Five things I learned while climbing Pinnacle Mountain

Lake Maumelle at sunset, from Pinnacle Mountain

Last Thursday (August 26, 2010), I did something I would not have believed I could do just six months ago. My high school friend Marvin invited me to go “hike” up Pinnacle Mountain in West Little Rock (AR).

Hike is a relative term.

It was more like “climb.” Sure, we took a trail, but at a certain point, it was all rock and the trail became a yellow line painted on the rocks to help guide the weary hiker to the top of the mountain.

Pinnacle Mountain is a part of the Ouachita Mountains, just south of the Arkansas River. It is not very high, but it provides a great exercise experience.

This experience was hard, and I learned a few lessons along the way.

1. “One foot in front of another”

My friend Marvin kept saying that phrase. I stopped a lot. A lot! But, I kept going. Marvin kept telling me, “just put one foot in front of another.” My pace was slow, but it kept moving. Sometimes, when the obstacle seems too much, we have to “put one foot in front of another.”

2. We all need someone to challenge, or stretch us

This is true in life, in exercise or in business. It is even true in our spiritual life. Marvin stretched me that day. He kept pulling me, kept encouraging me. He was so motivational to me that I asked him if had ever thought about being a personal trainer!

3. Success breeds confidence

Sometimes we have to have some success. The harder the obstacle, the greater the success! When we find that we can accomplish something we did not think possible, it gives us confidence. At least it did me! Does success give you confidence?

4. Faster is not always better

In the city, we sometimes think that things are much better when they are moving at break-neck speed. When we get into nature, we find things slow down. Taking a hike, going fishing, making a trip to the deer stand, and other types of activities that get us away from the “hustle and bustle of life” (I know it’s cliche) and in a natural setting will help us forget about certain stressors and give us a chance to just relax and enjoy God’s beauty.

5. Mind over body

Sometimes, we need for our minds to overcome our bodies. That is one of the greatest lessons of the ultimate exercise test. I was weary. I was tired. I was exhausted! My body said to stop. My body said to go back. Through the help of my friend Marvin, my mind began to say “keep going!”

Marathon runners, tri-athletes and other extreme endurance sports understand and know this.
Now, some of these lessons I already knew, in my mind. However, I learned them anew in a different way. This was a good kind of experience for me, and I am glad I completed the task!

Find a mountain to climb, and learn something new!

top of pinnacle mtn
Proof I made it to the top!

Photo Credit: photogg19