This week I have 3 of my closest girl friends visiting from London. Wherever you live in the world, guests always mean the same thing for your fitness plan – disaster. Entertaining, eating out, and staying up until the wee hours gossiping and catching up – the last thing I have the time or energy for is going for a run. Luckily I have fun, sport loving friends and I live in place where you can hang out, watch the sunset AND have a killer workout at the same time! It’s no secret that my favorite pastime out here is kitesurfing, I also love wakeboarding and when I need a good stretch I’ll do a bit of yoga. This week however, it was time for something new – Paddlefit.
There was just one problem. We didn’t really know how to paddleboard.
Thankfully we had local pro, SUP goddess, my fellow kite chick, Kiristen on hand to show us how it’s done. She makes it look so simple and downright sexy we couldn’t wait to get on the water after her demo on the sand.
How hard can this be?
HARD. Legs shaking like jelly we gradually made it to our feet and started paddling out towards the horizon. Checking our form and teaching us different ways to turn our 10ft floaties, Kiristen was always on hand to make sure we were doing everything right as she glided effortlessly around us.
As we began to get the hang of the basics it was time to learn about what to do if you get swept out offshore by an unexpected storm or gust of wind – it’s easy to see how it could happen, and how hard it would be to paddle back. The solution is to lie on your belly and paddle like a surfer. We flung our arms around while turtles swum under our boards and played in the water below us.
Half way into our hour long intro lesson Kiristen persuaded us to try some strength and fitness exercises. Doing yoga or strength workouts on a paddleboard multiplies the effects of the movements as your body is constantly battling to gain stability against the rocking of the water. First up were squats, followed by calf-raises, sit ups, twists, leg raises and v-sits. It was hardcore but it’s easier to ignore your screaming muscles when you have an amazing sunset to distract you.
We ended the session with a bit of gymnastics :)
Feeling excited about our new skills we left the water energized and ready to celebrate :)
Did I mention I had guests? I couldn’t be happier.