Gandalf is not too concerned with those who cant keep up #LOTR #impressions #Gandalf #hiking #notallwhowanderarelost

My Rocky Mountain NSV

In 2008, Jeremy and I went on a camping trip to Rocky Mountain National Park. We did some day hikes and “car camping,” but for one night we backpacked deep into the woods for an overnight stay. That was really rough on me. The altitude is no joke and the hike was long and steep. I wasn’t in great shape at the time. I think I might have been an “occasional elliptical machine user,” but that was about it. Jeremy, who wasn’t a runner at the time but has always been naturally athletic, flew ahead of me on the trail and had to keep stopping to wait for me. He was patient as always, but I slowed us way, way down.  At one point, I became so overwhelmed with exhaustion that I had a panic attack. I started crying and heaving, unable to catch my breath. It was scary! Once Jeremy was able to calm me down, we continued the hike but I’ll never forget that moment.

Last weekend we weren’t able to do a long backpacking adventure, but we did get up into the mountains for a hike. It can’t completely compare because I wasn’t wearing a pack, but man what a different experience it was for me. I scrambled up the path with ease, taking large strides. My legs felt strong as I stepped up on rocks and the “stairs” that were built into the path. I felt my heart pounding away, but it was invigorating and not scary. My lungs brought in deep breaths of mountain air without panting. I hiked with a smile on my face and joy in my heart. We even jogged/skipped/hopped our way back down in our heavy hiking boots as we were trying to beat the rain.

And the best part? I led Jeremy up the path and he even admitted at one point that I was handling the exertion better than he was. I felt such a rush of pride when he said that. And I knew it was true! *girl power* :)

I am 7 years older than I was on that first trip, but I feel younger. My stamina, energy and overall health has increased 10-fold. And that is ALL, without a doubt, thanks to Zumba. Don’t you ever tell me that Zumba is inferior or “not a real workout.” ;)  I talk to my students about the interval training we do in Zumba a lot - we take our heart rates high then bring them back down and repeat - and I’m here to tell you that it has benefited me! It has improved my endurance, strength and stamina! I already knew it was true, but it took a trip to my favorite mountains to reveal just how far I’ve come. Talk about an NSV!!

Good Morning from Scotland 

Sgurr Eilde Mor by Sven
Via Flickr:
and its wee Coire an Lochain in front. I was walking up Beinnein Mor when passing this place. I remember it from two years ago, but then the weather was quite miserable. This time the weather was much more inviting and Bert and I decided to have a rest, watch the light change and listen to the wind.