As you may know, I don’t like talking about myself very much. I feel that emphasis on a creator can detract from their work. That said, this is one of the rare moments where a personal concern and the hobby align. One of the goals of geocaching, hand in hand with getting people out into nature, is to encourage fitness. I’m not
always the exemplar of fitness these days, though.
Many, many, many moons ago, I was in pretty good shape, thanks to the US Army. I could bench press my own body weight and run for miles at a time. I left the Army and put on a little weight over the course of a decade and a half, but nothing worrisome. Twenty pounds over the best shape of your life? Few people would have a problem with that, certainly nobody of my height. After another decade, thanks to late-night jobs, marriage, and child rearing (and less-than-stellar eating habits), I managed to put on another twenty pounds. Again, since I’m tall, not that big of a deal. Then I got divorced, and age made me more sedentary. That added a little more weight over the course of five years, a little more than I was happy with, but still nothing too deeply concerning. I started caching around this time, and getting out into the green and hiking helped, though road-tripping resulted in me doing a lot more “fittin’ nis” junk food in my mouth (a long way to go for that terrible pun, but we all knew it would come to this).
The last couple of years have been especially bad for everyone. Being effectively trapped in our homes and just trying to mentally endure the burden of a global pandemic has made a lot of people put on some extra pounds. Your humble narrator is one of those people. While COVID-19 (or the Time of Cholera, as I sometimes refer to it) was not entirely bad for me (he said, looking at New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Louisiana in his rearview mirror), I did manage to put on a bit of the “Covid nineteen” (pounds, for those who might not have gotten the play on words). Another thing you should know about me, if I haven’t mentioned it before, is that I’m just a little bit vain. My health and my vanity together can be a potent force for good.
My point here (and I do have one) is that it’s time for me to start engaging in some of those higher terrain ratings. I need to do a little more hiking, a little more climbing, a little more roughing it. I’m not going to say that you should, too. Only you know what you are capable of physically. At the same time, I believe that most of us can benefit a little from the silly but not entirely untrue maxim “eat less, move more.” Yes, that “move more” bit is complicated in my case by the horrid string of hundred-degree days, but it must be done. I only have one body, and I’m already caching! I might as well put the caches to work for me! And so should you! Walk that trail! Climb that hill! Do the thing! We’re already out there! Let’s be more active!