Thursday, January 22, 2015

Kalalua Trail training: Hike #1

As I highlighted in my "looking forward" post for 2015, in August, Ryan and I will be backpacking the Kalalua trail.

To a seasoned backpacker, this may be a walk in the park. But for me, this is a big challenge!! It is listed as one of the top 10 most dangerous hikes in the world.

What it will entail:

Hiking 11 miles through mountains, hugging a cliff, through rainforests to a beach. This is described as "difficult" terrain with steep inclines and sharp cliffs. If you lose balance and fall off that cliff, you will most likely die. If hiking those 11 miles in isn't enough challenge, try it with 30 pounds on your back.

Then we will camp overnight on a secluded beach. Wake up on the morning of our 6 year Anniversary (awwww), and then do the 11 mile hike all over again.

(I anticipate there will be many mai tai's consumed the night we complete this, and arrive to our hotel. And I've already been warned about this incredible dive-of-a-burger-joint in Kauai we need to hit up afterwards. My mouth already waters....)

Our Training:

So let's just say, we have decided to train for this one. ;) Our schedules are insane and don't really match. After Feburary 1, Ryan works 21 days straight. So finding time to do a 5 hour hike is tricky. So our goal is to do at least 1 big hike carrying weight per month.

*Remember 5-6 days/week we are running, biking, lifting weights. So it's not like we are sedentary.

During the week when we cannot hike, we will use the stair-mill at the gym. That best assimilates hiking.

In May, we are hoping to do a "test run" and backpack the Grand Canyon. Oh darn. ;)

Our 1st training hike:

We did a hike called "Phoneline Trail" - which was a 8 mile out-and-back. It was good practice. Steep enough to make your legs burn. For about 6 miles of it, you are essentially walking along the wall of a canyon.

I plan to gradually increase how much weight I carry - just like you would increase milage while training for a marathon. So I carried 12 pounds on my back.

12 pounds really isn't much, but I will say when you're trying to push up an incline, or pick up the pace: you feel it!

It was a beautiful hike, and the miles few by! We stayed to our goal, which was around 20 min/mile.

Ryan is a "bit" more brave than I. This picture doesn't do justice, but he climbed up a wall to pose for this! He felt on top of the world.

The views on this trail on un-believable! That canyon wall is my favorite. Especially in the summer months, because it blocks that brutal sun! ;)
Our next hike:
We will be going out on February 1 for an 8-10 miler again. This time I'm going to carry 20 pounds, and I'm actually going to wear my Osprey backpack.
If you saw the movie or read the book "Wild", you may remember her bruises. This is a true phenomenon. When we did our Black River trip last May, I had some mad bruises on my hips afterwards.
So this time, I'm going to train to find the "hot spots" on my pack - and hopefully have REI help me out with them before our trip!
**speaking of Wild, I freaking loved that movie!! I know there were some mixed reviews. Maybe it's because I love backpacking so much. It is close to my heart.
I am getting excited! We have our tickets book, and our trip all mapped out!!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015


I am very content with life right now, but I have to stay it's been pretty "simple". Which I kind of planned purposely my 1st weeks of January to really get organized and balanced. Plus we have a puppy at home, so when we are not working -- we've really tried to stay at home.....

So due to my list of "interesting stuff", here is my "Currently post" for the winter!

Reading: I am currently reading "The Kitchen House", which I am having a very difficult time really enjoying. It's a good book, but it seems to be moving slow. Or I'm just moving slow. One of the two...


Frustrated: That I don't have a weekend off until February 20.

Feeling: At this moment, nostalgic. I'm helping my friend plan her music for her wedding in October. She had asked me what my processional song was, so while I was digging through my old "wedding stuff", I happened to pull out my wedding video. And 1 hour later, I found myself drinking a diet coke on the floor of our spare bedroom, computer in my lap, sobbing and blubbering like a sap watching my wedding! I can't believe we've been married 5.5 years. And I cannot believe how young we were!!!

Anticipating: My next Ragnar race! We are doing one in February in Phoenix (Del Sol). Ryan and I are the team captains this time, so lots of planning is involved. We have such a fun team, so it should be a great time!

Watching: American Sniper. We went to that last night in the theater for date night. Highly recommend it!! Bradley Cooper is not only dreamy, but shaping into an incredible actor. It was one of those movies where the entire audience exited in silence......

Sad: That Ryan left for Ohio today. Especially since he gets to meet up with his sister and our nieces/nephews, and then some of our friends from pilot school! Sometimes I get mildly jealous watching him getting to travel somewhere different every 2 weeks. Especially when he gets to see friends and family, and I'm stuck here. (That being said, I know when he travels it makes for very long days/weeks!)

Working: Hard! Winter brings a very busy time to the hospital! Most days lately, I find myself saying multiple times daily, "Where do all these sick people come from?! How can there be so many of them?? Won't we hit a point where eventually everyone's knees & hips will be replaced? Why won't these people stop falling down and breaking their hips, and then getting pneumonia?!" (Sometimes healthcare providers need to find humor in what we do...Please don't think we're cold.)

Grateful: For our winter weather! It is January 20, and is 75 degrees out today. My early morning run, is a perfect 40 degrees. I love this time of year.

Listening: To a new Pandora radio station called "The Piano Guys". It has a lot of strings music, but to modern music. It's fun music to cook to! (because you can sing along)

Wishing: That I had a crystal ball that would tell me that the decisions I'm making are right or wrong. But life would be boring then.....