Skating Uphill - May 2024

Living a Healthy Lifestyle


“Never heard of Cole Brauer?
Well, you’re about to!”
– The Uphill Skater –

I usually write about research I do on new developments in foods or cutting-edge discoveries regarding health and nutrition. However, my research led me down a totally different path this month.

My husband, Bill, and I have been serious sailors for well over 20 years. As such, all things about or related to sailing interest me, but I certainly was not looking to find or write about a female sailor. My curious mind led me to seek information about the health benefits, or lack thereof, of dehydrated foods versus canned, frozen, or fresh. As my research deepened, somehow, I clicked and delved into the world of Cole Brauer, which had nothing to do with nutritional values of dehydrated foods! (Can you believe I got sidetracked on the Internet?)

Born in Long Island, and graduating high school in 2012, Cole Brauer attended the University of Hawaii where she learned to sail. She took to sailing instantly, and even though her major was nutritional science, she competed on the school's sailing race team, eventually becoming captain. After graduation, she moved to Boothbay, Maine, where she taught and raced with the Boothbay Harbor Yacht Club. She also worked as a sail hand, delivering boats to buyers all along the Atlantic Coast.

In June 2023, she and her co-skipper, Cat Chimney, won both legs of the 668-mile Bermuda One-Two race from Rhode Island to Bermuda and back. This is the equivalent of sailing to Hawaii from the West coast, which is pretty much a walk in the park, then turning around and sailing back, which is one of the most challenging sails around! Her most recent and biggest challenge was the one that brought her to my attention. She was the first woman to sail single-handedly around the world, nonstop. I repeat: Nonstop! 

She finished second in the 2023-2024 Global Solo Challenge on March 7, 2024, sailing a Class-40 boat named First Light that she fitted out herself. She also set a new around-the-world speed record for the class. She was the only woman and, at age 29, the youngest among the competitors. (Fun fact: Cole was by far also the shortest at 5-feet tall.) During the 130-day race, she cracked a rib, suffered extreme dehydration, and actually injected herself with IV fluids to keep herself going.

Now, what did she eat in all of this time, you may wonder? So, this is how I actually found her. Get this: She organized a regimen of dehydrated foods she developed pretty much herself. Cole designed the regimen for three meals and a snack each day. Remember, she never stopped her boat for 130 days! There was no stopping at a marina overnight to step out for a burger. Her meals were planned meticulously, and yes, it worked.

She taught herself another trick while in college. She mastered the art of what she called sleep cycling, where she could go to sleep almost at will and wake at will pretty much refreshed. This was a huge help when plotting courses, knowing when it was safe to go to automatic pilot to sleep, and when one had to remain on watch for hours on end.

Cole Brauer, as petite as she is, was asked if she had words to live by. She responded, "Any individual, no matter how 'small' or limited they might seem, can set and achieve goals well beyond imagination with the proper will." 

Are you inspired? I certainly am.

Visit blog for new recipes, daily thoughts and décor ideas. Also find reprints of Pink articles and shared comments. Blogging is fun and easy.

Judith Lawrenson is a former Hilton Head Island resident who has a huge heart and is loved by all who meet her. She has served and volunteered with numerous charitable organizations while living in the Lowcontry making an impact wherever she went. She and her husband recently moved to the wild hills of West Virginia to be closer to grandchildren. Judith is an avid sailor, a retired reading resource specialist, and a children's TV host whose local show originated from the Boys and Girls' Club. Judith is also a long-time seeker of healthy, happy living and a lifestyle dedicated to service to others, balanced with love of God and love of self. Check out her blog for fun info, recipes and nutrition ideas, current updates on nearly everything in the world, and lots of comments and opinions.

Though I do tons of research, and have done so for many years, I am not a doctor and I share only my opinions. I enjoy research and subscribe to several magazines and publications and read up on all new trends. I hope you do, too!


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