Not Exactly Living the South Beach Lifestyle

When most people think of sailing, they think of the South Beach lifestyle and late nights at the clubs.

Clubbing, driving hundred thousand dollar cars, cruising the strip in the Art Deco district and hanging out with Fiona and Michael (you get it if you are a fan of Burn Notice) are all great things to aspire to when  you spend any time at all in Miami. But these things are the furthest from our mind…or our ability to accomplish them while we are here training in Miami.  Being in Miami is great, the culture, the people, the food, the tropical environment, I could go on and on about how amazing Miami is but we are here for one purpose and that is to climb to the top of the fleet and to be able to win Olympic Gold in Rio2016. That is what our South Beach lifestyle is all about.

South Beach in a storm

We know how lucky we are to be pursuing our dreams of becoming Olympic Champions and we know that spending our winters in the tropics is amazing. Nothing we will ever say will discount this but our extended time in South Florida is definitely not a beach vacation on South Beach. We are here for one reason and that is to achieve our goal and to make the USA Olympic Sailing Team in 2016 and then to bring home Gold from Rio. It is not a simple task to achieve, it requires a ton of hard work, long hours, stressful workouts and repetition of every aspect of a race x 1,000,000. We have a tough road ahead of us and we know that every minute counts so days lounging on South Beach and nights in SOBE are out of the question.

We have a highly structured week. We sail on weekdays regardless of weather conditions or anything else in our lives. At least one weekend a month and sometimes as many as three weekends we are in training camps and so we sail on the weekends too, but we also workout in the gym 6 days per week with structured workouts by the US Sailing Team Trainers at Jaguar Therapeutics. We run along the Rickenbacker Causeway and all the way out to John Pennekamp Park and back every Saturday morning at 6:30am. We meet with our advisers, watch videos of our performance and review our training plan with coaches and David still has to do several hours of schoolwork every night to complete his senior year of Highschool at Florida Virtual School in preparation for his college career following the Games in Rio.

David Hein and Jessica Claflin Sailing NACRA 17Our life is busy…maybe overscheduled by many estimates but we know that we have one shot at making this happen and so we are taking every opportunity to develop and grow to become the best of the best. We have put our lives on hold to achieve our goal, our friends, family, career and school are all taking a back seat to our campaign. Even in the times of the year when all the competition takes “time off” to recover, recharge and refocus, we are on the water, in the gym and pushing ourselves to perform better than we did the day before. It is the little things in our day that make the difference, it is the slow daily growth and the small changes in our sailing that will get us to the top. We are focused. We are dedicated. We are driven. We are determined. We are committed. We are going to win Olympic Gold in 2016!

It is not like we never get to South Beach, in our own way anyhow. Some days we sail through Government Cut out to the Atlantic Ocean for our training. On our way out to the Gulf Stream where we predictably have strong breeze and challenging currents, we take a short detour and reach along the beach so that we can get a glimpse of the pretty people and give some much deserved exposure to our corporate sponsors who have their logos on our sails and hulls. It is always a thrill when we hear beachgoers cheer us on as we are ripping across the waters off South Beach Miami.

If you believe in young, focused and hard working athletes pushing themselves to achieve the American Dream, please consider giving to our campaign! Every dollar helps us to win Gold!

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