I’ve been doing the Grouse Grind a lot this summer because I haven’t been able to ride my bike due to my shoulder injury that keeps on flaring up from whiplash. I have dozens of fresh insights daily because I keep on putting myself into flow states. That’s when you give your mind a break from the “real life grind” so it can form new neuroconnections aka ideas.
Whether it is on my bicycle or an intense hike like this, I exercise not to lose weight or because I have to. The multitude of benefits and results I get from exercise is what cemented this into my daily routine as simply as brushing my teeth.
Flow states, mindset shifts, epiphanies, meditation, solving problems, coming up with new ideas… and of course staying effortlessly lean while being able to eat what I want… and enjoying nature therapy and getting a hit of vitamin D and dopamine at the same time. I loveeeee being productive!
Random thoughts & tips while on the Grouse Grind:
- Those are two types of people: those who love love LOVEEEE the Grind and those who hate it. My philosophy is: if I know it’s good for me, I’ll do it until I love it and that’s why I loveee the Grind. I go hard into everything at least once before saying “I dislike…”
- 10+ years ago, I use to go up repeating to myself: “I fucking love this I fucking love this…” and guess what? I trained my brain to love it and here I am today! There is so much more literature today how you can really rewire your brain!
- Interesting fact I learned about dopamine: you must intrinsically enjoy activities for a larger dopamine hit and because I truly love love LOVE cycling and grinding sooo much, I realized that’s probably why I feel so blissed out almost all the time. Same with life! I literally wake up every morning excited to start my day. Since my dopamine hit from the Grind is so intense because I truly fucking love it, I can’t help but to keep on coming back for more.
- Since I don’t have a strict training schedule and I do it so often, I love it because EVERY grind is different and I never know what to expect. Some days my legs are dead from cycling. Other days I didn’t get enough sleep or perhaps I stayed out too late. I always think about this on my bike rides (since I only RIDE TO RIDE). And of course, I notice this with life as well. You never know what a day may bring! Adaptability is a common trait amongst of some of the most successful people. I read this in a Forbes article 10+ years ago and decided I wanted to be successful so I incorporate it into my mindset.
- I the Grouse Grind a a
- I am a cyclist and don’t like hiking because many of them are too time consuming (and you have to hike downhill , yuck) but the Grind is short and hard so I can plan my day accordingly. Life is short & you should only do what you love! I know I see so much more on my bicycle and the accomplishment, and views for some reason feels 100000x more worthwhile (if you know, you know)… and when I’m not riding, I want to be vegging on my couch or out with my friends.
- Unfortunately my baseline dopamine levels are too high and hiking doesn’t do it for me at all no matter how “long or hard” because it can’t compare to the feeling of adventure + speeds on a bike. BUT honestly, one grind (even if I hit PR’s) never seems enough because I know I have the energy, endurance and stamina to do 2-3. However as I get older, I appreciate recovery so much more and I know better than to push it unnecessarily just for that dopamine hit. It’s funny because for some athletes, it’s harder to stay still than to actually workout whereas it is the opposite for probably 90% of the population. We are all killing ourselves one way or another! That’s why it is so important to train my discipline muscle!
- I do the Grouse Grind multiple times a week when it’s opened while also cycling everyday so I never bother to do it “for time.” I have zero interest in further stressing out my body because I’ve seen athletes train themselves to chronic autoimmune conditions. My main fitness philosophy these days is: train hard but recover even harder.
- Just like cycling, I reframe it “me time.” That’s why I’m so addicted to Grinding—i I love my me time!
- If you do it often, try going up at a “chill pace.” It is a nice feeling when you realize your chill pace is still pretty damn fast. This will train your mind to stop being so hard on yourself to prevent you from overtraining!
- Make the most out of every Grind and keep your mind + body guessing. Some days I go up so I can focus on breathing through my nose, other days I’m focussing on my glutes making sure I take every step with intention. Some days I go up with a podcast or audio book, or music, or nothing at all. There are no rules and no pressure.
- I love love love biking + grinding except time hasn’t been on my side this summer. However still managed to squeeze 4 in!
- I always get my best times when I’m not trying.
- ALWAYS LISTEN TO YOUR BODY! I couldn’t sleep last night and I planned to hike this AM with a friend and I never sell out last minute so I decided today was going to be a “chill” day because I understand the effects of chronic stress. I get to be in nature while listening to some podcasts I’ve been anticipating. No Grind is ever a bad grind!
- I test everyone I meet on the Grind. If they can’t handle it and don’t want to level up their time, they can’t be in my life. 😂🙈
I did the Grouse Grind earlier last week on a Monday where I literally ran to the halfway point before I started getting tired. Then I did it again on Thursday were I could barely make it halfway to the quarter mark because my left upper-back, lats, and shoulder started radiating the most intense pain I’ve ever felt. I felt like a knife was in my lats but I made it past quarter mark and then realized I had to keep going because technically you’re not supposed to hike down after that point. I’ve trained my mind to “keep on going“, that’s exactly what I did and it ever occured to me to turn around or give up, and I 100% believed in myself that I was going to make it to the top no matter what (mindset training!).
You can really train your mind to turn on autopilot when you want it to through consistency and have faith in yourself. The lather is often looked over but extremely important.
This goes to show how every single hike can be different depending on a multitude of factors. So many people give up on challenging activities because perhaps they didn’t perform well– but you have to show up consistently to improve.