Mooresville man trains for epic paddleboarding trip for a good cause

MOORESVILLE, NC (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — A Mooresville man is training for the trip of his life, not by boat or plane, but by paddleboard.

On June 26, Gabe Barajas will paddle from Bimini, Bahamas to Lake Worth, Florida. It’s an 80-mile journey to raise funds for cystic fibrosis. He will paddle against the Gulf Stream.

“I go out [on Lake Norman] at three o’clock [in the morning] give me enough time to do what I need to do on the water, have time on the board. And then I go to the gym and try to do resistance training and cardio on top of all that before I have to work full time,” Barajas said of his workout regimen.

Besides training for the race, Barajas says spending time on the water is how he likes to clear his mind.

“Mother nature has a way of being my own therapist. It allows my mind to wander and think about a lot of things,” he said.


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Barajas says his goal is to complete the 80 miles in under 16 hours. Support boats will follow him throughout his journey to help him with navigation and nutrition. He will paddle alongside more than 100 others from across the country in a race known as The Crossing for Cystic Fibrosis through a charity called Piper’s Angels.

“I just felt obligated from father to father to help someone else,” Barajas said. “It’s definitely mental work, but I was a Marine and I’m kind of used to having that mental toughness.”

In his training, Barajas paddled along Lake Norman from Statesville to Huntersville. It’s about 30 miles. But he says his trip in June will be very different, as he will be paddling in the ocean where the water is not calm.

“For me, it’s not about the race. It’s about the journey and who you meet along the way,” he said.

On Saturday, April 23, Barajas raises funds for Cystic Fibrosis at Davidson Provision Co. from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. The Farmer’s Market and Davidson Art Crawl will be running at the same time.

If you want to follow his journey, Barajas encourages you to follow his Facebook page where he posts updates on his training or donate on his fundraising page.

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