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How Strong Do You Need to be for Mountain Life?

No. 031 Reading Time 4 minutes

“ Ab to ye ladke pahadi ho gaye hai “

(Now these boys are mountain boys, no more city boys)

say the villagers proudly, like they have coached us over time.

Living in the city, we had run occasional half-marathons (without training).

We played football on weekends.

We went trekking to the mountains once a year.

Apart from that, we had a pretty sedentary life.

The day we moved to the village, we had got all our belongings, from mattresses to tools, to start our mountain life. The villagers had promised that they would come and help move the stuff uphill. No one showed up.

It was just two of us. Ansh trekked with all the bags and tools.

Raghav off-roaded the scooter with heavy stuff such as tables and boxes.

We did not know how strong we were when being strong was the only choice.

That was one hell of a day.

We were exhausted but felt satisfied.

We quickly realized that the physical effort required to live a mountain life is a different ball game. Honestly, our first 6 months felt like a punishment. It was an embarrassing show. We were panting like dogs.

 75-year-old granny (Dadi) who we live with, lifted more weight than we could.

Observing closely, we learned that it's not about the weight you carry but how you carry it. This learning could be applied in other aspects of life too.

We have come a long way.

From being unable to carry even a bucket of water, to carrying thousands of heavy rocks, straw bales, logs, water tanks, doors, windows, and whatnot. Sometimes, doing 4 rounds of 2 km trek one way.

Earlier, we did not trust our footing on the hilly terrain and walked like an elephant, as granny would say. Now, Raghav goes for trail runs to the river below 3-4 times a week.

Like all other things, physical strength comes with practice. Human bodies are quite adaptable. If we have the right mindset, we can achieve anything.

Everything that is now easy for you was once hard in the beginning.

Robin Sharma

Some friends wonder why we put ourselves through so much stress.

We wanted to choose a lifestyle where the environment is the gym and explore our human physical potential.

We wanted to do the hard things. Ancient humans built pyramids, the Pantheon, and the Acropolis. We wanted to push our boundaries and at least build a tiny mud house over the hill.

Sometimes women tend to underestimate their physical strength. Atulya K Bingham, the author of Mud Ball, in her late forties, built several off-grid structures, single-handedly, without power tools.

We would like to end today’s post with a David Goggin’s quote,

" You are in danger of living a life so comfortable and soft that you will die without ever realizing your true potential. "

Reply to us sharing what you thought about today’s newsletter.


Raghav and Ansh


Check this meditative video without any music of Stiliyan Stefanov building a wooden reciprocal roof, single-handedly.

Courtney Dauwalter is one of the world’s best female ultrarunners. This conversation has changed our perspective on how we view pain.

"Four or five years ago, I viewed the Pain Cave as this place that you should try to put off as long as possible . . . but in the past couple years, it's been the place I want to get to" - Courtney Dauwalter

We came across this article in Atulya Bigham's newsletter that you might want to read and subscribe to. Hugh started building beautiful natural homes in his sixties. Now, you have no excuse!

Tiny Farm Friends Newsletter. Every Sunday, we share tiny valuable lessons to help you transition to the countryside and build naturally.


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