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Posts Tagged ‘Fitness’

Cross Country Season

Now that there’s a high schooler in the family, I’m learning about parenting during fall sports season. In this version of family adventuring, one of us is working hard and the rest of us are spectating. I’m proud of my son for running cross country and admire all of the athletes out there running 2 or 3 miles through whatever terrain and weather is happening that day. And in the northwest, that might be rain and mud, chilly forests, hills slippery with damp, or hot sunshine.

I love the talk of “PRs,” personal records as people improve their times throughout the season. And I love that athletes finish their race, and then turn to cheering on others still coming in.

Cross country season is adding positively to our family, encouraging all of us to get out more, and may even turn all of us into runners. Because I’m the only one in the family not running, and I’m feeling inspired.

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While we welcome good food, a cozy fire, and time with extended family as much as anyone, we also think a break in the kids’ school schedule allows for a little outdoor adventure.

So we added Grand Canyon backpacking to our road trip of visiting friends and family.

We started down the 9.5 mile Bright Angel trail in a snowstorm, camped at the Colorado river, and then were lucky to have a bright and beautiful second day for the 7.5 mile South Kaibab Trail. The kids were amazing backpackers, interested in the layers of rock and the ever-changing terrain, and able to hike for several hours between packs-off rest stops. I was proud of their accomplishment and impressed by their fitness.

We trekked the most utilized trails in the Grand Canyon, but doing so in winter made the experience feel more remote than it was. Three days there wasn’t enough, and I think all of us would welcome more Grand Canyon adventures.

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The Joy of Pond Skating

We live in a temperate area that is rarely cold enough for long enough that we can ice skate outside.

And we are part of a group of adults united over many years of playing league ice hockey at the local rink.

This means that there are some among us, who, when the weather conditions start aligning, look for outside ice. If found, the phone calls go out, and people meet for a few glorious hours, maybe even over a few glorious days. That situation happened just this weekend, and my husband and I have blisters from so much ice skating.

One child went with us, skated for hours, and wanted to go back the next day. The other elected to stay home. Not a full-on family adventure this time, but a chance for the adults to play like children and the children to have choices. Joy for all of us.

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100_2710You may not think of going to a Highland Games as a fitness event, but in our family it is. Drummer dad spends all weekend performing with Maggie’s Fury in what becomes an endurance event taking place every other hour all day Saturday and Sunday.

The kids and their friends spend those hours dancing until they are hot and sweaty. As the Maggie’s Fury dancers, they even have particular motions for songs like “The Mermaid.” They wave their arms to mimic “the ocean waves do roll” and lie down on the ground to the line, “and the landlubbers lie down below, below, below.”

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At other points they imitate highland dancers or freeform their own moves. It is another form of fun and fitness, plus keeps them active and ready for our more classic summer family adventures.

Try it out or join us this weekend for our local Highland Games.

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