I recently took a trip to the Shenandoah National Park with my buddy Genny. During this trip I had the opportunity to discover the importance of B.R.A. support!
Genny and I stayed at Skyland resort, in the Shenandoah. The accommodations were quiet, comfortable and clean. This trip was an opportunity to unwind, connect with a friend, with ourselves and enjoy the great outdoors.
On day two of our trip we challenged ourselves with a “difficult” hike, taking on the Cedar Run Loop in the White Oak Canyon. It is an 8 mile hike, considered more strenuous than Old Rag Loop (one of the more popular hikes in the Shenandoah).
The difficulty came in the form of increased stair stepping over rocks and tree roots for the majority of the trip. We lost the trail for about 50 yards. Climbing though brush and sliding down large rounded rock, we eventually found the trail continue on the other side of the river.
The challenges were worth the experience as we traveled down the canyon along the river bank, experiencing waterfalls the majority of the way.
The trail was very strenuous in ability and length, more than we were conditioned for on this day. Grateful that I had brought my hiking stick as I found myself slipping, tripping and falling on roots and rocks hidden under the abundance of leaves. It became my saving grace and saving face as I met many obstacles along the way. It was during one of my many stumbles that I began to realize the importance of added SUPPORT while taking on challenges on the trail and in life.
The day took a turn for the worse around mile 5 when my Iliotibial Band (IT Band) began to rub creating discomfort along the side of my left knee. It only got worse as we traveled up and down the canyon and crossing the river 3 more times.
As we reached the Whiteoak Fire Road the pain was stabbing on the side of my knee. I gritted my teeth and slowly hobbled the remaining portion of the trip. It was difficult and I was unbearably slow. My buddy Genny was an amazing support with patience and encouragement. I am not sure I how much further I could have gone without her help.
As the pain increased I found my energy level decrease. To move forward was challenging. There is something I do when things get really tough whether on the trail or in life in general. I say to myself, “Thank you Jesus”. This is the start of a long conversation I have rattling off words of gratitude. “Thank you for the colorful trees. Thank you for the opportunity to hike. Thank you for my friend Genny.” Some how by doing this it brings a sense of calm and focus within me, giving me energy.
As the sun began to set, I needed to muster that last bit of attitude to finish this hike. Finding attitude comes from within. From a place of reserve. A place we do not know exists until faced with a challenge. And when we find that reserve we discover new strength within ourselves we never knew was there. And in the end I was grateful for this wonderful discovery.
We finished the hike shortly before the sun set. Without my B.R.A. support I am not sure I would have made it. Without my Buddy, my new found Attitude and my Religion, I may have given up.
B.R.A. Support is just as important for men as it is for women. It is important on the trail and in every day life. Think about who and what makes up your BRA support. What’s your B.R.A. size and Is your B.R.A. giving you the support you need to meet the challenges in your life? If you are finding your reinforcements not holding up, it might be time to get fitted for a new B.R.A.!