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Real World Data: Would You Paddle 100 Miles?

Updated: Feb 27, 2020

Rob Allison, a software engineer for SAS pondered the question as he used data from my win at the California River Quest 100 to test out new programs.

When I was young, I remember teachers saying that one day we'd need all that math and science we were learning for "real world" applications. And, although now that I'm delving deeper into nutrition and physiology and seeing how that impacts my real-world racing performance, I still didn't see a lot of applications for the heaps of data I generate on my training and racing (outside of me nerding out over splits)... until the other day.

Rob Allison is a software engineer for SAS who enjoys using real-world data to test new software. Sometimes he write blogs about it, and since he has to use data, he tends to pick data that he's interested in!

After working up the data on the SAS blog, he posed the question to his facebook followers:

"Have you ever considered paddling 100 miles? ... How long would it take you?"

Answers ranged from a simple "no" to resounding Yes's with reports of how long it took various paddlers in various craft.

Rob, a life-long paddler, started out as a canoe instructor at summer camp. A decade ago, around the time that I started paddling, Rob got into dragon boat paddling in Raleigh, NC. He is currently a steersman at races for HighFive and PamAM. While I'm pondering making my first few moves in Dragon Boat, Rob has recently made his first few moves in SUP and OC. Several years ago he picked up an all carbon racing SUP, but decided sitting down and going fast (i.e. not a consistent, never ending, resistance workout with a balancing act to boot) was more his style and bought an old Mantra fiberglass outrigger canoe, and started working on speed and distance.

Rob is now the proud owner of a PuaKea KaheKai OC1 (one of my favs) and two Epic V10 Sport surfskis (one is all-carbon). He uses these rigs to compete in 2 or 3 Carolina based races per year.

When I asked him why he chose my data for testing, he said:

"I picked this data because I follow you on Facebook, and the race sounded interesting. (Maybe something I'd like to try, once I retire and have more free time!)" Thank you Rob! I can't wait to see your 100 mile race whenever you're ready, and may I recommend the KaheKai for the task ;-)

For now, I'll enjoy reading your blogs and following your paddling adventures on facebook.

Check out his article on the SAS blog HERE.


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