Sunday, May 15, 2011

Walking on Maui

Can I just say how muscular and skinny I would be if I lived on Maui? For one thing: beautiful fresh fruit year round and not all restaurants are veggie-friendly so I'd be cooking more. For another: lovely walking weather - even when it's raining!

My plan before going to Maui was to get up early every morning and do at least an hour walk before the days activities got under way. I also wanted to do some hiking as I'd heard the landscape is spectacular. The first two days I did really well: 4.2 miles on Day 1 and 2.2 miles on Day 2.

The first day, I took my brother with me as we'd both been up for hours by 6am (still adjusting to the 3-hour time shift). By the end of the first half-mile, I think he had a better appreciation for the kind of walking I do... Well, that and the boy only brought wool socks with him, so he was wearing shoes without socks because it was about 70 when we started walking. I left him sitting on the beach and continued my walk. I had forgotten how humid beach areas were, so I worked up quite a sweat on my 4-mile walk. I didn't mind, though, because I was walking next to the beach where I could hear waves crashing and birds chirping. The sun wasn't over the tops of the mountains yet, so the whole world had a kind of muted beauty to it. Here's my route:

By the time I made it back to the resort, I was smiling, loose, and ready to take on the day. It does a body good to breathe deeply fresh salt air first thing in the morning.

My second day's walk was limited to only half an hour as we'd decided to go out to breakfast at this place that was notorious for lines forming half and hour before it opens. Oh, Gazebo, how you wooed me with your banana and pineapple pancakes!

What I find amusing about these maps is it looks like I'm staying in a dirt field. I swear, there's actually a resort there! That day, my brother, dad, and I went hiking in the Iao Valley as well, so I didn't feel too guilty about cutting my walk short. The hike was beautiful and apparently we really lucked out as the valley is known to have rainy weather a lot of the time.

The next day, I woke up stiff and sore from our hike. I knew I wasn't in the best of shape, but I didn't expect my legs to actually scream at me after only an hour's hike. I decided to give my legs a rest that morning because I knew my brother and I were going to be driving around the top part of the island that day and I planned on throwing in a couple impromptu small hiking excursions along the way. The drive was beautiful and the scenery was dramatic. High cliffs, crashing waves, sudden lush valleys, cattle-country, and volcanic craters.

That afternoon, I became ill and had to take a day to recuperate before I could go on any strenuous excursions. I sat by the pool and read a lot.

My brother and I decided to take a drive and hike out past Makena on a trail called The King's Highway. I had never understood what lava rock was until we hiked on it for a couple miles. The landscape was so foreign, we could have been walking on Mars.
(Well, Mars with an extensive ocean, anyway.) The photos don't do the place justice. Next time I am out there, I will need to spend more time and try to capture the place. Iao was pretty, but the lava field was by far my favorite place this trip.

Our final full day on Maui, I did get another morning walk in. It rained during my walk, but 75 and rainy? Totally okay with me! It actually felt nice to have cool raindrops hit my sweaty face as I listened to the birds and waves battle for dominance in my ears.

I seem to be averaging 4.15/hour right now. Not too shabby for having only started training.

I didn't get to walk nearly as much as I'd planned, but all in all I'm proud that I got out there and did it the days I could. Like I said, I would be one in-shape chick if I could live there!

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