Row, Row Your Rowing Machine

So evidently running, cycling, some boxing, and strength training aren’t enough athletic activities to keep me entertained so I’ve added something else to the mix.
I mentioned over the weekend I got a new “toy’ and finally was going to use it this morning… hello rowing machine 😛
As I’ve shared, I’ve totally pulled myself out of running until it no longer stirs up my injury. This includes power walking as well ’cause my mile pace is usually between 12-13 mins and has the same effects on my body as running. This has been sooo hard but ultimately, my goal is to run forever so if I can’t for a season, I’ve accepted that.
However, I’m not gonna sit back and do nothing. As you know from my athletic antics, I spend a lot of time on my bike to get those miles I love and (got addicted to running). I’ve wanted to do rowing for awhile because I know the overall, total body benefits it offers… and the killer cardio it offers as well.
Rowing and cycling will keep me strong for when I can get back on the road. Swimming season will soon be upon us, so there’s that too =) I intend to keep my body physically strong during this time so when I do get back on the road I can focus on just building up my mileage again.
Ok..rowing. I had a (brief) encounter a few years ago with a machine and loved it. I’m not a big “machine” person when it comes to working out. I like activities that make me really use just my body. However, rowing definitely serves a very good purpose.
The past few weeks I’ve been doing my homework looking at all the vast models out there and trying to get the best one for what I was planning to spend..oh..and making sure the rail had enough length for my long legs to fully extend 😉
I finally found one that had consistent good reviews AND had been used by people taller than me who gave it thumbs up in the tall people department ha
A quick youtube video clip last night to review technique ( ’cause I want my form to be right) and I was ready this morning.
My goal? “Oh, let’s do 15- 30 minutes and see how you do”
An hour later… haha… I’m finishing…dripping sweat and feeling great.
I loved the workout it gave me! 10 minutes in I was starting to sweat like when I’m running. I love how this is an activity I can really throw myself into. I have a decent level of physical fitness so I just let myself go to see how much I could push and get out of it.  Rowing is a strong activity…..I think that’s what I liked about it…. what’s going to keep me coming back to it…
 The harder and faster you row with this machine, the harder the workout. Slow down, and the machine adjusts to a slower pace. No worrying about having to adjust the tension for a tougher workout.
Mentally, I tried to keep the idea in my head of actually rowing a boat across the lake, it allowed me to really focus on keeping my movements smooth and fluid.
So what ARE the benefits of rowing ? Why should you do it ?
Using a rowing machine can help to build and tone your muscles, strengthen your cardiovascular function and increase your stamina, Rowing burns calories rapidly, making it a suitable addition to your workout regimen if weight loss is your chief priority. Using a rowing machine is an endurance exercise that increases heart function making it a great non-impact cardio activity. Rowing uses virtually every major muscle group in your body. With little pressure on the joints, due to the activity’s low-impact nature, rowers work their legs, hips and buttocks with each stroke. They also use upper-body muscles, strengthening the back, shoulders and arms. The trunk and core are engaged in the exercise as the rower performs each stroke.
Rowing-Machine-Muscles-Used
All the muscles listed in blue are used during rowing. You can see why it’s such a beneficial exercise.
So if you’re looking for something new to add to your regimen or maybe you need something that’s a hard workout but easier on your joints, perhaps you should consider rowing. I’m pretty excited about having a new activity to add in to what I do.
And hmmm…. maybe I could start training for the Olympic rowing team ?  😉
olympic rowing
Tell me… have you done this activity before ? Do you like it ?