THE THOUSAND MILES JOURNEY
“A walk in Nature walks the soul back home.”
The Nature heals all wounds and empowers our souls. It is a fact that is proven so many times by scientists. What is so majestic about nature? The tranquility that we have lost somewhere on the road of transition from wild homo sapiens to the urban people with no senses. The bond is broken but the desires for reconnection with Mother Nature are still deep within us, like the invisible tattoos.
When I lost myself in civilization, I have a luck to find myself in nature, all over again. It is like coming come after studies abroad and being happy about granny´s apple cookies. You are there where you belong to and the modern, empty cities will never replace the alluring beauty of forests, lakes, mountains or oceans.
I am definitely the person who is oriented towards sport and good nutrition. The fitness is the important part of my daily schedule but I try to combine it with outdoor activities, when the weather is optimal. Somehow, I believe that sport outside is the best solution for body and for mind. It neutralizes the stress and increase the feeling of happiness and soul peace. In other words, the nature addresses all our problems and help us to solve them.
There are people who are not sure how to rebuild their relations with the nature and Earth. The great journey of discovery starts with the first step, the decision we do not need a comfort zone to be happy, and the passion to embrace all the miracles we can see on the road.
What could be your first step into the wonderland? There are many amazing opportunities to enjoy the wildness and you should pick up the one that will be in harmony with your own personality. The goal is to challenge your own limits and not to create the insecurity, fear or boredom. That is why I decided to write about three great sport activities that could be realized in nature, depending on your interest, mental strength or adrenaline drivers. The hiking, trekking and mountaineering sound similar but they are very different because each of those outdoor activities requires the different level of physical capacity, equipment and mindset.
The hiking is usually a warm-up for trekking and mountaineering later. It is the simplest from all of three but not less demand. There are marked trails and you can choose how fast or how slow you will do your hike. It is a half- day or all-day hike but sometimes could last for few days, especially if the route is longer (The Camino de Santiago in Spain or Inca Trail in Peru). The hiking field could be some mountain, flat region or coastline. Everything is allowed but the route should be adjusted to the level of fitness of the participator. It is very important to have right equipment so the hike could be comfortable and without stressful moments. The pair of right hiking boots will make your feet happy and try to get the better quality to escape the swelling and pain during long walking session. I am fan of Mammut but La Sportiva has also very nice hiking shoes. You will need leggings or convertible hiking pants, waterproof shell with hood and thermal T-shirt. Don’t forget appropriate 30 L Backpack, hiking poles, lots of water and first aid little package. The nutrition is also crucial so do not save on food. The body could be very fast exhausted and empty and you will need fuel.
There are hiking trails all over the world and some of them are unforgettable. Start the basic training in your area, then move to global known hiking routes, put your flags there, and make memories.
The most beautiful hiking tour that I have experienced until now is definitely Cinque Terre – Italian Riviera. The sleepy fishing villages and Italian charismatic nature let you be born again and living your own dream of freedom.
What we know about trekking? Trekking is between hiking and mountaineering, combining the easy trails of hiking with big challenges of mountaineering goals. The experts always say that trekking has more similarities with hiking than with mountaineering but treks are longer and include sleeping in the nature or accommodation in mountain cottages, lodges or bed and breakfast apartments. Trekking itself requires the higher level of fitness and condition; it is a kind of advanced hiking with full enjoyment of the exploration.
The mountaineering is the last one, the most demanding and the queen of all activities in the nature. This is a kind of trekking with special equipment and techniques. It is a gradation of your physical and mental strength and the final exam of your trainings. It is not only about conquering the highest peak but also about to learn to respect your own limits and the limits of wild nature. If you are one of people who accept the mountaineering as your own sport, you have to be ready to work a lot on your own physical condition and to study the moods of unpredictable mountains. The trekking into the sky is related to the balance of fear and adrenaline. You need fear as a friend and not as an enemy. With the fear, you can see the borders; you will know which are opened for you, and which of them are better to be closed for you. The constant weather changes, potential snowstorms and the lack of oxygen will make you sometimes loose the appetite for life or fighting to survive. That is a flame of passion for discovering the undiscovered and embarking the unknown as the road to walk on.
Each of these actions could be the right for you but you need to know what do you want in life, how much you are ready to invest in your hobby and if you are willing to overcome the risks and challenges to be the best version of yourself.
The outdoor recreation is the prayer for our bodies and souls. We all need the sanctuary. Dare to find your own and dare to keep it.