of life!

Here are a couple of examples we’ve done:

Happy 51st Birthday Sarah 

5 Rounds

Ski 510 m

10 DB snatch (LR=1 or 5 each side)

25 sit ups

510m run or row

10 KB swings

10 Lunges

Finisher: 51 jumping jacks or double unders or burpees.

Lou's 79th birthday workout

Happy 79th Birthday Lou

Row 2000m
7 push-ups, 9 box steps (or box jumps)

Row 2000m
7 DB snatches, 9 bicep curls

Row 2000m
7 jumping jacks, 9 single-leg lateral jumps

Ski 790m
7 bench sits, 9 sit-ups

Row 790m
7 push-ups, 9 sit-ups

Ski or Row 790m

DONE!

 

Holiday Workouts

Holidays work for this approach too of course.  Fourth of July, Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day, they all work.  Here’s one example:

Firecracker Fourth (7-4-2011)

Warm up for 10 min – stretch
Set erg or SkiErg monitor for 7411m
And GO!
Or…..
Set monitor after warm-up for Intervals: Distance, 500m row/ski with unlimited rest

Then do:
7 – burpees
4- pull-ups
11- pushups
4-7 rounds for time

Done, let the grilling begin!

Got a favorite celebratory workout you like to do? Share it with the world in the comments!

Body Shop Rowing Workout 3-18-15

This is a great rowing workout to break up a big meter target, like the kind you might have during a rowing challenge. Keep in mind that heavy cardio, even on a rowing machine, will eat into your strength over time unless you balance it with off-erg work. 

Do this series again if you need more meters, and scale down the off-erg reps as needed.  Sub the rowing machine for the SkiErg on the last interval if you don’t have access to a SkiErg. 

  

We Heart Valentine’s Day Workouts!

Get three Valentine's Day workouts to help you sweat with your sweetie. Happy Valentine's Day! Http://ucanrow2.com
Happy Valentine’s Day!  Themed Valentine’s Day workouts – we love ’em around here.  They keep the fun quotient up, and allow you to add variety to your workouts while still getting in a really good sweat.  Here’s a selection of our favorite Valentine’s Day workouts, we hope you <3 them! Of course, there could be a chocolate reward at the end…

Twos and 14s rule the day here, of course.  But notice too that there’s a good mix of rowing and/or SkiErging combined with moves that target pretty much the entire body.  These are great total-body workouts that would be good to do any time you want a solid workout for a general audience.

option 1: interval workouts

Two versions of the same workout.  The first is scaled, the second more challenging, both will get you sweating. Don’t speed through the lunges.  Get the form right and drop down low to max out your results. On both you should get about four rounds in.

Version 1

AMRAP 20 mins (AMRAP = As Many Rounds As Possible)

Row/ski/mix 214 meters
14 lunges (L/R=2)
14 push press
14 sit-ups
14 KB swings
14 goblet squats

Version 2

AMRAP 20 mins

Row/ski/mix 214 meters
14 walking weighted lunges with L/R rotation (L/R=2)
14 push press
14 sit-ups
14 KB swings
14 gator crawls (L/R=1)

option 2: steady-state row

Option 2:  Want to keep it simple? Do the Concept2 Valentine Challenge and row or ski until you hit 14,000 meters.  If you like, you can use our list of 10 ways to kill 10k for ideas on how to keep it interesting.  Make sure you STRETCH when you’re done and hydrate throughout.  You also have our full permission to nap later, with your valentine maybe?

Want more skiing or rowing workouts to pick from? Visit our workouts pages for lots more.  We also include a new workout in every newsletter; We’d love it if you would subscribe!

Let us know which one(s) you tried and how you liked them.  Got another favorite Valentine’s Day rowing or SkiErg workout?  Share it with us in the comments.

Try A Home Rowing Machine Workout That Works

Need a great bodyweight or home rowing machine workout? UCanRow2.com has you covered. #indoorrowing #workout #fitness

Last updated March 13, 2020

 

Stuck at home with coronavirus-related closures?  We’ve got you!  Whether you have a rowing machine at home or not, read on for workouts that will help you keep your sanity and your immunity up.

 

You can’t make it to the gym every day, and let’s face it, some days you don’t even want to.  A home rowing machine workout is the answer.  It happens to us all at some point: It’s snowing, raining, butt cold, broiling hot.  You’ve got a sick kid.  Or maybe you just don’t feel like it.  We get it, we’ve been there.  Some days you simply need to get ‘er done at home.

 

Much as we love them, you certainly don’t need a formal rowing program at a gym (hopefully taught by a certified instructor) to get a great workout.  You can break a sweat and burn fat just fine doing a home rowing machine workout instead.

 

Workout excuses removed.  You can thank us later.

 

home rowing machine workout that works

 

Obviously we think the most awesome at-home workouts include the liberal use of a rowing machine.   But we also know that not everyone has that as an option at home, so we’ve included workouts that don’t require a rowing machine.   

 

Regardless of your rower/SkiErg/BikeErg access, we’ve got you covered.

 

Get free workouts like these, delivered to your inbox every week: SIGN UP

 

 

3 killer rowing machine + Bodyweight Workouts

Key term for all workouts: AMRAP = As Many Rounds As Possible (in the time prescribed).  Or as the most awesome Jen Sinkler is fond of saying: As Many Rounds As Pretty.  She’s right, you know.  Form matters!!

 

Try these workouts and let us know what you think.  

 

Got a favorite home rowing workout (or home bodyweight workout)? Share it with the world in the comments.  You can never have too many good workouts!

 

Workout #1

AMRAP 20 mins
Row 500 meters (or do 3 mins of other cardio – jumping jacks, jump rope, run in place, etc.)
9 push-ups
9 squat jumps
9 mountain climbers
9 jumping jacks

 

Workout #2

5 Rounds
Row 500-750-1000-1500-2000m (or do 3-5-7-10-12 mins.)
In between do: 21-18-15-12-9 reps of:
Air squats
Push-ups
Sit-ups
Supermans

 

Workout #3

AMRAP 20-25 mins

5 mins cardio (a rowing machine, SkiErg or BikeErg is perfect for this one)

(Add TWO reps on each round)

4 thrusters / star jumps
4 push press / push-ups
4 sumo squat with a twist
4 reverse lunges
4 sit-ups

 

Can’t get enough?  Want something more systematic that includes done-for-you workouts and a workout calendar that tells you how to use them?  Check out our Meter Monster and Flywheel Frenzy workout programs.

Upcoming Indoor Rowing Certification

Looking for our latest indoor rowing certification class rundown?  GO HERE

UCanRow2 certifies indoor rowing instructors across the US and Canada

 

Get your sweat on and get certified!  Give us a day at our indoor rowing certification and we’ll give you all the fundamentals of teaching indoor rowing on the Concept2 rowing machine.  Certified indoor rowing instructors are more credible and are in high demand.  Why?  Because they have what it takes to help their students get their best results.

 

As one of our recent rowing training attendees puts it, “Certifications aren’t just for knowledge, they’re for networking, brainstorming and experience sharing in our overwhelming world of fitness.  We don’t have time to work out and experiment on our own to learn the best about new workouts.  So why not rely on our peer professionals?”

 

Here’s the list of upcoming indoor rowing certification trainings.  Don’t see the location you want?  Let us know in the comments or by email to info@ucanrow2.com.  We’re always up for adding more dates and locations.  There’s a lot of bad rowing to be fixed out there!

 

Need more information on indoor rowing certification? Visit our Instructors page and our FAQ.

 

UPCOMING INDOOR ROWING CERTIFICATION DATES

SEE THE SCHEDULE

 

 

 

Rowing Through the World Cup: The Soccer Fan’s Workout

The World Cup is here!  So many hours of game time, SO many hours waiting for something to happen.  Why not set up your rowing machine in front of the TV  so you can cheer your team on while still getting in a great workout?

Sure, you could row steady-state through the whole thing, but a typical game runs around 100 minutes with stoppage time, and no commercials to break it up! Give the game a little variety by following these rules for the UCanRow2 Soccer Fan’s Workout:

Set up your rowing machine with a straight view of the TV so you don’t have to crank your neck upwards or to the side.  After the national anthem, start off with easy rowing for 6-10 minutes at 20-24 SPM.  Once you’re in your zone, hold a steady pace at 22-24 SPM or lower, but make sure you keep it controlled and don’t get too sidetracked by the TV in front of you.  Remember, hold good technique!

Up Your Game: Once the action begins, a yellow card, goal, injury, etc., add in the following for a little variety.

Yellow Card – Bad boy! 20-stroke sprint at race pace.

Corner Kick – Drop your stroke rating to 20 strokes per minute or lower for the duration of the play. Remember to s-l-o-w your slide on the recovery to help you row low.

Substitution – Water break!

Injury – Wish them luck to get back in the game with 10 hard strokes, 20 if the player is taken off the field on a stretcher.

Goal – Celebrate really loud with a big “GOOOOOAAAAALLLLLL!” and then put the handle in the hook and do 10 jumping jacks or burpees.  Get back on the erg and grab a sip of water.

Penalty Kicks – Place handle in the hook and do 5 bodyweight squats during each kick.  In between kicks, get back on the erg but don’t strap in (This is a good opportunity to practice rowing with your feet out of the straps).

Half time – If you need a break, put the handle in the hook and record your meters.  That’s the number you want to try to beat in the second half of the game.  Bathroom break if you need it, or grab a healthy snack like a banana or an energy bar.  Make sure to stretch and get back on the erg for the start of the second half.  If you don’t need a break, just keep rowing! Do 6 x 1 minute of effort, 1 minute paddle then easy paddle. Remember to get fluids before the start of the second half.

Game Over – At the end of the game, record your meters in your online logbook and try to meet or exceed your meters for the next game.

Great job, soccer fan! Hopefully your team took the WIN!  Got suggestions for other ways to spice up the World Cup row?  Pop down to the comments and share!