Prior to my hike, I visited my doctors, hoping for a clean bill of health. That wasn’t the case as I learned that my triglyceride levels were off the charts. Seriously. 300-500 is considered high, I came in at 795. As my sophomore English teacher was fond of saying, if you’re going to fail, fail gloriously. I took his advice to heart (unfortunately, literally). The blood work news was followed up with an ultrasound that revealed a fatty liver and distended gall bladder.
If you read my previous post, I was a bit bummed at my condition, so much so, that for all intent and purposes I abandoned my hike. If selling most of your gear qualifies as abandonment, I scored well.
I read about high triglycerides and a fatty liver and changed my eating habits. Truth be told, I started tracking everything I was eating using loseit.com (also an iOS app). I also stopped drinking (not drinking in general, just the consumption of alcohol). Weird for a guy who bottles his own limoncello, but whatever. I started to lose weight. More importantly, I started to feel better, noticeably better. Everything I read indicated that it would take about six weeks to affect changes. I seemed to be ahead of the curve. Although I hadn’t been on the bike in some time, I was able to quickly string a few good days together. Hmmm…
For those of you who are friends with me on FaceBook, you’ll know my son Chris and I had a very nice hike on a section of the AT near his house in Maryland. We hiked south from Gathland State Park to Weverton Cliffs. We meet a few people carrying full packs and immediately struck up some conversations. Make no doubt about it, hikers love sharing and talking about their gear. We were having a good time.
The descent from Weverton Cliffs to our pickup point was a steep downhill. Oddly, I could envision myself heading north, making the climb up to the cliffs, even with a full pack. Was it the combination of a good day with my son, or the reality of feeling good, maybe better than I’ve actually felt in years? Does it matter? Something was fanning that ember!