In Honor of Lt Michael M McGreevy ( SEAL)

These training sessions are dedicated to Lt. Michael M. McGreevy ( SEAL) – Medal of Honor – who lost his life on June 28,2005 while conduction combat operations in Afghanistan. Have the courage to watch this video so that you can have a better understanding of what this man did. Today is Saturday and the last schedule long training paddle. The original scheduled called for a 45 mile paddle but I decided to cut it back to 40 miles based on how I felt last weekend. Sure don’t want to get injured this late in the game. Friday night a very heavy sea fog came in and out of concerned that it would be present in the morning I decided to start the paddle at 5:30 versus 4:30 to reduce the amount of time I would be paddling in it in the dark. Sure enough it was still present when I woke up and it was extremely heavy. I could only see about two foot in front of me.  Anyone that has operated in sea fog will tell you it is spooky, stressful, and you really have to keep you head in the game. At night it is even more difficult because of light rebound off the fog.Your spacial awareness is shot and you can become very disoriented if you don’t concentrate on what you are doing. If you hear another vessel without

This is what it looked like when it finally lifted and some daylight was peaking through.

radar you don’t know where it is and expect at anytime to see the fog separate and a bow coming at you. In a kayak you know you will be on the loosing end of that deal. So for two hours I just keep remembering  a lesson my flight instructor pounded in my head about flying a plane on instruments. “Trust what the instruments are telling you and not your body”. I m taking some writing liberties here. Body is my word he used a different word that was more specific to a certain part of my lower body that I sit on.  After a couple of hours daylight started to sneak though the fog and my range of visibility started to increase which was a relief. Oh and hallelujah the waypoint with a marker that I had been navigating to slowing became visible through the fog. The other troubling thing that happen when  I was in the sea fog is that my SPOT tracking signals were not getting out. I have never viewed the SPOT device as my primary emergency signal. I have a PLB (Personal Locator Beacon) for that but SPOT can help reduce both my wife’s and the Race Director’s worry. That is if it is used correctly. My wife enjoys the water and has a pretty good knowledge base of boating. In the 2011 EC I was departing Flamingo and she knew a front was coming through but at the time it was forecasted to only have 25 MPH wind gust. Knowing that is a little dicey I teamed up with another Watertriber for the crossing to Key Largo. A couple of hours after we had launched she got a weather report that indicated wind gust of up to 50 MPH were in the front. Unfortunately we were out of cell phone range so all she could do was watch the computer screen knowing it was not going to be good. She knew when the front would come though and knew when it hit us by the SPOT track showing a drastic course change.  She was also able to see that we made it to a small island where I sent an OK message..  So for a couple of hours we played like we were Bear Grills and hunkered down as best as we could and waited for the front to pass. After the front passed we started out , after three previous attempts where we chicken out and headed back to the island, but I failed to initiate the tracking feature of the SPOT. So for the next five hours my wife got to look at a computer screen with my SPOT showing my location on that small island while myself and the other Watertriber, who had initiated his tracking feature correctly, were having a great time getting to the finish line at Key Largo. I still feel really bad for the worry she went through because I didn’t know how to use my equipment correctly. So for my brand new SPOT2 to have some limitations is troubling. The trip up the Little Manatee River was uneventful except the river level was very low. I ended up having to stop two miles short of where I went a couple of weekends ago. I just plain ran out of water. The shallow water also slowed me down quite a bit.  I finished the day off with 40 miles covered in 10 hours and 8 minutes which gave me an average speed of 3.95 MPH. I know that the sea fog and the shallow water effected my speed but I think the greatest thing that effected it was the fact that I was using my large rudder. I really do think this causes a 0.2 MPH speed hit but in big water or using sails I want the added control it gives me. The training session for the other days of the week were the following:

Thursday – Elliptical 4.0 miles – 33 minutes / Lift Routine 2  / 5 mile easy paddle – 5.0 MPHE

Friday – Ran 3.6 miles in 33 minuets / TRX2 – 7 week routine

For the family of Lt Michael M. McGreevy ( SEAL) – Medal of Honor,  life has not been easy dealing with his loss. Please remember the name of this brave men. A donation to the Special Operations Warrior Foundation will make it easier for the families of fallen special warriors.