A Turtle Jumps on an Erg

I’m poking my head from the vortex of life.

Since December, we sold our house, bought a new house, spent roughly 10 days in Florida for the holidays, moved out of one house, were transient for a week, moved into a new house, and capped the craziness by all catching the flu. But I’m finally back in action as of February 2.


I intended to train as much as possible to at least not slide backwards. I knew the middle of January would be the worst because the erg would be in a moving truck and my gym membership would be over.

rowing in Inverness

Adventure row in Inverness in December.

The reality is, between arranging the home sale and purchases, navigating packing and moving, maintaining my work commitments, normalizing things for Caelan, and having the holidays, I was lucky to get 45 minutes a day, if at all.

Once we were packing and shipping our belongings North, forget about it.

I had to make priority choices, and for these two months, it was family followed by my clients. Exercise and rowing training had to hit the back burner.

Sarasota rowing

Quad row early morning in Sarasota

Not that I didn’t get any rowing in! Over the Christmas holidays, I loved seeing my rowing friends in Sarasota and had an adventure row with ROCCS in Inverness. I think it was a total of three on-water days.

We officially moved in on January 18. Caelan started with his new school right away, January 20. Alan started his new job on January 21.  I set a soft deadline to restart my training on January 27 because moving in and getting the house in order while working was too much.

Well, after two days in his new school, Caelan contracted influenza type A. He did have a flu shot, but the poor guy was down and out about a week. All he wanted was to cuddle with Mommy. Literally. I spent hours cradling him close because he kept saying he was cold and wanted snuggles.

Sick kid.

Caelan snuggled into my side while sick with the flu.

I did not get this year’s flu shot. Of course, I contracted the flu. And then Alan (who had the shot) started with symptoms two days after I bit the bullet.

So the week of January 27 started with me sleeping pretty much all day for three days and then taking care of the family.

Starting over in 2020

New month, new rowing year. I did my first workout last week, Monday, 5:30am.

It feels like starting from scratch. And honestly, I pretty much am starting from scratch. Weeks of no training and little physical activity other than shoving boxes around. A Galapagos turtle could erg further in 30 minutes than I did.

I’m behind. I’m consciously aware of how far behind I am after what amounts to two-and-a-half months off. My stamina, shot. Strength, pitiful. All last week, my alarm vibrated and it was a drag to get out of bed and downstairs.

But you have to start somewhere. That’s what I kept saying. Everyone starts somewhere.

Alan keeps reminding me April will be here before I know it.

I have not joined the rowing club yet. I didn’t want to show up pitifully out of shape and embarrass myself. I will see how much progress has been made by month’s end. I’ll either sign up in March or April, the start of their membership year.

There has been some progress. Already my stamina has shown improvement. I’m only in the second week, and I’m using the Faster Masters workouts because my time is still heavily divided. I don’t have time to customize a plan to whip myself back in shape. Usually these blogs take an hour or so but I’ve only allowed myself 30 minutes. I also don’t have a good routine established yet.


Being silly for Valentine’s Day. Starting to get back to normal.


Something weird I have noticed is when I erg my left foot keeps turning out. I correct it back, but it slowly pulls its way back to the left. Right foot’s straight on.

I should note I do all aerobic work and most aerobic work on the erg not tied in.

2020 Goals

I’m driven by goals, so I’d be lying if I didn’t have one in mind. It took me a while to land on it, and honestly, I’m still turning it over in my mind. For now, I’m keeping it to myself. It’s a little ambitious, but I have ten months to make some magic happen. 😉

Other than my secret ambition, my other goal is just to rejoin a team and the rowing community. I’m leaving myself open this year to explore what’s up here in Ohio and trying some new regattas. The Head of the Cuyahoga looks like it could be really fun.

The New Digs

We have a basement in our new house. I’ve got big plans for the space, like adding a mirror next to the rower. I acquired a few more weights and bands, but for now this is my workout cave. Journal’s back in action. Caelan keeps moving all my weights around.


My pain cave.



About camckenna

I write; I row.
This entry was posted in Home, Struggles, Training and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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