There were no stunning sunsets on the horizon, no whales, no dolphins and no sharks for company, as we endeavoured to complete our self imposed target of 1,000,000 metres row in 90 days. Thought out over a beer during the Christmas break we decided we needed a challenge that would help us get through the dark winter nights. I had tried this a few years back but over 12 months and failed. Nick suggested we do it over 90 days rather than 365 as that was the attention span for most challenges to succeed.
I can report that we have now completed the row and we did it in a managed 89 days. When completed this Easter, we both felt triumphant, relieved and slightly empty, as what we had strived to do over the past 3 months had now come to a satisfactory conclusion. I suppose fittingly we completed over the weekend of the Varsity boat race.
Nick was looking like he was going to fail though, as entering March with only 31 days remaining he was still more than 434,000 metres away. A bad back was causing him huge discomfort and so to push on and finish was not realistic. However, his stubborn streak and an unwillingness to fail he did indeed push on and rowed 435264 in the final month. In fact Nick managed a staggering 97,000 in the final 3 days. To alleviate his bad back whilst rowing, Nick would jump off the Concept 2 machine and do a quick 20 press ups every 2000 metres which gave his back a good stretch
I was able to get ahead of the game and had the average row down to around 10,000 metres by the time we hit mid March. I set myself new goals within the challenge such as completing the half marathon (21097m) within 90 minutes; this was achieved on Easter Saturday. I also created a whole new playlist for rows where i wanted to up the pace during 1 hour rows. Music with a faster beat which could give me a higher intensity for an hour seemed to do the trick. When i wanted to have a longer slower row, my normal playlist would suffice.
During the row my body shape changed, which was not the original goal but a welcome side effect. I lost 26lbs over the 90 days, which isn’t a surprise when you consider an hour’s row burnt in excess of 850 calories with the half marathon burning an incredible 1340 calories.
So, if weight loss is your intention then i would seriously recommend this challenge. Factor in one rest day per week at least. Do not go out too fast at the beginning of the row and try to build up the length of row to burn more calories. Use the Concept 2 online logbook to upload your progress and take part in their monthly challenges, within your own personal challenge. If you have friends’ also taking part get them to use the logbook too, then you can become online training partners which helps maintain focus.
If you do take part in the 1,000,000 metres in 90 days challenge, let us know how you get on. What thoughts go through your mind during the challenge and why did you do it in the first place?