Row Across the Atlantic? Anything for the Veterans.
What was your New Year’s resolution? You know, that thing that you said you’d do ages ago that now seems like a faint sheen atop an oil barrel of “I’ll do it next year.” Yeah, that’s the one. Well, if you needed motivation consider this: Bostonian Bryan Fuller has just cleared the last financial hurdle of his dream to set a new record time for a transatlantic rowing.
On or around February 14, Fuller and seven other men will depart from the Spanish isles with 30 days worth of food and 2,950 miles of open ocean to their destination in Barbados. If it all goes according to plan — and considering the experience level most of the crew (Fuller himself is actually pretty light on ocean-rowing experience), it should — they’ll row in shifts all day and all night and outpace the current world record, which is 32 days. You can track his progress here.
As we outlined in a story about Fuller in January, he’s a veteran of the U.S. Army who served in Bosnia. Part of his goal (in addition to the whole world-record thing) is to bring some attention to the plight of returning veterans, who may find themselves without translatable job skills but with a strong sense of isolation. He’s been training with Community Rowing, Inc.‘s Veterans Rowing program, which helps give vets a sense of camaraderie, teamwork, and shared purpose by having them all row together. The Adaptive Rowing program even has some boats with special mods that allow injured veterans to take part.
In all, Community Rowing has some 2,000 veterans who take part in the program, ranging in age from 23 to 90. Fuller said one of his goals is to enter a competitive team of veterans into the Head of the Charles Regatta.
So far, he’s raised $25,000, which covers his entry fees, use of a brand-new boat, food, and other equipment for the world-record transatlantic rowing attempt. Anyone who wants to donate to Fuller’s effort (airfare doesn’t pay for itself, right?) should go here.
What’s this have to do with New Year’s resolutions? When it seems too cold out for exercise (plug: check out our fitness package, Body by Boston, here) or that danish seems too tempting, just channel your inner Fuller. You don’t need to set a world record to do something great.