Approaching middle age, I have become determined to become the fittest person I know. I have resolved not to become entangled in the slothfulness of the sedentary lifestyle that so easily besets many others today but rather to live the best possible life that I can. The life I want demands health and strength, so I have fully embraced an active lifestyle. I have become enamored with the outdoors. I run regularly, having completed several half-marathons and many 5K races.
Fitness is also why I joined Blazing Paddles’ dragon boat racing team. Sea wind in my face; sea splash on my brow; the sparkle of ocean water in the sunshine, moonlight or city lights; the close proximity to salt life – these are powerful motivators! Why wouldn’t anyone want to get on a boat? Dragon boating offers all of these perks and a whole lot more, in a slightly more aggressive fashion. It not only offers the opportunity to be up close and personal with water but it also challenges you to face yourself, explore your limits and reach your ultimate fitness goals.
Joining Blazing Paddles was a “no-brainer.” Dragon boating combines my love of water with the prospect of adventure. This sport has given me the opportunity to become a better-rounded athlete. It is the perfect complement to the other sporting activities I enjoy. Taken as a whole, my sporting activities have transformed me in the most literal sense, physically and mentally. Dragon boating with the Blazing Paddles team has become a major part of that transformation. Being part of their team offers something extra, something not found in the solitary disciplines of running, cycling and swimming. It delivers camaraderie! Here is an opportunity to get to know other sports-minded individuals from varied backgrounds and bond in ways that only a team can. Practice sessions are intense but fun, and most of all, my teammates are supportive. It didn’t take me long to feel at home.
My next challenge is the completion of my first full marathon in about 6 months. I cycle; I can go the distance on a road bike and handle my own on a mountain-bike trail. I also swim. Last year, I completed my first sprint triathlon; I plan to complete another this year and hopefully an Olympic-distance triathlon next year. In addition to these activities, I enjoy tennis, snorkeling, canoeing and camping. And, of course, I now paddle!
What’s my advice? If you’re sitting on the sidelines and you feel like life is rushing by and you need some adventure, get active. Life is way too short! If you love being near water and nature, consider dragon boating. You will experience the outdoors in a unique way that only this sport can offer. Hey, even the British Royals are into dragon boating these days; you’ll be in great company. If you want to surround yourself with an awesome bunch of people who love to compete, thirst for adventure and are committed to reaching the top of their game, join Blazing Paddles.
Blazing Paddles Member since February 2011