It’s the Five-Month Countdown
Am I Doing This Right?
And so it begins…my journey to the Appalachian Trail. This is what’s going either to build me or break me; the preparation, the training, the laziness, the success, the whole nine yards. This is not only the start of walking the trail, this is the start of something so new; the start of a test I have never taken.
You never know what to expect when starting on the trail. To all the first-timers, it can be intimidating. You don’t know how to even begin training and preparing for something you assume is going to be intense, not only physically, but hand-in-hand mentally.
You go through videos and videos on Youtube as well as ask thousands of questions to anyone who has even stepped foot on the trail for a second. You even ask the old man who was just merely letting his dog out to go to the bathroom that happened to be 5 feet from the trail…close enough, right??
“How did you train??” “How did you prepare??”
Low and behold, you get a million different answers, not one the same. Literally. Not. One. The. Same.
So what do you do??
Nothing. You take all this given advice into consideration and start off your journey with a clean slate. Every single person on the trail is different. Everyone needs a different preparation method to help them succeed.
T-5 Months: This is Where I Stand
Over the last year, I myself too have done my research on ways to prep for the Appalachian Trail. I’ve heard everything from lifting weights in the gym, going out hiking as much as possible, running, eating a ton to gain the needed weight…all the way to something as simple as nothing.
So what should you do? What should I do?
It’s the 5 month countdown to the trail, and this is where things for me are going to get even more serious (disclaimer: Serious: adjective 1. Still downing 5 glasses of wine and a bag of Doritos after my “work out” that was actually just chasing my dog 1.5 miles down the street).
I begin by analyzing my fitness, my stamina, my health.
Looking into my kitchen, I’m very healthy with what I eat and drink, minus the absurd amounts of wine I drink with my dinner (okay maybe all the time but whatever), but I have to understand that those fresh fruits and delicious avocado salads won’t be available to me on the trail (but Doritos will be, so I’ll be okay). This is going to take extra planning to make sure that my body is not only getting the needed nutrition, but making sure that whatever I decide to eat on the trail (Doritos), my body is already used to eating (Doritos).
Looking into my fitness, I’ve got to be honest. I don’t like working out. Actually, I hate it. I like to have fun. Luckily, fun for me is yoga, riding, hiking, the occasional run, eating Doritos, and all things adventure. And I will stick to this. I occasionally will pop my face into the gym if it’s raining and I need to get out some built up energy, but for the most part, you’ll find me wandering a forest in North Carolina or climbing a mountain somewhere in Virginia. I’ve really never been the type to have a running routine or have any sort of cardio regime but this time it’s different. The trail is my motivation and my drive to go out and sweat every single day. I’m trying to be my best for the best.
Yeah, I’m acting like I’ve got it all figured out… but to be honest, I don’t think there is such thing until you’ve finished the trail. It’s going to be a learning curve on every single mile of this dang dirt highway, and I can’t wait.
This is my first post and I can’t wait to keep you guys in the loop with more of my journey to the Appalachian Trail.
And so it begins… I’m excited to officially be part of an incredible hiking community and I can’t wait to see where this leads me.
See y’all on the trail!
This website contains affiliate links, which means The Trek may receive a percentage of any product or service you purchase using the links in the articles or advertisements. The buyer pays the same price as they would otherwise, and your purchase helps to support The Trek's ongoing goal to serve you quality backpacking advice and information. Thanks for your support!
To learn more, please visit the About This Site page.