The Fit 50 – No.28 10km Row

Rowing can be as hard as you want it to be but if you have some cardiovascular endurance this is one you can do anytime. Hit the gym and just go, 10km probably wont fly by but you can keep plugging away. Technique isn’t an issue, even those who have not tried before can usually row without instructions.


It’s a good time to be at one with your mind, you know you can keep going, but do you want to? Are you enjoying it? Sometimes throughout this test you might almost meditate. You are aware of your breathing, as it should be on the out stroke. Becoming aware of your stroke rate is almost like a metronome leading to periods of mind relaxing trance, although if you are in pain from the effort this can be hard to achieve.

Practical Tips

It might be an idea to stop and stretch during this, those hamstrings can get tight as well as your lower back. If you can do this why not try the half or full marathon? Your ass is likely to get you with this one, a bit like a long bike ride. If you are not used to rowing for a long time I suggest having padded shorts or even a towel on your seat.

There is some wonderful satisfaction from being able to transfer this to a lake or river and using the skill and endurance you have to explore and see nature from a different perspective while you get a workout in.

If long endurance rows are not your thing, try to go all out for 500meters. This might burn a bit but is a nice alternate to the long and perhaps boring 10km.

My Experience

Not the most invigorating challenge, but possibly one of the most accessible. Once for an extra challenge I completed this along with 10km treadmill run and 10,000kg of deadlifts and bench-press (which was interesting). I am yet to complete a marathon row but have completed a half marathon one.

Fun Fact – Robert Spenger holds the world record for indoor rowing for 10km of 48 minutes and 50 seconds. No big deal you say, but this is the world record for the 90 to 99 years of age category.

Elite Challenge – Complete a marathon row.

Alternate Test – 500m in under 1min 45seconds.

Fit Fifty Challenge – Complete a 10km row in under 50 minutes.

My latest two books are now available in paperback, check them out 🙂

Why Not?

A Book About Teaching

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