INSPIRED SERIES – Vesna Radonich

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World Master Games 2017 Medal Haul

VESNA RADONICH

First name: Vesna Aroha

Surname: Radonich Aka Taravana (Tahitian for crazy)

Is an opens & masters division Paddler from Auckland, lives in Gisborne and has been paddling for 10 years.  She typically participates in sprints and marathon events each year.  And loves coaching juniors.

ROUTINE

Day before race, I think about the kids meals, what we are having for dinner, is the family sorted. Then I focus on me, as I have learnt that for me to be able to focus in I need to know my family are good.

Two days before, I start drinking more water, stretching, mobility and light cardio to keep my muscles relaxed.  Dinner the night before is usually lots of vegetables and lean meat.  Sometimes I buy pizza for the morning of a marathon race, as it’s what I crave the most.

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World Sprints Australia 2016

During sprint racing I just snack on crackers, hummus, kumara, banana, nothing too heavy till after the last race.

Marathons, during racing I have banana pancakes and kumara. On the last leg of a marathon race and on the last sprint final I like cold coffee and dark chocolate for the caffeine and sugar rush.  Not too much a fan of energy drinks and powerades. Prefer the raro with a couple of pinches of salt, does the same thing. Wake up at 5am and eat the usual breakfast, keep it simple, do what your body is used to. As a team or individual paddler it is important to stretch and warm your body to prepare it to preform at its best. For me its usually a jog with mobility stretches. Then when we load on the waka go for a warm up paddle and practice some of the strokes that are required in the marathon or sprint.

MANTRA – don’t think too much, just focus on doing the job

BIGGEST MISTAKE – trying to do too much the night before.

Biggest mistake on a race day, is not speaking your gut feeling when something doesn’t feel right, trust your intuition.

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Champions – World Sprints Campaign Australia 2016 

GRATITUDE

A great big mini to Vesna for taking the time to share a little bit of her knowledge with us all.  She is a super talented, busy athlete and mama and approaches everything she does with so much focus.  I love watching her perform on the water.  Vesna left out the part where she has represented NZ on the international paddle scene for many years in both W6 and V1 racing.  she is also a World Champion V1 paddler.  She has been a paddler I have looked to for inspiration for many years and will continue to do so.

Please show your gratitude by leaving a comment for Vesna and sharing her piece forward with your club and friends.

If anything resonates with you head over to the Facebook page and drop a comment.  It may just create some awesome discussion for us all to learn more from.

Much aroha to you for following my journey and mahi.  If you haven’t already please like my Facebook pages and even my instagram page if you are on there.  Don’t be shy, share the love.

Hiria x

#imagine #believe #achieve

Follow me

Hiria Rolleston Mindset Trainer – to help take you to the next level in your paddling, and life

Eastcoast Paddler Aotearoa – for all your paddle gear, canoes and instructional vids

Hiria Rolleston on insta – to follow where my paddle takes me

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INSPIRED SERIES – Jamille Ruka

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NZ Sprint Nationals V1

JAMILLE RUKA

First name Surname – My name is Jamille Ruka, I’m from the far north Hokianga and Mangakahia but born and breed in Whangarei. I paddle for my Whanau club Te Puu Ao and also do Kapa Haka for Te Puu Ao. I’ve been paddling for over 17years, my first sprint nationals was in 2000 as a mini midget and I’ve been to every sprint nationals since. Waka Ama has grown and developed more opportunities for younger paddlers to gain more experience through world championships and other big events overseas. I love Waka Ama because it’s a great Whanau sport. I continue to paddle with my parents, grandparents, my wife and kids.

Events each year- I’ve always paddled at sprint nationals. I love to Travel every year to compete in Te Aito, Tahiti. I always learn something new from our Tahitian paddling Whanau. I’ve done a few World Championships held in New Zealand, Sacramento and Australia. I have been fortunate to be apart of the first NZ open men’s elite team in Australia this was an awesome experience for me. I had the chance to paddle with some top paddlers that I looked up too when I was a younger paddler and during that campaign I gained a lot of knowledge from the coaching they gave me.

ROUTINE  It’s always dependent on what races I’m partaking in, but usually if I’m in training I’ll try aim for 2hour paddles 5 times a week in open ocean to get good feeling in the surf and to build a good base. If it’s sprints specific I don’t change much but add in 1hour sprint sessions 2 times a week, it’s always harder to recover from doing a lot of sprints training so I keep them short and sharp to build my speed and a race plan for sprints races. I also run a gym called Common Grounds Fitness with my whanau we utilise ZUU and Ankorr and offer community classes 3 days a week after mahi. For me ZUU and Ankorr is a great way to build my mental resilience through the high intensity workouts it’s a good way to push through those barriers of self doubt and hold a strong mindset.

The night before, dinner (anything special or specific for digestion).

On the morning of race (coffee? Tea? How early do you wake? Do you warm up? Stretch run or paddle? And when is your next meal?- The day before the race I like to go out for a light paddle to get my nerves out of the way and get good feeling on the water so my body is activating those muscle memories, this is something I learned from Tahiti and a good friend of mine. For food prep I usually have lots of pasta the night before, fettuccine is my go to but any pasta dish will do I just eat loads of it lol It’s a good way to store glycogen in the muscles for long endurance races. In mornings I’ll have an omelette and then I’ll have a little bit of pasta. I wouldn’t eat too much during race day but if I’m hungry it’s always good to get some fuel in the body.

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NZ Open Mens Team World sprints Australia 2016

MANTRA – if you have one? Or something you visualize night before or maybe that morning?- A whakatauki I use an resonate with is “Kaua he mate te tarakihi, Mate he ururoa” “Dont die like the Tarakihi fish, Die like a hammerhead shark” this Whakatauki  always keeps my mindset strong and helps me to refocus before or focus during my races but also known that I’ve put my 100% best hand forward with no regrets after finishing my races.

BIGGEST MISTAKE – leading up to race day? On race day? One big mistake I’ve done in the past is having inconsistency in my training, I’ve done months of training and then all of sudden stopped training because of work or whanau commitments and then I would try get back into training but then find myself back at square one. So If you can get a good routine and stay consistent in your training on the water you’ll definitely see improvements.

Remember to not overthink things sometimes it’s just good to get out and enjoy paddling for what it is and remembering why we paddle in the first place. Also surround yourself with the right people or role models that you look up too that give you the experience and skills to support your growth and development through your journey.

Remember always enjoy the journey and you’ll be able to achieve anything.

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Poor Knights Crossing Tutukaka 30km

GRATITUDE

I’ve known of Jamille just from paddling circles but never really met him till I did the Poor Knights race a couple months ago.  Its funny and I’m sure others will identify with this, but you build up a bit of an image in your head of what the person is like, and when you finally meet them it’s not as bad as you thought.  I admire anyone who paddles, has a family of their own and runs their own business as well as mahi.  The opens division is hard because of this so anyone who can balance all those things shows real commitment and perseverance, important factors in being a successful paddler.

If anything in here resonates with you please share, and drop a comment on my Facebook page to let Jamille know what you think.

Much aroha to you for following my journey and mahi.  If you haven’t already please like my Facebook pages and even my instagram page if you are on there.  Don’t be shy, share the love.

Hiria x

#imagine #believe #achieve

Follow me

Hiria Rolleston Mindset Trainer – to help take you to the next level in your paddling, and life

Eastcoast Paddler Aotearoa – for all your paddle gear, canoes and instructional vids

Hiria Rolleston on insta – for daily inspo and follow my journey to world sprints 2018

INSPIRED SERIES – Raipoia Brightwell

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Raipoia steering her Gold Medal crew Senior Master Women Long distance nationals 2016

RAIPOIA BRIGHTWELL

I paddle W1 in the Golden Master Women division and W6 in the Senior Master Women division.

My club is Mareikura waka ama in Turanganui a Kiwi, Te Uranga o Te Ra, Gisborne.

Mareikura is the first waka ama club to start in Aotearoa (1985).

Since then, my husband Matahi and I have been relentless in our promotion of waka ama in our role and in Aotearoa, katoa.

I first paddled in the Open division and moved through the divisions in time.  I currently paddle for Ruamata Waka ama club in rotorua.

My husband and I have been competing and coaching at waka ama National sprints since they first started and used to race in everything, everywhere.  However, we don’t do as many races these days as our whanau has grown to 7 beautiful moko (grandchildren) whom I spend most of my time with now.  I usually do Long Distance Nationals as well.  Throughout the years I have medalled in all events entered, whether they be national or international races.  I specialise in the steer position.

ROUTINE

Before a race I tend to isolate myself.  I like training on my own to take the time to kinda melt into the water and my waka so we become one.  I am one who usually loves making sure everyone is ok first, but my racing time is an exception:  There is no one else in the world but me.

I regroup, I recoil, I preserve energy, and run my own race over and over in my head, with a particular attention to what the water could be like on the day so when I am there, I already know it.  Even in a team situation I stand apart, fusing with everyone when the race starts.  No kia ora on the water, no have a nice race ladies…. I know no one…. No stretching, no land warm up, my love of being on the water hits me when I finally get on my waka.  It fills me with anticipation and joy… We’re on….

Oh and on the kai area: eat what you are used to and what you can get.  I don’t get hung up on special meals at special times.  I believe that if you eat with intent, and be thankful for the kai you are able to get it will do the job.

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Gold Medal National Waka Ama sprints 2016

MANTRA

Stay with the water and go with it… and the rest will come… fitness, strength, success, and most of all the happy paddling stuff!!!

BIGGEST MISTAKE

Believe in yourself, but train to the conditions: Molokai solo surfs 2000.  This one I keep rewinding in my mind even as years later.  A huge learning experience to my ego but also sealed my path with the realm of Tangaroa.  A friend had asked to join her in the Molokai Solo Surfski race and I thought ‘Cool – Hawaii, Big waves, island to island, I totally can do it… Minor problem I had no surfski experience – so there goes the surfski training out to sea inTuranga Nui a Kiwa.  Up and down waves, side on, offshore swell, beach surfing – all done.  Three months later was lining up in one of the best line up I ever seen – All surfski and waka ama long course world champions, men and women were there, yeah, an incredible line up.

I was mesmerised, even more eager to just go and do it… Well, the surf WAS much bigger (had to put the brakes on), after 3 hours I hit the wall.  With another 3 hours to ago, it was the longest painful crawl to Hawaii Kai finish line, with the clock showing 6 hours as I went through the finish line in second to last to an old Japanese guy.  The last 3 hours was a battle for survival and a long long time to rethink the poor strategy, get angry at myself, heaps of put downs, and the island which was never getting closer… it’s a good day to die, all that kind of stuff.  I was never able to talk about this race for a long time.  The morale of the story finally, feed the fire within because with this EVERYTHING is possible, BUT also train to the conditions because in the end there is only so far that your belief in yourself, mind power and passion can take you, and your body has to train for it… simple as that.

GRATITUDE

Raipoia is MY INSPIRATION and always has been from the first time I met her, soon after I started paddling.  I’ve always thought, “I want to be like her when I grow up”, seriously.

I remember racing a Rotohoe series and getting smoked by her!  She carries herself with such grace, but so much strength on the water.

Grateful that she shared her story with us and the learning we can all take from it.She is absolutely correct, mindset can only get you so far, you still have to do the work, that daily consistent action to get better and reach your goals.

If anything in here resonates with you please share, and drop a comment on my Facebook page to let Raipoia know what you think.

Much aroha to you for following my journey and mahi.  If you haven’t already please like my Facebook pages and even my instagram page if you are on there.  Don’t be shy, share the love.

Hiria x

#imagine #believe #achieve

Follow me

Hiria Rolleston Mindset Trainer – to help take you to the next level in your paddling, and life

Eastcoast Paddler Aotearoa – for all your paddle gear, canoes and instructional vids

Hiria Rolleston on insta – for daily inspo and follow my journey to world sprints 2018

Long Distance Nationals – Did it live up to the hype you built for yourself?

COMMITMENT

Training for a long term goal can be hard, I know.  Makes you wonder how our Olympians do it right?

How do you stay focussed for so long?

How do you maintain that physical, mental, emotional and nutritional discipline to reach that end point?

Well, it all comes down to how you prioritise your goal. Is it just the end goal, that outcome of making podium, or top 10, or is it about your personal growth?

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A PERSONAL JOURNEY VS OUTCOME

Some may say that the personal growth and journey stuff is teetz, and too airy fairy but the truth is this is what helps you bounce back when you don’t meet those outcomes the first time around so that you can meet them the next time you try.  It builds resilience and that is something missing in todays society, especially with our younger paddlers.

Too often paddlers will give up thinking they have failed.  They put so much hardwork in and didn’t get the outcome they were hoping for so give up.

I can relate to this because its how I spent my first years in sport, not just paddling (although I did think I was the shiz in paddling ha ha, such a newbie).

An outcome goal is not enough to keep you motivated to get out of bed so early in the morning, or commit to such a huge lifestyle change, because thats what it requires.

When you have thoughts of “oh its sweet, after I finish this I can go back to eating like I did, or not training so much”, these kind of thoughts are what will trip you up in your race because when it gets tough out there its this that creates the negative self talk, the lack of belief in yourself.

TOOLS

Keeping a training journal has helped give me the awareness I needed to deal with these thoughts quickly and easily, giving me the tools to be able to kick it during a race (most of the time).

I say most of the time because the thing is, once we are successful with a challenge, another presents itself.   Its how we grow as human beings.

I used to think, “oh sweet once I get over this hurdle I’ll be sweet,” but yeah nah, they keep coming at you in different ways.  But thats life huh, how boring would it be without a few challenges.  The downs make you appreciate the ups so much more.

FLEXIBILITY

Having a routine is needed, because you do need to be able to measure your improvement somehow.  But be flexible with it.  Just because your programme says each day of the week you have to do this, it doesn’t mean you can’t change it a little.  The weather maybe bad, or you might get sick. Beating yourself up over the programme will only give you more brain damage.

Also, try not to let yourself fall into default with your programme, you know, like groundhog day – where you wake up each day and its the same thing over and over and you end up doing it without thinking.  This is not a good space to be in.

BE INTENTIONAL

Make sure you connect in each day, with why you are doing this in the first place, and be deliberate with your actions, taking conscious action because thats where the gold is.  Its those actions that reset your brain to what works for you and not just being an imitation of someone else.  It sets the pattern for you to be able to react the best way possible for you when you hit challenges out on the water.

There’s nothing worse then coming off the water or in from a training session where you feel like you were just going through the motions.  It feels like a waste of time right? Start backing yourself and honour your time and effort by being intentional.

 

WHAT DID YOU LEARN?

Its never failure when you take away the lessons from it, and there are always lessons. If you don’t see that then you need to start digging a bit deeper, into why you even do what you are doing.

MY PERSONAL EXPERIENCE

Firstly, I’m pretty damn stoked with myself for what I managed to achieve and the opportunities I had to paddle with some pretty cool paddlers.  But I am going to admit that I did have a moment where I was upset with myself for not trying harder, giving it my best and letting my own self talk get to me.  In all honesty I still have that nasty dialogue go through my mind when it matters most, but, and this is a big one – I no longer let bring me down. Its important to ‘feel’ those feelings, because if you deny it starts a spiral of downward actions and you will end up at the bottom.

I could have sat and wallowed in my pity but I chose to accept it for what it was, I thought I had a shit race, felt bad for a teeny bit then decided, “this ain’t helping me at all” so I let myself move on.  Too often, especially us females, we can hold on to feelings, and let them rule our present and future. This is not healthy for our paddling at all and it starts to subconsciously show up and then we react to it, usually in the wrong way.  This can present itself by not taking up opportunities, or in the waka focussing on someones else role instead of ours, or by nit picking at somebody because they rub you up the wrong way, when in actual fact you are probably seeing your own reflection of what you need to work on yourself.

This is why mindset is so important in your paddling and sport. It’s the stuff that can either make you or break you and is the key to being your best self.

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Open womens 16km Long distance nationals 2017, Dale Thomas Bronze, Hiria Rolleston Silver, Marianna Hodges Gold.

TIPS

When I started writing this blog I thought about doing it as a personal wrap up from my own LDNs, which in a sense it is.  There are definitely elements in this that I need to pay attention to.  Its where my inspiration comes from, lived experience.  But, from conversations I had while there and the themes coming from it this approach felt better to me.

My daily routine consists of the physical aspects of training and connecting in to my surroundings, atua (gods, guardians) which fills me spiritually too, as well as my mental/emotional well-being by checking in with myself to make sure I am being intentional with what I do and making sure my thoughts and feelings are my own and not me getting caught up in someones else stuff.  I do this by journalling, I have a training journal and a business journal which helps me to work through and process my actions.  I also meditate by grabbing a moment to sit still and ask “where am I right now?”  It always brings me right back into the present and gives me clarity.

So, coming back to the title of this, I’m hoping you are still with me here ha ha, yes Long distance Nationals did live up to the hype for me, but I have a whole new bunch of things to work on now, which I’m grateful for because I know its going to help me grow evermore and is another deliberate step toward my dreams and goals.

I am grateful to everyone who came up to me and congratulated me on my medals, thats very humbling.  But even more so thankful to those people who came up to me to share their thoughts and feelings on this mahi (work) I have been doing around mindset. I have always been pretty open about what I do and share from my own experience.  I do have a Sports Science and Sport Psych background too as was a PE teacher once upon a time, so I do have the academic knowledge to back me up (it’s not all made up lol).

I share because my own journey was so difficult that I want to be able to help others.  We have so much talent out there in our communities going unseen because of our current culture around paddling from grassroots to elite.  Not blaming anyone particular person or group, but reminding us all that if we can be more open and not afraid of sharing that you will actually see it helps lift us all.

Would love to know if anything in here as given you a lightbulb moment.  Please share the aroha, share with anyone you think will benefit from this, and then drop me a comment on here or head over to my Facebook page and drop me a comment.

Sharing is caring

Hiria x

#imagine #believe #achieve

Follow me

Hiria Rolleston Mindset Trainer – to help take you to the next level in your paddling, and life

Eastcoast Paddler Aotearoa – for all your paddle gear, canoes and instructional vids

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INSPIRED SERIES – Josh Walters

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Josh rounding the marker at Takapuna Beach Cup 2017

JOSH WALTERS

My name is Josh Walters and I’m a U23 division paddler.  However I skipped the 23s to move straight to opens from J19s in singles in order to learn and experience racing with New Zealand’s best and international’s best!

I have been paddling for roughly 7 years now and got into the sport through my competitive national swimming.

Through the year I generally participate in both sprint and Long Distance nationals, Takapuna beach cup, all different singles races around the country and generally the world championships.

ROUTINE

My training routine is pretty set in stone depending on my shifts at work.  I wake up and head straight into the gym for around 2 hours.  The exercises I do are both paddle specific and accessory work to have better physical strength and fitness when it comes to paddling.

From there I will go home and eat breakfast or work or study.  I will head out on the water for a decent paddle.  I try to average around 70-90km a week which is about 4-5 days of paddling a week.  This increases when sprints come!

From there I go home again and eat lunch, and rest, and then back to the gym for another hour and a bit to work more on conditioning etc.  This routine is usually 5-6 days a week and I rest on the 6-7th day depending on intensity of the week and races coming up.

The night before I race I try to eat a bit more carbs than usual, pasta bake with a lot of salad to get my energy levels up and usually some sort of vitamins that I normally take.  In the morning of race day I find eating hard and I can’t digest a lot so it’s usually something easy like a berry smoothie and try to drink plenty of water.  I like to have little energy boost before a sprint race but they take a lot of energy away so avoid them for long distance unless its during the race.

I wake up whenever I need to but try get about 8 hours sleep if I can.  I’m really bad with warming up, I generally just do it to the start line but I need to change that!

I do some dynamic stretching and yoga for a few weeks before a big race is coming so I know my muscles are long and there aren’t any issues.  Once I finish I generally eat anything in sight but my main meal would be something like chicken on rice and vegetables, gets the fuel back into the body and some BCAAs for recovery.

Before race day I look at the course and visualise who I’d probably be sitting next to and think about how I can make my boat run more efficient and energy conserving than their’s by riding rivals wake or sticking to my own line just different race strategies really.

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World Sprints Australia 2016 – Maori Kava Tere, Ash Roozendaal, Daniel Kauika,  Marcel Hellesloe,  Josh Walters and Teira Wiari.

BIGGEST MISTAKE

I’d say my biggest mistake leading up to race day pretty much every time is my self doubt as I put myself off and let my nervousness get the better of me affecting my results in races I know I would have won or done better in.

GRATITUDE

Ok so I’ve known Josh for a while now and remember him as this tough little kid that used to paddle hard out along with his mate Ash Roozendaal.  I witnessed them both come up through the ranks and achieve some pretty amazing things.

I asked Josh to share his expereince becasue I believe it takes a lot of focus to be able to achieve what he does balancing his work and study too.  Most of our young paddlers drop off around that J16s mark but as you can see Josh is is committed to progressing as far as he can.  I look forward to his ongoing journey.

Our paddlers have given this information freely so please show some awhi (love, support) and go like their athlete pages if they have one or drop a comment on the blog thread on my Facebook post.

If anything resonates with you head over to the Facebook page and drop a comment.  It may just create some awesome discussion for us all to learn more from.

Much aroha to you for following my journey and mahi.  If you haven’t already please like my Facebook pages and even my instagram page if you are on there.  Don’t be shy, share the love.

Hiria x

#imagine #believe #achieve

Follow me

Hiria Rolleston Mindset Trainer – to help take you to the next level in your paddling, and life

Eastcoast Paddler Aotearoa – for all your paddle gear, canoes and instructional vids

Hiria Rolleston on insta – to follow where my paddle takes me

INSPIRED SERIES – Nyree King

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Nyree after winning the SMW V1 500m at 2016 World Sprints in Australia and setting a new World Record time of 2.35.96

NYREE KING

Senior Master Women

Paddling 14 years.  Started in 2003 – when I was in my 40s

2004 won the Silver medal in the Master Women V1 500m in Hilo Hawaii.  This was my first international event.

Been the Senior Master Women NZ National Champ six times.

World sprint Champion in 2006 in Aotearoa and again in 2016 in Australia.

Currently world record holder in the SMW V1 500m.

EVENTS

Although I have done quite well in sprints, my passion is long distance – and have crossed the Kaiwi channel from Molokai to Oahu in Na Wahine o Ke Kai (the women’s Molokai race) a total of four times now – once in the OC1 relay – and three times in crews winning Masters 40s in 2009 and 2016.

Have done the Pailolo twice and would rate this race as THE best downwind fun.  Would love to do Pailolo in an OC1!

I try to do as many national and international W6 and W1 events as money and leave will allow.  I have amazing friends whom I love to paddle with.  At home I love to do the Bo Herbert and Bhutty races and this year was able to do the Poor Knights Crossing as well.  There are lots of races I love to do here at home – Whaingaroa, Takapuna Cup, LDNs, Kaiteriteri etc.

This year – paddling took me to portland Oregon for two races in ‘The gorge’ (the Columbia river) with over 500 SUP, OC1 and Ski on the start line.  It was epic!

BUCKET LIST (not yet done) Liberty Challenge, Womens V3 race in Tahiti, Hawaikinui womens race, Kauai challenge Relay, Dad’s Centre (we never got to finish that race), Gold Coast Cup, Maui Nui (to do again and again) – Pailolo and Na Wahine.

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2016 winners of Na Wahine o Ke Kai 40s wiht Denise Darval-Chang, Katie Stephens, Mykala Bradley, Margie Kawaiaea and Tee Felgate from Hawaii, Jill Schooler and Jeane Barrett from California.  Ngaire Pehi and myself from NZ.

MANTRA 

I suppose my mantra would be  “be in the moment – each stroke’.  When I first started paddling it used to be “Go hard, then go harder!)  but these days that mantra has more to do with my mental toughness than paddling strategy!

ROUTINE

I have quite a specific mental checklist for V1 sprints to ensure that I am totally prepared as there is not a lot of wriggle room for stuff ups – but mostly I try to stay relaxed.  I use visualisation, bungees for warm up and hydrate well in the lead up to events.  I also make sure that our family eat well and have a good meal the night before.  Usually porridge, berries, yoghurt and coffee the morning of race day – but I also take a bar to nibble if race start is delayed… there is nothing worse than feeling hungry before you get on the water.

I like to have everything ready for race day but sometimes things can get messy when the whole family is trying to use the same resources (i.e.. canoes and water systems).  Sometimes you just have to be adaptable and go with what you got!

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With Tupuria and Rose King at the 2016 World sprints Nyree after winning SMW V1 500m.  Tipu Bronze Open Men, Rose Bronze Open Women V1 finals.

BIGGEST MISTAKE

I’ve had a few but here are two.

I rigged my kit in the wrong way around and had to jump into a bumpy ocean to turn it the right way with my paddling buddy’s (Ngaire and Brennan) unable to assist because of the conditions.  Lucky I did rectify it as the ocean was huge and we had to follow the line of the Tutukaka dive boat to get back into the safety of Tutukaka harbour.  I don’t think we knew how big it was going to be!

Another mistake – not paddle fit for Bhutty’s one year – even wore two pairs of neoprenes so my butt wouldn’t get sore – fell out twice and cracked my canoe.  The thing was – I really wanted to do the race but was underprepared mentally and physically.  Lesson learned.

GRATITUDE

Nyree is one of those paddlers who I have held in awe since I began paddling. She is so strong, focussed and just smashes it out there on the race course.  One year I had to fill in for her team as a steerer at a training and was so starstruck!

I am especially pleased to share Nyree’s korero because I have always and will always look up to her.   She is just as beautiful off the water as she is on the water.  It’s pretty clear to see where Rose and Tupuria get their strength from.  Though the whole family paddles and they all do pretty damn good, including husband Dave King and sisters Riana and Hannah.

Our paddlers have given this information freely so please show some awhi (love, support) and go like their athlete pages if they have one or drop a comment on the blog thread on my Facebook post.

If anything resonates with you head over to the Facebook page and drop a comment.  It may just create some awesome discussion for us all to learn more from.

Much aroha to you for following my journey and mahi.  If you haven’t already please like my Facebook pages and even my instagram page if you are on there.  Don’t be shy, share the love.

Hiria x

#imagine #believe #achieve

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INSPIRED SERIES – Michael Rogerson

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Mike Long distance Nationals 2016 – Gold Medallist 

MICHAEL ROGERSON

Division: Master Men

Club: Turangawaewae

Lives in Hamilton.

Paddling for 10 years.

I paddle all year round and participate in all the main races around the country.

ROUTINE

My routine for races starts about a few days out.  I start to organise my paddling equipment and waka making sure it’s all in good working order (i.e. drink systems, rudder and rudder cables) and to make sure I haven’t misplaced anything.  Nothing worse than running around the morning of a race in a panic doing repairs or trying to find something.

I also try and concentrate on eating well and hydrating leading up to a race.  I have come unstuck during races by not doing these two things in the lead up.

The night before I like to have a big meal with plenty of vegetables some pasta and either Chicken, fish or steak.  For breakfast its porridge with cream, brown sugar and a banana with a cup of tea.  Then it will be a 50/50 mix of electrolytes and water and just snack on scroggin leading up to the race.

The morning of the race I try and stay relaxed not rush around too much.  I’ll stretch throughout the morning.  I’ll usually try and get out on the water at least 15 minutes before race to loosen and warm up.

MANTRA

My mantra is be confident but humble.  You must have the confidence to back yourself if you want to succeed but also be humble in victory or defeat.

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Takapuna Beach Cup 2017 – 24km Relay

BIGGEST MISTAKE

The biggest mistake I ever made leading up to a race was not washing out my hydro pack before racing one year at the Bo Herbert Memorial race.  I became very sick halfway during the race and lost a lot of places.  So hence why I like to make sure I have everything organised days in advance.  Cheers Mike.

GRATITUDE

Mike Rogerson lives his mantra to a tee! He is one of the most humble paddlers I know.  I got to know Mike a bit better on our worlds Campaign for Tahiti Long distance champs this year.  When I approached him to write this little piece he was very taken aback by it not realising how much he has to offer us all.

Its similar with all our paddlers. Most ask “why me, I’m not special”. Actually you are, because it’s the way you do what you do that counts. It’s interesting to see and acknowledge our differences because those differences will really resonate with someone else and give them hope.

I admire Mikes consistency to his training while supporting his whanau, and coaching at his club.  Trying to compete yourself as an athlete and coach is no easy task so I take my hat of to him for that.

Our paddlers have given this information freely so please show some awhi (love, support) and go like their athlete pages if they have one or drop a comment on the blog thread on my Facebook post.

If anything resonates with you head over to the Facebook page and drop a comment.  It may just create some awesome discussion for us all to learn more from.

Much aroha to you for following my journey and mahi.  If you haven’t already please like my Facebook pages and even my instagram page if you are on there.  Don’t be shy, share the love.

Hiria x

#imagine #believe #achieve

Follow me

Hiria Rolleston Mindset Trainer – to help take you to the next level in your paddling, and life

Eastcoast Paddler Aotearoa – for all your paddle gear, canoes and instructional vids

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INSPIRED SERIES – Anne Cairns

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Anne paddling for her club team Manuz and Jemimaz

ANNE CAIRNS

This hearty paddler is from Palmerston North, and is an open womens paddler for Manuz and Jemiman from Haeata Ocean Sports.  She has been racing waka since 2010.

Main sport focus is sprint flatware kayaking but have competed nationally and internationally in a number of paddle sports; surf lifesaving, wildwater kayaking, ocean ski racing, waka ama and whitewater rafting.

I asked her if she has any specific events she does each year and her reply was;

Ha ha I don’t really have a typical amount of events per year, it’s really dependent on what my focus is that year or what is happening long term (i.e olympic cycle campaigns where I cut right back on waka or other disciplines in the two years proceeding doing a few waka races and maybe five or so sprint regattas which are Europe based so take time and funding to commit to.  Or post olympics like this year across my varying disciplines of waterspouts where I’ve done half a dozen waka races, surf lifesaving nationals, a couple of rafting events, and ocean ski worlds plus i like to do as many local races as possible in waka, flatwater, and multisport racing too.

ROUTINE

Depends on what type of race I’m doing (which paddlesport and sprint or long distance). For waka though I make sure all my kit and equipment is ready, usually the night before if possible.  Making sure to be hydrated well in the 2-3 days before but thats kinda just standard all the time.

Dinner night before based on what I’m feeling like, often chicken veggies (kumara or taro if I can get some) and maybe some pasta/rice.  And the routine green tea and chocolate before bed.

In the morning I eat a solid kai 2-2.5 hours before, porridge with berries and seeds and keep sipping on electrolyte, listen to music and stay relaxed but feeling ready… strong black coffee about 30 minutes before (especially for sprint racing).

For kayak racing I’ll do a pre warm up about 60-90 minutes before race time with a 20 minute set warm up before the race…  waka is a bit more relaxed, bit of dynamic land warm up and a paddle warm up with some builds/changing intensity… often have a snack of banana and honey on white bread about 1 hour before the race.

MANTRA

 

I don’t really have a mantra, I more try to just focus on the process of what I need to do, the outcome I want, technique, timing, race plan.

Biggest thing I remind myself is to enjoy it, no matter if it’s an olympic start line or a local race I do all the training and everything because I enjoy it and I can.  Not everyone gets to do what they enjoy and have a passion for so I’m unashamedly opportunity greedy and make no apologies for it.

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Anne representing Samoa at the Olympics

BIGGEST MISTAKE

Ha ha biggest mistake is slippery hands!!!  Apply sunscreen early or ideally get someone else to do it for you!  I always roughen up my hands with sand or mud, it’s a crap situation when you’re hands are slipping on the shaft, you grip tighter and it plays on your mind.

GRATITUDE

Again, I have only really got to know Anne through our recent World’s Campaign but knowing she is an olympic paddler and seeing how she trains and her consistency with her focus and nutrition was pretty cool.

I admired her approach to the team and flexibility coming from a predominantly individual paddle background.  She is one hundy chic and someone I totally admire on and off the water.

Our paddlers have given this information freely so please show some awhi (love, support) and go like their athlete pages if they have one or drop a comment on the blog thread on my Facebook post.

If anything resonates with you head over to the Facebook page and drop a comment.  It may just create some awesome discussion for us all to learn more from.

Much aroha to you for following my journey and mahi.  If you haven’t already please like my Facebook pages and even my instagram page if you are on there.  Don’t be shy, share the love.

Hiria x

#imagine #believe #achieve

Follow me

Hiria Rolleston Mindset Trainer – to help take you to the next level in your paddling, and life

Eastcoast Paddler Aotearoa – for all your paddle gear, canoes and instructional vids

Hiria Rolleston on insta – to follow where my paddle takes me

INSPIRED SERIES – Shon Siemonek

 

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SHON SIEMONEK 

Shon is an open mens division paddler from sunshine Coast, Australia and has been paddling for 4 years.  Typically participates in Queensland OC1 Series, Nationals and Paddles for Pacifica Open Mens Team.  He also paddled for NZ at the 2017 world Long Distance Champs in Tahiti.

ROUTINE

Off/on season I’m doing about 40-60km a week on the water.  Little bit higher/more for in season OC1 or on the race length I might try and push 80-100km a week.  I try and train for the upcoming predicted race conditions.  If it’s a downwind I’ll try do more downwind on the same angle.  If it’s a triangle I’ll try and do some variation training.  If its flat I will work on my speed a bit more.  I gym 3-4 times a week.

I try and stick to a high fat diet avocado, cheese, white meat.  I don’t eat red meat before a race ever.  I don’t carb load but will have a bit of bread the night before and morning of the race to hold water.  If I do feel like carbs I’ll have a small amount of pasta but not rice.

I try and not do anything I don’t do on a normal morning.  I eat all the same things like oats, water but I’ll add some electrolytes in depending on the race length.  I drink coffee.  Maybe right before I hop in the canoe I’ll have a bit of sugar or banana but not too much.

MANTRA

My mindset is if you have done the work the result will take care of itself.

I do everything possible to avoid conversations about the race or hanging out at race venues.  I don’t like talking too much and like to stick to myself and think as less as possible about conditions, race lines who to be concerned about.  I am only concerned about managing myself (OC1).  I don’t like racing the race before its started.

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BIGGEST MISTAKE

I think I miss way too many race briefings ha ha.

GRATITUDE

A big mihi (thanks) to Shon for being so open with his journey.  Although I haven’t known Shon for very long watching the way he carried himself at the World Long distance champs and his commitment to paddling inspired me.  He has a pretty impressive paddling CV for someone who has only been paddling a few years.  That’s why I wanted to share his journey because it shows me that it’s not about how long you have been doing something that counts, its how well you do it and Shon is a testament to the hard work and consistency needed to become a better paddler.

Our paddlers have given this information freely so please show some awhi (love, support) and go like their athlete pages if they have one or drop a comment on the blog thread on my Facebook post.

If anything resonates with you head over to the Facebook page and drop a comment.  It may just create some awesome discussion for us all to learn more from.

Much aroha to you for following my journey and mahi.  If you haven’t already please like my Facebook pages and even my instagram page if you are on there.  Don’t be shy, share the love.

Hiria x

#imagine #believe #achieve

Follow me

Hiria Rolleston Mindset Trainer – to help take you to the next level in your paddling, and life

Eastcoast Paddler Aotearoa – for all your paddle gear, canoes and instructional vids

Hiria Rolleston on insta – to follow where my paddle takes me

Inspired Series – Marama Elkington

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Interview with Va’a News after Marama’s Gold Medal achievement at World Long Distance Champs Tahiti.

MARAMA ELKINGTON

My name is Marama Elkington.  I’m a paddler from Porirua and I paddle for Hawaikinui Tuarua Waka Ama Club.  I paddle in the Open womens division, and have been paddling for 13 years.

I usually compete in the National Sprints, and some long distance races like the NZ Aito, and Tahiti Aito.

ROUTINE

Before I attend an event I educate myself to my competition.  I watch potential threats in a W6 and strategies.  When I get to the competition I familiarise myself with my course and conditions.

The night before I stretch and have my strategy planned, but adjust it the next day depending on different aspects.

On race day I sleep as much as I can, but also head down to observe the race calls, race starts and things like that.

Before a race I warm up by running, skipping, and exercises.  I also stretch and slap down my body, and keep my body moving to keep the nerves from settling.

However I always have to do a nervous pee before every race (some habits die hard aye).

I don’t have a special diet, I usually snack after a race, and eat when I have enough time between races.

MANTRA

My saying is “Go hundy or go home”.

When I race I leave everything on the water.  I like to remember the feelings I had when I lost to previous opponents and channel that when I both train.

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Gold Medal victory in the Junior Long distance race at World Champs Tahiti 2017.

BIGGEST MISTAKE

I have no regrets leading up to race day, as I feel that is half of the work that goes into a race, being prepared.  During my Open Women’s final in Australia, at the World sprints I however learnt a crucial lesson in racing.  I have always had a bad habit of looking to the side at my opponent while racing.  I looked across with 5ms to go, I fumbled with my paddle, and I lost.

This is probably the biggest thing I regret because I think I would have won.  This however taught me the importance of trusting yourself and truly believing in what you can do, and your training.

GRATITUDE

I have had the privilege to know Marama and train with her in the past and all I can say is wow.  Her presence can be quite intimidating because she is so focussed on the mahi. I have always been inspired by her work ethic and commitment to training and paddling, which clearly pays off.

So much gratitude to Marama for having the courage to step up and share her knowledge and how she makes it work for her.

Our paddlers have given this information freely so please show some awhi (love, support) and go like their athlete pages if they have one or drop a comment on the blog thread on my Facebook post.

If anything resonates with you head over to the Facebook page and drop a comment.  It may just create some awesome discussion for us all to learn more from.

Much aroha to you for following my journey and mahi.  If you haven’t already please like my Facebook pages and even my instagram page if you are on there.  Don’t be shy, share the love.

 

Hiria x

#imagine #believe #achieve

Follow me

Hiria Rolleston Mindset Trainer – to help take you to the next level in your paddling, and life

Eastcoast Paddler Aotearoa – for all your paddle gear, canoes and instructional vids

Hiria Rolleston on insta – to follow where my paddle takes me