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SUP in Ft. Lauderdale

May 22, 2013

When I travel to Ft. Lauderdale, my days are usually spent doing little more than lounging on the beach, by the pool or on the boat, with the occasional run thrown in.  So this time when I decided that I wanted to try paddle boarding for the first time, I felt really ambitious.

We rented from Fort Lauderdale Stand Up Paddle, a company located right off A1A next to one of my favorite restaurants, Coconuts.  They have a bunch of different rental options and also offer SUP lessons.  We opted to rent two boards for a two-hour stretch for $40 a piece.  I’m not sure how much SUP rentals run elsewhere, but that’s a much better deal than I’ve found at the few Colorado rental places I’ve investigated.  Also, they delivered the boards to my parents’ house for no extra charge (we tipped them) so that we could paddle around the canal right behind the house.  That was a great setup for us, so we could all take turns and have the house, pool, etc. right there.

Paddle Boarding

Cross one more off my 30 before 30 list!

When they dropped off the boards, they gave us a quick run-down of how to adjust and hold the paddles, how to lower the boards into the water and where to stand, and we were off and running.  I was one of the first to try and took to it relatively easily. 

Paddle Boarding

While my mom’s insistence that it was “impossible” to fall off a paddle board was quickly proven wrong (not by me I swear!), it did feel pretty stable under my feet and the trickiest bit was turning around and navigating the currents of the Intercoastal.

Paddle Boarding

I’m not sure exactly what my expectations were, but since SUP has been so hyped up over the last few years, I was somehow expecting it to feel more like an extreme sport.  To be honest, after paddling around for my first few minutes I just didn’t really get it.  BUT I took another turn and went for a longer jaunt down the canal and started to appreciate it a lot more.  It didn’t feel “extreme” by any stretch of the imagination (though I bet in the open ocean with some surf it sure would) but it was a great total-body workout.  There are few things I love more than exercising outdoors, and if I lived on the water somewhere I could definitely see myself adding SUP to my routine.

Paddle Boarding

After that uncharacteristically active morning, we headed to the beach to kick back and watch the waves roll in.

Ft. Lauderdale Beach

Toes in the Sand

Jellyfish on Ft. Lauderdale Beach

It was a truly beautiful beach day and I spent more time than usual playing in the ocean.  When I go to the beach these days I usually spend most of the day reading on the sand and jump into the surf to cool off, but the water felt so amazing that we spent what felt like hours bobbing in the waves.  It brought me back to my childhood in the best way.

Ft. Lauderdale Beach

Ft. Lauderdale Beach

I don’t know if it’s because I was born in Ft. Lauderdale or just because the beach is a wonderful place, but there are few places where I can go to feel as restored and peaceful as the beach, particularly this beautiful stretch.

Ft. Lauderdale Beach

We spent another day similarly lounging around and soaking up family time before heading back to Colorado.  It was a great trip that left me wondering why I don’t make it down there more often.  But today as I look out my window at our gorgeous spring morning I’m reminded that there are just too many beautiful places to be.  I hope it’s a wonderful day wherever you are!

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