WINTER RACE TRAINING: A LOOK AHEAD
I hope every one of you had a very Merry Christmas and/or Happy Hanukkah and got to spend time with friends and family. As 2017 is coming to a close Kevin, Brian, and I are looking back on our successes and areas of improvement to make 2018 our best year yet.
One concept that continues to bring out the best in all three of us is our race training program. It has created a unique community of water lovers and athletes where everyone is friendly and encouraging. In 2017 we ran three programs geared for different parts of the season.
At the beginning of March, we started our annual Bay Bridge Paddle Program. The main focus of this program was to get the local community back on the water and prepped to take on the Chesapeake Bay. The weather was considerably mild this spring and made for some great paddling. There were a few days where the temperatures were less than ideal but with the proper equipment and other like-minded people, it made for great training. “Strength in numbers” is the best practice when it comes to cold weather paddling. We had a great turnout for the BBP training program and were blessed with another warm race day at Sandy Point State Park. Next year the race directors have pushed the date back until June 2nd, which will give us plenty of time to prepare.
Our summer training program was geared toward the local race scene. Each month we started with a one mile, half mile, and sprint time trial to track progress. These time-trials were a testament to all the hard work that was going on in Spa Creek. Between Annapolis and Ocean City there were a handful of events where paddlers tested themselves and saw improvement in times and overall placement. Although paddling is an individual sport, when we train together all week and race together on the weekend, we get to celebrate together as a team. And it doesn’t have to be a win or podium finish to celebrate. Finishing your first race. Beating a personal best time on a 5-mile course. Outsprinting someone at the finish you’ve never beaten before. These are the reasons why we train and compete. To make ourselves better each and every day. Train to win. For races, for goals, for life!
New to the Capital SUP training program was the fall on-land program that started back in October and runs until New Years. In the past we had held bootcamps and group classes, but not specifically designed for paddling. The fall program was implemented to give our community a chance to train on land and paddle year round. The on-land portion consisted of a strength day, a balance and conditioning day, and a total body bootcamp on Saturday mornings. After bootcamp, those who were interested would hit the water and work on refining technique and keeping their skills sharp.
As we enter into 2018 we will be starting our winter training which is another 3-month program running Tuesday, January 3 to the end of March. Similar to our fall program the winter training will be on-land Tuesday and Thursday evenings at 6:30 pm and Saturday mornings at 10 am. The goal of these training sessions is to build strength, lean muscle, and flexibility all while having fun. Every New Year people set resolutions and goals to strive for. If you are looking to take your paddling to the next level or meet some new friends in a great community join us for the start of 2018 and get ready to paddle with Capital SUP. First class is always free and we have private coaching appointments available for those who can’t make it to the group sessions.
Thank you to my coaches, Mary Howser and Scotty Scott, for helping build the race training team. I am looking forward to another fun-filled year of paddling in Annapolis. And out of our Washington DC “Navy Yard” location, we will begin race training in June of 2018. Stay tuned for more on that.
Coach Chris Norman