When I was out on my solo trip this year, I went out a lot faster than I intended to. I covered about 50 miles in 2 days, with about 11 hours of hiking each day. (So I could have gone farther, since I had 14 hours of daylight.) And in those 11 or so hours per day that I hiked, I divided my time up into 50 minute sections.

Every 50 minutes, I would stop for a brief break. The break was untimed, but it had to include either sitting down or taking my pack off. Often it would include a nature break. And rarely did I take more than 10 minutes.

For whatever reason, I felt good. I wanted to keep walking, to keep my pace up on this crazy journey.

It was on the third day that my breakneck pace began to catch up with me. I met up with my husband at the Bruneau Dunes Scenic Overlook (and made grateful use of  the restroom). After that, I hiked another 4 miles or so and met up with him again on the road.

I could have stopped there. About 65 miles in 3 days. Not bad, right?

But instead, I kept walking, right through the Saylor Creek Bombing Range.

And as I walked I thought about Crossfit. I thought about how I was doing AMSAPs (As Many Steps As Possible) in 50 minute time domains. I thought about the coaches yelling encouragement, hearing their voices in my head, urging me on to keep walking til that alarm sounded a break. I thought about the crowd cheering me on when I did the last workout of the ’17 Open Rx.

I pulled on the discipline that I’ve learned, the ability to push myself past pain (when that pain doesn’t signify injury) and the belief that I was not the only one who believed I could do this.

I did stop the next day, short of my 100 mile goal, but that goal was arbitrary. Part of my challenge was determining when I should stop versus when I should push. Sure, 100 miles is an impressive number, but so is 92. And I’m not going to stop doing my segments, no matter how long or short, until I’ve walked the whole of the Idaho Centennial Trail.

Good morning trail! (Photo courtesy of Ambrose)

The scenery that day changed but slowly. 

Hard to believe the landscape is hiding canyons and buttes somewhere ahead. 

A little companionship. 

As close as I got to the scenic overlook with my camera. 

This is a “draw” also known as a place where water may have been once upon a time. 

So tempting to just get in the car and go home. 

Into the bombing range. 

Heading out of the bombing range. 

Home sweet home for the night. I sincerely regretted the spot I chose once I tried going to sleep. Too slanty. 

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