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Paddle Boarding in St. Pete

Summer is in full swing out here in Tampa, Florida! Because I moved here in late August of 2010, this is my first official summer in Florida. It’s different than I thought it would be. I expected it to be brutally HOT because that is what I was warned by every Floridian since I moved here. However, although the humidity is definitely high, it’s nothing like Vegas in July when the temperature can hit 120 with 100 at night. The temperature out here in Florida is normally in the 90’s but it never gets higher than that.

I have been surprised by the frequent raining. It seems to rain every day and, even if it doesn’t rain, there are plenty of threatening clouds overhead to make it look like rain. The pattern seems to be beautiful sunshine in the morning followed by clouds and rain in the afternoon and evening. Because of this weather pattern, I decided to try some summer water activities early this Sunday morning.

I figured since I’m only 30 minutes from the beach and the ocean, why not take advantage of this beautiful location and start getting in some extra physical exercise while I’m at it. I’ve got my choice of jet skis, kayaking and water boarding. I’m not ready to give actual surfing a try (unless it’s on a computer) but water boarding is more my speed. I’ve seen people doing it on the ocean and today was my day to try it.

I took a class at 10 am on Sunday to learn how to paddle board. As can be expected, the most difficult thing about paddle boarding is keeping one’s balance. Whenever a boat passed us in the ocean, the resulting waves created quite a challenge when it came to staying on the board. However, after the first fall, the anticipation of falling goes away and it becomes easier to focus on the actual technique.

I was pleasantly surprised to find out that I’m pretty good at paddle boarding. I was going much faster than anyone else in class (it must be the lats! ;) and I wasn’t tired or sore anywhere. I thought my core would really be sore but it didn’t really wipe me out. I guess my frequent HIIT cardio sessions on the stair master are paying off. I think I fell about 4 times but that’s OK. It’s like anything else in life, the more you fall, the more you have to get back up and keep trying. I’m looking forward to trying paddle boarding again but maybe I’ll hit the kayak next weekend.

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