Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Going Home

Good morning!

Yesterday I got outside and walked the circumference of my apartment complex.  It was really nice outside yesterday, around 68 degrees F.  Today it's down in the 40s but I happen to love winter and its weather so I don't mind one bit!  Today I am walking to Target and back.  Tomorrow I will going back to the gym and the treadmill.  I think I will start my strength training tomorrow also.  I enjoy the weight machines in the gym and I feel SO much better when I work out.

I woke up feeling rested and halfway decent this morning!  I'm surprised  because I normally stumble to the kitchen with one eye open, hit the start button on my Mr Coffee, and grab a diet soda and the ibuprofen right away.  I think - no I know - I'm getting in shape.  My body is thanking me for doing this.  I feel ashamed that I literally layed around for a year and got fat and flabby, not to mention depressed.  I'm sure I'd be in a lot better shape all around if I had done this last year but ya know what?  I refuse to be sucked down into the mistakes of the past!  I'm doing this NOW and I'm taking care of me NOW and that is what I need to keep focusing on.

Some times it just doesn't seem real that I'm going to do this.  I look at all the youtube videos on thru-hiking the AT and it's all so beautiful but it's ... surreal.  I can see myself at the overlooks and on the trails but only because I used to live practically IN Shenandoah National Park.  I know I'll be there again but my it's just like watching a movie on TV...

It's true what they say about not knowing or appreciating what you have until it's gone.  I always knew Virginia was a wonderful, beautiful, and historically rich area, but I took a lot for granted too.  The Appalachian culture, from which I am descended, is rich and beautiful in its own way.  It's a unique way of life that I am so proud of now.  I went through life just assuming everyone knew what it meant when I said, "I'd stretch a mile if I didn't have to walk back" and other little things.  Some people have never had homemade apple butter or seen a Mennonite buggy.  Others have never know what it's like to wake up with the sun blazing over a mountain, a river, or a forest with squirrels scampering thru the trees and across the electric wires.  Some have never sat around an open fire roasting hot dogs on sticks and drinking a beer with friends.  I took this way of life for granted.  I didn't think it was a big part of me.  I was wrong.  Very very wrong.  Hiking the AT is like going home for me.  It's in my blood.  It's part of my soul.

VIRGINIA'S FALL COLOR EXPLOSION

APPALACHIAN AUTUMN

THE AT THRU VIRGINIA AND SHENANDOAH NATIONAL PARK
CLICK TO ENLARGE


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