03 November 2015

Surf Simply: Martes (Tuesday)

We surfed early this morning after a quick first breakfast.
Kim, Fran and I carving backside on the beach
The swell had dropped to about head-high and the tide was high, making the waves soft and fat.
At Fran's suggestion, I took out a 7'6" NSP. We worked on angled takeoffs and carving turns. And stance, of course.
The high-volume board did give me a good wave count, and I'm getting better at looking down the line.
Back at the Rancho, we enjoyed second breakfast, although I was left pining for Denis' vegan pancakes. With some free time, Mike, Eric, Ian, Jessica and I walked along a path through the jungle into the small town of Playa Guiones. The town had a handful of shops along a short two-block stretch of dusty road, and the guys from Seattle wanted to check out the clay tennis courts. Mike mentioned a cafe that had vegan sorbet, and didn't need to spend any time convincing me and Jessica to stop in for a scoop. Robin's didn't accept credit cards but did take U.S. dollars, so I broke $20 and got back several colorful bills and a few coins denoted in colones.
Ian, Mike and Eric in the forest
Ian and Jessica in town
Harry talks about breathing
My chocolate sorbet had been deeply frozen in a small plastic cup, and the tropical heat barely melted the edges by the time we got back to the resort. We were just in time for Harry's lecture on breath-holding. As we sat on the floor of the yoga room, I nibbled on the cone and listened. I'd just taken a bite when Harry said, "Okay, now everybody hold your breath." I quickly swallowed and stopped breathing. I think I lasted maybe 30 seconds, not as long as others. Harry continued to speak on the dynamics of breathing and not breathing, most of which I'd heard during Hanli Prinsloo's Surprise Apnea for Surfers course. He had us hold our breaths a couple more times, on the last leading us in a breathe-up and purge sequence beforehand. I laid back on my cushion, closed my eyes, thought of nothing (as much as I ever can), and didn't breathe. Harry counted off time periodically and I could hear others starting to breathe again. After more than a minute and a half, he asked, "Anyone still going?" I raised my hand. More time passed, and my diaphragm bucked, but I kept holding. Finally I inhaled. "Well! Almost two and a half minutes," Harry told me. Wow! That was almost my time in the pool with Hanli whispering encouragement in my ear and the mammalian dive reflex giving me greater endurance. It seems like now I could go even longer than 2:40 with my face submerged. But as Harry pointed out, the longest most of us will ever be held down by waves is about five seconds.

Although I wasn't really hungry for lunch after two breakfasts and sorbet, I ate anyway. Lots of calories are being burned this week so extra food is okay. Then it was time for another theory session with Fran.
The afternoon surf session was a bit of a disappointment to me as I only rode one wave. But it was a good one, a long left all the way in to the beach. Mike from Seattle gave me a high-five, congratulating me on my "30-minute ride."

I had to miss afternoon yoga to walk down the road and pick up a rental car for tomorrow's adventure: Driving the Monkey Trail to see my friend Jon in Playa Negra!

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