|My legs say, "Bring on the climb! We're not tired yet!"|
One month into the New Year, and after building up by hiking more miles each week, I've almost accomplished my first goal for the year. This was much farther than the 13 mile maximum I'd been stuck on. What a surprise that I could do it, not even be all that tired (though this had more to do with the major endorphin rush I was on), and nearly kept up my regular pace of 2.5 miles per hour. The thing I learned is that I had convinced myself that I had a limit on what I could do that had no basis in reality.
Why twenty miles? When I set out, I didn't have a reason behind it. Why do I need more stamina when I'm no longer long-distance hiking anytime soon? Sitting around after hiking with the Dames recently, I was surrounded by women passing around the ibuprofen, recovering from injury, or putting themselves out there by hiking with the group for the first time. I couldn't remember the last hike I'd gone much beyond my comfort level. I needed a goal and a challenge.
I'd also been telling myself that I didn't want to push myself on solo hikes. This is a big mental thing for me because we are always told how much safer it is in a group. When I am solo, I don't let myself get too tired. My fear was that if I ran into a dangerous situation, that I didn't want to be so tired that I'd have reduced mental capacity (which does sometimes happen to me when I'm tired). Moving beyond that mental block and trusting myself was far harder than doing the miles for me.
Next, I'm going for the big TWO-OH. And who knows how far I can go after that!