Monday, July 22, 2013

Stroke the Slough - Part 3 - Perspectives from the Stoke-o-nut corner

Stoke-o-nut Corner : Racing & Stroke the Slough


What got you interested in racing?

I was curious about doing it because my dad was into it and I wanted to experience what it would be like being there with him during a race.


What do you like about racing?
I get a lot out of it.....
I love all the experiences – the magic of the moment, the glide…. & passing someone in a race (Hahaa – roaring with mischief laughter)

The Stroke the Slough 12 miler (2012) was a huge race for me – it was sooo long – my feet felt like concrete bricks after completing that, but completion was one of the most amazing feelings I’ve ever felt. It made me realize that if I believe I can do it – I can.

Photo: Kathy Greisen, Stroke the Slough 2012

Last Year:

Racing was a difficult thing for me - and really out of my comfort zone - because it was so new and there were so many things that were different about racing compared to the usual touring style paddling that we do. The starts were the hardest thing to get used to and it was hard to stay on. I got tossed around a lot and clacked paddles with my dad, and we both had to work really hard to stay on and paddle together.

When we go out and paddle together we work on things like - Timing, cadence, speed, and simple drills like if my muscles are sore and I need a break, water breaks, if I need to adjust my stance, if I need to re-fuel, so we don't end up becoming this mess where I'm trying to do something as he paddles and because we don't know what each other is doing - we'll get the board all tippy.

My favorite new thing we worked on is called a "Power-Punch"
I am not strong enough to paddle hard for very long, so it is our special drill where I focus on form, and short intense paddle strokes. I love the feeling I get when I drop into it - we go fast, even though for a short time.


This year compared to last year - I feel so much stronger and it is such an awesome feeling. Last year I didn't have the same focus, or the ability to stay paddling that long, it was hard on my body, and I've really worked hard to get better at it, to get be a warrior

The thing I really like about Stroke the Slough is that it is a really beautiful race. The scenery is just awesome, you don't have to compete with power boats and jet skis blasting around you.... once you get past the choppy start - it is you and the slough, and you get to go for it without having to worry about power chop coming from some wake boarder coming up right beside you during a race.

 I enjoy watching other people tandem race and regular race. It was cool to see all the other kid racers that were out there and parents paddling tandem with their kids.


It also makes me happy to know that you can encourage a friend to try it out and give racing a shot.

Like my friend Josie Ask - who went for it and did the Elite 7.75 mile race as her first race. I am very proud of her for doing it and completing. It was a very hard and tricky race....especially for her first.



It's always fun making new friends (other racers) like my friend E11 (Dave Raney) He was a super nice guy - I also learned that this was his second race and that his first was Round the Rock....just like my dad.


I learned that there are other beginners out there that are adults, it made me feel very lucky trying this out as early as I am right now. I think it is awesome that I am seeing more and more people that are beginners to try racing - and it makes me happy. I want to encourage everyone to try it because it has done so much for me.


Even if it's hard - never give up - keep trying!
Someday you will meet your goals and feel accomplished and proud of yourself.

Thanks to Sara and everyone that put Stroke the Slough together - I will always have amazing memories to this race!

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Thanks to Rick Ask for making these awesome trophies to remind us of  these amazing memories