Get Busy Living - Page 6
Photo by Matt Hage
#6 Have a Fastpacking Adventure
Few things are better than running trails from Point A to Point B. That is, except for when there is an overnight or two sandwiched between those points. For those willing to slow the pace and run with essential overnight gear on their backs (bag, tarp, food, additional clothing, water-purification tablets, etc.), fastpacking runs are the equivalent of total trail immersion. This is the difference between learning a foreign language by studying for an hour a day or spending a year overseas.
Andrew Skurka has be-come Generation Y's unofficial spokesperson for fastpacking. Skurka, who took second in the 2008 Leadville Trail 100, has "gone light," covering the 6875-mile Great Western Loop and the 7778-mile Sea-to-Sea Route. He was also named the 2007 "Adventurer of the Year" by National Geographic Adventure magazine.
Skurka opts to put a pack on his back for days at time because, he says, "The experience is much deeper. It takes more perseverance and fortitude, so you end up pushing your limits.
"And by removing yourself from the daily grind, you gain a greater sense of clarity. You are better able to put things in perspective, and come back much fresher than if you had just gone out for a long run."
Start out with a two-day, one-night run with friends (just be sure to buy a great dinner for the person picking you up at Point B). You'll be amazed at how two days can feel like two weeks.