Tips for Hiking Mt Kilimanjaro

When I was planning my trip to Mt. Kilimanjaro, I wish I could have found a list of tips for hiking Mt Kilimanjaro to help me prepare.  What’s out there is every tour organizations plug for why they are the best at getting people to the top, but not really helpful info from someone who had done it.  For the 35,000 people who hike the mountain each year, this lack of information is a gaping hole in the internet where you can usually find answers to everything.  Everyone has a different experience, and you may discover you have different needs than I did.  But after hiking, these are the things I wish I could have known earlier.  Each of these helped make my hike better and easier.  There is no particular order here.  I’d want them all.

Tips for Hiking Mt Kilimanjaro

  • Balaclava: Bring a balaclava for the journey. A thin one like they wear in the television show Survivor works best.  This becomes a very versatile tool.  You can cover your face to protect from dust and sun.  You can cover your nose to help warm the cold air a little […]
Tips for Hiking Mt Kilimanjaro2018-02-14T16:29:00-05:00

Pee Like A Guy

I also got a fancy case to conceal it when it’s not being used.

In prep for hiking Mt. Kilimanjaro, it was suggested to me that I get a device that enables women to pee while standing without taking their pants off.  It enables women to pee like a guy.  In truth, I’ve always been sort of interested in one of these contraptions, so it didn’t take much convincing.

A friend suggested the p-style.  And she said, “Practice.”  It arrived earlier this week.  The p-style looks sort of like a pink taco with one side sealed.  You place it where it needs to go, and viola, you can urinate like a guy.  Except I couldn’t figure out how not to pee all over my feet.  I couldn’t create enough force to get away from my feet.

I mentioned the problem to my dad at dinner.  He tells me, “Maggie.  Wide stance.  Pelvis forward.”  So I tried and it worked.  I’m not sure if guys know this little trick intuitively.  It also amuses me that my dad just taught his 36-year-old daughter how to pee like a guy.  A conversation I suspect he […]

Pee Like A Guy2018-02-14T16:37:22-05:00

Hiking Alone

Heading to the trail-head alone. Heading to the trail-head alone.

I can’t explain why but I needed to go hiking alone. I felt compelled to hike in the White Mountains all by myself.  For some people this may be no big deal.  When I’m hiking, I see lone hikers all the time.  And now I wonder if their moms are as worried about them as mine was about me.  Because mine was pretty worried.  If cell service allowed I promised to text her practically hourly.  Luckily for her sanity there was service the entire hike.  It made me feel safer too.

Part of my reason for hiking the White Mountains alone was practical.  I didn’t feel like planning.  I was going to be half way there after working in Boston, and I didn’t want to have to drive back to Connecticut to meet friends and drive back.  Matt was traveling for work.  But for all those excuses there was something else drawing me.

The White Mountains is one of my favorite places to spend time. I wanted it to myself for a moment.  I’m comfortable there.  The hikes are challenging and you can get […]

Hiking Alone2017-12-29T20:01:34-05:00

Six Reasons to Slow Down Your Workout

We tend to think bigger is better.  We have to work harder and faster or we aren’t getting a good enough workout.  Sometimes we even use this as an excuse not to exercise.  But research is showing we can chill out.  You don’t have to go hard or go home.  You can just move.  Here are some research points in favor of a gentler workout:


  • Run Slow (10-min mile)

Running ten-minute miles and under 15-miles a week is more beneficial to your heart health than running faster for longer, which actually diminishes the gain for your heart.  So slow down and enjoy the run.  And stop calling yourself a jogger at a 10-minute mile.  It’s not 1970.  You’re out there running with everyone else.  You’re a runner.

  • Pilates Good For Your Mind

A small study showed that 10-weeks of Pilates increases memory, cognitive function and neural network activity.  You won’t be surprised if you’ve done Pilates.  It’s basically the exercise for multi-taskers.  There’s a lot going on at the same time.

  • Aerobic Exercises Creates New Neurons

That’s right.  Exercise is one of the few things, if not the only thing, in life that creates and builds new neurons in the brain.  This should be reason enough […]

Six Reasons to Slow Down Your Workout2017-10-25T15:49:49-04:00

Welcome to Jordan

“You are welcome to Jordan” was the phrase we heard from almost everyone we met on our recent whirlwind trip to the Middle East.  “Please, go home and tell your friends and family they are welcome to Jordan too.”  Jordan, like Turkey, is a predominately safe country with some very difficult neighbors.  It doesn’t have any state issued travel warnings.  Mexico does. (Just to provide a little perspective.)

The curbs were the most colorful part of Amman. The curbs were the most colorful part of Amman.


I was nervous about traveling to Jordan until I got there.  Even though the flights were long, it was worth the trip.  We had three days in country which gave us time to see Amman, the Dead Sea, Petra and spend the night in the Wadi Rum.

Amman had some good local food and dabbled in interesting graffiti, but in my short stay there I didn’t see much else worth discovering.  It’s a very beige city—the Earth and buildings are the same color.





  Floating in the Dead Sea Floating in the Dead Sea

The Dead Sea disappointed in its beauty […]

Welcome to Jordan2017-10-25T14:24:29-04:00