Saturday, May 25, 2013

Paddling away stress

Work can be overwhelming at times, and in Sweden the mad rush to complete projects and wrap up activities before the July holiday period can make matters worse. But prioritizing a workout can be good for both your mental and physical health, as detailed in an article from the Mayo Clinic. According to the authors:
Virtually any form of exercise, from aerobics to yoga, can act as a stress reliever. If you're not an athlete or even if you're downright out of shape, you can still make a little exercise go a long way toward stress management. 
Yesterday, David and I did the "right thing" and followed through on our plans to train our paddling skills, and those hip muscles that burn when you're out on the water. We met at lunch, ready to go, and spent a bit longer than an hour out on the smooth water of Walloxen. Last time we were there, much of our time was spent relearning things like adjustment of the rudder pedals and paddle angles, but this time we were really able to put some distance on the boats, actually reaching the far side of the lake before turning back.

~9 km is still only half of what we will do in Åre, but honestly the boating is lower on my list of concerns--I'm fairly certain after yesterday that I could have been out there another hour without any major cramping or muscle fatigue. Now we're looking to the biking part as an area of focus--both in terms of miles and technique. That said, we've got the boats reserved again in two weeks as there is a long holiday weekend here in Sweden, and we're looking forward to those days as an opportunity to train a bit extra (and get some stress relief!)

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