Eric Murray is one part of the famous Kiwi Pair, along with his teammate Hamish Bond. The Kiwi Pair's dominance in the rowing world is legendary—double Olympic champions, world record holders and the winners of eight World Championships. We caught up with him to see what he's up to during this time of the coronavirus pandemic.
Have you changed your personal training routine during this time of self-isolation? If so, how?
I haven’t really changed too much during isolation. I have found that keeping a similar routine around getting up, getting the day ready and going through the normal routines of work and exercise has helped pass the time. It probably has allowed me to do a little bit more at times than normal because of no time constraints, but the general rule of thumb has been to stay fit and exercise for mental health and fitness.
Are you still able to train your athletes/clients during this time? How? What types of technology are you using?
I have been able to do a few livestream sessions and YouTube videos during my time as everyone else around the world is in lockdown—so you know most people will generally be in a situation that allows to them to plan around a time together to be involved. Livestreaming has been really good, and also a few apps that work with the Bluetooth function of a PM5 I think is very valuable to everyone—maybe even a great way for people to look at upgrading their current monitors for more connectivity around apps and training motivations.
Knowing that some athletes may not have ergs at home, what kinds of workouts are you providing them? If they do have ergs or access to Concept2 equipment, what types of workouts are you finding motivating?
I have been working with the asensei app which has allowed me to make a variety of workouts which have been livestreamed (and more about to come live on the app!). We managed to run a virtual high school event here in New Zealand—The Eric Murray Invitational—which saw age groups compete over various times to see who would be victorious. We also ran a New Zealand and Australia event online for our ANZAC Day to commemorate our troops from the World Wars. There are also a few other things in the pipeline with a few countries around the world and I am also doing all the Concept2 Spring VIII Series at the same time.
Can you offer a favorite workout?
Not so much a favorite, to be honest, as I feel that there needs to be a full mix of workouts. Some just steady training. Others long piece work, and then also some fast high intensity work. If you get the variety, you get the fitness, and also the benefits from the rating work and the high intensity power also.
Do you have any motivational, inspirational, humorous or learning moments to share from working out at home or in your current situation?
Probably the most humorous is that I can no longer look at the times I “used” to be doing, as sometimes I wonder how I was able to do those. But being a retired athlete and knowing that fitness is an important part of your lifestyle to stay fit and healthy in both body and mind, I just enjoy seeing what I can do each day and also mixing it up. I am lucky I have a full contingent of Concept2 equipment so I can switch between the BikeErg and SkiErg to get a lot of variety. I encourage others to do the same, even if it is body weight exercise of running, the mix is a great way to all-round fitness.
What’s the one thing you most look forward to when we get to the other side of this crisis?
I guess face to face interaction and seeing friends and family again. Things are going to have changed around the world forever and it's now just moving forward the best we can in what the new world is going to look like.