There is a saying on Maui and that also applies to the ocean. So many people arrive to Maui with dreams of surfing and paddling everyday, drinking from coconuts and basking in the warm sunshine. All of that is amazing and can happen and when it does, it’s truly amazing.
The saying is ” Maui will either accept you or reject you.”
For some, it just doesn’t work as it’s the most expensive place to live in the United States and requires one to be very resourceful and respectful of the island ways. Many go back to the mainland.
The N Shore before a big paddle surf Suzie scans the lines and sets
I arrived 15 years ago and first learned the same applies to the ocean, especially on the rugged and rough waters of the North shore of Maui. The waves are big and the currents and reefs do not forgive and challenge the most extreme, experienced waterman and women.
This is why I write. Every time I enter the ocean I have the greatest respect. I scan the surf lines and sets and the horizon beyond. I observe the cloud and wind patterns, swell direction and the overall “mana” or power that I am about to embrace.
There are days I feel unstoppable and the waves and wind are with me. There are days where I scratch my head and wonder why it’s so especially hard. Either way I am very grateful.
Owner of Suzie Trains Maui, LLC
Specializing in SUP and watersports performance
Aloha from Maui! Please like and subscribe to my YouTube channel and share this video!
Ever wondered what it was like to paddle Maui’s famous Maliko 10 mile downwind paddle on the open ocean? Now you can experience this with me. TURN UP THE VOLUME!
Maui is famous for it’s downwind stand up paddle run out of Maliko gulch ending 10 miles along the N shore to the harbor in Kahului. It’s truly the happiest place on earth for me ( besides behind of the wheel of a 911 or on a dirt bike ).
I’m riding the Naish Javelin LE 14footer by 26 inches wide which offers a full ocean, wild surfing ride and lots of glides! This day it was blowing steady 25-35 but it’s hard to tell. ( Thanks Bill for sacrificing your session for me, beer and wine )
I shot this along with my buddy Bill Hoffman who was wearing my #GoPro Chesty harness on his back. We also had my paddle and board rigged, then he also held the GoPole Bobber for a few scenes.
Hope you enjoyed.
Sponsors: Naish International, BLUESMITHS, Kaenon Polarized Eyewear, Indo Board Balance Trainer, Pocketfuel Naturals and RAW Elements Sunscreen.
Aloha and welcome to the world of downwind stand up paddling. I know you are hooked on this insanely fun, adrenaline elevator element of SUP; if you are reading this article. I’ve written about this a little before some time ago, but thought I’d bring it back again in greater detail as we approach this downwind season.
In this post I’ll touch upon the importance of increasing your lung capacity to increase your endurance and paddling capacity specifically for downwind paddling. I will also give you some cardio training tips, exercises and a special workout to help you structure your water time and gym time, so you can go the distance, get better results and have more fun.
Note: This will not be an intensely geeky, cardio technical wordy article as it could be, (no offense to those who love that) because my message here is for you to be much more aware of your cardio capacity or lack of, relating to downwind stand up paddling skills. I do refer to heart rate monitor, AT, recovery but I didn’t want to scare you away.
Maximum Heart = Maximum Glides = Maximum Fun!
Like many of us who live on or frequent Maui, we know for a fact we are some of the most spoiled paddlers in the world. We have on our N. shore a conveyer belt of downwind action, called Maliko. Flat-water padding? What? “We don’t do that” is what I often hear. Those words, “flat-water” I’ll admit, I too am guilty of never wanting to enter flat-water paddle races because I’m sure I’d suck wind. Honestly, I’d just rather surf it.
Besides Maui, paddlers are discovering other amazing places to downwind paddle like Lake Bohinj in Slovenia, or I know my Aussie friends love Snapper Rocks to Currumbin Alley and Broken Head to Ballina, or the Northern waters of Seattle, and on down to the Gorge in Hood River, Oregon.
Downwind stand up paddling has become it’s own unique element of the sport that offers fun and racing, allowing the adrenaline junkies like myself and those who love the surf; to have an “all in one” adventure. It simply doesn’t get any better.
Some surfing experience does help and will allow you to save your energy and cardio capacity for faster paddling. So if downwind paddling in high winds is your goal or dream and you want to be better at it, learn some footwork and go surfing.
The coolest thing about catching a bump or glide is that you just go. For example, once you catch a bump or glide which can require you to spend quick, intense bouts of cardio to paddle like hell to catch it, then you step back as your nose enters the trough and enjoy the scenery. But it doesn’t end there nor should your cardio effort.
However, when it comes to downwind paddling or racing, not all waters or racecourses or crossings are the same. You’ll find that not always will the wind cooperate in your favor forcing you to paddle on one side or head on or in many directions; every other direction except at your back. Or the tides can act as a mean backwash that makes you feel like your paddling in mud. That’s when you quickly discover you may need some extra, extra heart, and I don’t mean courage.
First, I always tell my clients to train on land and to train on the water; to push to the point where you get uncomfortable and stay there for one more minute, then two, then five and so on. Puking is not the goal, but not puking is. Make sense? Bottom line, the old training saying is true, “you gotta get comfortable being uncomfortable”.
If you’ve never heard of the term bonking, it’s a common term used in the endurance athlete world, which simply means hitting the wall. Your body and everything inside it is done, toast, depleted and it can even happen to the best. It’s not a pretty site.
So real quick, take note: The science or physiological meaning of “hitting the wall” is best described by Wikipedia is:
“In endurance sports such as cycling and running, hitting the wall or the bonk describes a condition caused by the depletion of glycogen stores in the liver and muscles, which manifests itself by sudden fatigue and loss of energy. Milder instances can be remedied by brief rest and the ingestion of food or drinks containing carbohydrates. The condition can usually be avoided by ensuring that glycogen levels are high when the exercise begins, maintaining glucose levels during exercise by eating or drinking carbohydrate-rich substances, or by reducing exercise intensity.”
Let’s now refer to the exiting Maliko gulch, for example. When you first attempt it and paddle out for your first run, “standing” for those who have little to no cardio training, that’s what get’s most right at the start. For the most part your first ten minutes or more (no warm up); you’re paddling up wind and side wind against side current and wind swell just to get out so you can turn down.
Some of you may reach your anaerobic threshold or AT which is NOT how you want to start your downwind run! (refer to definitions at the end of this article )
Granted you’re nervous, your adrenaline is turned on high and you may be tasting your breakfast, but this is the golden moment where your regular cardio training, increased heart and lung capacity will really help you and pay off. My heart rate rises but I’m able to control it as this is a perfect moment to get my head clear and start paying attention to my breath and rhythm as I get ready for the action.
Down we go!
A great tip I got once from Michi Schweiger of Naish one day on a training paddle, is he told me to stroke hard and fast twice then step back two steps and surf. Again, paddle hard twice, step back glide, paddle hard repeat all the way. He is very strong and has great footwork. He also has a fierce mind set with great lung capacity and is well trained. Sometimes I refer to it as the 2 and 2 or 2-3 and 2.
I do this now, but sometimes it’s like 2-3 strokes as I’m looking for the next bump. So let’s break down those first two strokes. They should be very powerful, digging, fast strokes. Anyone knows that paddling with Michi you better keep up because as he always says. “you can do betta” in his deep Austrian accent.
Right here is when you need a big lung capacity check.
First note as your paddling, be mindful of your breath. Is your heart pounding out of your chest wall, do we call 911? Or is it a nice smooth, trained, nicely elevated rhythm? Can you maintain this for 5, 8 or 15 miles?
Everyone knows that Maui is THE place to escape in the middle of winter for stand up paddling, especially when the whales are everywhere, the winds are calm and the water an inviting warm temperature, and the beaches begging to be explored.
Along with the True Collection Team, we present the Ultimate Experience for those select few who seek a life changing experience; one that will increase their strength, stand up paddling skills, offer female camaraderie and a luxury venue sure to be a hallmark memory.
Presented by True Collection & Ultimate Experience
For Immediate Release:
Media Contact: Amie Engerbretson
A Special Women’s Stand Up Paddle and Fitness Experience on Maui hosted by world-renown professional SUP athlete Suzie Cooney
(Saratoga, California)– Professional Stand Up Paddle Athlete and Trainer Suzie Cooney, along with Ultimate Experience, is proud to announce a special, women-specific experience in Maui, Hawaii, in January 2014. Beat the cold and getaway to the breath-taking Lumeria Resort for an unforgettable SUP and Fitness retreat. Cooney, a globally recognized athlete, SUP pioneer, professional fitness trainer, has put together an incredible and exclusive five-night stay at Lumeria for six women. This experience benefits Bring Change 2 Mind, a non-profit dedicated to eradicating the stigma and discrimination that surrounds mental illness, a cause Suzie is passionate about.
Located near the historic town of Pa’ia, Lumeria is one of the islands’ premiere and intimate locations, highlighted by barefoot elegance and sparkled with tropical gardens, saline pool and Jacuzzi, exquisite guest rooms and first-class yoga studios. With Suzie as your guide, tour one of the birthplaces of Stand Up Paddle as Maui reveals itself to truly be the gem of all island getaways. Fine-tune your stroke, learn water safety, board control and discover myriad health benefits of SUP on the crystal clear, blue, warm waters of Maui.
Through finely tuned training sessions with Suzie, you’ll build strength, improve balance, and get your mind in line with the ocean breeze. Between the adventures, enjoy fresh, organic farm-to-table meals artfully crafted and prepared by Lumeria’s award-winning staff, rounding out your healthy, restorative retreat.
It’s my sincere pleasure to introduce you to one of my new clients and new inspirations to Maui’s stand up paddle scene, Sasha Kinloch. Like many who enter the sport they discover that it’s amazing way to achieve a superior level of fitness, it’s a great cross training tool, or like Sasha they learn that this could be their newest healthy obsession!
I believe all of my clients are unique and often teach me more than I offer them. Sasha is an interesting blend of high energy, intense focus and has a way of visualizing exactly what her goals are. For a trainer, that makes my job easy!
Her base of fitness is already on the higher side which can only help her achieve her goals faster and with greater success. She wants to compete in all of Maui’s races, which are mostly downwinders. Her first race was the recent OluKai Ho’olaule’a. I didn’t get to meet her until the event, and learned that that day was her first time down Maliko! What a day that was for everyone. And here we are.
When I meet a person like Sasha and I see that fire in her eyes, I feel the need to pull the reigns in ever so gently to be sure she will enjoy every step of the way and not rush the “process” of putting her time in on the water. Nothing can compare to pure paddling time, getting worked and tumbled now and then, as the time spent on the water is the real training ground. People often ask me how many miles they need to run or cycle to equal number of miles on the water for distance or catching bumps or glides, and I simply say, “just time on the water.” There really is no way to measure that.
I asked Sasha a few questions as to why she’s taken with the sport of SUP and I hope it will inspire you to set new goals or maybe enter your first local race.
Stand up paddlers of all skill levels gathered on the serene grounds of Lumeria Maui on November 3rd for the SUP Pro Talk Workshop with Suzie Cooney. The educational (and fun!) land-based event touched on many important topics for paddlers, including the health benefits of SUP, water safety and ocean preparedness, SUP fitness techniques and training demos, and equipment reviews.
Clay Everline, M.D., co-author of the Surf Survival Health Hand Book, was on hand with a valuable lecture on First Aid, and pro paddler, Jeremy Riggs, heated the afternoon up with his tips on downwind paddling. Suzie Cooney, as charming as ever, kept the crowd entertained and engaged with her informative and “hands on” teaching style.
The big winner of the day was the organization Bring Change 2 Mind, as 90% of the event’s proceeds went to supporting the group’s fight to erase the stigma and discrimination of mental illness. The organization, founded by actress Glenn Close, provides educational material and a meeting place for a broad coalition of organizations that provide service, screening, information, support and treatment of mental illness.
“We were thrilled to sell out three months in advance. That really confirmed to me that people are eager to learn and support the sport. I’m a big advocate of those dealing with mental illness, so I wanted to spread the word about the organization I support, Bring Change 2 Mind.org.
Clay Everline, M.D. was very informative and entertaining, as was Jeremy Riggs, our local downwind pro who shared some of his helpful tips. The participants had great questions, which was helpful for the entire audience!
Stand up paddling is sure way to fire up the metabolism and shed some holiday poundage and still enjoy a fabulous meal. You can “shred to shed”. Get your core and body revving high to stoke the fire on the inside before your big meal. Do some interval sprints, go for distance or just get out there. You’ll be glad you did.
Also in this post, you can listen to my radio show ( below )to help you keep your SUP waistline svelte so you can paddle this holiday and fit into your bikini, board shorts or wetsuit, depending on where you live. My tips will also help you steer clear of the usual weight gain that could slow you down on your next downwinder.
Suzie is riding the Naish 14′ Glide Carbon Board
This year I’m adding the Scosche Rhythm Monitor to my SUP interval training and distance training. I can listen to my music list while I track my progress. It’s so cool. This Thursday you can be sure I”ll be either going down Maliko for a downwinder or be out in the surf.
We’re expecting a decent swell here on Maui this Thanksgiving so as tradition, I’ll be getting out there so I can charge my calorie burning engine. Just approaching a big set, the adrenaline and fear along must burn at least a few hundred calories! I’ll be catching a few on my Naish Hokua or the new 8’10″ Mana.
These are my quick tips I’ve shared today on my weekly health and fitness and all about SUP radio show, on how to enjoy this holiday’s feast and not have a guilty conscious. I was thinking of something different to offer the public, and maybe create a pre-Thanksgiving help line, but not for how to cook a turkey but to help counsel those who are already stressing about gaining weight. I think I could be on to something!
According to online surveys the average person will eat over 4,000 and 229 grams of fat, the Thanksgiving Day Holiday. Yikes. Not to mention the additional increase in sodium intake that may leave you feeling bloated and miserable. Do you know how hard you’ll have to work to burn that off? Very.
So instead maybe this segment will see you through. I know many of you who I counsel and train are getting a bit worried about how many calories they will be consuming. I try and give them all the knowledge and power so they don’t come back to me the Monday after with their tail between their legs, and crumbs on their face from pumpkin pie crust. For example if you eat 6 ounces of white turkey at about 180 calories, it will take you approximately 30 minutes to run that off.
Click Here to Hear Suzie Live
Listen here now to my snippet from the Maui Breakfast Club, relax and please whatever you do, leave the elastic pants or skirt in the drawer at home. ( Air date November 19, 2012 )
Go for run on the beach and charge your pre meal metabolic booster!
Tip One: Slow Down – Eat more slowly and taste each bite. Sip water before and after and each bite. PORTION control matters as well. Smaller portions, no seconds.
Tip Two: Sit down while you eat, no mindless grazing. Standing may cause you to eat more.
Tip Three: Go easy on the booze. These are sneaky calories! Fill a wine glass with sparkling water. Avoid alcohol as it slows down your metabolism.
Tip Four: Shift mind set to losing weight, and focus on maintenance. Don’t lose weight to eat more.
Tip Five: Don’t worry about insulting friends and family who push food on you. Politely say, “thank you but I’m so full, or I”ll have some later.”
Tip Six: Celebrate yourself, your friends and family. Hugs are free, they make us feel good and they don’t have any calories!
Tip Seven: Get outside and surf, SUP, windsurf, kite or walk or run on the beach. This is my tradition. Depending on conditions which are usually amazing in November; I’ll grab a board and hit the water for an hour or two.
Tip Eight: Don’t skip meals so you can indulge and binge. You’ll regret it.
Tip Nine: Eat fiber and whole grain breakfast. Fiber is filling.
Last Tip: Don’t stress, there are plenty of personal trainers that can help you get back on track. The trick is, not to go off track in first place.
Holidays are for enjoying yourself, the ocean and being thankful, but also for giving something such as a service or gift of your talent or time. I”m thankful for so much, but most of all thankful for my health, family and friends and you. So grab your paddle and some friends and catch some glides and waves. Then listen to my radio show to make sure you keep that body lean and strong.
Thanks for tuning in and check back here for more holiday tips to help you hold your course and not order that second one.
Mahalo and Happy Thanksgiving!
Aloha & Happy Thanksgiving
Suzie Cooney, CPT owner of Suzie Trains Maui, LLC
Tune in every Monday @ 7:20 AM to the Maui Breakfast Club 900 AM KNUI Listen live also at KNUI.com
Suzie rides the Naish Hokua 9’0″, Mana 8’10″ 14ft Glide, 9’5″ Alana, 11’4″ Nalu and the 10’6″Nalu and many more.
By Suzie Cooney, CPT owner of Suzie Trains Maui, LLC
It’s no doubt that Hunter Joslin, Indo Board Balance Trainer’s Founder and developer of the popular Gigante Flo Cushion, entertains and trains with me at this year’s Battle of the Paddle at Dana Point. Hunter was wowing the crowd with some tricks this weekend as Chip Martoccia, VP of Operations, and I cheered on.
Hunter Joslin and Suzie Cooney having Gigante fun at 2012 BOP, Dana Point
I’ve been a team rider and ambassador for Indo Board Balance Trainer for some time, and thoroughly enjoy my time with Hunter and crew. We never miss an opportunity to play around and challenge one another. He’s quite the surfer and in very good shape. We’ve shared a few waves together on Maui, and I can say he is just a little competitive!
As a SUP Team Rider for Naish, Hunter asked if I’d do this photo shoot and share some new tricks I’ve been working on in my studio here at SUZIE TRAINS MAUI to improve people’s stand up paddling strength. Of course! Turns out he had never tried or seen any of these so I was stoked but under the gun to give him my best.
These exercise are a bit advanced, but I encourage everyone to try them.
As one advances in stand up paddling technique, racing long distance or sprint racing or those who charge JAWS and other big waves, these folks understand already “where” their power is coming from.
Maui, Hawaii (PRWEB) August 24, 2012 PLEASE NOTE:We’ve Added One More Hour 1-4pm…
THIS EVENT IS SOLD OUT
Stand Up Paddle Pro Talk with Suzie Cooney at Lumeria Maui November 3, 2012
Join Suzie Cooney owner of Suzie Trains Maui, Naish SUP Team Rider and guru SUP Fitness Training Expert for an informative “hands on” workshop and up your SUP performance. All levels of paddlers welcome.
Suzie Cooney, CPT owner of Suzie Trains Maui & Naish SUP Team Rider “Stand up paddling provides amazing health benefits and will change your life. Hop aboard and discover the sport that is globally growing in every community and on every body of water.”
Maui is the perfect location for this unique venue as it is a popular destination where stand up paddling, also referred to as SUP, allows for people to enjoy and experience the fastest growing water sport in the world. People from all over, all ages and any level of fitness travel to Maui where the waves are plenty, with big open ocean swells and warm tropical waters that offer amazing paddling adventures.
Discover the health benefits of stand up paddling and learn new fitness training techniques designed specifically to increase your performance.
The workshop topics will include:
Preparing Your Body for the sport of Stand Up Paddling
Ocean Preparedness & Water Safety
Preparing for the famous Maui Maliko Downwinders
Equipment and Gear Review: Boards provided by Naish International
SUP Techniques – Fine Tuning Your Skills – Finding your “power” in your stroke
SUP Fitness Training Demos and Group Participation
Meet new padding friends and join the fun. Giveaways and Drawings for those who attend.
Supporting sponsors: Naish International, lndoBoard Balance Trainer, Kaenon Polarized Eyewear & PocketFuel Naturals
Cost: $20 per person Prepaid reservations required. No refunds.
A portion of your registration fee supports Bring Change 2Mind.org, an organization working to eradicate the stigma and discrimination surrounding mental illness. Additional donations are glady accepted.