I have rowed for 45 years. I was good, not excellent, but done my fair share of rowing and competing. But now in my masters years (59) I found good measure and wisdom in training and competing.
I hope we all agree that rowing should be fun, relaxation no matter how hard and intensive you train. So, I would like to share some insights I came to.
Know yourself. Rowers are stubborn, hard working enthusiast, not aware always what they can or cant. In masters years, first of all, listen to your body, not your belief, wish. We have rowers mind-set thinking we can do more than our body can. Relax, do as much you can, go to the edge but not over it (except on race) Enjoy - key word.
Be realistic. Do goals you can reach! Don't be a hero. Little by little you will be faster and faster. Sometimes seasons are needed for you to go one or two seconds faster (when you reach some level) Never, never be inpatient, it will come to you if you work steady and as planed, never doubt in yourself. Not having satisfactory time and finish any part you have means winning. Never quit, adapt, go slower but don't quit! Never quit, finish what you started. That is why I said you must be aware of your body.
Many of you start and chase awg or split time. If you want to do that, you need a good plan of training, consistent and aimed for specific target. To do that, find your max HR and than find A1, A2 and AN. Plan trainings to do it by the book. Do not look at time but pay attention to HR, and to stay inside aerobic wile preparing for your goals. Last 3 or 4 weeks before competition, brush it, get sharp. Remember, we are masters, so find max two target competitions for which you will get your form 100%. It is hard, not impossible but hard to get it more than that.
Every training session starts with a good warmup. It is a part of it. Also cool down and stretch. Little but do it.
Make notes of your training. Duration, distance, heart rate, stroke rate, split time. Make a record in excel. It is not only to keep track but to motivate you! Some time up, some time down, but you can see how you work.
Compare yourself with others only if you can be realistic. Don't try to gain results of others, make your own goals. We are different. I know I'm good for my years, weight and height, knowing that there are so many better than me. I enjoy their success, not envy them. I learn from many of you on this group, and that is so good and refreshing.
Learn technique, seek better and more an efficient stroke, compensate power with endurance rowing skill. Tips I got from one of the best, Nikola Bralic coach of Sinkovic brothers, change my whole perspective. Watch videos, it will come to you.
On the end, find a good group of people, one you understand, and they understand you, train an compete by making your friendship stronger. That's the most important thing, doing what you like with people you like.
Hope you find this interesting and useful.