We’ve all been there – skipping a few days has turned into a few weeks, maybe even months.

But, who can blame you, especially with all that’s going on outside?

Anyway, the bottom line is – you’re out of shape and now you want to get back to rowing.

And as we all know, it is hard to get back into the game after the break. We’re out of habit, it takes time to get back in the shape we were in, and more than anything – it’s painful.


Since getting back in shape (or doing it for the first time) is one the best decisions you can make, let’s see what exactly you can do to minimize the initial pain and exhaustion

Start Slow

I want it all, and I want it now, right? 

Well, even though we all want that, life teaches us that this is pretty much impossible. What you should do actually is start low and go slow. 

Start with a pace that you’re comfortable with and then take it from there. Experts recommend a general progression of no more than 10 percent on a week-to-week basis. So, if you begin with a daily 15-minute rowing session, do around 17 minutes next week.


For those already using HOLOFIT, Explore mode is a perfect setup for this – take it easy all while enjoying beautiful landscapes. You will forget the pain and the time, and you’ll get the results you are looking for.

Set Your Goals

Motivation is no problem on day one. But on day 9? Day 17? Yep, somewhere down the line it will get hard to maintain the motivation, and to effectively do that – make sure you set the goals right away. 

Also make sure you’re realistic – chances are you won’t be doing a Cambridge half-marathon anytime soon. On the other hand, that’s exactly what HOLOFIT member Sylvain did recently, and you can read more about it here.

Just set properly balanced goals, show up every day – and you will get there. You can also use one of our Cardio Goals programs such as Fat burn, HIIT or Interval training and slowly increase your difficulty level and workout time within.


We’ve also come up with a weekly workout plan, specifically tailored for people like you that haven’t rowed in a while:

  • Week 1 

For your warm-up, try Explore mode in Tropical for 15 minutes. Explore mode is perfect for warming up, whichever HOLOWORLD you pick. Start with the 500m race. Don’t try to win, but aim to be among the first 7. On your second workout of the first week, aim to be in the first 4. 

  • Week 2

Move on to the 1000m race. Try to finish among the first 5. For your second workout, increase the pressure. Try to finish among the first 3. 

  • Week 3

Win the 1000m race! For your second workout, do the 2000m. Don’t pay much attention to your position, just finish it. 

  • Week 4

Do the 2000m race and get through the finish line as number 7. Then, finish the month with a 500m race. Much easier, right?

You should see significant improvement in your performance, as well as your looks and health.

Our member Sylvain managed to improve his rowing performance fivefold by implementing HOLOFIT into his workouts, check it out here.

Listen to Your Heart?

Now, there are no strict rules here, so you’ll have to listen to your body. 

Exercise shouldn’t always be pleasant – that pain you feel really is the “weakness leaving your body”. However, you should be really careful and pay attention to what your body is saying – feeling too much pain too often is surely not a good sign. 

Find the proper balance and also don’t be afraid to ask others for advice. That’s where a workout buddy or a whole community of them helps a lot.

Be an Early Bird

Maybe this generally doesn’t work for you, but you should at least give it a shot and try doing your workouts in the morning. 

Besides having fewer distractions, you’ll have more endurance and strength during that time, and you’ll feel energized and ready for the day once you’re done. 

And yeah, it’s a great habit!

Use Distractions

Now, this doesn’t sound like a – sound advice, right? Well, let’s see.

See, once you’re back on your rower after a while, the biggest issues you face are motivation, pain and quick exhaustion. And sometimes, the best way to solve those issues is to actually use distraction. 

Well, that’s where Virtual Reality jumps in… 

What it does is really simple – it allows you to work out longer. You feel less pain and you don’t get bored easily – you feel way more motivated overall.


Or, as Coleen McClure and Damian Schofield of the Department of Computer Science, State University of New York concluded in their recent study :

The study also found participants who wore the virtual reality headset were able to remove themselves from their bodily sensations allowing them to workout longer.”

Now, VR fitness indeed was an expensive addition to the workouts, but that is a thing of the past. 

Getting into it has never been easier and more affordable – and you can check the best options on the table right here