100 Ways of Fitness Day 45

Roses are red, you’re who I like. It’s a beautiful day, let’s take a hike!

Hiking in Washington has its pros and cons. Because everyone in the state enjoys it so much, there are literally hundreds of easy to find and get to hikes, most within an hour from Seattle. Chris and I could easily hike a different trail every week in a year and not even scratched the surface of all the possibilities. The problem is with hiking being a year round popular activity is thinking Valentine’s Day would prohibit folks from going hiking. That would be totally incorrect. Hiking on Valentine’s Day is ALMOST as popular as hiking the day before the Big Game when your team is playing (there were so many folks wearing their 12th Man shirts and even dressing their dogs in Seahawks bandanas or shirts. There was even a huge crowd of people at the summit with a 12th Man flag). So people here in Washington LOVE to be outside in nature. So if you go hiking on a weekend, there are going to be a TON of people, no matter what.

Today we went up to Bellingham area, to the Chuckanut mountains near the Puget Sound and hiked Fragrance Lake. It was a very enjoyable hike. Yeah, there were a few people around, more than I’d like to see. But it’s great to know I live in an area that has so many folks interested in connecting to nature.
I found one nerdy correlation in the wildlife we saw on our way up north while going through Skagit county. There were dozens of flocks of trumpeter swans in the fields. I know in some places these swans are threatened and they are protected in most areas, and I’ve heard that local farmers try to do their part to conserve the species, but on this annoyingly romantic day, I found it ironic that we were seeing them everywhere, and they are typically monogamous birds that mate for life. Say it with me “aaaaaawwweeee!” Actually, I’ve never heard a trumpeter swan before, but I’m pretty sure they go “hooooonnk”

I find it interesting that I love hiking, but the thought of getting out of bed, packing the backpack with snacks and driving “so far” is so unmotivating that I almost cancel nearly every time I plan a hike. Except once I’m there, it’s energizing, I feel connected, natural, and even tranquil (it’s odd that one of the more relaxing things I do is sweating and makings heart beat fast- I imagine most people would find that difficult to believe). I mean, it’s not meditation, but I am usually very much at peace in the woods.
This feeling is also connected to biking, morning workouts, swimming, and lunch time or bed time routine workouts (I try to work my glutes at lunch and foam roll/pilates in the evening). I don’t wanna! I don’t wanna! Don’t make me! I don’t wanna! Oh, this is fun. Why didn’t I want to do this? And I usually have a significantly great time. I mean, usually I see something that I find significant for me. Like the trumpeter swans today.

And hiking with Chris is great too. We were debating for a while on whether hiking is a great “new relationship” date, because I felt it was a more “long term relationship” date, but I think that has to do more with myself being deeply connected to nature, it being such a personal and almost sacred and spiritual thing for me, that I wouldn’t share it with someone unless I really enjoyed their company. But I have to concede that Chris was probably right, and as long as both parties are somewhat active, a hike is probably a perfect date (just no sex in the woods- don’t make me commentate on that).

So, how was everyone’s V-Day? Did you all do something that your heart will thank you for? Did you have a sweetie to do something with? Or did you simply take very good care of yourself, because you love yourself?

Have a great weekend, my friends!

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