I love hiking. There’s nothing that makes me feel more alive than being outdoors and connected to nature. This weekend was different. Hiking with a fully loaded pack is a completely different beast, one that threatens to tear the enjoyment out of the experience. For much of the hike, we were silent except for our labored breath, focused on the next step. When one ravine ascent was followed by yet another, I felt every bit the 45-year-old guy who on most days is just a few clicks over sedentary. My calves felt ready to explode, my hips and shoulders ached. The kid’s face held the expression of what we were both feeling. Pain. I stopped and looked at him and said, “You know what gutting through the burn feels like. It’s just like running the 400. You just have to convince yourself you can.”
We can do hard things.