In Dec. of 2008, Greg is planning on pedaling his human powered boat “WiTHiN” 3000 miles across the Atlantic ocean in less than 43 days setting a new world record for the fastest human powered Atlantic crossing. Pedal The Ocean explores the limits of what is possible with human power.
2700 miles from Canary Islands to Barbados
Greg will start at the Canary Islands off of the West African coast. The Canary current is a southwestward flow that will take him onto the North Equatorial current which is a broad westward flow. It is fed by the Canary current and its waters eventually end up in the Gulf Stream system, via the Antilles current which should deliver Greg and WiTHiN to one of the islands near Barbados.
The average distance that various ocean rowers covered over this route is 2700 to 3000 miles. Rowing times from the Canary islands to Barbados range from a record of 43 days by Emmanuel Coindre to over 100 days. Ocean Rowing statistics are here.
Our modern sedentary lifestyle is putting our kids at risk of becoming the first generation that will have a life expectancy shorter than that of their parents. Worldwide, between 10 and 15% of our children are obese and 60% of the general population is overweight. Obesity in childhood often leads to obesity in adulthood. Most parents want the best for their children – including the chance to lead a long and healthy life. For obese children this goal is seriously threatened. The solution is education.
3 million years of evolution has produced an animal whose natural environment probably consisted of walking the distance of a full marathon each and every single day*. Now take that animal (also known as a “human being”), and stick him in a small cage, rob him of natural sunlight, make him sit in a chair all day and feed him a steady supply of chemicals and refined foods.
Is it any wonder that 60% of North Americans are over weight? Described by the World Health Organization as an “escalating epidemic”, obesity is “one of the greatest neglected public health problems of our time with an impact on health which may well prove to be as great as smoking.” Being overweight leads to many serious medical problems like high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and many other health related issues.
An unnatural sedentary lifestyle causes chemical imbalances in our bodies which can lead to a host of psychological problems. Population studies have shown an inverse relationship between physical activity and depression, and there is evidence that active people who become inactive are more at risk of depression that those who remain active. According to a study from Duke University, aerobic exercise was MORE effective than antidepressant drugs in treating depressive symptoms in three study groups.
The cause of the obesity epidemic and skyrocketing rates of depression is obvious in my opinion. We need to become reacquainted with our “natural environment”. Break out of your cage. Get outside and get ACTIVE! Ride your bike, run, walk, swim, climb – whatever it takes.