Sunday, May 29, 2016

Practice hike

For the last 8 months I've been walking long stretches (5-7 miles) every day. I listen to a book on my Audible app. I've gone through a lot of books but the ones that I'm listening to right now are about hiking the Appalachian Trail.

I find that my life is so busy that I actually have a hard time staying focused on reading but listening to audiobooks gives me the ability to finish a book. It's also sort of like meditation.

As my walk has gotten longer and longer I've started running simply to try to shorten the amount of time that I'm out exercising. It's hard to devote two hours in the morning or anytime during the day to a workout.

After reading all of these books about hiking the Appalachian Trail I decided to do a little bit of hiking locally. I'm about a 150 miles away from the nearest entry point to the Appalachian Trail.

So I went out this weekend and a little bit last week and hiked a 1 mile trail at a local park. The pictures that I'm going to present are from that hike and from one that I did yesterday with my daughter.

I'm not sure why , but hiking is much more intense then straight out walking or my sloe jogging on local roads. And let me say that when I'm walking here in town I'm going up and down some very big hills. But something about hiking is different.

I only hiked 4 miles yesterday, but today I am sore in my legs and in my knees so I'm calling it a rest day even though I had a rest day three days ago. I put in over twenty thousand steps yesterday according to my Fitbit and I'm feeling it this morning.

The spring weather is on seasonably hot, hitting over 90 degrees yesterday. my right thigh is throbbing and my recent * broken elbow is hurting again.

The canopy of green that surrounded me at Lion's Park was amazing.  If not for the huge hill that one has to go down to get TO the park,  I'd be there right now.

It's a heavenly mile in the woods.  There's so much to see that the eye can't take it all in. I find that I'm focusing on my feet a lot and missing the forest.

The other trails at Boyce Park are less shaded and the path is rougher and skinnier, side to side. The paths there are crossed by other trails and it's easy to lose the path. We had to backtrack a couple of times.

Since I'm new to this,  and since it was 90 degrees and we each had only one 16 oz bottle of water, I didn't want to risk getting lost.

We stop by afterwards to get some dinner in a restaurant and while I was waiting for the waitress to come by I felt a tickle on my left arm. I looked over and it was a very small tick crawling along my arm. I was able to dispose of it and hopefully that will be the end of that.

I know that there are several things that we need to do to hike effectively:

We need to dress better to cover the skin to avoid ticks.

We need to take more water and if we take a granola bar we should not take ones that contain chocolate which made a very melty mess.

Although we had maps,  we need a compass and we need to learn how to use it effectively. It is silly to rely on a telephone when many areas do not have phone service even this little wooded area which is inside a large Metropolitan area. It would be very easy to get lost in a dead zone.

* I've been given clearance by my doctor to resume activity after breaking my radial head and my right arm. I'm not in a cast because this type of injury heals better if a person continues to extend their range of motion. If it is cast it can freeze up.

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