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The Perfect Fit — Getting Your Workout In While On Vacation at ‘Tween Waters

Olympics Beach Volleyball

I’ve really been working on myself this year, which includes working out each work day. So when it comes to vacation, I’ve made it my goal to not skip workouts. While ‘Tween Waters does have a beautiful fitness center located near the spa and free to use with any stay, it feels like a shame to walk on the treadmill when there’s so many fun ways to stay active while on vacation. So how do I get my work out in, and still have fun enjoying paradise?

Tennis: Tennis is a great aerobic workout and an even better way to enjoy the outdoors while still getting a pretty consistent aerobic exercise. Rent rackets and balls at the front desk or bring your own!

Beach Volleyball: Grab some friends and head to the beach for this seriously intense workout. If you dig into it, this can be a huge workout on your quads and even a little aerobic when you play a little three on three. Beach volleyballs are available at the front desk.

Walk or bike down the beach: ‘Tween Waters rents bikes by the marina that you can take on a nice ride along the miles and miles of road and pathways on Captiva Island (note: Captiva Island does NOT have sidewalks, so biking on the beach sometimes is safer and harder work! It’s also the reason they do not rent children’s bikes). If you’re not much of a biker, you can make the four mile trek there and back by foot to Blind Pass for the best shelling on either island.

Kayak or SUP: If you’re seeking to tighten that core, you’ll find kayaking or SUP (stand up paddle boarding) is the perfect fit. These balanced activities have your ab muscles tightening and contracting to keep you in place — and if you’re like me, crashing into the water with your lack of balance and trained muscles!

Lap swimming: Let’s not forget that ‘Tween Waters is home to an Olympic-size pool, perfect for early morning laps. The pool can get busy during the day, but as soon as it opens, it’s a great time to jump into position and get your laps in before the party begins. This is my kind of workout — both aerobic and low-impact — plus I can enjoy a cocktail from the Oasis Pool Bar after my workout.

Now that I’ve worked off some calories, it’s time to rest and relax, and then maybe earn some of those calories back at Crow’s Nest Bar & Grille or Old Captiva House! Yum!

 

 

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Manatee and Dolphin and Osprey, Oh My!

A visit to ‘Tween Waters Inn Island Resort & Spa is a chance to get up close and very personal with nature. And it took only one trip for me to discover a truth I’d have never otherwise known.

Manatees are smart-alecks.

Yes, they’re gently gigantic majestic sea cows and all the other lovable things you’ve heard, too. But when you’re a 45-year-old guy wedged into a kayak and armed with only an obsolete iPhone to document your interaction, they also know exactly when to surface while you’re still fumbling through your access code, and precisely when to submerge just as you’ve lined up the perfect shot.

Maybe it’s instinct.  Maybe it’s coincidence.  Or maybe, as I surely suspected by the end of a two-hour paddle-bearing dalliance in the waters surrounding Buck Key, maybe they’re all hovering just beneath the surface — readying for just the right moment to re-emerge, and have me miss another great image.

But regardless of their intent — and in all seriousness — it’s an experience not to be missed. I was part of a six-strong mix of vagabonds (two from Michigan, one each from New York and Ohio, a Naples resident and myself) for a 2.5-mile trek offered by Adventure Sea Kayak Wildlife Tours, bayside on the property.

Adventure Sea Kayak offers four tours daily —9 am and 1130 am, 2 pm and 4 pm, weather permitting — from $40 for adults down to $30 for kids 10 and under. Reservations are recommended and customized trips and rentals are available.

Our trip was led by amiable tour guide Bob, a self-professed Florida cracker who spends half his work week splashing around the Tween Waters Inn, and the other half shuttling between his home in Fort Myers and a gig at Cabbage Key.

The time on the water has served him well, because he barely missed a beat between getting this northern transplant into just the right vessel — a candy apple red Whistler with a foot-pedal operated rudder — and dazzling the half-dozen of us with a college-level refresher on the flora and fauna just a few paddles off the shore. We saw the aforementioned manatees, a dolphin whose dorsal had an unsatisfying meeting with a motorboat, and enough osprey, little blue heron and mullet to fill three seasons of Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom.

But just remember: if a good photo of manatees is what you’re after, you might have to endure some silliness to get it.

Lyle Fitzsimmons Innsider Kayak
Lyle Fitzsimmons Innsider Kayak 2
Lyle Fitzsimmons Innsider Kayak 3
Lyle Fitzsimmons Innsider Kayak 4

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