Posts made in May 23rd, 2012

hiking to the top (giveaway)

1

Posted on May 23, 2012 in Fitness

I’m so glad to hear that you guys are loving the Under Armour What’s Beautiful Challenge! I thought it was a super cool program and am stoked to be partnering with them. It would be so freaking cool if one of you guys won the challenge! Go BTHR readers, go!

You have joined in, right? And set your goals? How are they going? Have you completed any of the challenges?

As you know from last time, my goal is to hike 100 miles before the end of 2012. Now that we are all well-acquainted with the What’s Beautiful competition, I thought I’d talk a little more about why I love hiking and what it means to me.

Hiking is something that I’ve done since I was a little girl, but as I got older and the go-go lifestyle started creeping in, I stopped hitting the trails.

For years, I’ve been trying to find an activity I truly loved. I knew I needed to workout, but I never found something I really wanted to do. I tried lots of stuff. I tried running. I tried dance classes. But it wasn’t until I came back to hiking that I truly felt like I’d found something I could do for a lifetime.

There are so many things I love about hiking. I love experiencing the world outside of cities and towns. I love unplugging from my technology-driven lifestyle. I love sharing the experience with my husband and puppy.

But I think what I love the most about hiking is the sense of pride I get from it. I find something incredibly empowering about hikingó especially with the crazy steep inclines in our area. I’ll get to the top of a long, demanding hill, look down to where I just came from and think, “Wow. I’m really strong! I can’t believe I just hiked up that.” It’s so nice to be able to physically see the space conquered. Not a distance on a treadmill display or a number of reps in my head. I can actually look at a section of terrain in front of me and know that I conquered it. It’s a pretty awesome feeling!

I have a lot of hiking dreams. I want to will hike the Grand Canyon from rim-to-rim. I want to thru-hike the entire Knobstone Trail. I’d love to section-hike the Appalachian Trail. And there are some pipe dreams, too. I’ve been looking at the Trans Canada trail, Continental Divide Trail, and the American Discovery Trail. I’ve never had those kind of grandiose dreams with other types of exercise. I’m addicted to that feeling of standing on the mountaintop and reveling in my own strength. It’s not a bad addiction to have.

But before I can even think doing any of those over-the-top plans, I have to get myself in hiking shapeóand that means hours on the trail.

We’re really fortunate that we have an amazing mountain bike park incredibly close to our apartment. There are miles and miles of trails that are perfect for quick jaunts. I love it because even though it’s in the city, it feels so remote and desolate. I usually do between 3-5 miles per week just on those trails alone.

But on the weekends we like to whip out our guidebooks and find new (and hopefully strenuous!) trails around us. We are smack dab in the middle of an amazing network of rugged hiking trails, and it’s been a blast over the past few months exploring all the beauty nature has to offer in our area of the country.

We’ve been hovering around 4-6 miles on our weekend treks, but I’d love to step it up and do entire day hikes. The only thing that is holding us back is gear. We’re slowly (but surely!) collecting all the stuff we need to be out on the trail for an entire day or even longer. We recently acquired some amazing hydration daypacks, and I’m loving all my gear from Under Armour. It’s so important to stay dry and comfy. The last thing you want is to be four hours away from the car and need to change your clothes.

Under Armour hooked me up with some gear to try out on the trails, and let me tell you, I am absolutely in LOVE with their Slash Capris. Not only are they comfy and fit well, but they also make me feel kinda hardcore. Business in the front. Kickass chick in the back. I definitely feel a little more of a pep in my step when I’m wearing these guys. It may sound crazy, but wearing these definitely adds to that whole “feeling empowered” thing. It’s so interesting how clothes can change your attitude and outlook.

If I keep up my with my 7-12 miles a week on the trails, hitting my goal of 100 miles by the end of the year will be no problem at allóespecially if we are able to slot in a few longer distance hikes a few times. Want to keep track of my progress and conquer your own empowering goal? Head over to What’s Beautiful and sign up. While you’re there, follow me!

Giveaway

Didn’t win the $500 gift card last time around? Well, lucky for you, Under Armour is feeling really generous and is giving away another 500 buck-a-roos to use online or in store. Nice people, eh?

To get entered, all you have to do is answer one question:

How do you empower your workout?

Here are the deets you need to know:

  • No duplicate comments.
  • You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

a) Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post

b) Tweet (public message) about this promotion, including exactly the following unique terms in your tweet message: ì#whatsbeautifulî ì#sweepstakesî; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post

c) Blog about this promotion and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post. To comply with FTC Guidelines (see http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2009/10/endortest.shtm), entrantsí blog posts must disclose that they are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post.

d) For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.

  • Entries from all participating blogs will be pooled for winner selection; only two entries per household.
  • This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.
  • The Official Rules are available here.
  • This sweepstakes runs from 5/23-6/11.
  • Be sure to visit the Under Armour page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers reviews!

Disclaimer

As you probably guessed, this blog post is sponsored by Under Armour in conjunction with BlogHer. All views expressed are my own.