Row, Row, Row.

With my running scaled back over the past few weeks and the half marathon looming on the horizon, I’ve been trying to mix up my workouts; Saturday morning I decided to test out my first group rowing class at Rowbot Fitness.

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Your first class at Rowbot is free; how cool is that? No excuse not to try! After filling out a new client form & waiver, two other newbies and I went through a 15-minute orientation with instructor Aubrey to learn proper form and the rowing terminology. I found this really helpful; I’ve rowed at the gym before but I was basically doing it all wrong. For the length of class I found myself trying to mentally repeat, “legs back arms … arms back legs.”

We also each received a card to insert into our machines. Concept2 logs each rower’s meters and time rowed in an online logbook; as someone who tracks workouts obsessively (hello, Runtastic), I really enjoyed knowing my results were being recorded for me. I can only imagine how awesome it would be if you were a studio regular.

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After a quick warmup to start the hour-long class, we did two minute interval drills of rowing at varying speeds, ranging from 24 to 30 strokes per minute. The instructor, Charles, rowed on a raised platform in the middle of the studio which was really helpful for the newbies. I really liked his music (House of Pain!) and the personalized attention he paid to everyone’s form. At times I found myself concentrating so hard on my form that my pace would slow, but I imagine after you have rowed a few times, it becomes second nature. By the time class was over, my butt was asleep and my back was talking to me.

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The class wasn’t quite the intense cardio workout as I was hoping for but it definitely would be a welcome addition to a strength training routine. The gym we just joined has a few rowing machines in their cardio area, but I definitely can see myself visiting Rowbot again whenever I need a little motivation from a group setting. After leaving the studio and running a few errands, I hit up the community hot yoga class at Be Yoga to stretch it all out. Lots and lots of chaturangas had my already tired arms screaming, but it felt oh so good to stretch out all the muscles I worked while rowing.

This morning I woke up feeling the best kind of sore. I’m not sure if it was rowing, yoga, or the combination of both, but damn, it felt good. I strapped braces on both knees (more on this in a future post) and hit the Cheatham Hill loop with my mom to take advantage of this beautiful weather. I haven’t run in shorts and a t-shirt in months, and I was super pumped about it, as evidenced by this super cheesy pose.

 

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We took it pretty easy with a 3:1 run-walk for 5 miles, and while our pace was pretty slow, my knees felt great and my troubled right hip was nice and warmed up by mile 2 – both great signs for next Sunday.

Say what you will, but I LOVE Daylight Savings Time. An extra hour of sunlight each day? I’ll take it, even if it means losing one hour of sleep. Do you love it too or does your grief over lost sleep overshadow any positive feelings?

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