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EXPOSURE: LESSONS FROM MT. RAINIER

By Kalyanasundaram Divya
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Adventure.

What does that mean to you?

For me, it is plunging into the unusual. Anything to deter me from the norm.

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We have developed low standards for adventure these days. When John Muir roamed the earth he would scale dangerous mountains and explore the depths of the glaciers. A lot of people look upon these thigns as mythical. I see them as invitaitons.

It is in these unusal adventures that we get the most power. The insights gained from the grueling road you have to travel is esoteric and priceless.

It was hard for me to come back from Rainier and answer questions about it. I want to say so much and immerse everyone in the beauty of the mountain that I was stumped, overwhelmed.

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It revealed my first insight from the mountain: over-exposure.

Rainier was a 3 day journey. The first day was 8 hours on the snow field training for the ice. No scary situations or anything but I Was in the sun and the wind all day.

I got burned but no big deal.

The second day was a grueling climb to Muir basecamp. It rained all day and the wind was cold. We basically had ou heads down and plowed our way up the snow fields which felt like it was never going to end. It took all day to get there and then we had to set up camp.

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Result? The wind in my face all day climbing and at camp, the sun came out and hit me again.

Day 3 was awesome. We got up at midnight and summited the mountain 5 hours later. The sun was just peaking as we got there which meant the climb down was going to be beautiful but SUNNY.

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Rainier was hands down the most beauituful climb I have done. I got to see in full light all the glaciers and other mountains in the distance, including Mt. Saint Hellen.

The catch is that my face got hit hard for another 6 hours down.

My face hurt so bad by the end that I literally slid, ran, and fell down the last 5 miles of the Muir snow fields. I left my group in the dust because I could not bear to be outside anymore.

I had over-exposure to the sun and the wind and as a result my face swelled up and cracked. My lips were so swollen that when I finally called my wife at the hotel I sounded like I had gotten back from the dentist. Sores deveoped on my lips and nose.

I am not pretty right now.

However, I did learn a great lesson.

Sure, I didn’t prepare for the sun as I should but the greater lesson lies in the metophor of the whole thing.

In our society there is so much information out there. Any single person can become an expert in any field because all you have to do is google it. There are ads everywhere. You are bombarded with fitness programs in the TV, radio, magazines, every where you go you see ads for the magic diet supplement and the best workout plan.

That is the same as the sun over-exposure. You see so much of it that you wind up doing nothing. It is daunting.

I kept putting off using my sun screen because on my breaks I had so much to do. Eat, drink, put on my down jacket so I didn’t freeze, check my ice gear so I didn’t slide or lose a cramp-on. SO much information forced me to do nothing about the basics.

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Over-exposure to anything will thwart results. We changed our programming recently at the gym here because we realized going too hard for too long will create injuries.

I urge you all to take 5 minutes today and see if you suffer from over-exposure to anything? Are you not taking action on something because there is just too much information?

=> scared to go back to school because the process seems daunting after all these years?

=> haven’ been to the gym in a while because you’re overwhlemed by all the programs and info?

=> Can’t find time for yourself because of kids, spouse, work?

It is possible to be oeverexposed to your family and job. WE NEED BREAKS. I went on this trip alone and when I came home the world didn’t burn down. My wife is ok, my son is ok. In fact, we had a blast and they were so hapy to see me.

Self-awareness can change your life if you adjust to it. Pointing out that you are overwhelmed by too much fitness information isn’t enough if oyu don’t immediately take action to fix it. If that is your story, then go to a gym TODAY. Any gym and join it. You can adjust later to find a better place.

Same thing with family. If you dedicate all your time to your family and feel overexposed to them and no time for yourself then book a weekend trip TODAY.

These are the secrets to developing the magic of success.

Become aware==> Take action to adjust ==> Reassess ==> Appreciate your growth

You have to appreciate the journey. I Am not focusing on the mess my face is. I am appreciative of the work I put in and the beauty I whitnessed.