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I Am a Traveler
October 16th, 2012, 17:30
In the Toronto airport, panic strikes. Hard. I’ve been sitting here with Odin, my big orange backpack, for about 5 hours. In hindsight a ten hour layover in Canada wasn’t the greatest idea. And the next one in Frankfurt probably wont be great either. Fear fogs my vision while I stumble-run into the cold sterile bathroom with Odin weighing me down. As I slam through the door, I catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror, flushed face and all. Reality hits. I’m going to India. Alone. With no planning whatsoever. For an obscene amount of time. Six months. Half a year. Is this too much? Should I quit halfway? Make it two months instead? Did I bring enough money? Am I wrongly trusting strangers? Are these people I found on couchsurfing going to kidnap me or rob me or kill me? What the hell was I thinking? This is a mistake. I’m stupid. This was wrong.
All of these thoughts and more strike me all at once and fly around my head. And I haven’t even left North America yet.
Traveling has a profound ability to change a person in many ways. It can give you a new outlook on the world and its cultures, make you learn new skills and, if you do it right, push yourself to the limits. But long-term travel can also change you physically. You’ve seen what it can do to a passport. Whether it’s a beard, hair, sun damage, or weight gain/loss, something is bound to evolve.
To test this, I took a picture of myself every week for my 6 month backpacking trip through India. Be on the lookout for only five shirts (but mostly my Lululemon Metal Vent Tech shirt), two beards, and no haircuts.
On my return, people said that I aged 5 years. See for yourself.
Introducing the Evolution of a Traveler:
When the alarm starts blaring at 6 AM, the first thing on your mind probably isn’t exercise. That hour is reserved for something like “How many times can I hit the snooze before I’m late enough to get yelled at, again?” along with a choice selection of a few four letter words. But here’s the thing, the morning is possibly the most important time of the day if you’re interested in getting healthier and dropping some pounds, and honestly, who isn’t? And the best part is: you don’t need to go to the gym to do it.
While traveling in another country, it’s often a good idea to carry your passport at all times in a safe and secure location. Just in case anything happens, you have immediate access to this important document.
The following is what happens when you carry around your brand new passport in your back pocket everyday for 6 months in India.
Introducing the Evolution of a Passport:
Reading Time: 10 Minutes
The best way to enact change is to find ways of working it into everyday life. This is true both for new skills and habits as well as for physical fitness. I have found that squeezing small workouts into any spare minutes helps to improve overall health. This not only keeps you actively exercising, but also taking full advantage of your time.
The trick is to blend these exercises into the things you would normally do every day. This way, it doesn’t feel like you are going out of your way to exercise. This helps you to remember to work out, and also makes it as quick and easy as possible. These exercises use your body weight and minimal, if any, equipment.