2019 Goals – 52 Hike Challenge

A few weeks ago, my sister texted me a link to the 52 Hike Challenge and asked if I wanted in. Being one to take on huge challenges without much forethought, my first instinct was to immediately reply with a HECK YEAH! For once, I paused and realized this sounds like a hike a week thing, which, if we’re honest, can be hard to accommodate schedule wise. Intrigued nevertheless, I clicked on the link to learn more.

The 52 Hike Challenge is what I suspected, it’s a yearlong challenge to hike 52 times with intention to connect with our environment, and others who share a passion for outdoor sports. This spoke to me because I want to transition from running to hiking in 2019. Running has become monotonous for me, and frankly, I’m horrible at training diligently. Because I’m fortunate to live where I do, there are tons of hiking trails literally at the end of my residential road, and I need/want/should take advantage of them.

All of these trails are an 8 minute drive from my house. I literally have zero excuses.

My biggest question was what do they consider a “hike”? I was happy to learn their definition is lax. To count toward the Challenge, a hike must be at least a mile, and can be done in any setting from urban bike paths and parks to snowshoe hikes and full on mountaineering expeditions. There are three different levels of Challenge depending on fitness level and if you’ve participated in the Challenge before. The tracking is done on an honors system using social media posts and hashtags, and there are different levels of swag you win based on registration level.

I want to see views like this in 2019!

You don’t have to pay to register, but there are three levels of paid participation that get you additional stuff. The “Starter Package” for $11.95 gets you a 52 Hike Challenge Patch, and 4 stickers, as well as access to the resources on their website such as tips finding trails, and the Challenge Guide. The “Standard Package” at 52.00 gets you all their resources plus a Finisher Medal, and the “Ultimate Package” gets you all that plus discounts from their sponsors: REI, Mountain House, Sawyer, and Arc’Teryx.

After mulling it over, I texted my sister back and said I’m in! I’m excited to connect with this community to help me stay motivated to get outside. I’m determined to see more of my beautiful state of Colorado this year, and to strengthen my bond with my sister. All around, this is going to be a win/win for 2019!

Opting Out

This year, REI stores will be closed on Black Friday, as they’ve decided to #optoutside. We LOVE this. Not because we have any issue with Black Friday shopping, but companies encouraging folks to get outside and get active is awesome. And a couple of us here decided to join them. So, here are our outdoor plans for the day.


I was an avid participant in Black Friday for years. The local outlet mall opened at midnight (Massachusetts has pretty strict blue laws about who can be open on Thanksgiving, and when). So, we’d head out around 9:00 PM, coffee in hand, sit in traffic, stand in some lines, freeze our butts off, then head to stores that opened later. I’d usually roll into my house around 6:00 AM, and have breakfast.

Breakfast, anyone?

This was breakfast. It’s pie. 


And then I would laze on the couch all day, because I was exhausted. Obviously.

Don’t get me wrong, I had a blast. There was always tons of laughter, some hysterical, but it was what really kicked off the holidays for me. But, the last few years, I just havent’ wanted to do it. My kids are older, and the things they ask for aren’t usually the things you get great deals on. Plus, my husband does a lot of the holiday shopping in advance.

Last year, I didn’t go out at night, but got up early and hit Target. This year, I’m opting out entirely, and making this my view for at least part of my day, when I head out for a nice walk.


Red Friday?

Red Friday?


If you’re out shopping, I hope you get great deals! If you need me, I’ll be walking off some pie.


While I have never been one for consumerism in general, I do love a good sale. However, I won’t be shopping today. Oh no. But in all honestly, I probably won’t be spending much time in the great outdoors either.

Which pains me to say. I’d much rather be outside than doing what we are doing…

Bathroom remodeling projects.


It has consumed my life (and my house, including my dining room table, living room, basement – ON MY TREADMILL! – and all other flat surfaces) since the beginning of November. Our downstairs full bathroom is nearly complete but since all my dad-in-law’s tools are here, we have decided to tackle the upstairs half bath as well. We even installed a new toilet that we got from toiletable.com.

However I did recently commit to the Real World Run Streak (#RWRUNSTREAK) so I’ll definitely be outside for at least one mile. And my hope is to cajole my boys into raking leaves with me for more outside fun. Fingers crossed!

Leaves, leaves, leaves!

Leaves, leaves, leaves!


However you spend your day, we hope it’s a joyous one! We’re super thankful for all of you. And leftovers.

How are you spending Black Friday? Are you out shopping? Tell us about your deals! And if not, tell us about your day!