Monday, March 2, 2009

Transition Week = Vacation

I finished up the first 16 weeks of the Out Season plan and next on the schedule was a 1 - 2 week recovery or transition period. I have been very pleased with the progress I made on my cycling power over the 16 weeks, and I think my run has improved a little also, but I haven't really tested it yet. Due to the weather conditions I am going to repeat the last 4 weeks of the OS plan again and then I will post my final results and thoughts on the 20 weeks of OS training.

Anyway, back to the point of this post, during this downtime for the training plan my wife and I went to Hawaii. I had no training goals at all, other then to run when I felt like it.

Well, I ended up feeling like it just about every day. Maybe it is because it has been so cold in Chicago and I enjoyed the prefect weather in Maui and Oahu, or just because I like exploring, but what ever the reason was a really enjoyed every one of the runs I did. I saw the sun rise a few days on both islands and even had a whale come up to breath close to the shore where I was running in Maui. For the most part I just took it easy and ran for 30-45 minutes, but a few times I would sprint up a hill or to the next intersection just for fun.

I did one actual swim in the ocean for exercise, I didn't go very far, but it felt good and helped build some confidence.

The other adventure on this trip was learning to surf. On our honeymoon in Kauai I tried surf for the first time. It went ok, I was able to stand up and catch a wave when the instructure told me when to start, however I was pretty much just along for the ride and had no control of what was happening.

This time I did a lesson at Waikiki beach with Aloha Surf and had a great experience. I started on their standard beginner board which was a 12' longboard with a padded top. I got up on the first try and after a few rides I was feeling pretty comfortable. By the end of the lesson I was able to time the waves on my own and paddle and get up on every wave I went for. I was also riding all the way in until the wave flattened out and then would sit back down on the board.

I enjoyed it so much and wanted to continue so I went back the next day and this time got a standard 10' long board that was not nearly as wide as the beginner board. I could tell right away this was going to be a little more challenging when I was paddling out the board almost tipped over a few times. In fact the first time I hit a wave (on the way out paddling) I fell off the side of the board.

It took about 30 minutes or so to get use to the shorter board, as I keep standing up too far forward and falling over the front of the board. It was amazing how much of a difference the 2 feet made. However, once I got the hang of it the shorter board was a lot more fun because I could actually turn it and had some control where I was going. It felt like I was actually surfing and not just along for the ride on a big floating board.

Here are some pictures from the first day when I started with really long beginner board.

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