Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Kayak & Paddleboarding Open 7 Days Sunrise to Sunset & Every Night     RESERVATION REQUIRED

Blog

Paddle Board to work

He got fed up with Miami traffic, so now he commutes with dolphins and pelicans

Parker Lake got sick of the rat race. Sick of working in a cubicle. Sick of commuting on Miami’s mean streets. Sick of being overweight from sitting at a desk or in traffic jams.

So Lake quit his unfulfilling job, sold his car and moved to a house on the Little River. Road warrior no more, he paddles to two new jobs on a stand-up paddleboard. The rude drivers who used to accompany him on his travels have been replaced by manatees, dolphins, pelicans and spotted eagle rays.

Lake decided to stop despairing and daydreaming and go outside himself, as well as the confinements of office and automobile. He’s lost 45 pounds. He’s gained peace of mind.

“I thought to myself, ‘I’m spinning my wheels in more ways than one. I’m not happy with the commute, I’m not happy being a salesman,’” he said. “Now I find myself fulfilled. The difference in pay is not insignificant but I figure I’m paying to be happy.”

One on One Stand Up Paddle Private Lesson

On Thursday, Lake paddled three miles home from his part-time job as a tour guide at theiPaddle Miami watersports rental center at Pelican Harbor Marina on the 79th Street Causeway. He paused at Bird Key, where a great blue heron launched from the trees. As the wind turned brisk and churned the Intracoastal’s waters, Lake balanced on his 12-1/2-foot bamboo Riviera Ron House board and gazed at the downtown Miami skyline. Then he headed up the river, which gets progressively grittier the farther west you go. He passed yachts parked behind luxurious homes, then helped construction workers fetch a fishing pole that had dropped in the water. He stroked onward past a flock of orange-beaked ibises, empty warehouses, run-down apartment buildings, a homeless man living under a bridge, walls covered with graffiti, trash floating on the surface.

Paddling to and from work, he can see and hear the cars on surrounding roads and bridges.

“I’m not part of that anymore and I feel great,” he said. “Drivers look at me with a look of longing, and I know what they’re thinking: ‘He’s probably on vacation. I need a vacation.’”

Lake’s other job is as a security guard at the Eden Roc hotel in Miami Beach. That’s a 12-mile, two-hour paddle from where he lives on Northeast 85th Street. He carries his work clothes and shoes in a dry bag backpack. He once paddled over a hammerhead shark on his route.

“This is a mode of transportation that I think more people will be choosing in the future,” he said. “Some people bike to work. I think everybody stuck in gridlock every day should consider an alternative. When I was cubicle- and Fiat-bound, my exercise consisted of walking into offices selling web technology. I got fat. Physically and mentally, I’m in a better place. Going to work is not a chore. You’ve seized the day by the time you get to your job.”

Lake, 44, is a Los Angeles native who earned an economics degree from the University of Southern California, where he was on the rowing team. He worked in China as an investigator for Pinkerton’s and in London in the financial printing business before moving to Miami five years ago to sell computer systems at UDT, a technology company in Doral.

“In California, the drivers are more polite than they are in Miami,” he said. “They use their turn indicator, they let people change lanes or cross the street. Self-awareness is the biggest difference between drivers here and there. Here, people are rude, they cut you off, they flip each other off, there’s lots of micro aggression wherever you go. In California you do not upset drivers because road rage never ends well.

“I came to realize that commuting in Miami was the worst part of my day. Now, it’s the best part of my day.”

Lake is adding mileage to his commutes whenever possible to prepare for Crossing For A Cure, a June 17 fund-raising trek from the Bahamas to Dania Beach. It’s a 61-mile paddle that will take 8-10 hours. Paddleboarders are raising money for cystic fibrosis research.

“There’s a degree of discomfort in this journey but it will be over in about eight hours,” Lake said. “Kids with cystic fibrosis live with pain all the time.”

Said iPaddle owner Manuel Castillo, who is helping Lake train for the event: “It’s no small feat going that distance. It’s a physical game. It’s a mental game. It’s the culmination of decisions leading to the lifestyle Parker chose to adopt.”

In exchanging car for board, Lake also wanted to set an example for his two daughters.

“If I transform what I do, that’s what I will be to my daughters,” he said. “I’d encourage everyone in Miami to get on a paddleboard. Or a kayak. A lot of people ride jet skis, but dolphins shy away from jet skis. Try paddling.”

 

Stand Up Paddle Group Lessons One on One Stand Up Paddle Private Lesson Kayak & SUP Rentals – Paddle Tours & SUP Lessons

Author: USNews.com

Categories

Magical Nighttime Kayak Paddle tours every night at 9pm, next full Moon May 23rd.

BOOK YOUR ADVENTURE ⬆️🤙

#nightimepaddle #kayakpaddletoursmiami #kayakpaddletour #nighttimevibes #kayakpaddletour #fullmoonkayaktour #miamiaighttimetour #miaminighttime #romanticdate #dateidea #funatnight #miamiskyline #biscaynebay
Being on the water replenishes the body and soul. Thanks for coming to our paradise island @shimi_pop for an impromptu paddle tour and SUP Yoga flow. Great things coming to iPaddle 🤙🧘‍♀️🕉️

#paddleparadise #supyoga #supyogamiami #waterfitness #soulreplenisher #supfitness #waterworkouts #miamifun #somethingdiffrent #hiddengemmiami #yogamiami
Sunrise vibes 
 #ipaddlemiami #sunrisetour #morningsinmiami #somethingdifferent #thingstodomiami #thingstodowithyourdog #doggiepaddle #northbayvillage
At iPaddle Miami even though we say no experience necessary, we offer Stand-Up Paddle classes with our PaddleFit Certified resident coach Aymee Vasquez. SUP lessons are 90 minutes long. We offer One on One classes which offer personalize attention and Private Groups of up to 6 friends or family members to enjoy a fun filled day. Stand-Up Paddle offers an active way to immerse yourself in nature and enjoy Miami waterways. We often see dolphins, manatees, rays and even an occasional turtle 🐬🐢🐟☀️🏝️.
We are bilingual and offer SUP lessons in English or Spanish, minimum age is 10 years old.

BOOK ON BIO 🤙⬆️

#paddleboardlessons #suplessons #learnsomething #learnsomethingnew #biscaynebay #learntosup #learntopaddleboard #paddleboardmiami #northbayvillage #miamithingstodo #visitflorida #outdooractivities
iPaddle is Miami’s adventure destination. From sunrise to sunset, our waterways offer a beautiful and exciting way to embark on a memorable adventure. 
Rent a kayak or paddleboard, book a guided tour or a lesson. 

📸 pc @romanstranger  it was great having you, come back soon 🤙

BOOK ON BIO 🤙
Trying something new is a great way to face your fears and have fun! Take a SUP or kayak lesson or rent one, it will be magical and you will love the experience.

BOOK YOUR MESSAGE ON BIO ⬆️

#paddleboardlessons #trysomethingnew #faceyourfears #shedidit #paddleboardingadventures ##paddleboardingfun #outdoorfun
 #Miamiadventures #biscaynebay #mangroves #miamimangrove
Biscayne Bay is full of life and dolphins are always in season. Book your paddle tour for a day of adventure on the water 🤙.
#dolphincentral #dolphinwatching #dolphinsighting #thingstodomiami #trysomethingnew #dolphinmating #biscaynebay #northbayvillage #miamilife #outdoorsmiami #wateradventures
Enjoy the beautiful weather and serene waters of Miami with our paddleboard lessons. Whether you’re a beginner looking to learn the basics or an experienced paddler wanting to improve your skills, our instructors are here to help and make your experience a memorable one. 
SIGN UP ON BIO ⬆️

#Paddleboarding #OutdoorFun #wateractivities #summervibes #ExploreNature #grouplessons #waterfitness #fitnessmiami #dateideas #groupactivities #paddleboardlessons #supclasses #wateradventures #biscaynebay