Climbing Mountains & Swimming Oceans
By Luis Bracamonte, Director of Fitness & Wellness
For many of our Members, summer may be a time to slow down, relax, visit their homes away from Ocean Reef, but for our most fitness-inclined Members, some of whom are pictured here and listed below, their summers have been about training, taking on physical challenges and new adventures.
Fitness has many dimensions; at the highest level, it can test our physical and mental limits. Regardless of fitness level, those who dare to embark on these adventures come out with a more profound knowledge of who they are and what they are capable of. It is cliché to say that life is about the journey, not the destination. When we set a goal that pushes our physical and mental limits, it is about both.
Congratulations to all our Members whose dedication and passion for self-improvement and personal growth led them to complete amazing feats this summer. The game only ends when we stop playing. We must take action and pursue goals with profound rewards to unleash our potential.
Sue Shuldman, Bonny Gothier and Joannie Rich on top of
Whistler mountain as 29029 Everesting finishers.About the Events:
29029 Everesting: Participants have 36 hours to climb a combined 29,029 ft. of elevation. They climb up and take a gondola down back to the start. The 2023 calendar had events in Idaho, Utah, Jackson Hole, Whistler, and Vermont. The following Members participated in the recent Whistler event: Joannie Rich (13-time finisher – most of any participant), Sue and Bart Shuldman, Bonny Gothier, Patrick Shouvlin (2nd event), and Michael Sullivan Jr.
Carlos Smith, Eric Soulavy, Luis Bracamonte, Vanessa Soulavy, Susanne Kramer, Liz Angelone and ORC Swim Coach Jon Olsen at the Swim for Alligator Lighthouse.
Swim for Alligator Lighthouse: Swimmers can participate as solo swimmers or in teams of two, three, or four to complete the 8-mile distance. The following Members participated in the event a few weeks back: Susanne Kramer, Liz Angelone, and Eric Soulavy. Also taking part in the event were myself, Director of Fitness & Wellness Luis Bracamonte, with kayaker Abraham Mirabal (Ocean Room Associate), Dr. Carlos Smith, visiting triathlon and endurance coach specialist Vanessa Soulavy, and Swim Coach Jon Olsen who is involved with the organization of the event.Leadville Trail 100 MTB: Mixing high altitude and extreme rocky terrain, this is one of the country’s prestigious endurance cross-country mountain biking events. See below for Kimberly Moritz’s story on how she endured and earned her finisher belt buckle!
What is Your 2023-24 Goal?
In order to increase our chances of success, it is ideal to pick personal and specific goals. Our personal trainers, instructors, and coaches are ready to provide you with the expertise and motivation to stay the course and achieve what matters to you. To book sessions for the season, contact us at 305-367-5820.
Conquering the Leadville Trail 100 MTB
By Kimberly Moritz, Member since 2017
Kimberly Moritz, with husband John, following the Leadville Trail 100 MTB.2023 Leadville Trail 100 MTB, starting at an elevation of 10,200 ft., going to almost 13,000 ft., 105.25 grueling miles, 11,568 vertical feet of climbing, three timed cutoffs in the book, belt buckle earned.
I did not do this in the time I wanted, trained for, or expected. The Wednesday prior to the race, I had learned I had critically low iron (this explained all the cramping throughout my body leading up to the race); I woke up on Saturday morning, August 12, 2023, and got myself to the start line.
Between miles 20 and 30, I realized it would be a long day; cramping had begun. I kept pushing. I came into Twin Lakes; my face already said it all, and the pain was written all over it. Generally, I smiled, talked, but this time was different; we all knew it. I continued up Columbine. I knew the top of the Columbine climb had changed, but that was a challenging hike on a bike. Even when I would get on my bike and pedal, other riders were clogging up the trail, not having the understanding of moving off to the right when walking. So I had to go with the flow until a clearing. I got to the top of Columbine at 12,600 ft. and headed down; I love the downhill. I got back to Twin Lakes, picked up more nutrition, and was on my way to Powerline. My husband told everybody no matter how bad it got, I couldn’t and wouldn’t quit.
I fully expected not to go past Powerline. By this time, I was not in the greatest shape. However, the smiling faces of my totally awesome support crew were there. I could not let them down, so I went up Powerline. With Austin and Heather walking with me to the first summit (there were a total of 5), the encouragement they gave and the jokes they made had me smiling and wanting to finish. Up, up, up, and up I went, to the top of Powerline, then came a really sweet downhill to Hagerman. By the time I was on Hagerman, I was in tears. However, I was so close to finishing and there was no amount of pain at this point that would make me stop. The thought of quitting was with me all day, but the will to keep going won out. No matter how rough of shape I was in, I couldn’t stop, I wouldn’t quit, and the finish line was within reach.
I reached the top of Carter Summit, and my crew was there again, cheering me on and telling me to go. Austin gave me a push and away I went. I had more to climb until I reached the top and enjoyed another juicy downhill. I then got to the bottom of Kevin and realized I had to crank it; time was running out for me to make it to the finish.
As I got to the top of the Boulevard, I knew the finish line was just a few miles and pedal strokes away. I gave what I had left in the tank to get there in time. I MADE IT, I got my belt buckle. My friend Sammy was the first to greet me. He said, “You did it, way to go.” I literally sat there, did not say much, and could not move. A few minutes later, Austin and Heather were there to help me. Austin had to lean my bike over so I could dismount and the day was done. My husband John met me, and with tears flowing down his cheeks, he hugged me. Had it not been for my fantastic support crew, I would not have made it to the finish line. Their support, encouragement, love, jokes, and cheering me on meant everything to me; I did not want to disappoint them or myself. They made the day so incredibly special. I am forever grateful and thankful for them.
Featured above: Kimberly Moritz (second from left) finishes the Leadville Trail 100 MTB.