Category Archives: Surfing

#SurfsUp

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Ya know, the hubs doesn’t ask for much, but I know today was a day that I should brag a bit about how he bought me my first surfboard.

Yep, its happened. Did I nearly have a breakdown on Friday morning when I didn’t have surfboard to hit the gorgeous swell that came in? Um, kinda not really ? <— I was heated for no real good reason, other than having a feeling a belonged out there. I actually took Mark to the water to look at the waves…. “Look at the waves Mark, aren’t they gorgeous? Yep, but who has no board?” <— Had missed the opportunity to rent a board the prior night to have something for the morning. He just agreed to the pleasant waves, nodded his head, and at the same time a surfer walked by me and said “There still some good waves out there…” <— are you taunting me?

In the past week I have done some research on boards. Best beginner boards, what you want to start with, hit up the local surf shops for used boards, hit up the local pawn shops as well. Did some reading, watched youtube videos, more reading, all the while sharing every bit of information with Mark. He is a silent man, and only nods and agrees with whatever information I have acquired.

IMG_0401I have shortcuts of Surfline and Swellinfo on my computer, I check them both every morning, along with live feed with what the water looks like. I’ve become slightly obsessed. I’ve had Mark read reviews on boards, which he states that he has no clue what they are saying, and I read perfect english <– Only because I have been reading non-stop and have used urban dictionary to actually understand surfer jargon.

After posting about MY Endless Summer, Mark decided to be my first sponsor by getting me a foam board  (I know I know, not a REAL board, but according to reading (and asking every surfer that would talk to me), you should use a USED or FOAM board to learn on, because apparently you WILL beat the shit out of your board). Sponsor? Yes, would I like to say it was a gift? No. Its a sponsorship .

The definition of a sponsor: a person or organization that provides funds for a project or activity carried out by another, in particular. <— He knows I have a dream, and is supporting that. Though being a husband in general might fall under that category, Mark is a very business man, and he MIGHT see this as an investment… but I think more of a gamble. A gamble to keep me happy while he is deployed.

*Shrug* I’ll take it… cause I’ve been promised a real board if I learn to kick some ass on this one… Kinda sounds like a challenge, I like it.

Guys, Im kinda totally psyched out…

 

 

 

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Her Endless Summer

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What can I say? I live at the beach, and refuse to let go of summer. You know usually my birthday (September 21) falls on the last day of summer. This year (2014) the last day of summer falls on September 22. So my birthday always brought in the closing of something great, but to be honest I was always ready for Fall (*Sigh* Pumpkin Spice Lattes anyone?).

This year I am not letting go. Not settling back into cookies and sugar laden lattes (sorry Starbucks). Though we all need to kick back, have a down period, well I am somewhat skipping mine. Heck, I still have Ironman Arizona in November, so I really can’t take the Fall off. <– That all didn’t sound right. Of course my coach will secure my recovery time. But what I mostly mean is that I am taking control.

Yeah, selfishly doing the crazy crap I’ve dreamt of. CRAZY adventure. Not just the typical. No, I kinda want the near death experience, and something that maybe only 2% of people will do. I feel as though I need to be pushed to the point of giving up, I mean TRULY being pushed to all limits, and having only my mind fighting with me to shutdown.

Beautiful things need to be seen. For the past 8 years I’ve told Mark “I want to see beautiful places. Places that not everyone sees. Places I would have to physically exhaust myself to see”. As a proud subscriber to Backpacker magazine and Outside magazine (subscription expired, and I still go to the store each month and purchase the magazine, only because we move so much and I just haven’t resubscribed…. I just need to do it), I live in the world of adventure through others. I dream, and put up barriers, telling myself I just don’t live that life or have the means to do something so amazing.

Thats all BS. You can have and do whatever you want if you set your mind to it. <– Yeah, sometimes I need to smack myself in the face, or just tell Mark “Im going to do it. You coming or what? Peace out!”

My life will be an ENDLESS SUMMER. Also I am coming up on a deployment. This leaves the kids and I free to the world. Yep, I’m taking my crazies with me everywhere I go (there will be some trips without), so its not only myself in need of something to look forward to or to keep my mind occupied. Its also the kids that need to experience the world, the wild, LIFE.

Please follow along on Facebook, my Instagram, and Twitter  . The Knitty Triathlete Endless Summer poster on the right links over to my future EVENTs, so if we are in the same area, lets meet up or say hi!

Happy thoughts my way please 🙂 Also know that YOU dictate your life, not others. So make it happen. Go crazy.

“To live would be an awfully big adventure.”- Peter Pan

“Think of happy thoughts, and you’ll fly.” – Peter Pan

SUP & SURF 1sts

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Its been done, I came out of my little shell and met up with the local SUP group, AND took my first surf lesson! Phew! Group meet ups are NOT easy for me, some may be surprised but I am actually a very nervous/shy person. I have to get myself pumped up (or raging on caffeine) to drop myself into a social situation. Nothing worse then being the new kid, and not having a clue what you are getting into!

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Though for my first SUP (Stand Up Paddle Board) meet up, I DIDNT bring my board (yeah, running super late, thought people would have already been gone, didn’t want to be THAT person), we stilled rolled up anyways. I thought I might as well say “HI!” and meet with some people, with all hopes that I would see the same people Saturday morning at the St Johns SUP Rush race.

Ended up being SUPER chill. People just hanging on the beach, playing in the waves, and the guy that puts it on (Mike) was super friendly and introduced some people. Most of the guys there were local reps, and some there just to try out boards. Got filled in on the local scene. Though JAX is a big surf community, the SUP scene has yet to get as big as you would think (for some reason I thought it would be huge here). I’m totally cool with small.

Sometimes its hard to come into an established group of athletes (paddlers? people?), it can be extremely intimidating, you feel yourself getting sized up…. Flashbacks, scary, egh, totally didn’t happen here. I’ll take these laid back surfers any day. This sport has been nothing but beginner friendly (both here and on the MS Gulfcoast). Heck its essentially a new sport, its just gaining ground. So hop on the bandwagon while its still growing. Just like the waves though, it will always be there.

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Tell you about the surf you say, ok…
I’ve only been wanting to surf since watching the surfers down in Encinitas, CA where we spent our summers (Del Mar racetrack, just didn’t “summer” at the beach).  My brother and I only had boogie boards, and though we weren’t as cool as the surfers, we caught the biggest waves we could, and put ourselves smack dab in the madness with them, which they (local surfers) absolutely hated, they would scream at us, and I remember thinking “Screw you! You don’t own the ocean!” Im pretty sure my 9 year old self was flipping the bird to them as well, sorry.

I desperately wanted to surf, my mom would try and promise us surf camps, and I would always bring home the brochures for them, but it never happened. Also couldn’t just ask my mom to buy a surfboard either, those things are expensive, so we stuck to boogie boarding. Boogie boarded our asses off. I think (pshh, I know) I have suppressed many memories as a kid, but the summers at the ocean, in the waves, I’ll never forget.

Now actually living in a place that has waves, and being only a walk away, it was time for a surf lesson to happen. Once I dropped the kids for their first day of school, I went and made an appointment for my first surf lesson. Ill be honest and say I was intimidated. Meeting up with Tony (surf instructor/owner of JAX Beach Surf Shop) was tough. Instead of easily penciling me in, we had to have a crash course on meteorology & oceanography and figure out the best day to have a surf lesson. Holy hell, we can’t just go surf? Proud to state that I may now be a semi-pro user of swellinfo.com , my meteorologist husband just MIGHT be impressed (we did get into a fight about ground swell vs wind swells though…. google it).

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How did it go? TOTAL BAD ASS. Not gonna lie, I was completely ready to get my ass handed to me. Was lucky though on the fact that Florida waves are no where near intense as the California waves I grew up with. Though I had a few wipeouts, I was able to get up on my first try, and things just got better wave after wave. Tony was direct, and straight AWESOME. He covered water safety, marine life, surfer etiquette, and a little more tips then normally given (I was getting the hang out it!). Apparently all those years boogie boarding played into my being able to read waves, yes-uh!

One of the coolest thrilling mornings of my life. I got to do something I’ve dreamt of for 20 years! So yeah, now I am getting ready for the next best day to hit the waves and looking into purchasing a surf board (lets get to Ironman Arizona first right?).

Oh, and you know your going to have a great lesson when your instructor starts with  “Don’t freak out when you see fins come out of the water. Totally the worst thing you can do is freak out. Understand?” <—- My thoughts? “This is gonna be totally awesome!”, and it totally was.