Sue, BCR’s Erg Beast

Holiday Challenge Met

Sue might look like a mild-mannered mother, (new!) grandmother, school administrator, and rowing club treasurer (wanna be) emeritus. 

And she is all that. But she is also much, much more–our club’s biggest, baddest erg beast.

Having taken on the Concept2 Holiday Challenge, Sue was doing what any mere mortal can do if any of us were to try really hard. Erging 100,000 meters from Thanksgiving to Christmas is a manageable undertaking, if a little tedious.

But the latest numbers suggest Sue isn’t going for mere mortal status. She’s going for 200,000 meters, and she could well do it. About 50 hours until the end of the challenge, she’s currently at 165,303 meters.

What’s her secret?

She writes, “Take it easy. Do 2,000 meters to start, and then rest for two minutes. Then do it again, and again, and then push for a 4th round.”

She claims counting strokes can keep the mind occupied, noticing that it takes her about 300 strikes to do 2k, keeping count while also doing some day-dreaming. If she’s emotionally prepared, she can even throw in some power pieces–a power 10 every 50 strokes.

Her advice is this, for any who want to join in her ranks: “Don’t get discouraged,” and of her own work she writes, “Whether my endurance or strength is increasing or not, just clocking in the meters” has intrinsic worth.

Since she does all this at her nearby gym, she enjoys people-watching, noting the latest fashions in athletic wear and appreciating all the effort others are putting in as well, some more capable than she, many far less so, and each doing what they can to be healthy and happy.

She also recommends a lot of self-forgiveness. She doesn’t make it to the gym everyday, and doesn’t always have a sublime experience on the erg. But she’s managed quite a lot during this dormant season.

Impressive, Sue! Congratulations! Well done.