Tuesday, April 7, 2009
Team NASA 2009 in Training
Climb stairs, jog, squats, climb stairs with pack, hike dike with pack, lather, rinse, repeat. Everyone on the 2009 trek has been in training mode for the past several months trying to ramp up our cardio and strength for the days on the trail that lay ahead. "So what are you training for?" I get asked while clodding away on the gym's treadmill at full incline with a pack strapped to my back. "Just some hiking." I reply. After a quizzical stare and a shrug of the shoulders, I get what is intended as a sarcastic response, "Where? The Himalayas?!" Well...ummm...yeah.
At least for those of us on the team from the Houston area, training for the upcoming trip has taken some creativity. I've heard of people using so-called mountains to train. Mountains...huh...perhaps those are like freeway overpasses but with dirt, rocks, and grass? Here in the vast land of the flat, dikes become our foothills and buildings of more than 5 stories become our 'mountains'. Unfortunately for some, hotel security has 'issues' with climbing the 'mountains'. I'm counting down the few remaining days until a smiling local will offer us a cup of tea on the 10th floor. If only there was an elevator for the trip down...or maybe those are called 'yaks' in Nepal?
Everyone has been doing an awesome job of motivating each other and working out in groups to prepare. Of course, the altitude can't be fully trained for, but the team is doing its best to stack the odds in our favor. Only about 9 more days and Team NASA 2009 will fully unite as we put all the preparation to the test and embark upon this grand journey!