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Train Hard, Rest Easy and Party like the Season’s Over!

26 Jul

I apologise for having been AWOL for a couple of weeks since the big race – but I haven’t gone, I’m still here – I’ve not retired early! I raced last weekend at Molesey Regatta, and am very much looking forward to the last couple of regattas before the season finishes for the summer.

You may have spotted I’ve been busy with the uploads to my instagram, and since Women’s Henley I’ve had a couple of weeks off to relax and catch-up with friends that I haven’t seen since October 2012, and make the most of the amazing weather we have recently been spoilt with!

Tonight is the End of Season party at the club – despite there still being a further two regattas in the novice race calendar! – but this weekend I have some spare time, and will update this page with the latest goings-on from South West London.

Train Hard : One more sleep!!!

20 Jun

tomorrow is …

Women’s Henley!!

 

Very, very, very excited!

 

Watch this space for updates, instagrams and more!

Train Hard : The week we’ve all been waiting for

17 Jun

So here we are, the last Monday evening before Henley, and we’ve just got off the water from our penultimate training session prior to leaving London for Henley on Friday.

Racing Starts Insync

Having had a long and heavy outing yesterday, tonight’s training was focussing on our racing starts.

We had Jon watching us for the second half of the outing, and worked with us on this – focussing on no backs or bodyrock, all legs, and getting the blades all in together, and getting all the power down together.

It was a really good outing – despite getting the usual soaking at bow seat! – and our starts really developed as the outing went on, and the last piece we did felt a hundred times more powerful and insync than the first this evening.

Crew Debrief

Jon hasn’t seen us out on the water for a couple of sessions now, and during our debrief he told us that we looked a different crew from the last time he saw us out on the water – which is nice to hear!

There were plenty of positive comments during our crew chat, and everyone seems nicely relaxed yet obviously excited about Friday!

The balance has improved massively over the last two weeks, and we’ve finally got used to the second shell; Viv – instead of the old trusty, and somewhat creaky Noel!

Train Hard : This week’s Training Schedule

17 Jun

Monday : Evening water outing @ TRC
Tuesday : Final Evening water outing @ TRC Pre-Henley & derigging
Wednesday : Sanding & painting blades Pre-Henley
Thursday : Crew Dinner
Friday : HENLEY WOMEN’s REGATTA QUALIFIERS
Saturday : HENLEY WOMEN’s REGATTA
Sunday : HENLEY WOMEN’s REGATTA

Train Hard : The real countdown begins!

14 Jun

Just a week to go until Henley Women’s Regatta qualifiers!

Train Hard : This week’s Training Schedule

10 Jun

Monday : Evening water outing @ TRC
Tuesday : REST
Wednesday : Evening water outing @ TRC
Thursday : Lactic Threshold workout @ TRC
Friday : REST
Saturday : 7.45 – 1pm water outing @ TRC
Sunday : 7.45 – 1pm water outing @ TRC

Train Hard : WHR Draw Announced …

7 Jun

Thames B will be racing …

Vesta!

Race 11 at 15:03 Friday 21st June, in the 4th of 7 heats.

 

Quarter Final

The winner of Race 11 will race again in Race 132 at 11:04 Saturday 22nd June against the winner of Race 10 (either City of Oxford or Cantabrigian).

 

Semi-Final

The semi-final will be Race 334 at 11:42 Sunday 23rd June, against the winner of Race 131 (either Twickenham RC/Barnes Bridge Ladies/Galway RC or Royal Chester)

The Women’s Eights Intermediate Final

The final will be Race 377 at 15:35 Sunday 23rd June, against the winner of Race 335 (either Lea RC/Tyne RC/Grosvenor RC/York City/Reading RC/Thames RC A or Cambridge City RC)

 

With three races to get to the final – it *could* be a Thames A vs Thames B final !!

Train Hard : Road to Henley!

5 Jun

It’s been a couple of weeks since I’ve been on an erg, as the last few weeks have been used for race prep, with lots of mid-week outings, however on the road to Henley, the training is getting ramped up further!

Tonight’s work was 2 x 5km pieces, rate 18.

It hurt!

Weight : 58.6kg

Piece 1

Time : 22.00.1
Average Split : 2.12.0
Average Stroke Rate : 19
Watts : 152
Calories : 302

Piece 2

Time : 22.37.2
Average Split : 2.15.7
Average Stroke Rate : 18
Watts : 140
Calories : 294
 

A good 37 seconds slower in the second piece, after a five minute break – understandably so though!

Train Hard : WHR Crews Announced …

3 Jun

… I’ve just received the email we’ve all been waiting for!

(Well, all of the women’s novice squad at TRC!)

 

The crews for Henley have now officially been announced, and training in those crews starts this week – I’m expecting it to be a very full-on couple of weeks as we build up to Women’s Henley (21st to 23rd June).

 

I will be racing in the Women’s 8 at Bow, along with Hannah B (2), Holly (3), Laura (4), Madeleine (5), Kathrin (6), Charlotte L (7) and Bethan (Stroke) – coxed by Marie.

As a squad, we are also entering a four; Katrine, Bernice, Amy C and Amy L, coxed by Cat.

 

Very, very, very excited!

This should make up for the many months training in the dark and cold!

 

According to the regatta’s website, the draw should be announced Friday, so until then we sit and wait to find out who our competition will be for qualifying!

 

 

Race Hard : Met Regatta – Saturday June 1st 2013

1 Jun

Despite the racing being out at Eton Dorney – 20 miles from home – we were quite fortunate that our heat wasn’t until 11am, and as I was driving that meant an alarm call of 7 as usual!

The drive to Dorney was pretty quick, however as we got towards the lake the sat nav decided it knew better and tried to take us off down someone’s driveway! As a result, we ended up slightly lost in Eton, in amongst some rather magnificent buildings!

Once we found out exactly where we were meant to head to – the Mets’ website did warn that sat navs don’t like the area! – it only took a couple of minutes to get there, and we soon got parked up.
What we didn’t realise was that we were parked halfway along one side of the lake, and the boats were on the opposite side – what looked so close actually took ages to walk!

 

All rigged up!

Boat rigging took barely any time, and we soon had the Noel ready to race.
We had a crew chat with our cox Marie – she ran us through the race plan so that we knew what to expect, and soon after it was hands on.

Once again, forgetting how far the boat was from the start of the lake we set off carrying the Noel down to the pontoons. About a hundred metres down, the real weight of the boat hit us! We only ever carry it from the boathouse down the embankment – 100m at most!

Whilst it feels a little more glamorous standing on a pontoon to put the boat into the water, there’s something a little unnerving about the fact its floating, and one wrong move and you – or worse, the whole crew! – could slip and go in with the boat!

Anyway, we got the boat in the water, pushed off and headed down the warm up lake – hidden behind the bank – to make our way to the start.

 

Race Warm Up

We worked through the usual warm-up of hands, hands and bodies, and working our way up the slide. We then had a couple of racing starts in an attempt to burn off a little adrenalin.

The marshall called the boats from our heat to get into order, and directed us down and through the bridge to get into position.
We were lane 6, therefore second from last to pull through onto the lake, and got ourselves into position as quickly as we could.

 

Attention!

Unlike the regattas we had entered prior to this, the start was much more formal – we were given a countdown to the race start from the official in the box, and once all boats were docked at the start the official called attention, then a short pause before the digital boards on shore lit up green and beeped to signal the start.

 

Our start

Unfortunately, the official called the start whilst Marie still had her hand raised, as we were still tapping the boat straight, and so we were all a little caught out.

Our start wasn’t awful, but we weren’t getting much power down, and there wasn’t the rhythm in the boat, which made the race a battle.

In terms of pacing, we were told to go all-out in the first 250-500 to get a good start, then lengthen and pace it out, before pushing again for the 1500m mark, and again for the last 250m.

Without the rhythm it was hard getting the power down, not only this but there were too many blades not catching properly and so Marie had the boat on full steer to bow-side for the whole race as bow-side were pulling the boat over to the lane to our left. Consequently steering adjustments have an effect on both balance and speed, and in an ideal world over the length of a straight-lane there should be very little steering required.

Despite feeling like forever to get to the mid-way mark, the race was much quicker than I had feared, and we finished the race 6th out of 7.

Obviously gutted as a crew not to have got through to the next round, or repechage, however it was a great experience – racing on a lake against 6 other boats was very exciting and new to us all.

 

Easy Oar!

Once we got the boat back on trestles, we were then left to chill out for the rest of the day, whilst the rest of the crews had their races, and so we sat by the finish line to have lunch and cheer on TRC crews.

My parents had made the journey to Eton Dorney to watch us race – I spotted my mum, busy with her camera taking photos of us all as we were getting in to the water! – and so they joined us to sit and watch.

It was nice to be able to spend some time with them whilst watching the racing. Training has taken over everything recently, and has meant that I am unable to go home to see the family like I used to, and so the only opportunity I get is if they happen to come into London – so it was nice to see my dad again for the first time in 6 months!

 

And so the end of Day 1 at Eton Dorney drew to a close …

And I get to do it all again tomorrow, with the other 8 that I’m racing in this weekend!

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