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April 11, 2013 at 7:53am

Outdoor Addict: Great Ankle Fiasco of 2013

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It's time for a confession dear readers. It's been three weeks since my last outdoor adventure. Sure I've talked about little hellions, err darling children, at the Nature Center and kidnapped a dog, but I haven't really adventured. I haven't been out freezing my buns off last minute camping or trying to get lost in the woods. I've been handicapped by a little issue I like to call the great ankle fiasco of 2013. One of my great loves is rock climbing and the Edgeworks Climbing gym feels like my second home. A few weeks ago, I fell in the gym doing something silly and sprained my left ankle. It has proved to be anything but simple to fix and has been quite the impediment to my outdoor enjoyment. But I'm at the end of my rope. Without some kind of adventure I start to go stir crazy. And that is what I want to discuss with you today.

It all started a few years ago. I found myself very stressed out and feeling anxious. A spontaneous trip to Paradise at Mount Rainier came as a revelation. I felt this incredible sense of peace. I was awed by the beauty of the mountains and the natural environment seemed to put my stress in perspective. I always liked being outside and enjoyed natural beauty but this was different. After this I started hiking and seeking out activities to recreate this feeling. This was the beginning of my "addiction."

I started small. Tromping through the woods at Point Defiance or going for walks at the beach. But soon it wasn't enough to get my fix. Next came the weekend hikes. But it wasn't until I took the plunge that I really discovered it had become a necessity for me. I attempted to climb Mount Rainier. I'd always said it was on my bucket list, but we all know how that is. I mean how many people actually check the items off their bucket list? I had no idea what I was getting myself into. It was the hardest ting I've ever done. Anyone who has suffered altitude sickness can relate when I say the first night I spent at Camp Muir was an experience I never wish to repeat. But I pushed my boundaries and came back a better person for it.

So dear readers this is my challenge to you. I encourage you to push yourself. Don't run out and try to climb Rainier next weekend. But whatever you've always wanted to do, try it. Make the time. Take the kids on that Foothills Trail bike ride. Or run 5 Mile Drive on a Saturday morning. Believe me, after a late Friday night dragging your hungover behind out of bed is really hard. But I've never regretted getting out, and after the first grumpy hour I always enjoy it. There are some great running groups in Tacoma and plenty of charity causes to join for almost any activity: 5Ks, triathlons, climbing, bike riding, whatever floats your boat.

I hope my weekly exploits aren't just entertaining. I hope they show you new things to do in our corner of the world, and maybe inspire some adventures of your own. I'm getting desperate for some adventure so expect some hilarious exploits as the great ankle fiasco of 2013 and I come to a mutual understanding about how this summer is going to go.

LINK: Scenic Beach State Park

Filed under: Outdoor Addict, Outdoors, Tacoma,
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