Mar 25, 2013

The Maliko Downwind

Yesterday, the winds were good enough and more or less in the right direction so we had the opportunity to do a downwind run! My first Maliko run and I was so glad to be doing with Jeremy Riggs, coach extraordinaire. Another great guy and good paddler,  Randy Royse also joined us... so really a super fun group for my first go. The wind was light for a Maliko but it allowed me to learn and feel confident (I only fell in twice...).. haha... I was working on catching waves, stepping back and not letting the nose dive under (which it still did...learning), and reading the water so I could stay on the wave. I am still having a hard time controlling the board (I think I get too excited and then forget that I have to keep looking around), and reading the little bumps...but I can't be amazing right away right?!?  I think by the end of the run, I saw some v shaped waves, the ones I want to see in order to stay on the wave... It felt good to be in big waters, with those guys I didn't feel nervous at all which I was happy about because that was nothing compared to what I am getting myself into for Molokai!

Today, is my last day,... I am very sad to be leaving but hopefully will get one more run in before I head home... I have had such an amazing time on this little island of FUN! Thank you Jeremy Riggs, Randy, Tomoko, Milton, and all the wonderful people I have met and now call friends. I feel like the luckiest person. I can't wait to return in July, when the wind will be pumping, and it will be very much game on....

Thank you Jeremy Riggs!

Randy and I with our SIC boards


live, love, laugh,...DREAM!

Mar 24, 2013

are the Wind Gods listening to me?

I've been hanging out on the island of wind.... blessed with some of the best downwind runs in the world. I however managed to fly here on the week with the best swell and no wind... hmmm.. not a good combination for downwinding... I came here to figure out how to downwind, a skill that will be key to my success on the Molokai crossing. The wind and swell have been teasing me and playing hard to get. I have been able to learn to catch waves and yesterday I moved up in the world.... being on a wave board and in the bigger surf (albeit still skirting the BIG surf... remember: baby steps...) Yesterday afternoon however the wind started to pick up... unlucky for me it was in slightly the wrong direction. It was  N instead of N E... so a downwind was not possible... However Jeremy and I did manage to get out and paddle against the wind and do mini downwinds back to shore... we did laps... Here, I realized I really needed the Wind Gods to start blowing in the right direction because I was ready to put it all together... there is a ton to think about, watch, and know on downwind runs... The way the water is moving, the way your board is moving, how to move on your board to catch, ride and catch the waves. I think I know what the main things are but NOW I need to feel it and actually experience it. I am definitely a kinesthetic learner... in other words I need to do it and feel it to learn it and remember it.

So, this morning as I sit on Randy's amazing porch, and watch those smoke stacks, I am hoping that they tilt in the proper direction..... but FIRST I will go and help clean out Maliko Gulch... They had been hit by a storm and flood and the community is getting together to help clean it up.
little downwind training

little downwind training
thanks Jeremy for the PICS

live, love, laugh,...DREAM!

Mar 23, 2013

Meeting Milton

Day 4 and part of 5 of Maui training....
Lahaina side

The Randy day: of surfing, more surfing, scenic rides, and meeting new people... LOVED IT
Randy: a great guy that I feel lucky to know:)

I surfed in the harbour as again the wind was zero and the surf was good. I surfed on the 14ft bullet in the morning practicing catching glides, moving on the board, and turning the board....

The later afternoon Randy and I checked out the Lahaina side of the island, the surf wasn't too great looking but we did meet a friend of Randy's and the drive was beautiful. Totally appreciated checking out another part of this magical island... We then went back to the harbour: this time I was on Randy's 9.0 x 27 wave board.... things were lining up and clicking for me... I was understanding the feel of moving on the board, making it turn and lovin' the boost of confidence on the waves...

post surf beverage

Later that evening I got to meet Milton.... Inspirational...He just fired me up about the Molokai to Oahu crossing.. A long time paddler originally from the big island.... he knows so much about the culture, history, and waters of this area... it was amazing to meet him. He  shared stories, knowledge, and ideas... so if anyone has films, books or stories to share about the Hawaiian culture, waters, and especially the Kaiwai channel I would love to learn as much as I can and would appreciate any suggestions...So thank you Randy, and thank you Milton for the very fun evening. I got to also check out yet another part of the island, Kihei.

Randy, Milton, and I

A cold beverage among good people and surf boards

This morning Randy kindly took time to take me out to Kahana beach for some bigger surf than yesterday... I was able to catch waves, but also fell in and failed at catching some waves... its good though cause now I know what I am doing wrong when it all goes wrong, luckily in those waves it was still very little consequence when mistakes were made.... I know for me I can't be timid and scared 'cause I usually end of not catching the wave or falling but if I put my mind to it and  just go for it...  I generally find success.

Now I am enjoying some relaxation until the next session... of possibly a downwind? if the wind decides to blow in the right direction that is....

for the love of being inspired....

live, love, laugh,...DREAM!

Mar 22, 2013

Makin' Progress

one step at a time...

Today I saw more progress... In the morning I was mastering catching, gliding, and turning on the SIC 14 bullet.... this afternoon I was on Randy's 9.0 x 27 wave board and really got the hang of putting my weight on the front of the nose to catch the wave and then stepping back and putting weight on my back foot to turn into the face of the wave..I was even making little S shapes while riding the wave..... YAY! I did manage a total rookie mistake of not stopping at the end of a sweet glide 'cause I was in the flow and lovin it and managed a slow motion crash into another surfer.. luckily, it was slow, no damage was done and she was cool... haha.. I won't do it again though...

It's funny at home, I do a lot of exercise, sometimes by accident through commuting, work, and training... Here, I am paddling more than ever and am enjoying chillin' in between surf sessions... I must be getting used to the island life... It was really great to chill with Jeremy, Randy, and the girls on the porch in between sessions eating delicious snacks and chattin' SUP/surf talk...., I got to practice the Indo Board and the balance beam balance exercise... I am hoping to get a skateboard to practice the feel of surf turns and understand how to position my body and how to feel the pressure on my toes and heels.., Also an indo type board will be great for yet another way to practice my surfing balance... these will be great tools for me to use when I can't find bumps and waves...

for the love of waves....

live, love, laugh,...DREAM!

Mar 21, 2013

The Journey to MOLOKAI 2 OAHU....

My Journey towards the Molokai to Oahu crossing.....

getting inspired through the beauty and magic of the island...

It starts here and NOW....
it all starts with learning the basics... catching the little ones...

It has begun... I suppose it slowly began when I announced my interest to do it to others, it more officially began when I signed up, and now I am in Maui, found an awesome coach and am learning the skills to help me cross the channel with success and more importantly with a smile:) I already have some pretty fantastic people to thank which is soooo amazing  as I am just beginning this quest.. There are so many wonderful people in this community I don’t even know where to start… all I know is I hope I can continue to share this dream, inspire, motivate, and teach others how to follow theirs…

The next 4 months I am going to focus on this journey I have chosen. I am sure there will be ups and downs, there will be  easier and tougher obstacles, there will be successes and failures… I look forward to the bumpy road though… if it were easy then everybody would be doing itJ

So, as I sit on Randy’s back porch (thanks for the loan Randy:)) enjoying the sunset over the Iao Valley here in Maui I know I am ready for this.

I have had some sessions with Jeremy Riggs, a downwind master and fabulous coach, father, athlete, human being,… we have shared stories and he has shared his knowledge… The wind has not yet blown to satisfactory big downwind runs but maybe it’s a blessing in disguise as I have been able to practice catching surf after surf after surf…. Getting the feel of a downwind board… It has been 3 days of lots of paddling which is wonderful… I am trying hard not to get all excited about everything and although I brought my running shoes I happily have not put them on yet (I did manage to however go for a barefoot beach run,  ran into a Lululemon morning beach workout group that cheerfully let me join in on their fun for a bit before I had to head back to find the outdoor pull up bar at the top of steep sand slope)

Working with JR... he makes it look easy...

I was pretty nervous coming to Maui on my own, but Randy, Jeremy, and the local community have been so welcoming and friendly, now its going to be difficult to leaveJ

I have 4 more days on this magical island called Maui and I will pray for some wind so I can get some downwind runs but am looking forward to enjoying my progress of riding the wave(s) towards the Channel Of Bones… M2O…. 

It starts with baby steps... Its hard sometimes to feel like you really suck at something... I watch others catch these baby bumps with ease and grace and here I am shaking, falling, getting frustrated at missing the waves, etc etc the list goes on... I am starting to see that this journey is just that... If I was a super star surfer and downwinder this thing would be less of a big deal for me... hehe... one small part of the many reasons I want to make it through this crossing is to force myself to learn these skills. 
learning to turn on the wave...

I want to add downwinding and surfing to my SUP skill set... 

for the love of downwinds..... 

live, love, laugh,...DREAM!

Mar 20, 2013

I am in Maui because I signed up for

Molokai 2 Oahu Stand Up Paddleboard Race..... A 32mile open ocean crossing from Molokai Island to Oahu Island.

I for some reason feel the need to keep pushing myself and this time I chose something very CHALLENGING for me. Its BIG and SCARY because I have to do it on my own (no relying on teammates, its all about me), it has a huge unknown factor for me (never paddled the crossing and until now never paddled in these waters), its a huge expense (training, flights, entry, escort boat, board...), its my weakness (the skill of surfing and reading water) in this newish sport of mine called SUP. So, it seemed like the correct challenge for me to take on... it seems like the next step.

me with the giant turtle on the beach....

I'm in Maui this week to start the ball rolling on the next 4 months of making the crossing happen as successfully as I can. There are some skills I need to learn: Mainly downwinding/surfing... a skill I have been meaning to work on for a couple of years but have been able to not really need it and therefore not put the extra effort of finding a coach, getting to surf, etc etc etc...essentially getting it done... I figured signing up for this race is a great push for me to learn this skill that will not only be very useful in future races but also really FUN to just know how to do and then go and do it.

I found an amazing person/coach/athlete named Jeremy Riggs. He runs his own business of coaching and sharing his passion of downwinding and surfing... I've had a day with him and I know he will be a key part in making this dream/bucket list item of mine a successful venture. I am always focused on getting a workout and paddling hard and its already nice to actually focus on a skill instead of my endurance or strength.... I am learning! I look forward to the rest of the week and hope that I come away with something I can build on.... I am also staying with a great friend of his Randy. His house is amazing, on the hill with views of ocean and Iao Valley... super nice place and really great company! Thank you Jeremy and Randy!
Learning to catch waves and move on the board: on a SIC 14 bullet

Iao Valley swimming hole... we found a new spot deep inside the valley... no people

me and the needle in the background: Iao Valley

Thanks Jeremy for takin pictures...

below are some scenic pictures of the hike and my home for the week
view from the front porch

view from the back of the house

cooling off the feet  Iao Valley

going on an adventure.....Iao Valley

one of many little waterfalls Iao Valley

View from back porch of the house: Iao Valley

live, love, laugh,...DREAM!

Mar 4, 2013


Friday March 8th
7:30pm Rio Theatre
Come listen to some AMAZING AND INSPIRING people share their stories...

Facebook link:

Link to purchase tickets:

live, love, laugh,...DREAM!