So, I ended up completing 5 laps around Ross Island with the team - over 5 hours of paddling, working out to roughly 30-ish miles.
#1 Must get what is lovingly referred to by all my teammates as a "butt pad." I am so glad I took a beach towel with me and was able to fold it up to give a little squish to my backside. Since I've lost all my padding back there, my bony bottom was rubbing on the hard bench quite nicely until I got smart and used the towel.
#2 This was probably one of the most physically demanding challenges I have ever participated in. There were definitely many times that I wanted to give up and leave, but being with my teammates and hearing them complain a little, then re-energize themselves really gave me the boost I needed to keep going.
#3 If we ever do this again in the future, there MUST BE some kind of music on the boat while we're paddling. I don't know if I can take hearing 20+ women singing "Don't Stop Believin'" by Journey again - though, it did make the time go faster to sing along.
#4 My team has come such a long way in terms of event-day snacks brought by everyone to share. We used to bring chips, cookies, candy, etc. Yesterday, we had so many blueberries, bananas, strawberries, nuts, seeds, veggies and healthy dips that we were joking all day about it. "No no, we really need MORE blueberries - we don't quite have enough." It's awesome to see so many people making healthy positive choices.
#5 We raised over $5000 for clean drinking water projects with Blue Planet Network. We were able to designate our funds to go to a project in Cambodia to help supply 160 people, mostly schoolchildren, with safe, clean drinking water. They already had $10,000 pledged to this project and just needed the last $5000 to make it happen. It makes me feel so good to know that I was able to be a part this.
#6 I was not sore at all today except for 5 minutes this morning right after getting out of bed. After stretching for a few minutes and getting in a hot shower, I felt fine. Which is amazing to me, because I was super-sore on the boat yesterday. The human body constantly amazes me in what it is capable of achieving.
So, amazing event - glad I participated, glad that it's over. My bottom is definitely glad!
On to Relay for Life next Saturday and my goal of walking a half-marathon! After completing this event, I know I can reach that goal with no difficulties!