Lake Mary Jane Paddle Race, Surfs up in Melbourne Beach, oh and I'm getting Married!!!
What a weekend! This weekend was spectacular for so may reasons! First off, my super, sweet, sexy, smart, supporting boyfriend popped the question on Thursday morning at sunrise. While getting engaged is not a surprise for us, Thursday morning was quite a surprise for me. We were out on our inflatable paddle boards spending some quality time together before I had to leave town again on my next traveling adventure. Will is in school right now so his traveling ability is extremely limited, but his plan to become a fire fighter in the next year will allow him much more freedom once schooling is complete. I know this next year will be hard on the both of us, being separated so much, but it is definitely worth it. I love that he has a dream and a plan just like I do and although they are very different, we each have promised to support each other in accomplishing them.
On Friday I headed up to see my parents new house in Melbourne Beach in order to be closer to the start of Saturday's race in Orlando. They kept telling me that their house is a 5 minute walk to the beach with a great surf break right out front, but my parents aren't surfers so I honesty didn't believe them until I saw it for myself. They were not lying in the slightest. One of the nicest breaks in the area, with no public access, and it's right in front of their neighborhood homeowners park. Wow! And to top it off, there is a tropical storm out in the Atlantic and the surf was perfect this weekend! How did I get so lucky? I got in about an hour of surf training on my 12'6 race board in preparation for the PPG (the biggest SUP race in the world) next week in CA. My little brother drove down from law school at UF and we had a nice family dinner.
Saturday was the Lake Mary Jane Paddle Race in Orlando, FL hosted by Wave of Wellness. This was the final race in an 8 race series titled the "Fastest in Florida." Your top 5 out of 8 scores were added up to see who will win the title and the bragging rights. Florida has a very strong SUP community and its great to see the paddlers and organizers who work hard and who represent at all of these events get rewarded and recognized.
If anyone reading this is from the state of Florida, you probably know that the competition in the women's division was heated and very close. There is one woman in this state who has consistently challenged me throughout the year. In fact she won the very first race in the series back in January. After that I always managed a 1st place finish, but not by much and never without some sort of drama after the race. (I hate drama) I knew she would be there on Saturday to take a last stab at earning the title. If she had won, we would have tied for 1st. Because neither of us could attend all 8 races, after 8 months in competition, it was THAT close. All week my nerves were killing me. I didn't even want to show up on Saturday. Thank goodness for the encouragement and support of my family who really wanted to be there to witness me see this through.
Almost my whole family came (my sister lives in CA and I will see her next week) to the race which was so awesome and I did end up winning the 6 miler and the sprint race and the title of "Fastest in Florida." I seem to be collecting a lot of those these days. ☺️ Although I won the title of "Fastest paddler on Earth" and a few other minor accomplishments this year like SUP Woman of the Year and SUP Athlete of the Year, (no big deal 😜) winning the Fastest in Florida was a huge challenge. Based on 8 races instead of 1, and determined purely by results and not votes or nominations. There is nothing but hard work and determination behind this achievement.
Back in Melbourne the surf was still up and I got in some more surf training on my race board. I surfed it until the deck pad was almost completely ripped off and my coil leash was no longer a coil leash. Lol. Ive got a long way to go, but it's safe to say, I'm getting better. And that is the goal. Just keep getting better.
I met up with friends from Ft Lauderdale who were in town for a surf competition and even rode a few belly waves with my brother and my dad. All together an amazing weekend! So grateful for my family for their love and support.
Thank you to my sponsors who make this all possible. Mistral SUP, Remedys Nutrition, Carbonerro paddles, Sweet Waterwear sup gear, Vestpac hydration, VMG Blades fins, Keys Mobile Chiropractic, Kaenon sunglasses!
I made it home on Sunday in time to play with my puppy and unpack my car before dark then immediately pack my bags for California as I had to leave for the airport at 5am Monday morning. On the road again. Another race. Another adventure. Yay #SUPlife!
I wouldn't have it any other way.
Blessings and gratitude,