Week 15: Out of the fog

Mount Falcon

Trail: Turkey Trot

Miles: 3.1

 

IMG_0237I gave up caffeine this week after experiencing food poisoning like symptoms for an entire 24 hours. This is my third go-around of having a severe reaction to food in four months. The latest stomach issue led me to make drastic changes in my lifestyle and diet. As a self proclaimed health nut I have a lot of knowledge about heathy living. Applying that knowledge, well, that’s the hard part. I am going on five days as a caffeine free human being! Which means that I hiked my first trail without a coffee – before, during or after – in a decade. I must say it was superb.

I felt clear headed which made me realize what a fog I had been living in. Even my vision seemed clearer and the lethargic feeling that I often found myself combating seemed to disappear. I couldn’t believe it. I will never go back to caffeine again.  EVER. It may not be the only thing contributing to my stomach issues, but it is a step toward a toxic free life. And isn’t that what nature is all about – detoxing from our lives – from the grind, from the crowds, from the to-do lists?

 

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Today’s hike took us to another Jeffco Open Space area. We hiked a trail called Turkey Trot. It began with a steep incline that switched back from views of Red Rocks Amphitheater, to views of Denver’s skyline. At the top of the climb we swirled further back into nature with views of the snow capped Indian Peak mountains. It was awesome! Mount Falcon is a popular area, similar to Matthew Winters Park, with runners, mountain bikers and hikers. Together we all share a trail and the common joy of being outdoors.

A good portion of the Turkey Trot trail is for hikers only. It was great to let AJ explore without having to remain on alert for mountain bikers. AJ hiked most of the trail and took some breaks on Joe’s back. He had a few falls all of which were teachable moments about “falling and getting back up again.” Of course there were hugs and kisses too. Getting out into nature with our kids really has provided invaluable opportunities for Joe and I to offer tidbits of wisdom to our kids about resilience, failure, agility, protecting the environment, and respect. Nature is the best learning environment no matter how old you are.

Another new development today – MJ was awake! He is approaching his first birthday and while he is an alert little guy, our hikes were often used for naps and cuddles with mama (that’s me). Not today. Today MJ was all eyes and ears. He searched for the sounds of the chirping birds. He babbled to me as though we were in conversation. It felt like the end of an era. I am not sad, however, I am excited to fully introduce him our outdoor adventures, and to watch as he and AJ discover the great outdoors together.

We ended the hike with a picnic, which we did last week as well. With spring just around the corner, picnics seem fitting for the end of a hike. Later that day, both kids napped like rockstars and I sipped on herbal tea, rather then coffee, as Joe and I enjoyed some down time together (which never happens!). I find myself renewed by today’s hike and from the events of the week. In this renewal of self I feel inspired to treat my body as I treat nature – with absolute and total gratitude and respect. Peace.

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