For as long as I can remember, I’ve always been active & keen on sports: As a child, like the cliché little sister, this was whatever my older brother Boy* was into- I totally idolised him & his sporting prowess (he would ace any sport he’d turn to). The diversity of activities he was into would change almost as often as he changed his pants- I could hardly keep up with him! At one point it’d be basketball- complete in a psychedelic 90’s neon get up, & a pair of Jordan’s (or air max) to match, the next he was practicing his happy Gilmore golf swing. His choice saw no bounds, tennis was a regular feature too & snakboarding down the streets (anyone else remember the snakeboard?).
*We grew up in South East Asia, where the locals would simply refer to children by their gender- henceforth I’ve always referred to him as boy, & likewise him to me as ‘girl’, we do have legit name too, obvs.
As a teen, tennis was ‘my thing’. I’d sometimes train up to 5 times per week, & school holidays’ were a jam packed schedule of competing in back to back tournaments around the county (with my poor mother, having to cart me around to them all). My other recreational love, was Thai Boxing (Muay Thai). Locally to me, was the Internationally renowned Keddles Gym- instructors included past & present world champions. As you can imagine, they were very keen on students progressing to a competitive level- but that wasn’t something I was down with.
Growing into my adolescent years, injuries kept occurring, school ended, & work began: Time became a precious commodity, I slowly filtered out competitive & impact sports for the more steady routine of the gym. Don’t get me wrong, I’m pretty happy at the gym- it’s my escape – I go there to enjoy the thrill of endorphins rush through me & gain some head space.
But, it’s not the same as ‘proper’ sports, is it?
& Then, there’s my other passion. Being outdoors. Granted, the abysmal UK weather puts a stop to this becoming a regular occurrence (As I type this, it’s hammering it down outside & it’s supposed to be ‘summer’!). It’s largely speculated that the beach is my happy place. I can confirm, this, is without doubt #fact. Considering my childhood environment, it’s no wonder really. It’s something intrinsic to me, & perhaps with my star sign of Pisces, this leads me towards the water.
A while back, I shared this over on instagram.
Sunday goals & ambitions // In the next year, my ultimate goal (amongst a heap other shiz too) is to get our butts out to Australia & start the next chapter of our lives there, & do this ⬆️ as often as I can. I want to be the owner of a paddle board (& chocolate lab) & learn to do yoga on it (dog included) // the simple things. Our visas have been submitted & it’s a case of (yet more) waiting around, so for now I’ll just daydream (or take to Pinterest?!) about my little life goals.
Since I first tried paddleboarding last year, at Mark Warner Resort, Levante, I’ve been hooked. I’ve gone on to try it in 3 countries so far this year. It’s a sport I’m developing a passion for, & the desire I feel to pursue it, is limitless. So much so, I’ve decided to share my thoughts aspirations on here.
Writing down our goals, dreams & ambitions can make them feel ‘real’, & more achievable, don’t you think? Sharing mine with you here, & on social media, has helped me see a direction, the path I hope to take, & will enable me to keep track of & celebrate my progress in due course. My immediate goal is to locate where is most practical for me to regularly participate- based in SE London, I’m quite limited to options. Just the other week saw me compete a lesson on an open lake at, Mercers Country Park, with Aquasports. Now? I’m ready to take on the world, baby. My ultimate dream? To discover the top destinations in the world to go SUP (as Stand Up Paddleboarding is referred to. Though, I constantly shout it like it’s part of a gangsta rap ‘ SUUUUUUUP’). Currently on my hit list? Turks & Caicos, The Cayman Islands, Hawaii, Several spots in California (Malibu, Santa Barbara, Lake Tahoe), The Bahamas, Costa Rica, The Black Canyon lake-Nervada, Bali, Fiji (not a bad list,eh?).
Ideally, I’d like to have my own kit too, allowing me a little more freedom: find open water? Paddle. Rather than the nuisance of hiring equipment each time. & Of course, participating in another hobby of mine (shopping!) whilst I do this only adds to the fun! ……
I may have made one cheek purchase already….
A photo posted by Katrina West (@coolbananasblog) on
All that there is left to say now is: ‘Watch this space’, Rome wasn’t built in a day, yada yada.
What are your personal ambitions? I wanna hear them, as simple, daft or opulent as you fear they may sound.
PS: If you know of any paddle boarding clubs around the SE London area, PLEASE holla in the comments below!
PPS. I’ve been shortlisted for an award, I’d be so grateful if you could vote for me- & everyone who votes, is entered into a draw to win an AI holiday to the Almafi Coast (as chosen by Amara) Please just click on the image below. Thank you!!