‘Each fresh peak ascended teaches something.’ — Sir Martin Convay
I am piling up clothes, shoes and supplies because I am about to pack a bag (several bags actually, because packing light is NOT one of my super powers…) and embark on an adventure.
An epic adventure that I’ve been working toward for the last 2 years. It’s cheesy to say, but it’s kind of a dream coming true moment for me. I leave in a matter of hours!
My heart beats a little faster when I get asked about it, I break out in a big-ass grin and I have been walking around randomly humming ‘Rocky Mountain High’ (Yes. I know it’s not just about the mountains. Save the jokes. But I am the girl who grew up listening to John Denver on vinyl… )
I have flown a TON for my work over the years. I worked mostly west of the Mississippi River – flying in and out of Portland Oregon. My flights commonly hubbed in Denver. We would soar over the Rockies coming into and out of that airport. I can remember thinking many, many times as I stared out the window at those incredible mountains…
I wonder what it looks like in those mountains? What is it like to actually be in those mountains?
How would it feel to climb up on one of those exposed ridges and feel like you could turn 360 degrees and see the ends of the earth?
At close to 400 pounds — looking out the window as we flew over the mountains ranges and simply wondering what the Rockies looked like was the extent of my connection to any of those fabled peaks for decades.
But life has a way of changing. 🙂
I don’t weigh 400 pounds anymore. I’m not a Type 2 Diabetic dragging along a Sharps container and pen needles. I don’t get winded and red-faced after walking half a mile. I’m active and healthy and damn it all… I WANT TO SEE THOSE MOUNTAINS. I want to KNOW those mountains. I want to walk in those mountains and breathe in that (thin!) air and just see what it looks like from the ground.
Not from the plexiglass window of an airplane.
So I am going to Colorado for a running event/race/camp.
I’m headed to the Transrockies Run. Kind of what it sounds like… It’s a 6-day running camp in the Rockies.
I am traveling with Spencer, Dave, Erica and Sean. And for 6 days we get to run, camp, make new friends and SEE, LEARN, RUN THOSE MOUNTAINS! 120 miles of those mountains. And about 20,000 feet of vertical climbing in and on and around the Rockies.
It’s epic. It’s scary. It’s exciting. I’ve never done anything like this in my life. Never thought I could ever do something like this in my life.
Oh… BUT I CAN NOW and you have no idea just how badly I WANT to…!
The old life I lived… I wouldn’t have been in shape to hike anything beyond the parking lot. I couldn’t sit in the car for 120 miles without being in extreme discomfort. I wouldn’t have fit in a sleeping bag. Sleeping on a sleeping pad, on the ground would be the recipe for never getting back up off the ground. I wouldn’t have trusted the camp to have enough of the sugary/fat/processed foods I was living on. I never would have fit in a portable shower stall…. Get the picture as to why I believed something like this would never, ever happen?!
But that’s not my reality anymore. 🙂
I’m really going to try to absorb and enjoy each moment. I intend to enjoy EACH and every single step I get to take in those fabled, rugged and spectacular mountains.
I have worked for 2 years, steadily, to get to the point where I feel I can run the mileage and handle the back-to-back-to-back running. I know I fit in my sleeping bag 🙂 and I’m totally OK with the food they will be serving.
It’s almost go time.
It’s time to meet those mountains with my very own feet.
We’ll fly over those mountains coming and going from Colorado. But on the trip home… This time… This time I’ll know as I stare out the window, I’ll know what those mountains actually look like from the ground.
Now I really have to get serious about packing… 🙂
‘The mountains are calling, and I must go.’ — John Muir