This Damien Roche Fitness Workout of the Week (#drfwow)  is a great way put in a big distance without the boredom or monotony of a steady state 5k.

How Do I Do It?:

Warm up with an easy 1000m. Use this warm up to dial in your perfect form. Then begin the following pyramid sequence.



10 Strokes light intensity,  followed by 10 powerful long strokes.

20 Strokes light intensity, 20 powerful.

30 Strokes light, 30 Powerful

40 Strokes light, 40 Powerful

50 Strokes light, 50 Powerful

40 Strokes light, 40 Powerful

30 Strokes light, 30 Powerful

20 Strokes light, 20 Powerful

10 Strokes light, 10 Powerful

Cool down with light rowing until breathing and heart rate returns to warm up intensity.

How to do it well:

By the end of your 1st 20 powerful strokes, you should have an idea of what pace you can maintain. Decide here that this shall be the target pace for the remainder of the power strokes. As you fatigue it will be tough to hold on to it but you will get almost enough recovery during the light phases of this workout. Done correctly, you will need to tap in to some of your mental strength near the end of the pyramid.


For this workout I like to set the display to show the Watts bar chart. It shows you just how effective your stroke was compared to previous strokes. It gives good feedback and hopefully you will see that when you relax into a great rhythm with good form, your bars reach higher even though the stroke seems easier.  If you feel you are putting in the same effort but your bars are falling short, your technique may be falling apart.  Good to know early, before you waste too much energy.

Hardcore Option:

After your last light stoke from the previous round, allow yourself 4 transition strokes to get the pace back to your target. (These 4 strokes are performed at full power).  After the 4th stroke, refuse to count any strokes that results in a pace slower than your target pace. If your pace is slower than your target, the next stroke that counts is the one that gets you back under your target.  In doing it this way you will keep the powerful strokes POWERFUL. Its a great motivator to stay the course as you are coming down the back side of this pyramid. You will also make the connection between good form and good pace. Faster but poor technique will just not get you home as quick.


Keep your core engaged and tight as you row. Your core is used to keep your spine in line, protected and a strong link from your legs to your arm action.