Saturday, August 9, 2014

Squaw Valley to Granite Chief

Gasp... Breath... Huff... Puff... te-thump... te-thump... te-thump... te-thump... Gasp... Breath... Huff... Puff... It's only... been... less than... a month... Gasp... Breath... and I am... already... I think I'll stop... te-thump... te-thump... te-thump... te-thump... and catch my breath...

I completed my JMT thru-hike about four weeks ago and I am already back to day-hiker condition. Four weeks ago I could crank out twenty miles above ten thousand feet in a day and call it an 'easy' day. Now I sit at the summit of Granite Chief in Squaw Valley after a gasping climb with a six pound pack and lament the effort required.

It is amazing how fast the human body reverts back to jelly roll status once you cease to discipline it with aerobic exercise and weight training. It's been a long time since I have done anything close to exertion. My body is complaining in all of the ways it does when it thinks it's best interest is to sit on a coach eating snacks and watching TV. My right knee creaks at every step. My left hip threatens to revolt if I take too large of a step. My heart pounds in my ears and threatens to explode. Ending the hike in a dramatic and final way.

Since I've been back home there have been countless people who have said, "I could never do that" when I tell them about my hike. Right now I feel like saying the same thing. Reality, of course, is always different the our feelings and perceptions. If you live with your feelings as your guide you'd never do anything to risk the delusion that who you think you are right know is really who you are.

The Journey, baby, it's the journey! Life is like a journey. You're either moving down the trail, or collapsed in a whimpering heap listening to your feelings. Walking itself is the best cure to the pain of walking. So what if my speed today is three-quarters of what it was. At least I am moving.

The last month has been my 'recovery' month. It's a way to justify my coach potato behavior. Today is pay-back, I get to feel the full-weight of my lazy behavior. I can see how one month can quickly become two, two can become a year, it wouldn't be long till I would be gasping for breath to climb the stairs to my bedroom. 

I really need a goal out in front of me that makes regular exercise something that I look forward to doing. Even though a PCT hike from Mexico to Canada is on my bucket list. It feels like it is so far away that it isn't really a goal at this point.

Life is like that. I need specific goals to keep myself focused on the things that are important.

No comments:

Post a Comment