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31 August 2011 @ 12:35 am
 
I'm not sure how this has happened, but I've put on a significant amount of weight in the last several weeks. I suspect it's due to forced inactivity due to the grueling heatwave, followed hard on by my flu/bronchitis/relapse. My voice is still dodgy at best. Can't quite shake the congestion. Energy levels are about 75% at best. Oh, and I've been eating very VERY badly.

On second glance, I've got an excellent idea how this happened. In any event, this will not stand. I've got to get back into my usual routine. What happened to teaching two classes a day AND jogging four miles AND hiking or roller blading?

Yesterday, I taught in the morning and then went for a very slow and pathetic two mile 'run.' Today, I ended up teaching a late kickboxing class after having gone for an hour and a half hike. I would've gone further, but... wait. Let me back up a bit here. I had every intention of taking my usual route (up The Stairs, over the hill and down to the stream, then back again). Problem is, so many roads are still flooded or blocked by fallen trees or simply no longer there (Irene kicked my county's ass) that I couldn't get to that spur of the AT. I'm not even sure the trail is passable. We shall see. Anyway, I headed in the other direction to pick up a different section by Ice Cream As Big As Your Head, aka the Bellvale Creamery. Since I'd never hiked that spot, I was delighted to find it the terrain hilly but pleasant.

UNTIL.

After about forty minutes of hiking, I came to a hilltop of bare rock. The white trail blazes were painted along the craggy surface, well above the tree line. My heart started racing. I am not good with heights. I get dizzy, and with that goes my balance. Striding along uneven boulders? Not my favorite. Still, I decided to give it a go. I scrambled along, sometimes on all fours and, at one point, scooting along on my butt. Pride wasn't high on my list at that moment. I was feeling rather proud that I'd made it that far.

UNTIL. AGAIN.

The white trail marks slashed confidently along a thin ridge of stone, a handspan wide. My fingertips tingled. My heartbeat tripled. "F this S," I said aloud. Yes, I know: people hike this all the time. Weary travellers, exhausted from the journey that began hundreds of miles to the south, laden with packs at least half of their own body weight, navigate that rocky spine and continue blithely on. But here I was, carrying only a bottle of water and a cell phone and my paralyzing fear. I couldn't do it. I will say that my first thought was, "Not while I'm hiking alone." I was already freaked out and unsteady and no one knew where I was. I turned around, scrambled breathlessly back over the craggy rocks and hauled my sorry butt back to the trail head.

Now I'm feeling a bit of a wuss. Mind, my heart races just thinking about that moment, but still... I should be stronger than that. Braver. Cooler.

There are two plans of action here. 1 - I go back with a fellow hiker and power through it, even if I have to do the butt-scoot across that damned ridge. 2 - I go back on my own, having told my sweetie where I'll be, and ABSOLUTELY butt-scoot. Oooh! I just thought of a third plan - get vanilla-Twix ice cream at the Creamery, sit on a bench and gaze toward the trail in a haze of sugar and ennui.
 
 
 
Kerry: Mad burn myselfscreamingdolai on August 31st, 2011 04:53 am (UTC)
I just bought my first size 16 pants. You are skinny.
el diablo roboticoplatypus on August 31st, 2011 05:54 am (UTC)
When I've gotta but-scoot down a steep bit of trail, I do it without shame. Okay, with minimal shame. If I try to stay on my feet, I will either (a) take half an hour to get down the steep bit or (b) fail and break a bone anyway. I'm less of a wuss than I used to be, but I'm still a pretty big wuss.
La Petite Souris Scientifiquemelebeth on August 31st, 2011 10:34 am (UTC)
I also gained a disturbing amount of weight over the past few weeks and it hadn't occurred to me why until you laid out your reasons. Mine are, in retrospect, similar : heat related inactivity, health stress, and crappy heat related food choices (in the summer I drink way too freaking much sweetened stuff). Fortunately I have a mini plan for getting back on track. Hopefully it will work.
awomanthatsblueawomanthatsblue on August 31st, 2011 01:17 pm (UTC)
You sound sensible to me--you don't want to end up a tragic headline about the Dangers of Hiking Alone. Go back with a friend, and butt-scoot all you want. :)

Phoenix Risingmynock25 on September 4th, 2011 11:51 pm (UTC)
You are not a wuss... You made a very smart decision. Going back with someone, or after telling someone where you'll be is a very good idea.