Driveable Terrain – There is Always a Way

So many people get caught up in the conventional means, the accepted route; that they lose sight of the actual goal and instead focus myopically on doing it the way it has always been done. They hope that doing so will somehow bring them to stumble upon their goal somewhere down the road.

If the conventional means are unavailable, they dismiss their goal as impossibility and go back to watching television.

In a tactical driving school I went to while in the military, we were introduced to the concept of “Drivable Terrain.” Drivable terrain is anything that your vehicle can feasibly traverse. It has nothing to do with that terrain being part of an accepted motorway. It can be sidewalks, fields, or a path straight through a car without too much weight behind it. (Aim for the axles.) You’d be amazed what your car can actually handle.

I am writing this from Kathmandu, Nepal. I’ve been here about a week and am staying in a guest house in the center of the city. There is no gym anywhere nearby, but it is obviously important for me to work out and maintain at least some level of conditioning.

What I do have is a concrete slab with a metal swing in the middle. Drivable Terrain.

I went walking through markets until I found a shop selling rope and PVC pipe. I bought a length of rope and two short pipes. From this I fashioned what amounts to bastardized Olympic rings. I take the chair off the bar, hang my rings (well, handles) from it, and can do all sorts of bodyweight dips, pushups, rows, and a variety of other upper body work. I can bend my knees and do pull-ups on the bar. On the slab in front of it, I do a mobility warmup, plus bodyweight lunges, single-leg squats and deadlifts for lower body work.

I won’t need this much, because a good portion of my time will be spent hiking in the Himalayas. But for while I’m here in the city, I can stay moving and not worry about losing any conditioning.

There is always a way.

– Craig, Kathmandu, 2008

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