I consider myself to be an outdoorsman and as soon as I was able to walk, I wanted to be outdoors. My parents had always lived a very healthy lifestyle. They would eat only healthy foods at home, things like soda were rarely in the refrigerator and my father insisted we exercise every day. This came as a challenge for my older brother who had always been on the heavy side.
Anyhow, my father would take us outdoors as much as he could. He liked running and encouraged us to run. He took us to a track where he used to go almost every day but for some reason, I always found it boring. I used to tell my father that I didn’t see any sense in running in circles, I would rather pick a trail I liked and run there.
And that’s what practically got me interested in trail running. I lived in a hilly area, so it provided a lot of possible combinations for routes that I could take. As far as I was concerned, that’s all I would need. I started working on my times with hopes of being able to compete. It took me a few years to get to a competitive level, but I got there.
I competed in my first race when I was 15 years old. I was very nervous and was not sure of every single turn in the course, but I gave it my all. I was surprised that I had made it to the top 10 in that race. It gave me all the motivation I needed to keep running and improving my times. I knew that as long as I worked hard at it, I would succeed.
Many years later and I still enjoy trail running. Fortunately, my son has also picked up the baton and is running at only seven years old. I like running with him because I remember what got me started at his age. Every trail is like a different world to explore. Feeling the breeze on your face and having the sun shining in front of you, make the perfect picture for me.
Now, imagine going for a walk underwater. Everything you see and know is above ground. The jungle, the trees, and plants, everything is above water. Do you think this is possible? Well, that’s exactly what happened after very heavy rainfalls inside “Recanto Ecológico Rio de la Plata” (Natural River Park) in Jardim, Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil.
Everything has been submerged but what is so special about this case is that the waters are incredibly crystal- clear. When one moves underwater, there’s no muddiness and no debris. This is a protected private park that is off-limits to the public. Thanks to this, no trash or extraneous objects have gotten into the water. It is like a dream come true. A must-see!