How to: Travel With Your Surfboard

When you own a surfboard, of course you want to take it with you on your next surftrip. Your board should arrive there just as healthy and safety like you. Unfortunately, it is known, that many airlines do not treat the luggage very well, so I show you this time in a step by step guide how you can make your board ready to fly.

Step by Step Guide: How to prepare your surfboard for a flight

Step 1: Check the baggage policy

First you should check if it’s possible to take your board with you and how much it will cost you. This page provides a good and comprehensive overview of many airlines, what they allow and how much they charge for the transport. Check also the baggage policy on your airlines webpage. Here they will also let you know if a reservation for your luggage is required.

Step 2: A good board bag is mandatory

Now that you know you can take your board with you, you should pack it safely. A good board bag is half the battle. But also the way how you pack your board is crucial.

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Step 3: Remove Leash, Fins and Wax

If there is still wax on the board, remove it. Otherwise it maybe sticks melted in your board bag later. The Fins can break off during transport broken, so simply unscrew them with a Fin-Key. Also remove the leash from your Board.

Step 4: Protect Rails, Tail and Nose

The nose and the tail are particularly vulnerable. You can protect them with foam-pipes from the hardware store, which you usually use for the insolation of pipes. Cut them on one side, pull it over nose, rails and tail and fix it with tape. If you don’t have a hardware store nearby, you can also roll a towel and use this instead. To avoid residual glue, you can wrap your board cling film before. To avoid plastic waste, I refrain and remove any residue with nail polish remover.

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Step 5: Pack and Stuff

For this reason – no plastic waste – I don’t use bubble wrap. I use clothes and towels instead to cushion my board. Wrap your Board into it and fix it with tape. If you have a board sock, put it over your board now. The well-padded surfboard now comes in the board bag. Fill free spaces with other clothes or towels.

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Step 6: Nothing forgotten?

Check again if you have Fins, Fin-key and leash. It would be annoying to forget those things. And also don’t forget the tape so that you can prepare your board again for your flight back.

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Now your board should be good enough packed to survive the flight unscathed. So good and safe trip and see you in the line up!

stay stoked and hang loose

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How to: Make a plan – achieve your goals

Your next holiday is just around, you’re already counting the days. Right now is the perfect time to prepare yourself for the next surf – physically. In this post I’d like to show you, how start it so that you will reach your goals.

In fact, for me it’s almost time. In five weeks I will board a plane and head up for the sun again. This time I will focus on my take off. I already told you that it’s really slow. I have a new, smaller board and I really want to surf it, though. Although I had overcome my lack of motivation and already train regularly, but I want to focus my training and make it more targeted. And this is how I do it…

To achieve goals you first have to have some

Goals are very powerful. Because once you make it concrete something all your senses will be aimed. Be as specific as possible. Just to say, “I want to be fitter” is not enough here. How will you check it? Your goals need to be verified later. A simple example: “I want to be able to do 10 regular push ups in a row within the next four weeks.”
Next step: write it down! Only then your desire becomes something material. From the mere thought to a concrete statement of intent. It’s a little bit like making a contract with yourself. I have listed my goals on a whiteboard and placed it visible in my living room. Now I see it every time when I sit on my couch and I am reminded. A simple sheet of paper works also, of course.

Preperation_Plan_Surf

You have your goals – now you need a plan

Now that you have determined what you want to achieve, it is time for a plan.
First I set up rules which apply to the whole period. These include things like, go to work by bike or don’t drink alcohol.
In addition, I make a weekly schedule for the workouts. I always make a plan one week in advance. So I can consider my work and personal appointments and make fix appointments for my workout. (I wrote about a well balanced workout plan here)

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Take on a challenge

Maybe you’re more like a type that would rather stick to a predetermined plan. Look for a challenge. The Internet is full of it and it is available for almost everything: 30 days Yoga, 30 days Squat Challenge, 30 days Beach body… just to name a few. Quite apart from whether the promised results will be achieved or not, you have at least a workout for every day which you can stick to. Another advantage is, that you can network with other people who do it and motivate each other. But don’t forget to add the workouts in your schedule.

30 Tage Challenge Pic

Again the thing with the motivation

You have your goals, you have a plan. Now you only have to stick to it. It sounds so simple, unfortunately it isn’t in reality. What really helps me, is this simple sentence:

31 days as active as possible

And let me tell you why: it contains the following:

  • a time period that tells me: There are only – in this case – 31 days, then I can theoretically be lazy again. But these 31 days I will persevere.

  • On the other hand, it is a challenge for me: “as active as possible”. That forces me to reflect and ask myself, is it really everything you gave? Am I as active as possible or can I do more?

This works at least for me. You know better than me what works for you. And when you still need a motivation read this post again.

Push hard!

So, I have my plan! I am highly motivated and of course I will keep you updated. And I will also let you know if I will actually manage to surf a wave with my new board. If you have any questions, just write me!

When do you usually start with the sporty preparations for your surf trip? And what are you doing actually? How do you motivate yourself?

stay stoked and hang loose

Healthy Eating: How To Cook Soy Meat / Vegetable Protein

Most of us know how to cook beef or meat but many are afraid to cook soy, because they don’t know how. However, the preparation of soy is not difficult. Even though you’re not a vegetarian, soy can be a cheap and delicious alternative which brings a little more variety to your plate.

And it’s healthy too. Textured Vegetable Protein (TVP) is made of defatted soy meal. It contains many valuable nutrients, especially vitamins and folic acid, as well as vegetable protein with all essential amino acids. Moreover, minerals such as calcium, magnesium and lecithin isoflavones, fiber and trace elements and polyunsaturated fatty acids are contained. Today I’ll show you:

Step by Step: How To Prepare Soy Meat / Vegetable Protein

You need:

  • soy meat / vegetable protein,
  • some soy sauce,
  • oil and
  • seasons of your choice

sojafleisch_zubereitung-zutaten

1: Soak the soy:
Pour the soy meat with boiling water and let it soak for about 5 minutes until it has drawn enough of water. Stirring during times so that all the pieces get soaked.

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2: Drain the water, swill cold and squeeze it
Once you have drained the water, rinse with cold water. This has the advantage that you do not burn your fingers. For now, you squeeze the water easily with your hand out of the soy.

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3: Sizzle in the pan
Now sear the soy meat in a pan until it is brown and crispy from the outside. Make sure to use enough oil because the soy doesn’t contain much fat, unlike meat.

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4: Deglaze and spice up
Now deglaze with a good dash of soy sauce. Thereby, the pieces inside become “luscious” and will get a nice aroma.
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Then it’s time to season to taste. What spices you use depends on your preference. My favorite at the moment is this grill seasoning. Also here, be not too sparingly because the soy is relatively tasteless.

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5: Yummy!

That’s it. Easy – wasn’t it? That’s what I did this time:
serviervorschlag
Bon Appetite!

stay stoked and hang loose

Surfing: How To Get Back In After A Break

The first day in a surf camp is for me always a day full of mixed emotions. On one hand I am absolutely euphoric – finally surfing again, in the ocean, into the waves. On the other hand: disillusion, most things just don’t work how they should. That leads to disappointment, frustration and dissatisfaction.

But why? And How Can You Avoid It?

Expectations Are Too High

The first day is for getting used to surf again not for high performance surfing. I know that, but still, I often can’t appreciate even small success. I tend to belittle my accomplishments. … “Yeah, that was quite ok, but only in the white water and also I had a longboard …” Better is…
Enjoy every wave you get and do not be disappointed because they may be too small or you were not able to ride them long enough Try not to think about how much better it was the last time. Be glad about those small moments of happiness and success!

Not Enough Training

Everyday life can be very stressful and busy sometimes, so training has not always prio 1and I skipped it once in a while… shame on me. But what goes around comes around. After a few paddle strokes I hang panting on my board and must take a rest constantly. The next day I have sore muscles and then I could barely move. To avoid this…
Train regularly. Your goal should be to start where you end at your last surf trip. Hang in there.

Bad Equipment In The Surf schools

The boards in the surf schools are in heavy use. Therefore, there is either water-soaked soft board or haevy hard boards made of poly-ethylene. Then it could be that there is no surfboard with your preferred sizes or this it is just given to someone else. Therefore …
If possible, take your own equipment. You know your board and so you don’t have to struggle with rented board with low quality. In the worst case you have to test more than one to find something that suites you. Precious time, you better use for having fun

No Help

Especially when I visit a place for the first time and am not familiar with the spots and the waves I feel sometimes a little helpless. And when I am in a huge group of surfers it maybe can be, that me and my interests disappear in the group. But…
You should talk to your surf guide. When you have a specific goal that you want to work on, tell him and ask for feedback later.

If you follow those tips, you can avoid disappointment and frustration on your first day on the board again. And always remember:

surf and have fun

The best surfer out there is the one having the most fun.

Over to you: What about your first day surfing after a long time?

stay stoked and hang loose

How to: Find your perfect hostel

For solo-travelers it is almost a must! But even when you are traveling with friends – a hostel can be an inexpensive alternative to sterile or same looking hotel room. Hostels are great! They are cheap and nowhere else you can get in touch with other travelers so quickly and easily. But: It takes all sorts. Some can keep up with any design hotel, others offer you a cozy, familiar atmosphere, others are just descent. Therefore, you need to think well before you pick your choice. Especially if you have never been to a hostel, the vast selection can be a little bit overwhelming in the beginning. That is why I show you today,

How I find the perfect hostel for me:

I start by visiting the website: www.hostelworld.com. Thousands of hostels all over the world are listed here. I am pretty sure that there is the right one for you. Just fill in the city you want to travel to and when you are going to stay there. Now you are getting a huge list with many hostels and b&bs.

How to: Choise the right hostel

The following criterias are important:

  • price
  • rating
  • impression/facilities/ambience
  • location

It is entirely up to you how you priorize these points. For me, the price is really important, but on the other hand the ambience as well. Therefore, I decide usually for a hostel in the middle price segment.

Click by click to your travel home:

  1. First, sort by the price. So I can get an overview of the local price range.
  2. Next, I sort by the reviews. A high value is a good indicator for the quality of the hostels. Guests evaluate and rate the service, security, location, staff, atmosphere, facilities and cleanliness.
  3. And then I start clicking like a maniac – I open the cheap and highranked hostels in tabs. I look at the pics and decide within seconds flying by the seat of my pants. If I like, the tab stays open, if I don’t I close it. Most times there are about 4 or 5 hostels, which appeal to me in the terms of price and visual impression.
  4. Now it’s time for the details. I compare facilities and services. Is breakfast included (really important)? Aircon or Fan? Bikerental (just in case)? Parking lot? Laundryservice? and so on. I take a closer look where the hostel is located – how can I get there, is there a bus stop or a subway station?
  5. If available I now visit the hostels homepage. Here I get to know if they offer activities. In Singapore, for instance, I was in a hostel which offered citytours with the kickboard and in Lisboa we went out for a Fado-Evening.
  6. Finally I read some of the reviews. But again at hostelworld.com. In the direct comparison I usually find my favorite.

And voilà: I have found my hostel!

You can directly make your booking over hostelworld.com. A deposit of 16% is due – the rest I then pay when I am there. For a surcharge of 1 € I remain flexible and can use the deposit for another booking in case of cancellation.

Over to you: How do you find your hostel? What was the best hostel you have been to?

How to: Create your own Fit for Surf Workout Plan

Here you can read why it is so important to train constantly, if you like to be fit for surf. Now i am going to show you, how you can use the knowledge to create your personal “Fit for Surf-Workout Plan“.

Endurance + Strength + Flexibility + Balance = Fit for surf

In a surfspecific training you’ll make movements and exercises, which can help you to catch more waves and ride them longer. A well-balanced workout plan is the key to success. The relevant physical basics you need for surfing has to be trained in special workout units.

Strength

Surfing involves nearly all the muscles in your body. While you are paddling out with your surfboard, it takes a lot of energy, especially if you ‘re doing it several times. For catching the wave you need strength and endurance – as well for the take-off and even riding the wave. Regular strength training helps you to paddle faster, further and harder and gives you the ability to control your body better on the board. The major muscle groups are: shoulder, triceps, biceps, back and your core. In addition, a good inter- and intramuscular coordination, and strong muscles in your lower body are important.

Endurance

Surfing is paddling! Approximately about 80% of your session is just paddling. So if you do not want to be completely out of breath when you arrive the lineup, you have to train endurance. Basically, all endurance sports are good for that. Whether running, biking or the cross trainer – the main thing is that your cardiovascular system is stressed. For surfing swimming is ideal as endurance sport. Crawl style swimming trains the muscle groups you need while surfing as well. Even better, of course: You have a lake nearby and you can paddle with your surfboard.

Flexibility & Balancetraining

Flexibility is one of the most important elements in fitness, but it is often neglected or left out. If your muscles are not flexible enough your movements are limited. Balance and coordination are essential skills for surfing. They are the body’s ability to make controlled and purposeful movements in any position or action in a stabilized, upright posture – which is essential for surfing. With balance exercises you train not only your balance – it also affects on posture, improves coordination and relaxes tense muscles. The inter- and neuromuscular coordination will be improved – that means the muscles interact more effectively with each other and with the nervous system. Both, balance and flexibility, you can train in a good way with yoga. ( There will be another blog post soon). For Balancetraining I also use an Indoboard or I go longboarding.

Put it all together: Create your Fit for surf – Workoutplan

Your workout has to suite your personal goals and aspirations. Make sure that your goals are realistic and fit into your schedule. Since I just surf in my vacations, it is my goal to start again, where I stopped the last time surfing. Here we go:

  • Initially plan for 4 to 6 weeks with a specific focus (endurance, strength, balance or flexibility).
  • Every week should have contain at least one unit of endurance and strength training.
  • Flexibility and balance you can train every day – but at least once per week.
  • For your focus put one to two units per week in addition.
  • Mix the units! Do not train the same two days in a row.
  • Arrange restdays, so that your body can regenerate.
  • Stay flexible! You feel a little bit weak or tired today? Maybe better a relaxing yoga session, instead of strenuous strength training .
  • Listen to your body! Start slowly and increase. If something hurts, stop doing it.
  • After 4-6 weeks it is time for a new plan. This avoids boredom.

Here is a template that helps you to create your fit for surf – training plan (PDF-Reader required) and this is how my training plan looks like. In the next posts I will introduce you some exercises and show you complete workouts.

The zombie in the line up OR how grumpies get out of bed

I HATE getting up early. I ‘m a night owl and I used to get wired in the late evening. Since the conditions for surfing are better in the morning I accord to circumstances and tumble up from bed early – in my vacations (!!!). And to be honest, not even the prospect of a good surf makes me bounce cheerfully out of bed when the alarm clock rings. Let’s face it: I am not an early bird and I just don’t like it to get up early, … not even for surfing – but at least I do it!

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Tips for morning grouches who have to torture themselves out of bed early

  1. Zombie mode! On automatic until you’re in the water. Since it’s off .
  2. Coffee , coffee , coffee – black, strong and intravenously .
  3. Roommates! If you let your alarm clock ring like forever in 4 or 6 bedroom, it can happen that your roommates become really angry with you. Little tip: It seems that they also can’t laugh about, when you accidentally hit the snooze button instead of turning it off, then slip away into the bathroom and when the alarm clock rings again, scream because you was frighten and  fight with the door to open while be even more noisy.
  4. Wake up call. Ask someone to wake you up in the morning. But negotiate the terms first – whether with a bucket of cold water or by gently tickle 😉 both work.
  5. I know you don’t want to hear it, but it really works. Go to bed early, don’t drink too much alcohol or party too long in the evening.
  6. Stay in bed sometimes, but not too often. Sometimes your body just needs to sleep!
  7. Appointments. No one likes to wait. Knowing that someone is waiting for me, I often prevent me for turning the alarm clock off.
  8. Early birds and jesters. Yes, they are annoying! But an early birds who infectiously good-humored and spread geniality and happiness is sometimes the best way to not fall asleep again.
  9. Just fake it ‘ til you make it! Spread good mood and optimism around. Hey, you are going on a surfsession 😀
manchmal lohnt sich das aufstehen

Sometimes to get out of bed will be payed off

baliammorgen

Bali in the morning

Good morning, Barbados!

Good morning, Barbados!

Over to you: How do you get out of bed really early?