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July, 2013

From Zero to 100

By July 25, 2013 Love

Sometimes, I think this is what I try to do….go from zero to 100 in a relatively short space of time! And when it comes to surfing, being restricted to a once a month trip makes it difficult to practice and nail that technique in just a few months. But I have to be patient – my time will come!

I have just finished watching the documentary ‘From Zero to100’ which has inspired this blog

post. The film charts the progress of pro US surfer Lakey Peterson who, having discovered surfing at the age of 12 went onto qualify for the ASP World Tour just five years later – an amazing achievement considering that many of the fellow pros on the tour surfed from a much younger age than her.

What really struck me about Lakey’s journey was that she never gave up. During the film, she was beaten numerous times by the likes of Carissa Moore and Steph Gilmore – two of the best pro women’s surfers on the circuit. Yet despite the tears and frustrations (and at one point declaring ‘I can’t surf’), she dug deep, drew inspiration from those less fortunate than her and went on to win the 2012 Vans US Open of Surfing. All that determination and will to succeed paid off and I take my hat off to her.
It was also quite humbling to see her tears and frustrations and realise that the pro’s have off days and at times must feel like quitting. But, as the saying goes, a quitter never wins and I was reminded during the film of Andy Murray’s repeated quest to win the Wimbledon grand slam tennis title this year. Many of the UK population, me included I hate to admit, had given up on Andy ever winning Wimbledon, but most importantly, Andy never gave up on himself and proved many of us wrong.

So, when I head into the surf next week for my private surf lesson and the subsequent sessions following (and during any off days), I will have Lakey and Andy very much in my mind, and intend to go out there with a ‘can do’, winning attitude!

Lakey Peterson is currently going for her second US Open of Surfing title and I am keeping up-to-date with her progress with keen interest. Good luck Lakey – I hope you defend your well-deserved title!

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It’s all about the balance

By July 9, 2013 Surf more
My star sign is Libra, represented by the zodiac totem of the scales. Apparently, Librans seek balance which is something that I will be looking to improve on during my quest to become a surfer!

When I was younger, I took ballet and modern dance classes and balance was something that I became very good at, but not having kept up with any activities in recent years that promote good balance, I decided to look at ways that I could improve and incorporate this into my fitness schedule whilst having a bit of fun at the same time!


Getting the balance right – skateboarding fun!

When Jay suggested skateboarding, I thought it was a great idea. Surfing and skating go hand in hand with many similar movements and concepts between the two. A lot of surfers skate and use the board as a training aid to improve their surfing and have some fun when there’s no swell!

So, whilst in Croyde, I spent £15 on a board from a newsagent, figuring that I would see how I got on with it before doing my usual ‘throw loads of money at things straight away.’ Last week, I tested the board along with the rest of the Wolvo Surf Crew and although it’s not a speedy demon yet (some modification needed), I had a lot of fun and was surprised at how decent my balance was. Ok, so I’m not doing turns yet but I gave myself a pat on the back for not falling over and scraping my face on the concrete!

Watching the movie ‘Dogtown and Z Boys’ immediately after our session was really inspiring too and  great to see how surfing and skating come together. It got me fired up for the next skateboarding session! Definitely worth a watch for anyone who hasn’t seen it.

I’m also using the new addition at our gym – the Bosu Ball. It’s similar in concept to an Indo board and helps to promote balance and a stronger core. You can use the Bosu Ball to do your regular standing exercises and I’m using it to do squats and push ups initially but will be looking to build in some more exercises along the way.

Using the Bosu Ball to improve balance

Using the Bosu Ball to improve balance

There are some great videos on YouTube which show how the Bosu Ball (and Indo Board) can be used and how they can be incorporated into your surfing training. Check this guy out for some ideas.

I even came across someone using the Bosu ball to pop up and turn like on a surfboard. Maybe that’s something to try when the gym is a bit less busy!

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I surf because….

By July 2, 2013 Escape, Thoughts
Waxing the boards

Waxing the boards

Last weekend, the Wolvo Surf Crew headed to Croyde for another surf session and for me, it proved frustrating.

I tried desperately to get to my feet but it just wasn’t happening. I tried all sorts of things – popping straight up, swivelling my back leg out to the side and pulling my leg through (the army crawl technique), staying in the shallow white water, paddling out further…you name it, but it just wasn’t happening.

I can come up with all sorts of reasons/excuses but at the end of the day, Im just expecting way too much too soon. I want to be able to stand and I want to be able to do it now.

Back at home, I contemplated why I am doing this and why it means so much to me. The phrase ‘I surf because’ came to mind, the strapline of the 2011 Billabong campaign which encouraged surfers across the globe to share why they surf through words, video and images. Feeling a bit flat and deflated (and very bruised!), I used it as a motivator to pick myself back up and remind myself why I keep going. Here goes:

  • I love the sea
  • It makes me feel free
  • I forget about everything else
  • It soothes me
  • I want to
  • Geography is not a barrier
  • I love its laid back vibe
  • Despite the frustration, I want to keep doing it
  • There is nothing to stop me
  • It’s exhilarating<
  • When I catch a wave, it feels like I am flying
  • It’s an artform
  • There is always another trip to look forward to
  • I am the Wolvo Surf Crew President (an honorary title bestowed upon me on our way home)
  • There are too many reasons why I shouldn’t quit!

It helped. Last night I was back in the gym and fired up for the next surf session which will incorporate the couples class. Hopefully the guys at KingSurf will get me back on track and working on my technique :)


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