Westdale Rowing Community

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I thought I would post something about our training and the vital importance of keeping the energy up at this time of the season.

We know you guys are struggling a little bit.  This is the time of year we coaches call “The Dog Days”, where we seem to get bogged down.  You guys have had it tougher this year because of the imposed break during Quiet Week/Exam Week.  The initial thought is for the experienced rowers is, “how can it be harder this year, despite the fact we’ve had more time off?”  Well, the reason for that is that we are currently on at least our third re-start of the season.  It is VERY difficult to start and stop your training.  Think about it:  We started on Hallowe’en and went to the holidays.  You guys were all ON FIRE when we went away for the break!  Since then, we came back on January 9th, had 10 days of training, stopped again  until February 3rd, and have started up again.  That’s tough on the body and creates a lethargy.  It’s why your erg numbers in many cases are lower than they were on December 23rd.   Think of how you feel on your first day of training after having a cold or the flu.  It’s not easy, is it?  It takes a few days to get back into the routine and to feel strong at training.  We get it.  So how do we break out of this “funk”?

  1.  Push the doubt away!  If doubt about whether you can handle this creeps in, push it away.  You CAN handle this.  You handled it before Christmas…you can definitely handle it now.
  2. Commit to being your best at training.  Break the sessions down into manageable parts.  A 30′ erg can be broken into 10 or 15 minute segments.  Stopping and starting actually makes it harder because you break out of that rhythm and have to get back in it.  So don’t stop!
  3. We will probably be on the water a LOT sooner than anybody thinks.  The club is adamant about getting on the water as soon as we can this season.  I wouldn’t be surprised to see the docks go in either the first or second week of March.  At that point, we will finally trade erg handles for oar handles!!!
  4. Remember that every athlete goes through their own “winter blahs”.  If any of you chat with athletes from other schools at CSSRA, it won’t take much prompting to get them to say how much they don’t like winter training.  You aren’t alone in disliking the erg, but remember that it is key for making you fast when the time comes to race.  The on-water part of the season is the best part and getting there signals the end of the most difficult part of the season.

So let’s put our heads down, re-focus on the task, and make the next 3-4 weeks the best they can be!



  1. I love your emails Tom!!! So motivating!


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