This week I realized how much I write about my experiences with Orange Theory Fitness, I decided it was time to try something new for my readers. After all, I am supposed to be your guinea pig in trying out new workout fads, that way you don’t have to!
My husband and I are moderately outdoorsy people. We love to go hiking and skiing. One of the main reasons we moved to colorado was to be able to spend as much time in the mountains as possible. I should mention that I am also from Minnesota and have been suffering from lake deprivation since the summer started. Colorado definitely doesn’t have the amount of lakes I’m used to…10,000. So for this work out attempt, my husband and I decided to see what all the fuss was about with Stand Up Paddle Boarding (SUP). We choose Evergreen lake which is a perfect blend of mountains and lake, and only about a 40 minute drive from Denver, CO.
I will admit that I was very nervous to attempt SUP. For some reason I kept thinking that the paddle board was going to be the size of a surfboard and that the majority of my time would be spent falling into the lake and struggling to stay afloat. However, with beginners and the paddle boards you will most likely find at rental shops, the SUP board is 32 inches wide, unlike a surfboard that is usually only 20. I was pleasantly surprise to find out how spacious these paddle boards were! I also was happy I had a life vest.
We got to the lake at 10:00am just in time to get on the list before the rest of Colorado made their way to the rental shop. We only had to wait about 10 to 15 minutes to get suited up and handed our oars. The staff was very friendly as well and quickly went over the rules with us. The #1 rule was to stay away from the people fishing and the Dam…it seemed pretty self explanatory. They also gave us a few tips on how to easily stand up on our boards and what to do if we fell off.
Evergreen Lake is definitely a place I would suggest for first time paddle boarders. The water is calm and the lake is small and you deffinitely can’t get too far from shore. The weather was also pretty warm since it is not too far into the mountains. We ended up doing an hour retail for $20 each.
The great benefit about paddle boarding that I was looking forward to, is the idea that Stand Up Paddle Boarding is one of the best exercises for strengthening your core! Similar to yoga, SUP forces you to use all of the muscles in your body to keep you balanced. This workout is great for a rest day because it is low impact as well. When we first pushed off from shore I stayed in a kneeling position, but finally once I had my bearings, I shakily pushed myself up to standing position. The easiest way to do this is by slowly getting into a position similar to downward dog and then going up from there. To compare this feeling to anything you may do on land, think of it as standing on a flipped over bosu ball. I am telling you that standing on a bosu ball (paddle board) for an entire hour, while also using your core muscles and arms to paddle your way around a lake is definitely a full body work out.
I have to share this photo of my friend definitely killing it on a SUP. I could barely get the bravery to stand up on mine!
If you are afraid of falling off, like I was, don’t be. I did not fall off once! You can go as quick or slow as you want. In many ways I found the experience to be therapeutic. I took my time and was in no rush to make this a cardio work out. On the other hand, my Husband who is very active and a Soccer coach, did try to turn a bit too fast and took a tumble. Though getting back on the paddle board is so easy, I wondered why I was nervous in the first place.
Possibly next time I should attempt Yoga on my SUP?
If you live in Denver and you are interested in trying out Stand up paddle boarding for yourself, check out this article on the best places to catch some waves.
I will deffinitely be trying out a few of these places for myself. Also, if you have any summer workout’s or sports you would like me to try, feel free to leave a comment here and I will try my best to work up the courage to tackle it!
Until next time!