So, yesterday my husband did a hike up the back side of Mt. Peak, “The Easy Side” according to some teenage girl who I realize now, was probably trying to impress her boyfriend. It was like Mt. Si DOUBLED.
Ok, the first part was “easy” in that it was a straight-up gravel road, then I entered the “HARD” part, many times climbing up rock sections, hands and feet on the ground…which was RIGHT IN FRONT OF MY FACE. That’s how steep it was. Did I mention the mud? It was muddy. That makes it slick.
It took an hour to get to the top. An hour of straight climbing. It took 45 minutes to come back down and as it was completely impossible for me to go back down the way I came (it was too slick, too muddy and there were too few footholds), I had to go down a slightly different path. And I fell. Hard. I missed one small foothold and fell so hard on that muddy path. I was quite sure I’d broken half of the bones in my body, but no, my ample butt and my already injured shoulder took the brunt of that fall.
As I scrambled to my feet, inches from the edge of the trail, which plummeted almost one mile down the side of the mountain, I though…you know what? This action is NOT FUN.
Seriously, none of it was “fun”, not like running is fun for me. I haven’t run at all for 3 weeks because I’ve been doing this mountainy-climbing hiking. As I went back down that trail, one muddy, slippery footstep at a time, I thought a lot about it. It’s just not for me. I don’t enjoy danger, I don’t enjoy challenging myself with crazy-hard activities. Not like my husband does.
While I was doing my hike, what did he do? He went up the mountain and then down to the other side, then BACK UP THE MOUNTAIN and back down to the other side, then went and got the pickup and came around to my side to pick me up. And he loved every single second of it. In fact he RAN down the mountain, mud, roots, stumps and all…thousands of them. He just loves it.
Yesterday I realized that this is one of those “things” that I was going to watch out for that make me hang back about doing exercise and eating well. I vowed to myself that I was going to keep an eye out for the things that I was doing because I “should” or because it’s “good for you” and promised myself that if I ever felt pressed to the wall by something that I was going to look hard at the situation and find what WOULD work best for me. This is one of those things and I’ve decided it’s more stress and not-fun than it is good for me. I adore hiking. I love it just about more than anything except running, but I don’t like this climbing-up-hard-mountains-stuff. Running is a cake walk compared to this.
Today I’m going out for a run and I can’t wait. Today my husband is going to go climb “Mailbox”, which is what people around Seattle climb when they’re training to climb Mount Rainier. It’s so hard, that there’s a sign at the trail head stating that fact over and over again so that you GET that it’s HARD before you start. He’s giddy with excitement over it. That’s where we differ and I accept that now.
We’re still going hiking together, but when Jeff wants to summit something, he can just jolly well do it on his own. However, I AM open to doing Mt. Peak again, just to the point where I get to the first peak, which is where I took the amazing picture at the starting of this post. There was no mud, no rocks, no roots up to that point. It was very hard, very challenging and straight up, but it was SAFE.
So, this weekend, we’re going to drive up to Mt. Rainier and hike together. We’re going to find a challenging hike that’s not something an Olympian would do, and we’re going to enjoy a good, long hike. And I’m ok with that.
That’s why everyone calls this a “weight loss journey”, because there is so much to learn about yourself, so many challenges to face, so many decisions to be made and so much growing to do.