The aspect of the hiking I loved most was the exhilarating feeling of doing something out of my normal fitness routine with a reward so sweet when you get to the top.
I had the opportunity recently to travel to Phoenix for a long weekend with my fiancée. I had no idea how gorgeous the area is and how amazing the hikes are! I met up with my friends Kris and Mindy on Sunday morning and they took me out to the Superstition Mountains to Lost Dutchman State Park and hiked up and even beyond a point called Flat Iron.
The hike took us 5 hours round trip, and to say it was a “hike” is actually being mild in description. This beast is more like a climb. And to say there is a “trail” to follow is being extremely generous in description. Thank goodness Kris and Mindy have hiked it many times because there is no way an occasional white or blue dot on a rock was enough to guide me as a first-timer!
The views were absolutely stunning! Thank goodness I had a Camelback of water for hydration and Kris brought gels for me. When we started out that morning, I had no idea what was in store and those gels were absolutely necessary for the amount of energy I burned on that mountain!
Going down the mountain took me longer than I anticipated. I have a slight fear of heights, and climbing down and the fear of slipping kept me moving fairly cautiously.
Even though I run three times a week and strength train three times a week, I was still sore. Monday I woke up with some pretty sore quads and my upper back was also sore from using my arms so much on the climb.
Despite the soreness, John and I decided to run 2 miles over to Camelback mountain from where we were staying, climb up the mountain in time for the sunrise, hike back down and run back to the hotel. My legs were done, like really done by the end of that excursion. But again, the views were more than worth it, watching the sun come up over the entire city of Phoenix was breathtaking.
The aspect of the hiking I loved most was the exhilarating feeling of doing something out of my normal fitness routine with a reward so sweet when you get to the top. The oscillation of pushing yourself physically to get up the mountain and the relaxation and spiritual connection to nature when you get to the top and can appreciate God’s creations.
What have you done that’s out of your norm for fitness?