The Trail to Philmont, May 2020

May started with our trip to Philmont being canceled. We moved our reservation to 2021 in the hopes that we’ll be able to travel (and hike) by then. The challenge used to be getting ready for a 60-mile backpacking trip by June; it became staying motivated when that trip is now more than a year in the future.

Staying motivated wasn’t easy. I kept up my running routine, but my strength training routine slipped. My Wilderness First Aid class in late-June was canceled because of COVID-19. I never got around to putting on my pack and doing some practice hikes around College Hill.

On the plus side, my runs got longer, reaching 4.5 miles by mid-May. My personal trainer and I re-connected after a few weeks off and started talking about a 10K training program. I slightly increased my walking mileage, going from 5.5 miles/day in April to 5.6 miles/day in May. Both months are significantly below my 7.6 miles/day pre-COVID-19 mark in February, but given the stay-at-home orders we were under, that wasn’t bad.

I got my bike out of storage in May, and I’m looking to start up with a basic cycling training program in June. I’m getting back to strength training with a new routine from my personal trainer.

NeutronLad and I are also going to start our backpack training in June (for real this time) because we hope to go backpacking sometime this summer. Of course, that hope is entirely dependent on what Scouts BSA and the states surrounding us allow.

Weight-wise, I flirted with 200 lbs. throughout the month before settling at 202 lbs. by the end of May. That’s down two pounds from April and 20 lbs. since January. I’m on track for being below 200 lbs. by mid-June, which was my original Philmont-inspired goal.

To mark this milestone, I cleaned out my closet. I got rid of anything that either didn’t fit. This led to me trying on a bunch of shirts, shorts, and pants that haven’t fit in years because they were too tight/small. It was immensely satisfying to pull on a shirt that never really fit me and find that it was actually a little loose. That meant far more than whatever the number was on the scale that day. It also provided some of that much-needed motivation; I could feel I was close to my goal, and that made me want to push ahead.

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The nature fork of the Karl Stirner Arts Trail in Easton, Pa. Credit: Ken Newquist


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