Talking Exercise with Ken

Veteran agent Ken Chaplin faces unusual challenges when it comes to exercise. He lives on a boat! Usually an avid biker, take a look at how he has adjusted and changed how he exercises now!

When did you start exercising?

So basically…when did I start exercising…well I’ve never been one to do proper exercise routines. I like to do an activity which I enjoy that also gives me exercise. I guess what really prompted me to be a little bit more serious was when I had surgery about ten/twelve years ago and I wanted to regain my health and my fitness so I started cycling.

I joined a cycling group and I built it up and over several years I managed to do the Ride for Hope. It was my goal to do the whole one hundred miles which I managed to do about the third or fourth year into it. For the first ten years in a row I did every single one. I think I rode a hundred miles at least three or four of those times. Joining the cycling club was great because it gave me motivation to go and I would ride every Saturday morning and then ride on Sunday and then again with a friend on Wednesday. At my top I was doing a hundred miles a week.

That has fallen off, once I got out of the routine, but recently I got it back up again and started riding about twenty miles a day, three or four times a week. The other sport that I use to get exercise is windsurfing. I would windsurf at every opportunity and I would windsurf for long distances, several hours, say two or three at a time, and I found that to be a good upper body exercise. I would also walk with my wife sometimes over Paradise Island Bridge. We’d walk for about an hour at a pretty brisk pace and that pretty well sums up my exercise routine.

Why do you exercise? Why is exercise important to you?

Why do I exercise? Well that’s pretty simple. After you get to the age of fifty it gets harder and harder to keep yourself nimble and so it’s harder and harder to get to be the way you felt before, so you have to exercise harder and harder to just be that way…to just stay fit at all. As I live on a boat I'm always squirming into funny odd places to repair engines or repair this and that and so I've got to stay pretty flexible.’

How is your exercise routine different now than pre Covid? 

Well…dramatically.  As I said before cycling and windsurfing were pre, and post we have two kayaks on board which are operated by pedals Hobie Mirage kayaks. Sheila and I would do long kayak rides for over an hour, maybe two hours at a time, going long distances. They’re also equipped with a small sail and that was a good workout for your lower body. 

Before we got into total lockdown and were confined to our boat, on the way down to the Exumas, we stopped at several islands where they had really great walks. Coastal walks which involved going through paths that were up and down over headlands and then along long beaches and then up another headland and so on, scrambling up and down hills. One of them on Lee Stocking was actually the highest point in the Exumas which is about a hundred and twenty feet and that was a pretty good trek.

The thing that we still manage to do, even though we’re confined to the boat is swim. We swim to shore. My boat is due for a bottom paint job, which I had hoped to have done in Spanish Wells and that plan has gotten thrown aside so I'm having to scrub the bottom of the boat! Now that's a workout right there and it’s amazing how quickly it grows back. I'm having to scrub it at least once every two or three weeks and that gets the heart rate up!

Since the total lockdown where we’re 100 percent confined to our boat, Sheila and I have started to do some online exercise routines. We also have a set of exercise bands that have been sitting in a bag on our boat for the last probably ten years and we’ve never used them. Now we’ve started to, and even the easiest one gives you quite workout. We started to do a few push-ups too but not many and Sheila found a simple dance routine that was kind of fun. So we put that on the big screen TV and we do that and that's just half an hour but it gets your heart going and makes you sweat so it must be good!

Who/what inspires/motivates you? 

Not sure if I can say there’s any one person or somebody who inspires me. I think what motivates me is I know that living on a boat requires one to be pretty fit and I want to continue living on a boat, traveling and doing outdoor things, so I have to keep fit.

Exercise goals?

As far as exercise goals go, I thought I’d like to do a triathlon and it still remains as a goal, but because of a bad knee the running side seems to be a bit of a challenge. Maybe I’d have to walk that part.

Another thing would be a long distance windsurf. Like from Nassau to Spanish Wells or vice versa, or along a big long leg in Abaco or in the Exuma chain. A general goal would be to start using weights. I am aware that as one ages weight training is very important. I would add too, that both Dave and Krystal have inspired me. My colleagues are both active and I have seen a change in their physique. Also Peter who has exercised continually, doing his early morning swims and so on. So I’m surrounded by a good bunch of exercising people!

Posted by Helen Dupuch on
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