On April 4, 2017, I went on my first real hike at a state park. I went with my mom, my friend, and three dogs. We had no idea what we were doing. Not even close. We didn’t even know that we needed to pay a few dollars for a day pass.
Technically, this wasn’t really what you would call a “hike”. It was more of a short walk. It took more time to get all three dogs out of the car than it did to actually walk this trail. And I wouldn’t even call it a trail either. We looked like total newbies. I remember we went exactly .75 miles. That’s right, not even a mile. I thought we were so cool for going on a “hike” and being “adventurous”.
This experience, though, was just the beginning for me. Little did I know that I would actually turn out to be a legit hiker. Over the next few months, I had opportunities to go back to this state park. I took a different buddy with me this time. Someone who was a more experienced hiker and outdoorsy person.
They knew that I had athletic ability, but that I was out of shape. So, instead of hopping on a trail and doing the whole thing, we would get on a trail and hike for about 15 minutes, and then we would turn around. I was really slow, and I would huff and puff even when I was walking on flat ground. This was what my life looked like for a few months.
Overtime, I got stronger and faster. I was starting to be able to keep up and not get tired as quickly. So, 15 minutes turned into 30 minutes, and 30 minutes turned into full trails. And, before you know it, I was able to complete a 6.5 mile trail!
Summer 2018 rolled around, and I became like a hiking queen. I hiked almost every day of the week. I was getting stronger and was able to push myself more. Still, the highest mileage I had completed was a 6.5 or 7 mile hike. But it wouldn’t stay that way.
On December 3, 2018, I completed my first (and only) 10 mile hike. I was so proud of my accomplishment, and I still am! There’s just something about achieving things you didn’t know you were really trying to do. Because of all of the work i had put in, and the appreciation of nature I had gathered from hiking, I decided to make an Instagram for hiking. I use it to document my adventures.
My current hiking adventure I began in January of this year. I decided to start the #journeyto100 challenge. It’s a challenge that encourages women to get out and hit the trails at least 100 times in whatever amount of time you give yourself. Personally, I have given myself until the end of the year, but I am hopeful that I will finish before then.
As of April 7th, I have done 25 out of 100 hikes. Out of those 25 hikes, I have completed 80.8 miles. It has been so life changing for me. I look forward to hiking every week. It has become my therapy. I could never live without it. To me, all of the physical growth has been pretty subtle, so I tend to not give myself enough credit for the things I do accomplish. Looking back on these last 2 years has opened my eyes to see the change and to be proud of it. I can’t wait to see what else is in store.
If you want to follow along on my hiking journey, click here to see!
Do you hike? What’s your favorite thing about it?