Today, a motivating (and slightly embarrassing) story about giving up on the side of a mountain…
And how to get healthy, no matter how sick you are.
I created this inspirational 4-min video to go with it…
(WARNING: watching this could change your life).
And now, onto this incredible story…
“That’s a long way up dude… I just don’t know.”
“I’ve never done anything like it… I’ve never pushed my body like that.”
Steve and I were staring up at the mountain peak looming 2,000 feet above us.
We stood next to Fairy Lake near Bozeman, Montana, elevation 7,557 feet, debating whether or not we should hike to Sacagawea Peak, elevation 9,665 feet.
“It’s only another 2,000 feet…”
My knees got wobbly just thinking about it.
We got in the truck and went home.
But I’ve Scaled Bigger Mountains Before
6 years ago, doctors told me digestive disease wasn’t reversible.
I was having diarrhea 15 times a day.
I wrote my first will.
I wasn’t sure I’d watch my one-year-old son grow up.
The health mountain I had to scale was a thousand times more intimidating than Sacagawea Peak that day…
I still didn’t think I could climb this mountain
I was filled with doubt the next morning when we stopped at REI, grabbed some gear, and headed back up the mountain.
We were actually doing this…
What if my body can’t take it?
What if I’m not healthy enough for something like this?
What if I freak out at the top and can’t get back down?
No matter what I’ve accomplished in life, the voice in my head is still good at scaring the crap out of me.
How to Scale Any Mountain…
I can’t tell you how many times I wanted to quit over the last 6 years.
Scaling the health mountain isn’t easy.
It’s one step at at time, one step after another.
But it’s a LONG way up. And if you’re as sick as I was, it’s a long way to go to getting healthy…
Especially when everyone around you is saying it can’t be done.
But you have a choice… to take each step. And each step is one step closer to the top. But more importantly, it’s one step further away from where you started at the bottom.
Like when I was having diarrhea 15 times a day… dropping to 14 times a day is one step closer to perfect poops.
And so we arrived at the base of the mountain. It was time for the first step of this hike.
My Heart Was Racing…
But I didn’t tell Steve.
(He probably knew anyways ha-ha).
We started up the mountain trail, one foot in front of the other.
Occassionally, we stopped along the way to enjoy the view, take pictures, and have some fun.
It’s easy to keep looking up at that peak thinking about how far you have left to go… but that’s a mistake.
The joy in the journey comes when you stop and look down at how far you’ve already climbed.
Like after I started SCD and I was only having 2 loose stools a day… I stopped and looked back at when I had diarrhea 15 times a day.
I had come so far.
But on This Mountain, I Almost Gave Up
Two hours into the hike, we reached Bridger Divide (elevation 8,963 feet).
I couldn’t breathe.
I was sucking air.
All I could think about was stopping. I couldn’t go on. I was done.
The mountains were spinning around me.
“Dude… I can’t breathe… I’m lightheaded… you go on… I’ll wait for you here…”
I sat down and dropped my pack, exhausted.
Steve talked to me, helped me breathe slowly, and helped me stay grounded.
He wasn’t going to let me stop now, only 700 feet from the top. We were too close.
But the voice in my head was strong. I didn’t think I could go on.
Steve waited for me. He wasn’t leaving without me.
It took about 15 minutes for me to beat the voice in my head. It was time to keep going, one step after another.
The Final Steps to the Top Were a Blur…
When we reached the top, my mind went silent.
We had done it.
9,665 feet above the earth.
Looking down, at what seemed like the whole State of Montana…
In that moment I knew deep in my heart that I can do anything.
The only thing that ever gets in my way is me.
I can scale any mountain…
Just like I scaled the health mountain.
One step at a time, one foot in front of the other.
The day before, I stood beneath this peak filled with doubt. But here I was… breathing in the the cleanest air I’ve ever tasted.
I can do anything in this world.
And so can you…
With This, You Can Scale Any Mountain…
It’s a choice…
The choice to believe in yourself and take the first step.
And keep choosing it, moment by moment, even when you’re ready to give up…
Which is why I created today’s 4-min video for you.
To show you that you can do anything.
You can scale any mountain.
We believe in you!
Here it is again:
I’m so grateful to be a part of your health journey.
Thank you for choosing health!