With Karen’s inspiration and help, I just wrote an article about moderation in wealth and health (http://www.healthcentral.com/diabetes/c/17/13985/health-wealth). Maybe that’s why my hike today was a moderate one.
When I studied my trail guides yesterday, I saw that it wouldn’t be possible to climb higher anywhere around here than I did Wednesday without climbing a mountain. No hikes in Rocky Mountain National Park or Indian Peaks Wilderness or James Peak Wilderness go above 12,550 feet without going off the trail to climb a peak, and I’m not prepared for that.
But I knew that I wanted to go back to Rocky Mountain National Park, because I just got high resolution National Park maps and loaded them into my GPS receiver yesterday. I decided to go to a lake that I had never seen before in the Bear Lake area where I have often hiked.
My destination was The Loch. The lake and the trail to it turned out to be one of the most beautiful I have ever seen. Almost all of the way to the lake was along Glacier Creek, which starts at The Loch and is exceptionally dramatic as it goes over Alberta Falls.
The creek runs through Glacier Gorge, one of the most beautiful canyons I’ve ever seen. It’s already fall in the gorge with the aspens turning brilliant yellow. The Loch itself is exceptionally photogenic, so much so that I couldn’t limit myself to one or two shots.
The day turned out to be brilliantly clear and surprisingly warm, much more so that my last two hikes. It was such a beautiful day in such a spectacular place that I stopped often just to give thanks and enjoy being there. I never had to stop because I was tired or to rest my shoulder, which Ranata had so well massaged yesterday when I went to Denver to see her.
I don’t know exactly how many miles I hiked, because I walked all around The Loch. But it was about 6 or 7 miles, 17,000 steps, with an elevation gain of 940 feet to 10,180 at the lake. My guidebook rates it moderate. I got to the Glacier Gorge trailhead at 7:50 a.m. and returned exactly 6 hours later.
Even after I got back to the trailhead the day rewarded me with another beautiful sight, this elk beside the road.
I went a little faster than usual after talking last night with Karen about interval training (and a lot of other things too!). She recommended going faster and then slower and then faster again. Actually, I was already aware of the benefits of interval training and had in fact written an article about it (at http://www.healthcentral.com/diabetes/c/17/12668/stop-exercise) a month ago and cited a new report in The Journal of Applied Physiology that showed repeated bouts of moderate endurance exercise enhanced fat metabolism. But until Karen mentioned it I hadn’t applied it to my hikes.
When I hike it clears my mind. Today in fact I finally saw the solution to a long-standing problem. I need to make some changes in my website, including coding more than 200 articles that in the past two years I wrote for healthcentral.com.
I need to do that because almost all of my new articles are for that website. I am afraid that my site will wither unless I infuse it with new articles. That has become especially important because advertising on my website is now paying me every month more than twice with healthcentral.com pays me.
But it’s boring work and I just haven’t had the time anyway, especially now that I am spending so much time getting good exercise.
The solution is outsourcing to India, where computer programmers earn a lot less than they do here. I’m going to start by contacting Abhi, a friend of mine in Mumbai who is a computer expert and helped me on my site earlier. He may well have a young friend would who like to earn some easy money.
During the hike today I didn’t just think about making money. Most of the time I thought about my new love. And I didn’t have to clear my mind to do that.