Posts in inspiration
Quitter and Proud. On the Life-Saving Skill of Knowing When to Quit

I believe knowing when to stop, turn around, give up - is the most important skill any hiker or mountaineering can have. Writing into the culture of wrongly understood "motivation" can be deadly.

There is no shame in quitting. Anyone who says so has blood on their hands. As I already stated a few times, I find the ubiquitous "fitspiration" of "never give up" disgusting and dangerous.

But we are surrounded by the macho culture of winning, being the first to reach a “never before” place, be better than the other one, risking life to achieve some Big Goal.

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9 Ways to Tame Your (Solo) Hiking Fears: A Guide for Women

A lot of women who would like to go hiking, don’t do it because of fear. Sometimes it’s even hard to identify what exactly it is that scares them off - it’s just the generalized fear of Nature, hiking or camping solo or the unknown.

There is this anecdote asking how can a person lift a huge rock? The answer is: by breaking it into much smaller pieces and lifting each one separately, step by step. Same is with fear: when it’s unidentified, generalized fear of an idea, it’s hard to do anything about it, it’s paralyzing. But when you are able to name the particular source of anxiety, there is a chance we can work around it or with it.

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Pros and Cons of Hiking Solo

What does it really mean that you are alone? 

Before you head off to your first solo adventure, it's worth going through some pros and cons. I love hiking solo and am a big supporter of the idea. But it's best to be prepared and know what you are getting yourself into. Below are various possible cons and pros - they don't work that way for all but read them all to see if hiking solo is for you!

In the typical case of "good and bad news" I start with the cons:

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Hiking with Fibromyalgia: Benefits, Tips, and Recommendations

I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia some nine years ago. Unexplained pains, nothing on x-rays, and jumping reaction to the doctor pressing some well-chosen spots on my body. A well-known story to many who struggle with fibromyalgia and sometimes wait for years for a diagnosis.

I am lucky – my version of FM is pretty light. I could still work, take care of myself and generally, the disease did not mess too much with my life. My doctor told me about the importance of exercise and active lifestyle no matter the pain it could cause.

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The Scenic Route to Weight Loss: Hiking as a Weight Control Tool

I am a big fan of the “Healthy at Every Size” movement and support women of all sizes and fitness levels in the Outdoors. No weight loss is necessary before enjoying the wonderful benefits of hiking and camping.

But I know a lot of women do want to lose some weight and get in better shape. Myself included. I put some fat on and although I don’t think there's anything wrong with it, I would like to get back to my size from about a year ago – if only to fit my old clothes.

So if there are women out there who would like to get into a bit more athletic shape, let’s find the best, the most healthy and safe way to do it, right?

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Battling Crowds during a Mother-Daughter Long Weekend in Rome

Back in August, when I just came back from my fabulous travels to Quebec in Iceland, I was telling my Mom about the great time I had.

She listened and then told me, You go, my dear daughter, go and travel – for me, it’s too late, but you go!

That shocked me.

What did she mean it was too late for her? Did she really think there would be nothing of that kind in her life ever anymore?

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Hike Proud. Be Proud. You ARE Enough.

"Do it or die trying!" "Unless you puke, faint or die, keep going!" "Crawling is acceptable, falling is acceptable, puking is acceptable, crying is acceptable, blood is acceptable, pain is acceptable; quitting is not".

That kind of "fitspiration" messages circulate all over the web. In the visual version, they are generally accompanied by images of body parts of very slim and fit women. Sometimes the whole woman is seen - maybe bent after a hard run.

These kinds of words are supposed to inspire and motivate us to push harder. We are weak and lazy, we have to push ever more, hard and with no excuses.

Some of them also give reasoning why we are supposed to do it - "because I don't want to be anyone's fat ex" or "so you prove those who said you can't" or "because I prefer to be covered in sweat than in clothes at the beach". 

To me, they are terrifying. 

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Hiking Benefits - Scientific Reasons to Hit the Trails Today!

Hiking through beautiful landscapes is a reward in itself. But as if this was not enough there is a whole range of hiking benefits to serve our body, mind, and social relations.  

No matter the length or difficulty – all hikes bring benefits to the physical and mental health. Do what works for you – and hike your own hike. It can be 30 min before or after work, or a few weeks in the wilderness.

The benefits might vary – but they are all the lovely side effects of simply enjoying some time with Nature. 

Please remember, we are all different and we all have specific body needs.

If you have any health issues check with your doctor first before starting any kind of physical activity, and especially if you wish to do something more strenuous, like long hikes in mountainous terrain.

Let's stay safe, enjoy the Great Outdoors and reap the many benefits of hiking :)

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Just Leave Me Alone! How Hiking Solo Calms Social Anxiety

„Are you hiking all alone?” – An older gentleman asked me as I was making my way up the trail. I looked up and down and saw at least a dozen people in groups of two or more making the same trek as me.

I was hiking a very popular trail, on a long weekend which raised the number of hikers even more, and pretty close to the town.

Why is it, that a woman hiking by herself causes surprise and strange looks? I wonder what this gentleman would say If I told him I loved doing multi-day solo hiking and camping trips in much more remote areas.

I don’t have to wonder if he would ask the same question a solo man. I know he wouldn’t.

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We Belong There: Love Yourself and Hit the Trails, Ladies!

Is hiking only for the young, fit and healthy?

I have to make a confession. I used to be pretty fit. Daily workouts - in the beginning track and field, then martial arts and rock climbing.

I was in an awesome form!

But it was, like, high school ;-)

And now? I’m 40 year old in a month; I have fibromyalgia and haven’t been properly exercising in a long time. My back hurts sometimes and my knees are a bit off after overworking them last summer in Scotland.

Asthma, celiac disease and multiple allergies…

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