How To Implement This Week’s CFE WOD

CrossFitters and rowers, I thought I’d do a post on how to actually implement this week’s CrossFit Endurance rowing workout, as it’s a tough one to figure out:

Row (TUE): 6:00 of 125m sprints on 0:30, recover 3:00, 4:00 of 125m sprints on 0:30, recover 2:00, 2:00 of 125m sprints on 0:30

A couple of points:

1.  It would be pretty hard to pull this off for anyone other than a heavyweight man with pretty good rowing technique.  For even a pretty fit woman, or someone who is a novice to rowing, it’s unlikely you will be able to have any rest of all.  On a good day, I would be challenged to do a tabata 0:20/0:10 workout with >110 meters per interval, which means that for 0:30 intervals, getting 125 meters would result in about 5-7 seconds of rest per interval.  For many rowers, if your 500m pace time is in the 2:00 range, it will be a challenge to complete 125 meters in 30 seconds, and you may actually fall behind.

2.  There is really no way to program this into the C2 performance monitor.  If you simply program 30-second intervals with zero rest, you will not be able to keep track of how many intervals you have completed, and will have to track this in your head.  The last thing you want to do is have to fight with the monitor or do mental math in this type of workout.

Recommendation:  Implement this workout as 15 strokes on, 3 strokes off.  Shoot for a stroke rating of at least 35 strokes per minute.  This universally scales for skill level, and delivers the intended mix of intervals and intensity.  If you are an experienced rower, you will achieve pretty much the times as programmed.  If you are less experienced, you will still get the intended effect of the workout, scaled to your abilities, even if the total elapsed time is longer than programmed.

I tested this approach today and it appeared to be the simplest, most effective way to do it.  It also works on the water.  Honestly, I think it would be more effective to do 3 standard tabata series instead of the relatively complicated way this is programmed.  I found that my intensity drifted down due to the reduced rest time, and I feel that the standard tabata would have actually been a more taxing and effective workout.  Hope this helps.


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