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Old 07-23-13, 03:55 PM   #1
JamieElenbaas
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How to stay fit in the middle of the Atlantic for 6+ weeks?

Here's an odd one:

I am helping deliver a 40 foot boat from the coast of France to the Caribbean this fall. The first leg will be about two weeks to the Canary Islands for a few day replenishment stop and then weeks three or so to the Caribbean. I expect to do pushups, situps and pullups, but that isn't going to do a lot for my cardio or legs.

All in all, I would expect to be spending about 6-7 weeks off the bike. I wonder if anyone else has a similar experience and can share what they did to keep fit in a small space.
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Old 07-23-13, 04:00 PM   #2
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There is no hope for you. It is inevitable that you will become catastrophically aerobically unfit. However, I am prepared to help. I will make the supreme sacrifice. You can stay at home and ride your bike, while I take your place and deliver the yacht.
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Old 07-23-13, 04:40 PM   #3
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There is no hope for you. It is inevitable that you will become catastrophically aerobically unfit. However, I am prepared to help. I will make the supreme sacrifice. You can stay at home and ride your bike, while I take your place and deliver the yacht.
Yep, that's what I thought. I'm going to man up and do it myself, hoping that that the daily rum ration dulls the pain.
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Old 07-23-13, 05:13 PM   #4
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Do stair step-ups for an hour or a ton of jumping jacks--these both are aerobic activities. Of course you may be black and blue from the tossing you'll get against the boats hull, walls, doors, bunks, tables, etc.

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Old 07-23-13, 05:27 PM   #5
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Jamies, have you done much sailing? As in ocean sailing? In heavy weather?
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Old 07-23-13, 06:31 PM   #6
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Well, you could always procure the rowing set-up from a one man scull and fix it to the rear of the boat. Then you could just sit there and row for an hour or two helping to move the boat on it's way.
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Old 07-23-13, 06:40 PM   #7
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Well, you could always procure the rowing set-up from a one man scull and fix it to the rear of the boat. Then you could just sit there and row for an hour or two helping to move the boat on it's way.
Or bring a Concept II rower along and end up fitter than you are now. It folds upright for convenient storage and would be great exercise if secured to the deck of a boat.
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Old 07-23-13, 06:44 PM   #8
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Jumping rope is likely among the top aerobic exercises - and would be interesting on a pitching boat!! Cheap and packs small.
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Old 07-23-13, 06:56 PM   #9
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I suppose I should also ask if this is a sail boat or a power boat.

But overall, any exercise that involves jumping is something frowned upon by most boat owners.
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Old 07-23-13, 07:23 PM   #10
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You'll get over it. Enjoy the ride.
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Old 07-23-13, 07:33 PM   #11
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Bring your trainer and bike





Or you could swim...
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Old 07-23-13, 07:46 PM   #12
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How big is the crew? Best shape I was ever in was a four year stint living aboard. No shortage of work to do whether it be maintenance, sail changes and pulling halyards and sheets.
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Old 07-23-13, 08:00 PM   #13
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A decent swell and chop on top will give the OP an all-round body workout that will have him crawling into his bunk wondering if he is capable of moving again.

And it's almost impossible to get totally comfortable sitting down on a boat (except maybe on the windward rail while beating to windward), so lying down in a bunk (preferably a pipe berth) can be a god send.

Moving sails is a great weights workout. Scrambling about on deck is good for aerobics, and fast sail changes and tacks are great for anaerobic exercise.

Oh, and a few things to remember at all times -- one hand for you and one for the boat; and don't pee over the side at sea, you may never be seen again.
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Old 07-24-13, 11:45 AM   #14
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Rowan, Actually, I've done quite a bit of blue water sailing and understand the 'workout' involved in just living at sea. It's the aerobic part that had me a bit concerned.

A bit more about the boat - It's a Lagoon 40. While there will certainly be deck work, most of the trip will be in the trade winds and electric halyard and deck winches will take some of the athleticism out of sailing (as long as they work ). The crew will consist of my brother and me, (the only ones with significant sailing experience) and my sister and her 16 yr old son.

In all but the worst weather, I find big catamarans to have a more comfortable motion than mono-hulls (or half-a-marans as we like to call them). Nevertheless, anything involving jumping is going to be out of the question. The stairstep idea is exactly the kind of idea I was hoping to get from this thread.
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Old 07-24-13, 12:16 PM   #15
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Swim, you should have plenty of opportunity.
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Old 07-24-13, 12:22 PM   #16
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You could strap on a pair of fins and push! Same pedaling motion!

Safe journey, my friend!

Our family had a 38' cutter-rigged ketch until a foreign (European) government stole it... They later admitted they were wrong, but nonetheless they still will not return it (was 'sold' to a government official), we are still out $100k+...

My dad's retirement dream was to cruise the canals of Europe for three years - north in the Summer, south in Winter - then sail back to the Caribbean for a year or two, then sail to the South Pacific to live out his days....

He had outfitted the boat for blue-water sailing over a winter in the FL keys, sailed to Bahamas where I met him for a nice week of sailing. Then on the single-handed trip from the Bahamas to Bermuda ran into the same storm that sunk those Tall Ships back in '84. After that experience, he took 'crew' on in Bermuda - made the West-East Atlantic crossing. That's when the trouble started... In any court in the world - other than Portugal - the boat is ours.



Challenger 38 -- Not ours, but that's what it looked like, minus the custom bowsprit (dad installed) along with the second headstay...

Wanna pick up a second boat along the way??? You just have to get it 12 miles offshore... and provision it... and sail it across the ocean...

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Old 07-24-13, 01:14 PM   #17
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Crank those coffe grinder capstans .. , tie the stern of the dinghy to the bow, of the boat, get out and row ..
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Old 07-24-13, 01:34 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Cougrrcj View Post
You could strap on a pair of fins and push! Same pedaling motion!

Safe journey, my friend!

Our family had a 38' cutter-rigged ketch until a foreign (European) government stole it... They later admitted they were wrong, but nonetheless they still will not return it (was 'sold' to a government official), we are still out $100k+...

My dad's retirement dream was to cruise the canals of Europe for three years - north in the Summer, south in Winter - then sail back to the Caribbean for a year or two, then sail to the South Pacific to live out his days....

He had outfitted the boat for blue-water sailing over a winter in the FL keys, sailed to Bahamas where I met him for a nice week of sailing. Then on the single-handed trip from the Bahamas to Bermuda ran into the same storm that sunk those Tall Ships back in '84. After that experience, he took 'crew' on in Bermuda - made the West-East Atlantic crossing. That's when the trouble started... In any court in the world - other than Portugal - the boat is ours.



Challenger 38 -- Not ours, but that's what it looked like, minus the custom bowsprit (dad installed) along with the second headstay...

Wanna pick up a second boat along the way??? You just have to get it 12 miles offshore... and provision it... and sail it across the ocean...
Yikes - I'd like to hear, "...the rest of the story," sometime over a beer. As for picking up a second boat, I don't suppose the 'getting of it' would be much of a problem, it's clearing into the next port of entry that could be a bit sporty.
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Old 07-24-13, 04:20 PM   #19
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Jump rope good.
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Old 07-24-13, 04:33 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by JamieElenbaas View Post
Rowan, Actually, I've done quite a bit of blue water sailing and understand the 'workout' involved in just living at sea. It's the aerobic part that had me a bit concerned.

A bit more about the boat - It's a Lagoon 40. While there will certainly be deck work, most of the trip will be in the trade winds and electric halyard and deck winches will take some of the athleticism out of sailing (as long as they work ). The crew will consist of my brother and me, (the only ones with significant sailing experience) and my sister and her 16 yr old son.

In all but the worst weather, I find big catamarans to have a more comfortable motion than mono-hulls (or half-a-marans as we like to call them). Nevertheless, anything involving jumping is going to be out of the question. The stairstep idea is exactly the kind of idea I was hoping to get from this thread.
Oh.... uhhhhhhh... nothing more to add.

Stairstep is probably going to get boring real quick, but in the absence of anything else, at least your arm will get a good workout drinking the beer, and rum and coke!
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Old 07-25-13, 03:40 AM   #21
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When I had carpal tunnel release surgery back in January 2012 and could not ride a bike for 3 weeks(on the road...didn't have a trainer then), I did stair stepping for 4 weeks. I started with 30 minutes and fairly quickly led up to 1 hour 20 minutes(6 days/week). Now, you only need 20 minutes of aerobic exercise to have benefits so you don't need to do long sessions like I did. I had a timer that I could start(maybe if there's something metallic that you can stick a timer with a magnetic strip on the back to. Also, to make it so I had to be thinking, every 5 minutes, I would switch off the starting leg. I did two stair/two step step ups(one step at a time) and would lead off with the right leg and 5 minutes later, lead off with the left, etc(when I got up to 1 hour 20, I switched every 10 min). This may have may have relieved some of the tedium. It's not the most exciting exercise and it will take discipline to keep going for a long time(weeks), but, as I did it for 4 weeks staring at nothing but the timer and the door at the top of the two steps from my garage, it can be done. You will sweat and will want a shower afterwards. I got sweaty even though I was just wearing shorts and a wicking tee-shirt in a garage that was in the 30šs. You may want to wear a headband to keep sweat out of your eyes. Especially since you're on a boat with movement, use the handrails to maintain balance--just lightly touching with nearly no force, just for mental balance.
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