Learning to Surf- Part 2

This past Sunday Ray, Cooper and I had a relaxing morning at home. Ray has a lot of travel coming up for work and with the holidays right around the corner we needed to sit down and organize our schedules.  Ray and I enjoyed some coffee and banana oatmeal during our schedule/holiday planning session, which totally hit the spot. I love coffee and oatmeal in the mornings!

Ray and I never mastered how to share our calendars electronically or keep each other in the loop with our plans by sending one another calendar invites. We both use electronic calendars at work to organize our schedules, but for some reason we could never extend it to our social lives. The only way that Ray and I consistently keep each other in the loop about travel and events is when we use an actual calendar. I prefer to actually write out our schedules and be able to flip through the pages to see what we have going on in the upcoming months. Our calendar hangs in the kitchen by the fridge, which makes it easy to update and for us to see throughout the day. While Ray and I were chatting about our schedules and making holiday plans Cooper curled up next to me and fell asleep. I guess we were boring him! sunday morning breakfast

sunday morning breakfast 2I was thoroughly enjoying our relaxing morning at home until Cooper went outside and got muddy and wandered back into the house. He jumped all over the couch before we had a chance to catch him.  dog print on couchOh the joys of having a puppy! Ray and I coaxed Cooper outside so I could clean him up and Ray tackled cleaning the couch. Luckily, we were able to get the stains out of the couch so no permanent damage was done.

The weather was awesome in San Diego on Sunday so Ray and I decided to head back to La Jolla Shores and go surfing. The conditions were much better than the last time we went surfing because the waves were smaller and there was little to no wind.  This time around I felt more confident on the board and had an easier time balancing and paddling. I was even able to sit on the board and practiced turning around to get into position to catch a wave.

I concentrated on balancing my weight more equally between my right and left side and controlling the board by shifting my weight. I was able to paddle into a few waves on my own and I was consistently able to get up and stand on the board. I still didn’t manage to stand on the board for very long, but maybe next time. Now I just need to work on getting my feet in the right position and balancing.  I still took some nasty spills in the water and get tumbled around in the white wash, but I didn’t let my fear of falling off the board or looking like an idiot scare me. I concentrated on what I needed to do and went for it.

From my last surf session I learned:

  • you must have strong strokes and paddle hard
  • it is key to have equal pressure between your right and left side
  • moving your torso up away from the board helps you control the board
  • you need to wait to feel the wave catch you before trying to move into a standing position

Ray and I were in the water together for about an hour before I headed in (by that point my arms were exhausted).  Ray took my board out and surfed for another 40 minutes while I sat on the beach and hung out. It was such a great day outside and the beach was packed with people. It was nice to sit on the beach and feel the sun on my face and the sand on my toes while I people watched. It is days like last Sunday that makes me appreciate the simple things in life – like being outside on a beautiful day, hanging out with my husband, and continuing my quest to learn how to surf.


Learning to Surf

Last week while I was at work I got an email from my husband that contained quite a surprise. Ray bought me a surfboard! SurfboardAt Ray’s work they have a classified email service that people can use if they have items they would like to sell. It is sort of like a mini Craigslist. A great looking 8ft foamie surfboard popped up on the email service and Ray jumped on it.  For the last few months I have been wanting to give surfing a try and Ray thought the 8ft foamie surfboad would be a great board for me to learn on because it would be pretty stable in the water.

This past Sunday Ray and I headed to La Jolla Shores with some friends to hang out and surf. The surfing conditions were pretty good (for me at least) because it was sunny, the water wasn’t too cold, and the waves were on the smaller size. 

I will admit I was pretty nervous about going surfing for the first time. I am a little intimidated by the ocean and I am not the strongest swimmer.  However, most of our friends in San Diego surf and love it and it is something I have always wanted to learn. On Sunday, I spent more time in the water than I did on the surfboard (which I was told by my friends is normal). I definitely got hit in the head a few times with the board (thankfully it is made of foam) and drank about a gallon of salt water.  I believe in total I stood on the board for one second.

Since I was still figuring out how to balance and paddle on the board and didn’t have a great sense of position, Ray helped manuever me into the wave and then would give me a little shove to help me catch it.  We must have done this about a dozen or so times and usually the end result was me sliding off the board and landing in the water. Every time I fell Ray would give me an encouraging smile and a few pointers and feedback, which I appreciated because it was pretty frustrating at times. I believe my biggest problem was that when I would try to transition from lying to standing on the surfboard I was not pushing myself up with equal force. The extra force I applied to one side would cause one side of the board to tilt into the water, which would then cause me to tumble into the white wash. I also think I was a little afraid and too timid, which caused me to over think things and be super cautious when I needed to just go for it.  Next time I go surfing I am going to focus on learning how to properly balance and how to shift my weight to control the surfboard instead of putting so much pressure on myself to try and pop up. Baby steps!

I think it is important to try new activities and not be afraid to put yourself out there. Surfing on Sunday was a very humbling experience. I am in good shape and pretty coordinated so I thought  I would at least be able to consistently stand up on the board. However, nothing about surfing came easy to me and most of the time I felt like an idiot flailing around in the ocean.  However, when you are trying something new you have to start somewhere and you have to be persistent.  Even though I struggled on Sunday, I was proud of myself for trying something outside my comfort zone. I will keep you posted on my surfing progress.  Maybe with lots and lots of practice I will eventually be able to look as good as Ray on a surfboard 😉IMG_6244

 When was the last you tried something new that was outside of your comfort zone?