Happy New Year, everyone! How many of you are making resolutions? Or at least thinking over what improvements you would like to make in your lives? Me too....
I just emailed the Sierra Club for brochures about this trip:
I'm a member, and keep the magazine in the "throne room" for a little light reading. But something fundamental changed for me over the last couple of days. Or should I say... "returned"?
[There will be photos later in this post, please bear with me....]
The setting of my vision on something I want to accomplish for myself. Many things I tend to waffle over, debating with myself whether it's what I should do/have. A lot gets put off for lack of time, money, physical ability, or for family considerations. But sometimes... I just know. The seismic shift between "I would love to do that someday" to "I'm going to do that, asap". The vague desire becomes a seemingly instant decision. But it's not, really... it's the self-knowledge to see in front of me what has been floating in the back of my mind, sometimes for years....
This looks like exactly the sort of trip I would love. Kayaking in a completely foreign place like Vietnam... *wistful sigh*. And I would finally get to deflower my "married name" passport!
What do I need to be able to do to be fit enough for this trip? So far, I figure:
1. Be able to walk for hours at a time, over rough terrain.
2. Be able to paddle for hours at a time.
3. Be nimble enough to climb around in caves.
4. Bicycle over rough terrain, I suspect including hills.
5. Keep up with the others.
6. While wearing my gear in a heavy backpack, I imagine....
Here's the rub: I am not in the physical condition I need to be in order to do these things. YET. I keep reading that people tend to be more successful in their outcome if they aim at a specific goal, rather than nebulous ones like "I want to be thinner, in better shape, etc." Before his current medical crisis, Hubby had been saying that he wanted to train for the "Tough Mudder" race.
I have zero interest in doing that myself. But I will train hard to get ready for this trip to Vietnam. I'm the only one working now, and I don't know what the money situation will be this year. Or next. I don't know whether Hubby would be in any condition to accompany me. But I'm not going to worry about that now. I will get my body ready to handle the physicality of the trip... and deal with the practical stuff as it comes.
On New Year's Day 2001, I boarded a plane to Australia to begin my foreign study. I traveled around SE Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, and stopped over in Fiji for a few days on my way home. It was the only time where the money, time, and physical ability came together for me. I had been dreaming of foreign study and international travel since... forever.... My family didn't have to means to send me in high school. I couldn't go in college because I was too disabled following a motorcycle accident. I seized my last chance to fulfill this long-held dream at age 28, when I was in law school.
I was not at my slimmest, or even in my best physical condition. I was at an average fitness level, size 14, and determined to get the most out of my experience. I think that I could have done the Vietnam trip then... although it would have been difficult for me. But I felt a certain physical confidence, which I now haven't had in years. That is what I want to get back!
So I went into my scrapbook, and decided use my photos as an emotional reminder of my former confidence in my body's ability to meet my goals. These are all from 2001:
I thought I looked fat in the kangaroo photo. I could slap myself!
Australia is where I adopted the board shorts in lieu of bikini bottoms look. The women's sets in the shops didn't fit my disproportionately-large thighs, so I bought men's shorts and a separate bathing suit top. The top eventually bit the dust, but the shorts live on in my basement.
Sorry for the hazy photo quality... these are phone shots of actual 35mm film photos in my scrapbook.
Abseiling and caving in New Zealand:
Just about to go swimming with dolphins:
I got the front seat! Ah... the benefits of travelling alone :)
All my Thailand pics kind of suck... I got ripped off when I bought a disposable 35mm camera in Bangkok. Very few of the photos turned out at all. But I really wanted to show this adorable skirt and top I loved wearing. They are still in my basement! I loved it so much, I even set aside my usual hatred of cankle exposure:
I walked and walked and walked... I was constantly moving, exploring... and so very happy and comfortable in my own skin. Did I want to be slimmer, have better legs? Sure! But I could rely on my body to carry me into my adventures. If someone dropped three grand into my lap tomorrow... I couldn't register for the Vietnam trip because I don't have the current fitness level to be able to push myself that far.
So the way I see it... my goal is to ready my body. So that if the money and time fall into place, my body won't fail me.
Hubby thinks I should do a separate, invite-only training blog. I'm a bit nervous, putting weight, measurement, fitness stats, and particularly the extremely unflattering "before" photos out there. Especially before I have my "after" photos, and I'm still living in the "before" body! I could use some input as to whether this would be helpful....
If you would be willing to go on such a blog and nudge me, let me know!