What are you wearing?

Standard

DCIM101GOPRO

This morning was a crisp 18 degrees, a little cooler with the wind chill. After loading up the car I headed to the beach to check out the waves. They were in rare form, nice size and not close outs. As I looked at the water and the surfers in the lineup I was not sure that I wanted to suit up. There was no other way to describe the weather except with words like frigid, freezing, Jack Frost’s backyard, or whoa why on earth am I outside today? While I was sitting in the car pondering I realized that much like in running, what you wear matters.

 

I’ve gone out running in some pretty brutal weather. My personal weather restrictions are lightening, ice, and wind- lots of wind. I do have a limit on air temperature, but that is subjective. My decision to run when it is cold depends most on how I feel that day.

 

Fashion is forgotten when you run in extreme weather. The goal is to put on enough clothes to stay warm while not wearing so much that you overheat. Finding the right balance is not easy especially if your running route takes you far from your start point. When find that perfect level of layering it makes running in cold weather tolerable.

 

Surfing isn’t much different. With the right equipment it isn’t so bad. So after a few minutes of debate I climbed into the back of the truck to get dressed. And layering doesn’t just work well in running, I use it in surfing too. Smartwool socks and gloves fit nicely under my wetsuit and they help to keep me toasty warm.

 

Although for me, it was a frustrating day of surfing I was really happy to be out in the water. And despite the cool temps I never really felt cold, until I got out of the water.

IMG_0462

We’re moving to Dallas

Standard

IMG_3826

We’re moving to Dallas

At work we decided to move half way across the country. We are going to Dallas.

Okay not literally, we made a team goal to run, walk, crawl, swim, bike the number of miles it takes to get from Newport, RI to Dallas, TX. We are all tracking and logging our miles.

The past two weeks my RunKeeper has been working overtime tracking my walking, biking, and paddle boarding (still no running). I would probably have a few more miles but I haven’t figured out how to translate surf sessions into miles.

I am a relatively active person but tracking every activity is really interesting. What a great way to really see how you’ve been moving.

So far we’ve collected quite a few miles, which means we are closer to our goal of a big juicy burger (ironic I know).

So I guess we’ll be seeing you somewhere in the middle of the country.

IMG_3830

Water hiking

Standard

IMG_1385

Unlike many other sports, surfing requires the right conditions. There are days when you might be geared up for riding some waves, but first Mother Nature has to bring the waves. This makes surfing both frustrating and magical.

 

We’ve been on a lull here in Rhode Island. The forecast predicted waves, but nature forgot to bring them. So when the waves don’t come thank goodness for paddleboards.

 

The weather has been amazing and we are finally to the point where we don’t have to wear a wetsuit in the water. Those days don’t last long in RI, so we have to take full advantage. On the calm days when the water is clear, we go exploring the waters looking for fish, starfish, jellyfish, crabs, and other sea creatures. It’s the water version of hiking and listening to birds and trying to find a squirrel.

Bits and pieces

Standard

IMG_1298

Winter has finally given way to spring and summer is nearly here. I’ve been out of the water for months. I would love to blame the cold winter from my surf hiatus, but instead an injury kept me on land and out of the water.

 

After weeks of rest, recovery, and physical therapy I finally feel strong enough to get back in the water. To say I am rusty would be an understatement; I actually feel I am demonstrating all of the things not to do while surfing. So I’ve been trying to manage my time in the water by avoiding crowds, this way I am a danger to far less people.

 

To compound my reintroduction to surf, because of the nature of my leg injury I’ve decided a change was needed to protect my leg from getting reinjured. Since I began surfing I’ve always had a regular stance, which means my right leg is in the back and the leash goes on that leg. My right leg is my bum leg. So I’ve been learning to surf goofy, putting my left leg back and right leg forward.

 

In many ways it feels like learning from scratch. Right now my brain is wired to pop up the same way I’ve always done it. Telling my head to do it a new way is no easy feat. But it is coming along, although it is in bits and pieces.

 

I have moments where it makes sense followed by moments of what do I do next. I get the pop up but I can’t manage the turn. I make the turn but immediately fall. I catch the wave and look down at my feet. And everything is moving so fast; my brain can’t process it quickly enough.

 

Hopefully soon I will be able to string together each glimpse of surfing and it will start to feel more like the real thing. In the mean time, I’m just happy to be back out in the water because I’ve been Vitamin Sea deficient.

 

When is it time?

Standard

Providence Rock n Roll

Good news I am back to running. Yoga is pain free. Walking stairs and hiking on rocks doesn’t really hurt me like it did a few weeks ago.

DSC00270

Bad news, I still haven’t gotten back in the water and I don’t know why I am so apprehensive about surfing.

DCIM101GOPRO

It’s winter in Rhode Island and winter surfing is tough. The wetsuit is so thick that you can barely lift your arms to paddle out. Just donning the suit is a workout in itself. Once you manage to get geared up and in the water, during the paddle out your arms feel heavy. Heavy from the workout and heavy from the extra material you have to wear just to stay warm. After you are safely past where the waves break and you’ve rested, it is easy to settle into the surfing.

DCIM101GOPRO

But wait, the challenge is far from over. The extra gear can make a wipe out more daunting than during a nice summer day. And after the surf session you have the next major challenge of getting out of your gear. The workout resumes as you wrestle off gloves and booties. Even if you drive home wearing your wetsuit, you still have to free the proper appendages so you can drive.

DCIM101GOPRO

Aside from the logistics of winter surfing I think my biggest apprehension is re-hurting my knee. I surf regular, which means my right foot is my back foot. You steer your board with your back foot, which puts strain on your knee. Unfortunately I hurt my right knee.  How I surf I makes me more likely to exacerbate my injury.

 

I’ve been considering changing my stance to goofy so my right foot will be the front foot. However, changing your stance is akin to starting from scratch. Winter is not the best season to start over again.

 

Part of me thinks my logic for staying on dry land is reasonable and logical. But part of me wonders if I am just rationalizing reasons to not go because I am afraid. (And I admit I am mostly afraid of the really cold weather.)

 

Maya Gabeira is a big wave surfer who had a major wipe out in Portugal, which almost killed her. The other day I saw a video clip of her surfing again. Seeing that clip made me wonder what on earth is wrong with me and why I haven’t gone back out. Surfing almost killed her and she is back in the water, what is my excuse a bum knee? Yes it was great inspiration to get back out there, but she was wearing a swimsuit and surfing in warm water.

 

You know what, there is no shame in taking some time away from the water. Spring will be here before we know it. The conditions should be much more conducive to surfing. Now if I am making the same excuses when it’s warmer…….well we will know I am just rationalizing.

 

How do you know when it is time to start up again after an injury?

Spring!

Standard

The weather across the country is BEAUTIFUL. Today it was 70 degrees. I’m still in shock that it’s that warm. I feel lucky that this has all happened in our first year living in New England.

The warm weather has drawn me to the beach to look at the water. I have this urge to get back in the water and start surfing again. Just looking at the water, inspecting the waves, has made me yearn for the feel of being one with the ocean. The past two days have been flat. Which is probably good, because I’m not sure I’m ready to get in the not quite freezing water. (Then again that is what a wet suit is made for.)

The weather has also got me wanting to run again. I’m happy to report I am back to exercising again. I haven’t made the full leap into things, but I have gone on a few runs with work and on my own and also done some other workouts. So far the pain has not returned but I keep waiting for it.

But with the warm weather coming back in full force be sure to be safe outside. Wear sunscreen so you don’t get a burn. Drink lots of water so you don’t dehydrate. And most importantly enjoy and have fun!