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It takes no effort to appreciate life. Even when you feel like nothing is in your favor, opportunities arise in weird places….

A woman named Olga is teaching me Russian right now she’s from Kazakstan… Yes like in Borat, the joy I get from learning her language is incredible. I am learning to accept my circumstances and take advantage of the opportunities even in the small places…so am learning Russian. Olga leaves tonight but the last two weeks have been filled with Russian key words, numbers, the alphabet, and some common curse words:) the last two weeks I have been listening to her talk about growing up in Russia and living the good life until the 90’s came around an the Soviet Union took over and communism set in. Literally over night she watched every grocery store get cleaned out completely….nothing….from grocery stores to waiting in line for 3 hours a day for a little piece of meat. She had a toddler and a baby in her belly at the time…she’d wait all day and sometimes by the time she got to the front of the line, all the meat would be gone. She watched her dad’s huge savings account get taken away to the equivalent of a days lunch money…she had winters where she’d have to put vegetables in big bins of rice in the basement so it wouldn’t freeze. She told me in Kazakstan there is no such thing as diapers or toilet paper so when she raised her children…every pair of pants had to be individually hand-washed and they used the newspaper as toilet paper. The stories are crazy and so she shares, I listen, and remember how fortunate we are as Americans to use the restroom in clean water and wipe our asses with toilet paper throughout the days….

Life is so beautiful when you can see the different perspectives all around us. The most important thing to realize is that whatever we may be going through, it’s never really that difficult and eventually everything moves on and gets replaced with new situations and opportunities. When I’m at a low point, I cease what can be done like learn a new language and meet new people and listen to their stories, get outside of myself….

Apart from all this I have been making sure to strive for new goals:

I am signed up for a glacier climbing course that starts next month, I’m going to Hawaii with my family in January, the big Island specifically… I have never seen lava before so I’m really excited about it and excited to be with my family again. I bought tickets to see Cheryl Strayed (the author of Wild and solo-PCT female hiker) speak here in seattle and I’m also going to a yoga training this June.

Only 15 more days…I can’t believe it!

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The best way to be happy is to be grateful. It’s a festive week around here and people are happily preparing themselves for a massive feast, happy times(or anxious/dreadful) times with their families with sweets and drinks flowing… Whatever the case, we are thankful. The best thing to do is really sit and think about how lucky you are. What can you appreciate right now? Make a list.

I am thankful for the most supportive family in the world.
I am thankful for the ability to have fresh, nutritious food at my fingertips.
I am thankful to live in a place surrounded by beautiful mountain ranges.
I am thankful for a healthy, strong body.
I am thankful for yoga and it’s ability to cure anything that I may face in life.
I am thankful for amazing running shoes and hundreds of trails.
I am thankful for being highly adaptable. Whatever I face, good or bad, always becomes manageable and I usually can see the positive side of every situation.
I am thankful for my faithful car that has really shown me my freedom on a geographic scale.
I am thankful to have women in my life that empower me to be my best self and are always by my side.
I am thankful for my sobriety.
I am thankful for change…and that through everything, I am who I am and have had so many experiences that have shaped me and my surroundings to what it is today.

Remember to be grateful. Happy Thanksgiving to everyone! I can’t wait to be free…thank you for all the continuing support that helps me stay positive through the holidays.
38 more days till true freedom but I am still grateful for everything I have today.

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When I am surrounded by negativity, I remember how important it is to be a positive shining light through it all.

I am constantly listening to stories from young girls in and out of unfortunate situations who know nothing else other than hustling and stealing and drug use and even prostitution. It’s sad. I ask them if they ever want to change and they tell me that they don’t know how to change. They have had this way of life for so long. They are surrounded by people just like them, their family is all the same and their demographic is just like this. They would physically need to move away and start from scratch. But what happens when you move away? How do you start over when you know no other way? You may just have the same bad habits in a new location where you don’t know anyone. The same scheme repeats itself again and again….

I can’t believe that at one point, this was my life…not the full extent: I never stole or was a prostitute or anything like that but I was a slave to a self-destructive life style in one way or another. At one point I did not see any reason to change because I was walking this life with my eyes closed.

These girls ask me why I don’t have a husband or babies….and I ask them why they have numerous baby-daddies or why they teach their kids to steal? They ask me why I am so good and don’t do drugs or drink? I ask them why can’t they live their life without it? They ask me why I pay for things when it’s easier to steal? I ask them why they preach their bibles to me when they can’t even follow commandment #8.

We have many conversations and I wish I could show them what it’s like to walk through the mountains, to wake up to a sunrise right outside of your tent. To see the clouds move beneath your feet as you stand over blanket of fog. I wish I could tell them that the more you embrace the things you love, the more you don’t need the drugs, the alcohol, or that abusive relationship. I’ve been asking these girls to make a list of places they want to go, things they love to do, hobbies that bring them life. Surprisingly, they have quite the long list. I try to tell them that it is possible to have a life outside of the unhealthy cage that they have created. I try to tell them that if they spend each day, each week, each month doing at least one of those things on that list, their life will change dramatically.

The more you do what you love, the more you begin to love your life. It’s not about making a lot of money or finding that perfect mate, or having that perfect body…it’s about finding pure joy in doing whatever you do.

Someday I would like to create some sort of support group that brings troubled souls together for outdoor hikes. So many of these girls have never stepped foot on a mountain and I feel that everyone needs this in their life someday…and hopefully it’ll spring new possibility. This life is too beautiful to play small.

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I don’t know where and when I stopped holding on to people. I sweep things under the rug. I pretend I’m so happy on my own. I smile so big but find myself running in circles to keep my lonely heart busy with activities to do. Yoga, hiking, running, repeat. When you’re constantly running in circles you barely have time to feel lonely. It’s amazing filling my day doing everything that makes me happy. Right now I can’t do those things. As I have said, I am in a transition.
Lone wolf.
Solitude.
Embrace independence.
You can do everything on your own.

I’m talking about it now. I’m telling you what happens when you aren’t able to do everything that you love 7 days a week. You get to wake up, but you have all these thoughts running through your head. Constantly.

You feel.
Feel.
Feel.
Feel.
Nothing to run from, nothing to distract the underlaying feelings of loneliness, regret, and unsaid feelings. It’s all fucking right there, staring at you in the face like you’re naked for the world to see.

Every single day I realize how important it is to eat fruits and vegetables because when you don’t eat properly, it alters your mood and makes you an unhealthy crazy mean person.
I realize how much I hate feeling or having an outlet to channel the very things that get released when I’m doing what I love.
I realize how much I miss being in love with someone and having the same in return. I don’t remember the last time I’ve ever really truly been in love. Sometimes I feel incapable of normal emotions. Sometimes I’m scared that I am not able to make a family because all this time has gone by and I’m still single, never been pregnant and don’t understand the concept of love.

These are the raw things going through my head the last few days. I miss the mountains. I miss how much they lift my heart and make me smile. Today I have to learn to embrace these raw feelings so that I can understand them and move forward.

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What a magical week!
I went on 3 hikes and turned one year sober.

I also had a handful of people say the same thing to me:
“YOU have so much to offer the world”…..I find that so beautiful….my little ears are used to my imaginary ear-plugs constantly blocking out any form of kind remark or compliment from anyone. I have learned this year to remove those imaginary ear-buds and accept the words of others and accept that I am a worthy person capable of helping others. Most my life I felt so broken that the thought of helping others seemed absolutely impossible. How can one help another if they don’t even know who they are in the first place?

My life is growing. I feel so much change and evolution within myself and I can barely contain it. Today I hear people say that I have so much to offer….and I finally can stop, think and really say “YES! I agree”. I really feel that my story, and the things I have gone through in life can help so many other people. The thought of being a guiding light for another makes me giddy as I sit here typing this. I remember about 6 months ago reading about desires and the importance of setting an intention. I remember waking up every morning and thinking, “God, I desire to feel empowered and vitality…..I desire to empower others”….and I said that every single day for a while amongst other things.

WIthin this past month, I feel this. I feel my confidence slowly rising and my fear subsiding. I feel my words towards others really lifting them. I used to only use this blog as a way for spreading my word but now I see it around me…..it’s an incredible feeling.

So the last three days really defined my new blog name! It’s funny how true this blog-name-change came along…..I created it and find myself truly on the trails or in the water everyday:) Being in nature combined with living a loving, positive life really makes everything better….I feel if others saw the brighter side of things, we could all help each other grow…..

“Did I offer peace today? Did I bring a smile to someone’s face? Did I say words of healing? Did I let go of my anger and resentment? Did I forgive? Did I love?’ These are the real questions. I must trust that the little bit of love that I sow now will be many fruits, here in this world and the life to come”
-Henri Nouwen

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(above: after climbing a few waterfalls, I reached a place to swim. isn’t washington amazing?)

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(trail-running to lake melakwa)

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(climbing waterfalls)

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(next day: hiking to Barclay Lake with my brother)

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(this is why i need to buy a professional photography camera….i want to be a photographer someday!)

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(it was too cold to jump in, but we thoroughly explored the area)

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(brother bear exploring the meadows)

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(we had our own private beaches)

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(just hangin!)

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(day 3////last night where we went hiking/trail-running till 9pm)

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(the sun before our head down the trail)

What a glorious week! You have SO much to offer….we all do. Make the most of this beautiful life!

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“Look at the trees, look at the birds, look at the clouds, look at the stars… and if you have eyes you will be able to see that the whole existence is joyful. Everything is simply happy. Trees are happy for no reason; they are not going to become prime ministers or presidents and they are not going to become rich and they will never have any bank balance. Look at the flowers — for no reason. It is simply unbelievable how happy flowers are” ~Osho

Nature is Love. It’s simple happiness. The Osho quote perfectly describes life around us. Everything has happiness just as it is. Nothing to strive for, nothing to be worried about, nothing to be heartbroken over. Life happens all around us with pure joy no matter the circumstances.
Today I worked then spent the day running the trails in Seattle. It’s amazing how alive the city gets this season. Every restaurant is flourishing, the markets are flooded with people and the trails and parks are filled with people enjoying the sun and soaking in that vitamin we all barely get through the other 8 months of the year. I have noticed when I hike, when I am out on the trails….I am happiest. I could be with friends or I could be alone and I feel the exact same feeling. bliss.
We were meant to roam and explore. We were meant to be happy. Whatever is going on this very moment, whatever pain you may feel….remember that although it may hurt right now, it will pass and life will be beautiful just as it is. Sometimes I go through pain(especially this past year) and I realize the more I don’t give it power to ruin my day, the less I worry, the better things work out. Things have been working out….and I find peace in nature.

Back to my trail run. I haven’t been running with my Runkeeper app in months. It’s liberating!!! I am not training for any races right now because of my circumstances and I realized that this past year I have slowly let the pace thing get to me. I would beat my best pace and over time I would try to get faster and faster and when I don’t beat it, I feel defeated…like I’m failing. How absolutely dramatic of me…but it’s what has been happening. I switched things up, I stopped using my Runkeeper, stopped tracking my miles, put the electro house music on hold and paused. This summer I have only been running with country music, with books on tape, with sermon’s from my church and I have been relaxing my pace. In this instance, my run’s go longer, with more relaxation and the ability to be joyful. AS WE SHOULD BE. Things will change when I can train for the marathons and such but for now, I live every single day in peace. Serenity from keepin’ up with the Jones’s, serenity from self-criticism and serenity from anything negative.

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After my run I stopped and picked some blackberries. Here in Washington they are all starting to ripen. I got a little carried away and by the time I got to my car I noticed:

1. I have a random Mason Jar in the trunk
2. There are hundreds of blackberry bushes all near my car! Score!

The addict in my little head told me I need to find every blackberry before I go home… So tonight I made a delish little dessert with my berry-winnings!

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dont they look amazing???…..and kind of not completely ripe yet. i got a little excited

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dessert

a sliver of chocolate cake with a scoop of greek yogurt, my blackberries and a scoop of ground chia/flaxseed/cacao :)

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I did it! I did it!
I changed my name….hahaha something I’ve been contemplating all year! It feels so right…it makes me want to update all the time because I feel that my little blogging identity has been rejuvenated to a more authentic feeeeeel, if ya feel me?

SO here I am. No longer tiarefitness.com because if you have been following my blog for the last couple years, well I don’t give a rats ass about trying to appease anyone with specific fitness needs. I may lose a lot of followers but in the big scheme of things, I have found MYSELF.

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feels refreshing.
I’m going to kill you all with my horrible grammar and spelling typos because my shitty Mac lost my normal Word Doc program but I no longer care! I will update you more via mountain adventures and through my little struggles I am soon facing in my near future…

So here I am….tiny trail mermaid. It may be a little ehhhh….but it fits better. I am 5’3 and petite((hence tiny))….I am from Hawaii and grew up there for the first 12 years of my life. ((hence the mermaid part)). I moved here to Washington when I was 12 and lately, as you can see, I have been throwing myself into adventure in the GREAT PNW. I love it here and always have but this year has brought new meaning to my life. I have truly found who I really am and most of this was through being a year sober as of this month, finding true passion in my yoga practice, and finding myself….especially in the mountains. I love to trail run and hike and recently started camping on those long treks.

I’m not going to go into detail about my life because it is still the same life I have been living. The only difference is a name…I didn’t want to be a fitness blog. This is just a blog about my life and the adventures I take, and the little things I do day in and day out to become a better person.
This is a New year. A WHOLE YEAR SOBER.
Change is surely happening and I want to make sure I can write about it without making this just about fitness.

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