It's C.R.A.S.H.-B. week, kids. Don't worry, at this point we're not going to try to convince you that starting your training plan today is going to do much of anything to change your results on Sunday. We will, however, give you just one more winter workout to add to your repertoire. row2k caught up with Brown alum Quinten Richardson, who, in his senior year last winter, placed 2nd among U-23 Men, and 5th overall in the Open Men category at C.R.A.S.H.-B. with an impressive time of 5:55.9. Clearly, his off-the-water workouts kept him fit throughout the winter.
row2k: What is your favorite winter workout?
Quinten Richardson: At Brown, we do a winter workout called “The Cooler.” It’s a workout that combines low-rate power with high-rate endurance. The workout is 4 x 10' (4' at 22, 3' at 24, 2' at 26, 1' at 28) and 1 x 7' (6' at 26, 1' open), with 7' rest between each piece. The Cooler was created in the depths of winter training back in 2006 and has been a staple of Brown’s winter training program ever since.
row2k: What about this workout makes it a favorite?
QR: What makes The Cooler great is that it’s dynamic. The constant rate changes during the 10' pieces keep you mentally engaged and really help you break down the workout. The challenge of The Cooler is to be able to attack the first 4' and then consistently drop your split as the rating goes up. It’s easy to use the rate bumps as a way of maintaining a certain split with a little more ease, but you get the most enjoyment and reward out of the workout when you use those intervals as opportunities to find more speed.
The structure of the workout is a big part of what makes The Cooler so challenging and fun. During the workout, your focus is entirely on the four 10' pieces. By the time you get to the 7' piece, your only option is to hang tough and see what you can throw down in that last minute. The combination of these pieces makes The Cooler a perfect workout to develop solid base and raw racing grit.
row2k: How long have you been doing this workout and who introduced it to you - is it an old favorite or new to your repertoire?
QR: I did this workout every week of winter training during my four years at Brown. It’s regarded by many Brown rowers, both past and present, as a favorite winter workout.
row2k: If you could stay fit during the winter by only doing one type of non-erg cross training, what would it be and why?
QR: During winter training we would often incorporate running outside as part of our erg workouts. Getting out in the cold was tough and required some additional layers, but it was a welcome break from the erg room.