I assume you've all seen the other email saying no crew class this week - out of our control I'm afraid.
So two suggested sessions for the week below, if you fancy them.
When I was planning them, I was thinking both about the time of year / actual training need, but also about the idea of identifying what we prioritise when we're on the erg doing a session.
There's lots of ways to think about that, but for me I can summarise a list of three things which I tend to focus on
1. Getting the split time(s) I want for the piece / intervals
2. Focussing on my technique and erging with good form
3. Just getting through the thing and not giving up, regardless of form/technique and/or the split.
Sometimes I am prioritising one or two of them, sometimes I am trying to make myself juggle all three.
Last week and for the few weeks before Christmas, we were focussing quite a bit on number 1 - hitting target splits. For this week's two sessions, I'm suggesting you ignore that altogether, and focus instead on the other two - getting the pieces done, and getting them done with good form. Try to make yourself ignore the split! They are polar opposite sessions; partly for variety, and partly to reinforce that idea in different contexts.
Suggested session 1
40 minutes straight.
Do it in 4 x 10-minute blocks, and choose your rate for these - pick either 18/20/18/20 or 20/22/20/22.
We haven't done a single long block like this for ages, so don't worry about the split, try to avoid targeting something. Instead, try to do it at a perceived exertion of about 13 on that 6-20 scale (so it feels 'somewhat hard', on a scale which goes from 'no exertion' to 'maximal exertion').
The idea is then to work on maintaining technique for that really long time, and making sure that you don't go too hard and burn out. If you finish the piece feeling tired but not on your knees, good. If you finish it in a heap on the floor and the last few minutes felt all over the place, then you've gone too hard.
Suggested session 2
8 x 500m, r24 or 26, undefined rest.
The idea here is to throw in some short intervals for a bit of variety, and for you to see where you're at.
So warm up really thoroughly, and then get stuck into the 500m pieces. You might have an idea at the moment of what you think you 'should' do for 500m, you might not - it doesn't matter though, just forget it. Go hard at them, but prioritise good form above split. Think about pulling your 'safest and best form' 500m pieces, rather than your fastest 500m pieces. To reinforce that, take whatever rest you think you need between them. If you only take 30 seconds or a minute, you'll be unlikely to really be able to keep it together until the end. Probably for most people, 2 - 4 minutes will be about right. If you take 10 minutes, you'll be able to keep your form really well, but your session will take an house and a half or something!