Updated 11th February 2007
We were reformed in January 2006 to take part in the Cross Team Challenge
The Flyers were originally formed in 2001 on the old style US Forum.
Our membership is from the USA, GB, New Zealand, Finland, Australia, Thailand and the Netherlands. We have all abilities from beginners to CRASH B hammer winners and numerous BIRC medallists. We are all non elitist and welcome everybody.
Marc Blackburn (UK)
Forum Name: Leedsmeister
Hi i'm Marc, from Whitby up north but currently living in Crewe, Cheshire. I row for Whitby friendship ARC in the summer (we row gigs- those fat wooden cows) and enjoy playing instruments, cycling (not since my bike got nicked last week argh), rugby amongst other stuff. Doing a sports science degree at the moment at Manchester met and hope to go sub 7 pretty soon just as soon as my arm fully heals (broke it a couple of months ago on a night out in Leicester!).
Shirley Godkin. (New Zealand)
Forum Name: rowmyboat
After following my husband and children through all their sporting
careers, boxing, rugby and various horse events for many years, picking up
the pieces! - lots of travelling and many lunches later - I am now free to
follow a sport myself with all the support of my family behind me. I enjoy
the participation and they are happy being spectators as they keep
humouring me that they wouldn't like me to beat them. I have managed to
persuade my husband Tony to erg along with me at times for company so
that's a start!!
inaugurated my athletic career as a mediocre high school basketball player
(although I did have a great view of the court from the bench). I followed
that with a stint as a mediocre LWT rower in college. Then I was, at
various times, a mediocre tennis player and a mediocre runner. When I
bought my Model C in April 2002, I saw the opportunity to reach that most
cherished of goals: If I could just outlive everyone else, I could reach .
. . advanced mediocrity as an indoor rower! If that isn’t enough,
I’m wondering if, at 6’2”, I qualify as the world’s tallest 55yo
In real life, I’m a writer and the proud father of two sons, aged 27 and 25. They’re out of the house now, if not entirely out of my wallet. They also seem to think that I’ve gotten smarter as they’ve gotten older. How strange.
Forum name: Cars
I am a 38 y. old HWT at 184 cm, located in Germany and working in the Netherlands after spending some time studying in the U.S. and South Africa. I used to row in competitions until the 20's, but eventually went on to American Football, basketball, weight-lifting, long distance running and triathlon at a later stage. Then the college years were over and with a medical career and a family life at hand sports became the occasional weekly "run" and looking at the scale became rather unpleasant . Since this spring I own a Model D, enjoy the regular sessions and the perspective of starting in competitions once again.
The Flyers are a great bunch to share the
motivation and enthusiasm for this nice sport.
Ultimate goal: Selection for the German WIRC Team in 2 years (then 40+).
Age 36, 12-13 stone depending on the
time of year, 5’6”
I started rowing when the university crew invited me to spend some time with them. The coach was pretty enthused when he looked at me, so I rowed for the ’68-’69 school year. An academic advisor suggested that being on the water at 4 pm and staying in my 3 pm math classes seemed like a conflict, so I resolved that by napping before I headed to the river. Neither Coach nor academic advisor was pleased about the academic suspension. On the other hand, The Selective Service System appreciated it plenty. Having been properly conditioned to sit on my butt and go backwards while somebody hollered at me, the transition to the Army was easy. No boats, they made me run all the time and hurt my knees, but I stayed for 30 years anyway.
In ‘95 I found a flyer for the Baltimore Rowing Club and reported for duty. It was a little late in the season, but it let me find out what an erg was and I got to do the Baltimore Burn in ’96 before a reassignment. I turned myself into a teacher when I was released, started fairly regularly to hit the erg on the way to work, and logged meters beginning in May 2001. After logging the meters with the Flyers for a few years, it’s quite nice to see them re-invented.
I plan for annual competition at the Mid-Atlantic Sprints and the Baltimore Burn just to get the head-to-head at 2K and to test myself at the hour rows. I figure that’s good for keeping my weight down while I eat whatever I please. Every now and then I pop off a pretty good 2K time, but I spend most of my effort burning calories and building sweat puddles.
Forum Name. Roadrunner.
Enjoy erging, eating ice cream, the occasional beer or two, racing as a 50+ LWT, part of the FF for a short while now but racking up the metres as usual. Not as many as I used to, but a shade faster on the long stuff.
I'm Petra Schouten, 36 years old, heavy weight, married with Wim, old rugby-player, now he's rowing to. We have two daughters, Iris is ten and Jessica is eight years old.
I started rowing and fitness after I broke my arm. I think one arm was stronger than the other. See what happen. I was rowing two times the E.K. championships( 2km 7.22). I did four times the Ergo Head in Amsterdam (6 km 23.03). I also did the marathon three times (2 hours 58 min.47sec.). In my youth I played soccer. Most of the
time I stand in the goal. When I was a little child I did gymnastic. My whole life I did on sport. So now I'm a rowing housewife
Hometown: Edwards, CA
Bio: I'm Grace Malacrida, 42, heavyweight, married to a lighweight rower. We have two teenage sons. One son loves rowing and the other would much rather sleep in then go row. My 15 year old son is my mixed doubles partner for rowing.
I'm also the 2 seat in the 8 that Joan Van Blom stroked to victory at the Head of the Charles and at the Crew Classic this past year. I truly enjoy competing with the Long Beach women in an 8. However, I live quite some distance from the boathouse, so the erg is my friend. I use the erg 5 days a week in my home and get on the water once a week. Since I live in a house with a swamp cooler and the local temp has been in the 100s, I may be able to become a lightweight via sweating...well, maybe not.
For the past few years, Marlene Royle has developed my training program and helped me drop my 2k time quite a bit. I hope that these suggested workouts will help me lower it even further.
Hometown: Seal Beach, CA
Bio: I am (yet) another of the Long Beach Rowing Association women's 8+, along with Joan Van Bom & Grace Malacrida. As a dye-in-the-wool, 125 lb lightweight, I'm bow - no surprise. Started rowing in the mid-'70's as an undergraduate at MIT, and have continued competing on the water ever since (a string of wins at the Head of the Charles and the Crew Classic are favorites). Many thanks to my LBRA teammates; we continue to learn from and push each other.
And considerable praise to Concept2! as they released us from the tyrrany of the Gamut & Gjessing ergs in transforming the erg from the occasional test machine into a real training tool that anyone could afford (a real blessing for time-pressed working moms). I was on the first USIRT in 2002, winning at the BIRC. Rowed at the CRASH-B's in 1984, 1987 and then every year from 1997 on. Have won a couple hammers and have a few silvers & bronzes.
My training plan is 6 days/week, 1 rest day on my longest day at work. The Wolverine Plan has been a well of information & inspiration - and so I do a few level 4 sessions, and 1 each of levels 3,2,&1 per week, with the level 1 sprint session done as a group at LBRA. Now usually rack up 14 to 19K per day, preparing for the Head of the Charles. The mix of workouts suggested for July seems very good for this!
Todd Carpenter (New Zealand)
I am 32 years of age, live in Tauranga
New Zealand, and am married with
Paul Harris USA /UK
Forum Name PaulH
"I started erging in '99 while on a contract at a London bank that had a free gym. A friend (thanks Nik!) taught me how to do it vaguely right, and for six months of weekending I had nothing much to do in London except work and erg - that got me off to a good start with times that I've never quite matched.
Moved to Minneapolis later in '99, bought an erg immediately and for the next four years meant to learn how to row on the water, but didn't quite get to it. In that time I created the Nonathlon (www.nonathlon.com) along with Cran. In 2003 I signed up for a learn to row class at the Minneapolis Rowing Club (www.mplsrowing.org), where I am now Sport (i.e. recreational) Captain and Vice-President. That's all changing now as we're moving back to the UK.
I'm married to ClaireH, a reluctant erger who I've currently bullied into joining the Forum Flyers, have a little girl who likes erging for about a minute at a time, and a little boy who is less keen since he fell off the erg - luckily his head broke his fall. As well as rowing I cycle, with equally poor results. My lack of success is tempered by the Perthes disease that hospitalized me for a year as a 6 year old - I consider myself lucky to be able to do what I can, and unlucky that I can't do more due mainly to my crippling chocolate addiction and general sloth."
carried on playing rugby throughout my teenage years, mostly at openside
flanker with the odd game at scrum half.
I also played some hockey getting into my school first team for
both. I managed to avoid any
major injuries until aged 17 when I dislocated my shoulder playing for my
wing of the Air Training Corps. That
put me out for a while but I was back for the next season.
university (in Bath, where I studied Chemical Engineering) I carried on
with the rugby and by now weight training as well and again managed to
mostly avoid any serious injury. It
was round now that I began to enjoy playing less and the university teams
depended on how your face fitted rather than things like training
attendance and ability. That
soon picked up however when I did a year’s industrial placement living
in Taunton. One of my colleagues introduced me to the local club and I had
a season and a half of my most enjoyable rugby ever.
I also switched to inside centre which was a much better position
for me. Despite weight
training 3 times a week and eating like a horse, I never managed to get
above 12 stone. It soon began to dawn on me that I would be forever taking
on not just big forwards, but increasingly large centres as well added to
which, the bruises took longer to heal and my shoulder was now beginning
to be less than happy at times.
then had a somewhat fortuitous injury when I went back to university to
finish my degree. I managed
to mess up my knee, which put me out for around 10 weeks, just at the time
that the local referees society was holding a laws course just around the
corner from my house. So I
took the course, bought a whistle and haven’t looked back since.
I now have ten years refereeing under my belt.
graduating I joined Courtaulds, now sadly defunct, which is where I met
Rekha, my future wife. We parted company a bit later, but then got back in
contact and the rest, as they say is history.
We got married in 1999 and now have two children Rohan (2002) and
Serena (2004). We moved to
Ely in 2005 following a job opportunity for me and it was here that my
erging bug began, partly because I now had a large enough garage and I was
increasingly finding that running on concrete wrecked my shins and ankles
and I didn’t have time for gyms. Low
impact was a good way to maintain my fitness and I could fit it around the
family at night or in the morning.
I bought the erg in October and soon discovered the forum as a mainly useful and friendly collection of individuals who all had the same bug. Six months later, I’m doing it at least three times a week and get itchy feet if I miss a session and have amazed myself with my self- competitive side pushing me ever faster. Currently 7:35 for the 2K with a sub-7 target.
Al Hallberg New Zealand
(alias Flymo) born March 1955 in Dunedin, New Zealand, now residing and working in Waikanae which is about 1 hour north of our capital city - Wellington.
I am married to Sue whom I have to admit has the patience of a saint, we have 5 children between us (yours 2, mine 2 and ours 1), out of all that we only have a teenager to go before the nest is empty.
Fortunately I grew up in a sports mad family and after having tried many sports I settling on Athletics (shot put, discus, javelin and hammer) and progressed on to Powerlifting, holding most of the New Zealand records for several years.
I competed internationally at Shot and Powerlifting back in the eighties, culminating in an invitation to compete in the 1983 Worlds Strongest man competition which I accepted not really knowing what to expect.
At that time only 2 or 3 people worldwide had deadlifted over 1000lb, from memory 5 of us lifted over that mark with my lift being 1003lbs (455kg), this was my own personal best until 1991 when I increased that to 1044lbs (470kg) at the NZ strongest man.
Retiring from Powerlifting (and weights) in 1992 relatively injury free, I set my sights on cycling and running, at a bodyweight of 127.5kg I knew I had some work to do, so after 18 months I had trimmed to 84kgs and was either cycling or running most days - I recall passing through that weight when I was about 15 years old.
I found that longer distance events were my forte, couldn't sprint to save myself but have finished most of the long distance cycle races including lake Taupo Challenge(160km) many times, Around Mt Taranaki(160km), Christchurch to Timaru(160km) and the 100km Flyer - Rototua to Taupo. Taupo is the biggest event for riders attracting around 10000 in 2005, I haven't broken the 4h30m mark yet so will keep trying.
Ongoing calf problems from 2003 and a torn knee ligament late 2004 I returned to the gym for strength training and inspiration.
1st May 2005 I was directed to "the rowing machine" and told to do a 10 minute warmup, I likened it to being sent to the school headmaster for a good telling off, I got through it, but my immediate thought was - this would have to be the ugliest exercise ever invented, who in their right minds would actually enjoy this - hadn't done any cardio for a while so was feeling it a bit.
Three weeks later and about 21000metres, a work colleague made the big mistake of mentioning that there is such a thing as indoor rowing racing (I'm picking challenge here), I had actually heard of them but thought it was for current and ex rowers, and he went on to further challenge everybody to a 2000m race on his brand new C2 model D, a further 2 weeks later kicked his butt with 6m56.
By the end of July I entered my first big race - the long distance champs, I thought "I had rowed for an hour before, what was the problem", the programme was set down for three races - 5k at 9am, 10k at 9.30am and the 1 hour row at 10.30am, entered the whole three 17m36 for 5km - havent got near it since, 36m09 and 16179, needless to say I slept well that night.
My early goal was to do 3,000,000 metres for the year, early December I changed that to 4m and have averaged over 100km per week since then, managing 1 hour row at 16705m and half marathon 1h 15m 56, with future goals being - sub 6m30 for 2km, 17000 for 1 hour and finish a marathon without stopping.
Fred Dickie (USA)
Started Erging 8/4/98 First Million 5/26/99 Fifth Million 12/29/01 Ten
|Paul Galliford (Australia)|
Beth Lawrence (USA)
John Stock (UK)
36 years old, weigh 86kg, 5ft 10 tall and have been rowing for 6 months.
Most of my previous training has been with weights, which is why I
find rowing the shorter distances suits me best.
One of the things that attracts me to erg is that there are so many
statistics available to monitor performance, achievement and competition. My erging goals are a sub 7 minute 2km and 8km plus for 30
been an Engineer in the RAD since 1990 and currently posted to Tactical
Communications Wing at RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire.
This is an instructional post that involves Pre-Employment Training
(PET) of all new personnel on the Wing.
As communications are a vital element in any operation it is
imperative that all service men/women involved are able to carry out their
duties effectively in any environment.
After classroom and practical instruction the students embark on
several challenging exercises. The final requires them to set up and maintain a forward
communications site in an extremely hostile environment.
For a week they regularly come under small arms fire, aircraft and
chemical weapons attacks (o yes and lots of sleep deprivation).
Which you would all agree is character building stuff (that’s
what they told me when I did it). If
the student successfully completes the exercise he/she is classed as being
fully operational and can be deployed Worldwide.
The lessons they’ve learnt during this PET are currently keeping
them alive in some of the Worlds less desirable locations.
I’ve been married to Susan for seven years and we have two wonderful children, Craig born Apr 03 and Kayley born Oct 05. We livein Basingstoke, Hampshire which is 40 miles west of London.
|Anne Badanes (USA)
Forum Name. anneoaks
rowing history is probably the shortest-15 months. I turned 50 last year
and a friend thought it was time I learned a new sport and put my height of
5'11" to work. So, he took me to an erg, showed me how to row and said
I should be doing a 2K in 8 minutes. It was that easy. HA ! Little
did I know how hard it would be to get below 8 minutes. I had
some great help prior to the '05 Crash Bs in Cincinnati and managed 8:10. I
spent most of 2005 rowing distances--kind of unfocused, but growing
to like the erg and the exercise.
husband is also tall and has some medical problems. He had
to stop running, so he began to erg as well....my idea of a fun date was
to erg side by side to accrue meters....pretty pathetic--but certainly
cheap! He is a bit faster than I am so it was friendly competition. We
learned to row outdoors this summer on a river in Cincinnati called the
Licking River (flows into the mighty Ohio). I rowed a few times on the
Ohio at the crack of dawn before the mammoth barges arrived and
I also row on a single at a nearby lake. But, I prefer the erg in the
summer as it is a quicker workout and I need to find time for golf and
As for my lifestyle (you can go to sleep now), I live in Cincinnati, went to college in Massachusetts, and have been married 26 years. We have 3 kids; one in DC now, one in college and one still at home. I worked as a head hunter (executive recruiter) and marketing consultant for new products. That work has taken me to the UK a bit and am hoping to return their soon. Other sporting interests are golf and hiking. Doing the CTC is great fun...and I am just hoping someday that an age handicap is instituted...because then I'd give our rankings a boost! (The funny thing is that I don't think I am old!) Oh well, until then I will give it my best and cheer you all on!
|Jim Barry (USA)
I rowed in college in the late 80's. Nothing special.
Our light 8 was a lot of fun and regionally competitive, but we never
made much of ourselves at the national level. After school I
was mostly into Mt biking and downhill skiing which I got quite good at
(moguls especially). I was not much for regular exercise (boring!) but one
year where I just did not bike much (2000) left me about 30 lbs
overweight and shopping for new pants and belts. Scary! So I got an
erg; I got into the forum; I met a lot of people, including many
of the flyers here. I rowed a million meters in under a year, lost the
weight and got fit again. I even got a chance to coach a
few folks (including building a training program for Nik Fleming
which led him to his only Gold Medal at the Crash-B's). I myself
raced a few times at the Crash-Bs finishing nearly last and telling
myself, "Well, it's not called the World Championships for
nothing." Regardless, I have an addiction to understanding sports
physiology and I am basically happy racing myself and denting the rankings
a little. Ultimately, I'm still hopeful I can pull an athlete out of
me here again one day. Lately, I'm finding more hope and relative success
at running where I'm well built for it. (5'11 and 150lbs). If I can
figure out a way to put in more than 30 miles a week and not get injured I
should be "up there" with the better runners in the
regional races and that's exciting. I can also do well enough at mt bike
racing without much training for it. The three sports have my head
spinning. I really love them all.
In my normal life I'm a business director for a large
insurance company. I do like my work and my work team which
oversees the reporting services for large clients like Dell
Computers. I grew up just outside of Wash DC. Our family moved
to Maine in 1977 where I fell in love with taking life a lot slower
than most everyone else in America. In 1998 I married Marlene who is
a good athlete herself. We love hiking/the outdoors and dogs. Right now
we have essentially no real life as we devote quite a bit to our
kids, Ben (5) and Emma (2). Slowly, but surely we are reclaiming our
former lives and doing normal things like having a dinner conversation
(don't know what you have til it's gone) .
Great to get a chance to row with you all and span the world with our efforts. Steve, Rick, Andy and I are ready to do our part for the LW element. It's really fun to mix it up with these really fine athletes.
Forum Name. DP
I have always been mad keen on sports, despite having little aptitude at them. My only real skill was speed over short distances. I rarely troubled the selectors of the school football and cricket teams although I played rugby regularly in my early teens. I really wanted to play as a winger, but was not fast enough, so plied my trade as openside flanker, blazing the trail for more successful exponents of the position, such as Kronfeld, Back and McCaw. J My speciality was the “late but not late enough tackle to be penalised” and many fly halves in the local area experienced being knocked flat just as the ball was reaching the outside centre! Happy days indeed, brought to a sad demise by improved refereeing standards and the realisation that I didn’t really like being jumped on, squashed, punched, kicked, studded etc.
My late teens saw me as something of a pool-shark,
and too many nights in the pub saw me leave school with the well deserved
nickname of “Porky Parky”. I started at college and drifted into
rowing, lured by the promise of “train hard, drink lots, stay thin and
pull the girls”. The first three of these claims were quickly proven to
be true although it took me until my final year to successfully woo Sue,
who would in 1995 graciously consent to become Mrs Parky. Mrs Parky was a
talented rower (unlike me) and her final race saw her partnering a future
GB international as they stuffed all the blokes’ crews in a long
distance pairs race.
I drifted back into rowing in early 2000 when the
gym I’d changed to acquired some model C ergs. I bought an erg for the
house and started competing. My debut was BIRC 2000, where I demonstrated
a rare talent for the “fly and die”. By this time I’d found the
forum and there was a guy on there who appeared to know a thing or two
about training. Jim Barry was his name, and I outsourced my training
schedule to him. This proved to be a sound move as over the next year I
did PBs for the 2k (6:37.6), 5k (17:28) and 10k (36:28). The 5k PB beat a
time I’d set over ten years earlier and had resisted numerous assaults
before finally yielding. I raced as a lightweight in the autumn of 2001
winning the 500m at
Life changed somewhat in 2002 as elder Little
Parky arrived on the scene. Nigel provided considerable advice in the
months running up to the “big day” and when I find the time I’ll get
round to suing him. I just about hung onto my fitness and raced again as a
lightweight at BIRC 2003, finishing 7th. I also finally
breached the 16k barrier for the hour shortly afterwards. Since then,
training has been a real struggle following the arrival of younger Little
Parky – she of dubious sleeping tendencies – although like Jim, we are
starting to “reclaim” a small part of our former lives, which in my
case means having more time to train. I don’t imagine I’ll be
indulging in conversation with Mrs Parky much this side of 2010!
My aims at the moment are to beat Jim’s current
10k running PB, get back under 37 minutes for 10k and possibly compete as
a lightweight again when I hit 40! I wouldn’t bet much on either of
these, but I need some targets to keep me sane.
In my normal life I work for a well known firm of accountants, specialising in the development, testing, audit and repairing of financial models. Thankfully, the world appears to be full of people who think Excel is easy and then come a cropper!
|Steve Green (UK)
Forum Name. Steve G
I was a decent cross country and track runner at school, but never used to train, we thought it was uncool. From the age of 16 I did nothing, just the occasional game of football. It wasn’t until my 31st year in 1981 when my good wife Mrs G started running. Sod that I thought I could do that again. Luckily I was still a beanpole weighing in at well under 140 lbs.
My first run was round our block, a distance of
1.1 miles, I walked twice; it took me several weeks to master this mega
distance run. Next thing
there was a local marathon advertised, which virtually passed our house, 3
months later we both toed the line. I ran with Mrs G for the first 6
miles, and then bade my farewell and finished in 3 hrs 34 minutes feeling
fine. Susan did around 4hrs 40 minutes, and later went on to do 3hrs
That was it for the next 20+ years, joined a
club, road and cross country races at least twice a month, became a vet
and won lots of prizes, it’s good getting old J
Between injuries I started going to our local gym
in 2000, quite happily messing around there, until that one fateful day.
One of our top runners was on the erg, I sat alongside him, and he set me
a challenge to go sub 8 minutes.
Still running when I can between injuries, as
well as cycling when it gets warmer, I have my own Concept2 in the garage,
but still prefer to go down the gym and sweat all over their floor.
|Paul Baxter (UK)
Trained hard straight after Birc where I managed to achieve 7th place and got my first time under 6.40's with a 6.39.4.This year's English Championship seemed much earlier, and so I had to train with out a break through November to January. Through dark mornings, started to cycle to work, climbed steps, anything to improve general fitness.It just felt right and I beat my pb by miles with 6.35.1, which won by a margin of .1 It's the closest race I have ever been in, was presented with the medal from Sir Steve Redgrave. How do i trump that? Looking for 6:30
|George Dunning (NZ)
Forum Name. George NZ.
I will be 48 May 1st 2006 so my age fits right in with the start of the Indoor Rowing season (so that must be fate)
I am about 197cm now and weight about 104kg (down from about 110 18 months ago. Been married for 24 years and have 2 children a son (17) and a daughter (14), but I am the only crazy one.
When I was younger thru to my early 20's basketball was my sport and I represented NZ at an under 21 level but then other things started to take up more of my time and I drifted away from the sport tho I am still a great shot (just ask my daughter). Through the intervening years I have done a bit of social sport, a few Tri's and a bit of running (furthest was a HM) but gradually tho the fires still burnt the body degraded.
About 4 years ago I had had enough of being disgusted at the sight of me so I started walking in the mornings and gradually lost a bit of weight and then after 6 months joined a local gym (5 minutes walk) and generally just worked on my fitness. Some weights and some cardio, just general stuff and the 6 ergs I walked past were just that, spectators to my efforts (sat on them now and again but like most people found rowing hard work). Initially I joined the gym for a year but half way thru they had a great deal and I joined for another 3 years (finishing next month), and so by late 2003 I was losing a little bit of motivation with no real goals THEN the gym owner put up some 'challenge boards' (chance to beat some young guys). They had distances ranging from 500m thru to 20k and a place to put your name and times, that was me hooked then and there - a challenge!!!! I logged some times, not the quickest in the gym, found the forums, found the sport and was addicted. Now I am the gym crazy who rows forever and the one to beat, but I hope also that I am now able to give back some helpful advice to those that want to use the erg for more than just a warm-up.
By the end of 2004 I had rowed 3 million meters, I had competed 3 times in local comps, had gone under 6:30 once and was on my way - I dont think so life said !!!
2005 I rowed a lot of meters to start with, played around with stroke and drag and approach, and screwed myself up to the point where I really did not know what to do next, all my times were slower and I was going backwards. By the end of year I was starting to get my headspace back and now I am feeling ok for the future. My goal is still to row sub 6:20 when I turn 50 in 2008.
I guess my strengths in the sport are that I am tall, reasonably big, I seem to generate good power and always have (2004 was a 500m in about 1:23 and a 1k in about 3:04) but my weakness is my endurance which I intend to rectify over the next year or so.
I am a student of the sport and physiology on an amateur level but I like to know what I am doing and why and what my body is doing and why and I love to discuss it endlessly. Never really short of an opinion [;o), and willing to help anyone that needs it if they are keen to listen to my ramblings.
So that is pretty much my history
|Nigel Farmer (UK)
My sporting background is practically none and I was usually one of the kids left at the end when selecting a team at school. I did do well at sports day though and in junior school I won the sack race in 1973,1974 and 1975 but sadly this has never been accepted as an Olympic event so my athletics career went no further.
From leaving school in 1980 until around 1989 I did no sport or physical activity and so I decided to try running. My first run was about a mile long which left me struggling to get the key in the lock when I got back home and unable to get upstairs for another 30mins. Several years of training later and I was still a very average 7:20-7:30 mile runner and I eventually joined a gym.
After a few years of doing the usual gym training (10mins bike,10mins threadmill etc. ) there was a 2k competition. My first attempt got my 6:52 and from there it took several years to hit my pb of 6:29.5 though this was in 2001. Since then all my other times have got quicker and continue to do so but to go sub 6:30 again is the big one for me.
|Paul Flack (USA)
Forum Name. Canoeist
Member US canoe and kayak team 1978 to 1986. Best finish - bronze medal C2 team race. (C2 stands for canoe, 2 person, sorry Concept!) B.S. U. of Md. 1977, MBA Carnegie Mellon 1988. Now retired and raising two children. Started erging seriously July 2000. Gold Medal BIRC 2001 and Bronze medal BIRC 2002 45-49H. Former British 40+ marathon and half marathon record holder.
|Rick Bayko (USA)
Forum Name. Yankee Runner
My main activity from age 17 to 49 was long
distance running, which accounts for my forever-lightweight body. A
left ankle injury from indoor track racing at age 42, which I tried to run
with for 7 more years, eventually put an end to that activity.
For me, after 2 1/2 years of athletic inactivity,
having an erg in the bedroom was just too much of a temptation. I
began to tentatively get on and pull for a few minutes at a time in hope
of doing something more strenuous than mowing the lawn and walking to work
and back. It took a few starts and stops before the ankle adjusted
to it, but eventually I was on it almost every day. Then I
discovered that RACES WERE HELD ON THESE THINGS!!! And the rest is
history. No more leg injuries. Now I get to have back and
shoulder and wrist injuries. My life has been a attitude that if I'm
not injured in some way that I must not be trying hard enough. Tom's
description of racing a 2km seems to be the motto of my life. "It
seems that the way it works is you must go fast enough to want to quit,
Sadly, Denise fell on her right hip twice and has
been battling a bad hip and back for the past couple of years. She
had to finally give up the erg, and has to settle for treadmill walking.
So far no one has been able to get her out of pain, but only keep it down
to being miserable instead of excruciating.
During the day, I own & operate a one-man business selling running shoes and apparel. We have two grown daughters (one each previous marriages) w/3 grandchildren, and one 18-year-old son in deep angst. He is both healthy and intelligent, so I'm sure that he will eventually figure out something to do with the rest of his life.
|Henry John Streiker
Forum Name. HJS
My sports history: I
always loved being active and have been training almost
|Ben Rea (USA)
I’m a 15 year
old, 6'0", light weight rower...what more to say? I started rowing 2
years ago in a fall program and notice i had a passion for the sport. I am
currently on my highchools varsity team as a sophomore. six seat and
loving it. my best 2k to date is a 7:49, but im confident I can beat that.
Erging is all i can do in the winter so im always trying to beat PB's. my
best 300m is 1:00.2, which will hopefully get better so i can help out the
Forum Flyers! I have played other sports in the past but i never liked
them as much as crew (soccer, baseball, hockey).
I found the erg for 5 years ago and have the new model D in my garage besides with Dyno from Concept2. I have not had a regular training program and have erged totally not more than 3 million meters during the last 5 years. I have done a lot of short sprints mainly because that is what I like. I have been only once to a competition and that is BIRC in 2002 when I was very new to erging. I enjoyed it because I was able to follow my plan and could finish strong. This year I plan to participate in certain competitions, endurance still lacking though
In Finland we have only 5
million people. Those 5 million share 4 million mobile phones, 2 million
saunas, 2 million rowing boats and almost 200 000 lakes. We have a
lot of nature per capita and that is utmost valuable. I spend a lot of
time at my summerhouse even winter time. In the evenings we heat the
traditional old smoke sauna by wood. Such sauna has no chimney so all the
smoke stays inside until it is ventilated prior to bathing. After the
sauna we go swimming in the lake both in summer and in winter. People say
we are friendly and reliable. We are also known by rather strange drinking
habits which are characterized more by quantity than quality.
For those who wonder how one can stay longer times in the countryside without erging I have to confess that I brought my old c model to the countryside after the one and only real original Finnish Santa gave me the new model D last Christmas.
Tom Rawls (USA)
Ever since I was a little kid,
I have engaged in competitive athletics. I played countless games, but I
never did this solitary, endurance stuff. I had a brother who was a
swimmer, and it always seemed to me that drowning might be preferable to
swimming those endless laps, up and down, back and forth, a little
waterlogged, red-eyed yo-yo. Now here I am, years later, a yo-yo
myself, having long ago given up ice hockey (a wonderful sport in which
one can succeed by knocking down small guys who are faster than you) and
tennis (the birthplace of back spasms).
sports I was involved with at school involved water. I swam when I
was younger, backstroke primarily, but peaked at about 12 so my times went
down from there. My Dad is a complete yachting nut and forced his
daughter to learn to sail in the vain hope I would one day be in a
Whitbread Round The World Crew. Unfortunately I didn't really
appreciate getting my nose broken by the boom at seven and Dad gave
up on me racing and let me 'muck around' with yachts instead. We
lived by the sea so we had kayaks etc too so most of the time was spent on
the water during the day and draining the shower of hot water at
land in the 1970's/80's in NZ you had to play netball if you were a girl -
I refused to play because the skirts looked stupid. We had a mixed
volleyball team and I enjoyed that for a bit. I also got into girls
cricket but could only be bothered to hit 4's and 6's as it meant I didn't
have to move off the stump.
2005 I joined the gym and then the Team Million Metre Challenge came along
in July. I'd rowed about 2 minutes before that. My first day
on the team I rowed 6k with a lot of stops. In the end I rowed 165km
in 26 days and just kept on going. I found I really enjoyed rowing
longer distances and rowed my first marathon in late September, no
planning or training - just hopped on and did it. Bought
my own C2D in December and the metres have gone up since being able to row
on a good machine. Currently working on one of the C2 plans to loose
some weight. Eventually I hope to enter a race - George Dunning
keeps an eye on me and probably knows I am nowhere near ready for anything
married to Richard, who's from the UK. He's just got into running
and is really passionate about it. We live on the Kapiti Coast about
a 5 minute walk from the beach. We grow all our own vegetables
organically and supply half the neighbourhood with their requirements too.
We are trying for a baby at the moment, hopefully this year we might be
lucky. We have five 'fids' (feathered kids) - Basil, Parsley, Rhubarb,
Custard and Crumble - a mad bunch of cockatiels. Milly our geriatric
cat makes the odd appearance for food but these days she mainly sleeps.
I’m 42, and spent my 40th birthday at the Crash-Bs, finishing 5th in the LWT 40-45 bracket. Good timing! That was my second erg comp, the other one being BIRC in 2001, when I notched up what remains my PB, 6-41.7. Number 10 resistance, obviously.
Sports-wise, I’ve a distance running and martial arts background, though the latter takes something of a backseat these days, what with hip joints disliking too much lateral movement and rotation when we bid adieu to our 30s. My marathon running PB is 2-31, and I’ve never dipped under 70 minutes for the HM: the year when it really ought to’ve happened was wrecked by a fall in Dulwich Woods, South London during my final training run before the Great North Run.
Erging, weights, running and cross training are on rotation as my exercise activities; this whole Forum Flyers business and the CTC have upped my erg enthusiasm levels to some tune.
Away from the PM3, I’m a semi-full time Dad to my daughter Lily, 4, and I juggle her (she doesn’t mind) with work as a Psychotherapist (I’m of a Psychodynamic persuasion), Journalist (I write and edit Healthy For Men magazine and do freelance work for The Guardian and various other august publications), a TV scriptwriter and pundit, and Personal Trainer. This is either ever so glamorous, or the sign of a distinct lack of focus….Once Lily is in full time education, my working potential should increase. I do, however, spend rather too much time on the C2 Forum, diarizing and getting all slack-jawed at some of the, um, debate. My lifetime ambition is to usurp Arno from FF Boat 1.