Hike It Baby: What You Need To Know To Get Started
Joining Hike it Baby
I discovered Hike it Baby almost a year ago when I was getting outside more with my youngest and hiking with her in the carrier. I was missing interacting with friends and thought it’d be a good way to get some time in with parents that were in the same boat as me: early risers, loves the outdoors, needs exercise, needs mom time and child interactions. I started out leading hikes and immediately felt a kinship to all the women I met on the trail. Some were with their first child, some younger, some my age, some pregnant, but all of us love the outdoors and carving the time out of our busy lives to be there. All you have to do to join or lead a hike is sign a waiver–so easy, right?
On leading hikes
Anyone can lead a hike. So far I’ve led about 5 hikes (to be honest, I lost count) and I love it. I set the hike schedule/details, post it up on the Facebook group page for my area, and the day of the hike after I drop all my big kids off to school, I head out to my selected place to meet. What I love about leading a Hike it Baby hike is I’ll come away with meeting some great people or learn about a new trail. You don’t have to be an avid hiker to join either: all are welcome and encouraged to come out despite your level of comfort on a trail. There’s no pressure if the hike does not progress or moves slowly–we move at the pace of each person especially paying attention to our kids’ cues. I’ve also seen other activities like stream play or playground meet ups stem from the hikes that have occurred.
The next step
Now that I’ve gotten comfortable leading group hikes, I wanted to give myself a new goal. Enter, Hike it Baby 30: For 30 days, 3x/week, you hike/go outside for 30 minutes–or you can log 30 miles in 30 days. When I broke that down in I was like, whoa–I go outside every week way more than that. For 4 times a year–January, April, September, and November, the challenges are open. This month I’ve committed to going outside (yep, you can spend time outside and it counts!) or hiking 3x/week, for 30 minutes each time. There is a membership fee but supporting an organization like Hike it Baby provides me with daily inspiration and that’s worth it.
What joining the Hike it Baby community means to me
For me, it’s not about the mileage or how much weight I might lose but that could be your goal if you wanted. I honestly love seeing the spark of positivity and energy that random people all over the country and abroad are feeling when they announce they’ve just started their 1st or 8th challenge–hearing about their stories of triumph, loss, happiness, or just getting out and doing something in the open air. Knowing there are moms around me who nurture their well-being and the well-being of their kids despite any circumstance, is mind-blowing. (Sick, tired, overworked, moms–I see you.)
I’ve got outside with my kids for over 10 years and there are challenges and there are easy moments. One thing I learned that is true for all who “Hike it Baby”: We are supporters of each other, we lend each other a helping hand, and we don’t judge or criticize each other. We’re just a bunch of moms who love being outside or are open to getting outside more with our kids (and who might have extra snacks in tow for our demanding toddlers who insist the snacks we brought are not suitable).
To find a Hike it Baby group near you, visit the Hike it Baby website. Plug in your zip code or city and select your group to get started. Don’t forget to follow your Hike it Baby Facebook group to get local updates on the hikes/activities in your area. If you’re already a part of the Hike it Baby community, feel free to reach out (California-East Bay) and let’s get outside together!