Why I’m Going for a Hike … Again

Appalachian Trail in Northern Virginia On April 12th I will return to the Appalachian Trail in New Jersey and hike to the terminus of the trail at Katahdin in Maine. Despite the fact that I’ve cut my previous hikes short I once again am returning to the trail. This decision may not be entirely logical since history suggests that I won’t hike long enough for it to be worth the trip. Nevertheless, I want to hike again and feel like I should. The past few years I have gotten too lazy and too unwilling to put up with discomfort. It is my belief that completing my AT hike will reduce my laziness and increase my tolerance for discomfort.

Long time readers of this blog might remember that I suffered from clinical depression while in law school. The depression hasn’t returned, but I do feel like I’m in a bit of a funk that could lead to depression if I don’t do something about it. My plan is hike myself out of the funk. That is why I’m committed to completing this hike as long as I’m physically and financially able. In the past I’ve quit hikes because I was thinking of all the other things I could be doing. On this hike I need to focus on the hike and make the hike the priority.

There is a possibility that this funk might be due at least partially to health problems. I’ll be going in for an EGD and colonoscopy next week. I’m hoping those exams will not reveal any problems, or at least not any major problems. If they do reveal any problems that need to be taken care of then I’ll have to postpone or delay the hike. Otherwise, I’m committed to doing the hike. If I’m not able to hike then I’ll have to make some other major change to get out of this funk. I’m not sure what that will be yet, but I’m considering several possibilities.

Sharing my goals on the blog hasn’t always been enough to motivate me to accomplish my goals. I thought about making a bet similar to my $3000 Healthy Wage weight loss bet to provide myself with some motivation. I decided against it though since I don’t want to rely on external motivation. I’ll complete the hike because I want to complete the hike. If I’m able to start the hike I will complete the hike as long as I’m physically and financially able.

2 thoughts on “Why I’m Going for a Hike … Again

  1. Did you hike last month also? How long should it take you to finish the trail? Hopefully your doctor has some good news for you. Still making it to Omaha?

  2. Jon – I did hike last month. That hike was planned to be for just a few days. This hike will take a couple of months. Whether I go to Omaha depends on whether I’m able to start my hike as planned. If I have to delay or postpone the hike then I definitely want to go to Omaha. I should be able to let you know by next weekend whether I’ll make it to Omaha. I do really want to go to Omaha, but the hike is my priority right now.

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