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Fitness Afloat: The Journey Ahead


We began our boating and fitness journey from a hospital bed. Just after our mid-life wedding, fate’s present to us was Jay’s cancer, wrapped in multiple surgeries and tied with a long ribbon of recovery. But cancer also gave us the gift of perspective, and for that we are grateful. Newly armed with a sense of what is and what is not important, we sought out adventure and freedom for our life together—which naturally brought us to boats. Still, cancer had made us physically unsuitable for the cruising life we imagined, and we began a fitness plan for our life afloat.

“Fitness” can sideslip a common definition, but “ready for duty” isn’t bad, and allows us to share the notion that fitness is much more than physical readiness. In our view it’s Inspiration, Diet, Exercise and Attitude (IDEA), in that order of importance. In our last column we presented boat-ready exercises, to address the challenges of staying heart healthy in the limited space we cruisers have aboard. But without a positive attitude, a sense of purpose that inspires us, and clean food in healthy quantities, exercise produces only a well-muscled body in a life poorly lived. Tips on developing your own IDEA will be a common theme here to accompany out training and dieting tips. The key to success is a willingness to jump in with both feet.

Body-weight-only Workout

(8 exercises, 9 minutes, no rest if you can).

1.Push-ups (1 minute: from your knees if you need to, hold in the up position if you can’t finish)

2.Lunge (2 minutes: 1 minute leading with each leg)

3.Side Plank (1 minute: 30 seconds each side)

4.Squat (1 minute)

5.Seated Punching Arms (1 minute)

6.Straight Leg Backward Kick from All Fours (1 minute: 30 seconds per side)

7.March in place, knees high (1 minute).

8.Tricep Dip from Bench or chair (1 minute: hold yourself in the up position if you can’t finish)

Visit our other posting for more detailed descriptions of how to execute the exercises as well as Karen modeling the moves.