Personal rowing record: 5,016 meters in 20 minutes

June 18, 2016 by Joshua
in Fitness

Concept2 Rower

Three weeks ago I rowed 4,994 meters in 20 minutes, a speed that felt surprising to keep up the whole time. I’ve been approaching 5,000 meters in 20 minutes for a while.

Today I rowed

  • 20 minutes
  • 5,016 meters
  • 334 calories or 1,003 calories / hour
  • 1:59.6 min / 500m split

I can’t tell you how good the accomplishment feels. I didn’t plan on doing it today. I started rowing faster and harder than usual, felt good, and kept the pace.

Not long ago, I struggled to keep up 900 calories per hour for a few minutes at the end. Now I maintained over 1,000 calories per hour for twenty minutes. My body and mind kept telling me to stop. I felt nauseated for part of it.

I gave myself milestones—another minute, to the end of the split, to the next quarter or third of the way, etc—to keep going. I also reminded myself that if I made the achievement, even once, it would last for the rest of my life, while the pain would fade within minutes.

As fast as I went for myself, exercise keeps you humble. The world record for 5,000 meters for lightweight men my age is 16:31, so that guy would have finished and waited around for three and a half minutes for me, so it’s not like I’m a competitor.

I read online that 5,000 meters in 20 minutes is about the threshold for non-racers to being serious and the posts I read didn’t specify age, so I figure that includes people closer to their physical primes, so that feels good.

Update: 5,009 meters in 20 minutes on July 4. I went out too fast and paused for a few seconds about two-thirds through. I felt so good for the first third, when I was on pace for 5,100 meters, but couldn’t keep it up. Still getting my bearings for this pace.

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8 responses on “Personal rowing record: 5,016 meters in 20 minutes

  1. Good work Josh. The record times, and even the top 10% are pretty humbling, so it can be easy to lose sight of your own achievements and progress. First time sub-20 for 5km is special. Enjoy the experience.

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