• Ronda Ogilvie

Take a Hike They Said, It Will Be Good For You They Said...

So I woke up this morning and hopped right on social media as I do most mornings. I roll over in bed grab my cell phone/ alarm clock and start scrolling through facebook and emails before I'm even out of bed. Anyone else do this? It is quite sad really. I'm on my fourth day of not drinking any coffee and I had read that the withdraw symptoms are not as bad if you get out and exercise. So after days of excruciating headaches I decided I would get some miles in this morning once the kids were off to school. We went about our normal school routine of packing lunches, breakfast, and so on. Once the last kid stepped foot on the bus I rushed home put on my exercise clothes and running shoes and hopped on the treadmill. I took about three steps according to my fitbit and stopped so I could get my ipod, Because if you have ever run on the treadmill you know it is the most boring exercise EVER! I couldn't find my ipod so I went outside to check in my car, and noticed the weather was quite nice. I decided I would instead drive up to our local skyline park and go on a hike instead!

I equipped myself with a big bulky hiking belt that holds two bottles of water and pretty much anything else you may need. I called my husband and told him where I was going in case something were to happen to me. It's as if I had a small part of me that already knew what kind of hike I was about to endure. I embarked on my journey!

I arrived at the park and was surprised at the amount of cars already in the parking lot. I had to park somewhat far from the trail heads, but that was ok because I was there to exercise and a few extra steps was not going to kill me. I took off on my hike that was a three mile loop with a 867 foot elevation climb.

At the beginning of my hike I felt all zen and one with nature. I was proud of myself for deciding to get out in mother nature rather than running in the corner of my room looking at a white wall. I was taking my time, stopping for Instagram worthy moments and enjoying all that surrounded me. I was thinking, "I should do this every day!, it's so nice to be out here and everyone on trails is so friendly!" As this was going through my mind, the lady on my run keeper app spoke up. she told me my distance traveled the time I had been traveling and my average pace. she says, "Average pace 22 minutes per mile" Crap!!...I better speed up this is going to look horrible on my running log! I was soon to find out running and hiking...two different things! I was starting to get my average pace back down, but I felt I might die in the process! I was hot, light headed, and tired. At about one and a quarter mile in I was thinking I just might die. I started taking breaks in every bit of shade I could find and was putting my two water bottles to good use!

All of a sudden I hear, "HELP, She is going to faint!" I look up the trail to find a very concerned male holding on to his partner as she swayed back and forth. Me already out of breath run to their assistance. I tell them we need to get her to some shade, so I help the young man get his wobbly partner to the nearest shade of a large rock. I ask if they have water which they did and told her she needs to drink, because she is most likely dehydrated. Offered to call 911, but she thought she was going to be ok and seemed embarrassed I was there. I sat with the couple for a while, they were not from Arizona and were just not prepared for the heat of the morning sun. After some time I made sure they knew where they were and that their phones had battery and told them if they needed any more help to not hesitate to call 911. I walked up the trail a bit and sat in the shade and watched until they were up and walking again. I thought she would be able to relax better with me not there.

So off I went to finish up the second portion of my hike. I was stoked to reach the top of the climb and knew the last mile and a half was going to be a piece of cake. As I began to descend the mountain I came across a very angry sidewinder rattlesnake that was none too happy that I was in his territory. He was big and beautiful with a very large set of rattles. Thank goodness for this old fella making me aware of his presence, because without that full set of rattles making a ruckus I'm pretty sure I would not have seen him. He was wound up, mouth open wide, shaking his rattles and ready to strike! Now every blogger bone in my body would have loved to snap some pictures or even a live video of this magnificent creature, but every life saving reflex in my body said jump, yell, and run as fast as you can! So that I did!

Now let me tell you, after seeing a huge rattle snake on the trail threatening to send you out of this world you become very cautious! I still had about a mile and a half of my hike until I was back to the parking lot, and that mile and a half seemed like ten! I noticed every rock, stick, and bush the rest of my way down! Every time my runkeeper lady spoke up on my phone I jumped...literally!

I began telling every hiker I passed to keep their eyes out because they were heading where I had just passed a rattler, they were thankful for the information. I made it back to the parking lot and sat at a picnic table and watched and waited for the couple I had helped to make sure they made it back to their car. I waited for about ten minutes as I was wondering if I should head back up the trail head to see if I could find them, they came out from around the bend. I made sure they got back to the parking lot and I was one my way.

So my hike in a nutshell. I started out all hippy like in a zen state enjoying mother nature. Next I went into full on beast mode trying to get a better pace, which I'm pretty sure almost killed me. I became a star citizen and medic and helped folks on the trail. Next I became a snake whisperer (not really, more like a snake scream, jump, and runner!) last I became Ranger Ronda and warned all hikers I passed about the dangers of rattle snakes! In the end I hikes 3.54 miles, burned 306 calories, for a duration of 1:19:25 and an average pace of 22.25 min/mile. Way more exciting than the treadmill!

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