Have you ever tried to erg without the monitor? Maybe the batteries were dead or the connection was broken.
Today I did.
And discovered something revealing.

I found an internal power that I had long forgotten was there.

Forced into a gym with bad weather and new year (over)celebrations, I found a shabby, clapped out erg obviously unfamiliar with hardship.

It also had no batteries – which was ok since I didn’t really have a plan in mind.

So I just rowed and rowed.
Staring at the blank monitor.
And occasionally at a spot on the wall.

I didn’t have a watch with me

So I was just me and the machine.
And I got sucked in…

I found a new… perspective on what Perceived Exertion(PE) is and how it can be skewed with blaring visual clues. Like the big fat number updating on the middle of the monitor every stroke I pulled.

It made me listen.
The metronome of the fan hissing rhythmically made me sensitive to searching for aural clues as to how hard I was pulling.
But it revealed nothing.

So onward I searched, until I discovered it.

The Internal Power.
I found it inside firing away and fighting hard impulsing me to push and swing and pull and spin and slide.
I got sucked into an upward vortex of discomfort and ransacking satisfaction.
Pulling harder and harder.

And you know what?

I didn’t get tireder and tireder.

Because there was no monitor telling me I should be.

My new year’s resolution.
Every once in a while rowing monitorless on the erg at a tempo and intensity that feels right.
And afterwards checking the validity of my PE –  as I feel the need for a reality check.

After all, it’s what sets us apart.