Monday, 8 September 2014

Try something new: stand-up paddle boarding

It's always good to try new things; to challenge yourself and to keep learning. I was brought up to be active and to enjoy the outdoors (so grateful to my parents for this) and so I'm always up for trying new outdoor activities. I love water sports like surfing (very badly!), water skiing, swimming, and have wanted to try stand-up paddle boarding (or SUP boarding) for ages - it just looks so serene and relaxing, and if Jennifer Aniston uses it to help her stay in shape then it must be worth a go, right? Last week I was fortunate enough to go on a family holiday to Bermuda, and I was super excited that the hotel we stayed at had a bunch of SUP boards we could take out almost every day.

Courtesy of Charley Jackson & her GoPro

I was surprised at how easy it was to balance the board - I suppose the yoga must help, but the rest of my family don't do much yoga and they all found it pretty easy too. The paddling part was also fairly straightforward, you just had to find your rhythm and go with it. It was a really peaceful and fun activity, made even more incredible by the sea turtles that would playfully pop their heads up for air and then swim away underneath our boards. There's nothing quite like watching wild animals in their natural habitat. 

The physical side to it wasn't as much of a work out as I'd expected, but after an hour you could feel that your arms and back had done some resistance work. I guess we were just too distracted by our beautiful surroundings to notice!

The Jackson 5 on our SUP boards

At the moment I also can't seem to stay the right way up for too long - I just love to be upside-down! So of course I had to give a headstand a go. After two hilarious falls which resulted in successfully nosediving my board I managed to pull off the below headstand for a good 10 seconds. And the day after I did actually do a pretty strong yoga headstand (again after nosediving the board a few times - poor turtles!) - but we didn't take the GoPro out that day so that's a moment that will have to stay between me, my sister and the turtles. It's good to change your perspective of the world from time-to-time because your way of looking at things may not always be the best, and being upside-down reminds me of this. 

Courtesy of Charley Jackson & her GoPro

So I really wanted to share two things in this post: 1) try SUP boarding - it's lots of fun and most people should be able to do it without too much trouble 2) keep trying new things more generally. That really annoying phrase when you were younger - "There's no such thing as can't" - actually becomes pretty cool when you're that bit older and understand what it means. Why can't you give that thing a go that you've been wanting to try but are too scared or too busy to? Life is short, keep learning, keep challenging yourself, keep trying new things - just don't stand still. It'll help you to feel Beautifully Healthy

Love Lucy x

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