Upon leaving school I found myself very short of a sport to compete in and since then I’ve realised that you really need competition to keep you motivated and on top of your game. I tried rugby, but it just wasn’t the same after school so I stopped it and settled on hitting the gym and focusing on strength. I did do a bit of lifesaving in between but I never really enjoyed any events other than surfski and in the end all the effort required just didn’t produce enough enjoyment.
I started paddling around from Milnerton Ligthouse to break the monotonous boredom of the gym and enjoyed it waaay too much and after a few years of this on/off paddling (with an old lifesaving club surfski) I decided it was time to buy a surfski of my own. Now, 2 months after buying a surfski, I find myself paddling regularely, 3-5 times a week mostly to the ships in Table Bay ,the Harbour or just catching some fun hefty winter waves.
I’ve been thinking about it and I now have a real opportunity to get back into the competitive spirit. I will most probably start as a back-of-the-pack paddler but I will be working hard to improve up the pack and all the while having a blast. I have seen what can happen in a year from a friend (Bryan) and I know that with a little (a lot :P) of hard work vast improvements can be made.
It’s always a great idea to have a goal to work towards or your training will have no direction.I will compete in the Dunlop World Cup Race in Cape Town on the 16 December. It’s 26km and right now my furthest paddle is 10km (I went for a 13.5km paddle just after I wrote this lol) so I have a lot of work to do. Luckily time is on my side and I have 5 months to get where I need to be. I’ll compete in any events I can along the way but it will all just be part of preparation for the World Cup race.
For the next 6-8 weeks I will try to build up a decent paddling base by getting in the sea as often as possible and then assess where I am after that. I’ll also be keeping you up to date with any interesting musings along the way.
Why don’t you join me in my quest? It’s 3 days till the middle of Winter and from then onwards the days get longer and Summer approaches really fast. Start something that will take the monotonous boredom out of exercising at the gym and by Summer you’ll already be a great portion of the way there!