Been thinking about this for a while and finally decided to do something about it. Having a body mass index describing me as ‘verging on the obese’ (such a harsh word) and ‘overweight’ has made me get my thumb out of my bum and start a structured 6 week pre Christmas training program. The key to this being the pre Christmas bit. Hopefully it will help me fend off the insane onslaught of the food and drink mountain that is about to reign down over the festive period.

The other incentive was my general fitness. I want to be able to do what I do for longer and weather the beatings better. I mean I’m 48 next month and with the darker evenings and the distinct possibility that too often the weather on Sundays is not always going to be conducive to surfing, the possibility of winter vegetation, expanding waistline and big smiles through several chins is looming fast on my horizon. When I started paddle surfing I was almost 15stone /210lbs/ 95.5kgs. Thankfully a lot of that has come off but I now seem to have reached a status quo.

The big question then is what indoor training method would be closest to and most beneficial for Stand Up Paddle surfing?

Easy. Which bits hurt the most after a decent couple of sessions?


Calves,thighs, back, shoulders, arms. Has to be some form of rowing machine and as it happens I have a Concept 2 lying about neglected. Perfect. And the best thing is that it’s going to give me the same callouses on my hands that paddle surfing gives me . Double Bonus. So the next thing is to set it up in Kath’s bedroom (she has sort of moved out) dig out my MP3 player and decide on what might be a sustainable, easy to follow program that should give me some weight loss, improve tone and hopefully help with stamina and strength.

In the past most of my ‘Training schedules’ have followed the same pattern. This sort of thing.

1 . . 2 . . 3 . . GO! GO Hard!! . . . . GO HARDER !!!! . . . BLOW UP

and collapse in a heaving, dripping mess of hairy sweat soaked salty flesh at the back door, convinced that I’ve done myself a power of good. I would then get bored after following the same routine for three days having pulled muscles, got sore feet, knackered my back, ripped my stomach muscles, suffered random bleeding from tear ducts, ears and most other orifices and had to endure the ignomany of walking down the stairs backwards in the mornings resulting in me not being assed about anything anymore and giving it all up until the next time.

But this time is different – because I’m going to go after a RAT, (Reasonably Attainable Target) and (and this is the killer) post my progress on my blog. How stupid is that? Which sort of got me thinking ‘Iwander if anyone else fancies doing the same?’ Sort of a cheapskate, cyber weightwatcher’s for out of condition over the hill paddle surfers. Think of the shame of not making weekly progress. It could work, message or mail me if you fancy a bash, who knows where it might lead other than total public humiliation in the eyes of the entire paddle surfing community. Fantastic – this has to be even better than riding blow up surfboards for a hobby.

Anyway – the plan: Find and download from the web a 6 week weight loss plan that is easy to follow and does not involve buying copius amounts of bizarre own brand protein shakes containing some foreign gentlemans special relish. Eat more salad than shite for lunch and dinner. Stay off the beer and wine except for Saturday night when the gloves come off and surf on Sundays as much as possible.

Goals – to loose half a stone / 7lbs / 3kgs / from my current ‘fighting weight’ which sort of fluctuates almost daily between 14 stone 4lbs / 200lbs / 90kgs and my alarm bells weight of 14 stone 7 lbs / 203lbs / 92kgs.

Basically I just want to see 13 stone something on the scales and maintain it. Not as easy as it sounds as I think I was born at just under 13 stone and the resulting stitches still give my mum considerable jip.

My plan is based on a % of my theoretical maximum heartrate. 220 – my age 48 = 172. I know it’s a crap measure but I just don’t fancy doing a maximal test at the moment as I figure it might be quite nice to actually survive until the end of the six weeks without vomiting or soiling myself.

All sessions start and finish with an 8 minute warm up /warm down at 64% (110bpm) of maximum heart rate.
For the last minute of the first 8 minutes warm up the heart rate is brought up to the training interval level.

Week 1 session 1
Warm up – 2 x 15minute intervals @ 75% of max(130bpm) 2min rest between – warm down
Week 1 session 2
Warm up – 3 x 5minute intervals @ 81% 0f max (140BPM) 1 min rest between – warm down
Week 1 session 3
Warm up – 4 x 4minute intervals @ 90% of max ( 154BPM) 1 min rest between – warm down
Week 1 session 4
Warm up – 2 x 15minute intervals @ 75% of max( 130BPM) 2 min rest between – warm down
Week1 session 5
Warm up – 3 x 5minute intervals @ 81% of max(140BPM) 1 min rest between – warm down.

Each session is roughly 30 odd minutes and has a mix of longer, lower level sessions progressing through to shorter more intensive sessions as the week goes on. Following weeks see the sessions build in duration and intensity but never both at the same time culminating in week 6 with sessions about an hour long. I fully expect to be totally bored with it by then. So expect to see me advertising the Concept 2 on

So thats it, this is what I’m doing and I’ll post my progress or lack of it once a week along with my next weeks program, and with a bit of luck I should end up with some really convincing paddle callouses.

If you fancy a go feel free to use the plan, message me your results and I can shame or fame you along side me. Please satisfy yourself that you are not in danger of a stroke or a coronary and if you think you might be, seek proper advice or at least try to film it with your Go Pro.

I am not a coach and this is just a hamfisted plan for me to follow and anyone else to use at their own discretion. I would guess that any stepper / rower / climber /ski trainer would give you a similar value workout if not the callouses.

Good luck – Steve.

Currently BMI = 29
chins to spare but no jaw line to speak of.
14 stone 4lbs / 200lbs / 90.9 kgs

P.S. obviously I’m going to cheat having already completed my first week, so you are already a week behind. Bona fide’ gym bandits and anyone with a six pack need not apply.

As far as the surfing is concerned, it looks like the storm from Hell is about to hit us tomorrow with just a slim chance of getting in on Sunday afternoon somewhere very sheltered.