If you’ve never worked out on an indoor rower, you should give it a try. As we head into the winter months, there is no greater way to lose your motivation to workout than getting bored with exercise. Rowing is the perfect solution to doing the same-old same-old day  in and day out. What’s more, the body benefits of rowing are like no other exercise.

  • Rowing works the legs, butt, back, abs, shoulders and arms.
  • Rowing increases your lung capacity (which means you’ll be able to go farther faster without feeling like you’ve done the extra work thanks to extra O2).
  • Rowing is non-impact (which makes it easy on all your joints).
  • Rowing burns calories like crazy.
  • Rowing is a great way to crosstrain for running.
I stopped into Rowfit Chicago the other day to check out one of their rowing interval classes. It was well worth my time. I asked Rowfit owner, Nell Shuttleworth, if she could put together a workout for me. Here it is! The POWER PYRAMID.
Power Pyramid: Total Workout Time: 34 minutes
1 min on, 1 min off
2′ on, 1′ off
3′ on, 1′ off
4′ on, 1′ off
5′ on, 1′ off
4′ on, 1′ off
3′ on, 1′ off
2′ on, 1′ off
1′ on, 1′ off
**During the ‘on’, the rates will shift up from 20 Stroke Rate to 28 Stroke Rate.**
Interval one: first minute ‘on’ will be at a 20 Stroke Rate, followed by one minute of recovery
Interval two: first minute will be a 20, the second minute a 22, followed by one minute of recovery
Interval three: first minute will be a 20, the second minute a 22, the third minute a 24, followed by one minute of recovery
Interval four first minute will be a 20, the second minute a 22, the third minute a 24, the fourth minute a 26, followed by one minute of recovery
Interval five first minute will be a 20, the second minute a 22, the third minute a 24, the fourth minute a 26,  the fifth minute a 28, followed by one minute of recovery.
Repeat intervals four, three, two and one as stated above – heading back down the other side of the ‘pyramid.’

Stroke Rate? What?
Stroke rate is found on the upper right-hand corner of the rower’s computer. You can’t miss it. Set the damper, which is what gives you resistance, right around a five.
Need tips on technique? Check out this video. If you can make it past the REALLY corny intro, you’ll pick it up in no time. If you happen to live in Chicago and want more hands-on instruction, stop by Rowfit, located at 1455 W. Hubbard.

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