Jonny endures Rowing pain
A lot has happened since I last touched base on here.
Considering this was only a few weeks back, the mere thought is an exhausting one.
But the fact that I am here is a relief, as our last challenge was set to push Jonny and I to our absolute limits!
Last you may recall, we were both charging ahead with our preparations, but the sheer magnitude of what lay ahead was overwhelming.
So just to recap, the battle ahead dictated that Jonny and I must strip down by a staggering one stone. And for every pound over they must endure 1000 reps on the rower. All reps must be completed in 24 hours.
With literally days to go before the main event I was feeling sick to my stomach. The weight wasn’t shifting and I missed out on a crucial cardio blast.
Fortunately this was putting me off my food and I restricted myself to war style rations.
Meanwhile Jonny must have been feeling the heat too, quite literally, as he endured hours in sauna style gym conditions, pouring into a sticky sweatsuit.
Jonny weighed in and went first. He came in 5 pounds over the target. This added to my nerves as I was convinced he would hit.
His stint started early in the morning and went on for what seemed like a lifetime. I only received the occasional update and it did not sound pleasant!
I’ll never know exactly what happened during his date with the rower, all I know is that 6 hours later I at last received confirmation that the deed was done.
To add a twist to the tale, in a rare occurrence, Jonny admitted his potential for punishment had reached a step to far and limited my row to the same distance as his; should I exceed the weight count of course. This filled me with a mix of relief and sheer terror, but more so the latter, as I knew this challenge could only spell hell!
I weighed in on Friday night, 9 pounds over the target. I usually weigh in roughly 2 pounds under in the usual morning weigh, so I concluded it was 7 pounds over in total. It was disappointing but still pleasing when I considered my achievement in the wider scale of things. I had lost almost a stone.
So the next morning, it was simply pure punishment for me.
I started at 2.30pm and was feeling good. I was loading with energy items and water and began with a good stretch.
I had pondered the best strategy for a few days, but Jonny was quite adamant that I go with a 100 rep approach with small breaks, until 1000 reps and then have a slightly longer break. His reasoning very soon became clear.
Jonny also suggested that I should aim for each 100 within 5 minutes if I aimed to make good time.
So after starting my quest, it didn’t take long until the reality of the task hit me like a wrecking ball. I was already breaking a sweat.
Soon enough however, Jonny put on the second Hobbit film for me and I was suddenly finding my rhythm.
I was making great time and felt optimistic. I had a vision of knocking out the reps by the end of the film and enjoying the rest of the day, chilling with a burger and beers.
Jonny soon got bored and left me to endure my endless fate alone.
This was fine for a good while, but at 2000 reps I was suddenly hitting some kind of sailor wall. It was like a form of sea sickness. The constant movement back and forth was sending me doolally and a crippling ache in my lower back and arms was starting to kick in.
I was lifted from this trance with a great action scene in the film, but this proved only to be a temporary grace, as shortly after I lost all focus on the film and could only think of pain.
The half way point was an interesting marker. It felt good to make it half way, but disillusioned at the though of doing it all again.
Jonny came back to join me as the film finished and it was becoming clear that I was dropping off the early pace significantly. So much for my early film finish.
I was pre-warned about the torturous nature of the last 2000 reps and oh boy did they deliver! The arm and back pain became more intense with every rep and every rep got slower.
All I could do is slog it out and try to ignore the pain. It must have looked grotesque; sweat stained, red faced, angry and deranged. To make matters worse, the sun started to blaze through the windows.
A powerful hunger came over me with 1000 reps to go and I craved beer and burger like oxygen.
With a few hundred reps to go it was confirmed that Jonny had finished before me. It this point I did not care.
I battled for each and every rep. Jonny assured me that the last 200 were not too bad, due to the finishing line being in sight. I failed to feel that benefit until the last 100 and then suddenly it felt like magic. A burst of energy took over and I at last reached the shore!
A marathon on the rower was complete; and it took 6 hours 20 minutes. I was elated. However it didn’t really stem for pride, but rather relief! It’s only now upon reflection I can appreciate the achievement.
It was odd because after all those hours, the pain was less intense than in previous challenges. It’s quite clear that this challenge was one for the mind. Unexpected but ultimately we couldn’t have asked for anything better.
Getting yourself to the gym is a mental challenge; it is mind over matter and getting through life is exactly the same!
So if this does turn out to be mine and Jonny’s last challenge for many years to come, I’ll leave C&J content.
After all Jonny stated in his last blog, he believes that we should constantly push our limits and never give up. I believe in this too and think everyone should follow suit.
If you don’t quite understand what I mean, try doing the challenge for yourself and everything will soon become clear…
Until the next time!
(Chris speaking) from C&J Active
Your everyday fitness friends.