In Jill's Words

I dedicate this site to my mother. She was a columnist and an author with the uncanny ability to find humor in the daily ins and outs of life. She faced every challenge with a witty optimism, including the cancer that ended her life too soon.

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Location: Boise, Idaho, United States

Saturday, June 18, 2016

My Favorite Summer Activities (and Why I Should Maybe Not Do Them) (RE-POST from 6/6/15)

I still love these things about summer. I am also still a wimp. Not much has changed in the course of a year. Enjoy this post from June 2015!

I love the summer, and I love my favorite outdoorsy activities. But I'm not tough or gutsy. And I am getting less tough and gutsy the older I get. (I just turned thirty-eight yesterday.) In fact, celebrating another birthday, inching me closer to forty, got me thinking: Maybe I shouldn't do these things anymore.

My husband, Dan, and I see lots of people older than we are doing all sorts of crazy outdoorsy stuff. We live in Idaho after all, and people around here would wrestle grizzly bears if you'd let them. But we've already established that I'm not tough or gutsy like those people. I am, however, a five-foot-three bundle of entertainment during my ventures into mother nature.

1. Hiking
I love hiking, but . . .

I am deathly afraid of heights. If you have been reading my blog for a while, you have probably seen the infamous Becky-breaks-down-on-the-trail video. Unfortunately, this is not the only heights-induced breakdown I have had.

And I don't want to run into bears . . . ever. From what I've heard, it's inevitable. You keep hanging out in nature, you will encounter a bear eventually.

2. Mountain Biking
I love mountain biking, but . . .

Dan's doctor can't believe that, as an avid mountain biker, he hasn't broken any bones yet. It just goes with the territory. You keep mountain biking, you will break a bone. I don't want to break anything. And I'm sure as I approach forty that my bones are not what they used to be. I already know I don't heal as quickly as I used to.

And I still don't want to run into bears.

Oh, and the heights thing. I've had a few mountain biking meltdowns that (thankfully) have not been captured on video.

3. Trail Running 
I love trail running in Boise, but . . .

As I get older, I'm noticing weird aches and pains that don't go away quickly. And I have heard many I-used-to-run-but-my-knees stories from people about ten years my senior.

Cougars are scary too, and they love coming down from the foothills onto the trails in our city.

One time, this thing crossed my path, and I didn't freak out too bad.

I don't like snakes either, and they hang out on the trails all the time.

But . . .

Last summer, a runner passed me and warned me about a snake on the path, and I was like, "Is it a rattlesnake?" and the runner was like, "No," and I was like, "I got this."

And just a few weeks ago, I was running with my girls' group at school, and some of the girls started squealing about a snake on the trail. I stood beside the snake and directed the girls around it, kind of like, "Nothing to see here. Move along."

So . . . maybe I'm tougher than I think.

Or maybe I should just stick to my other favorite summer pastimes: Reading and blogging.

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