The following article was published on oregonsportsnews.com on Monday June 17, 2013.

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Perhaps it’s because I lived in the world’s second largest mega city for over a year. There’s something about being constantly surrounded by throngs of people that makes one want to escape to nature. Of course, a month spent in disconnection on an island, far away from civilization, is a very freeing feeling. Maybe it’s just the simple fact that I’m back home in the mountains. Whatever the reason, I love being outdoors.

I’ve ventured up into the mountains of Estes Park, Colorado, and I’m currently sitting in the grass staring at snow covered peaks and elk in the distance. The sun is beating down, it’s slightly breezy, and clouds are rolling in over the Rockies. After five days of hiking, trail running, and spur of the moment yoga pit stops around town, I’m in love.

Whether you feel at home on the pavement of a city street or squeezing dirt through your toes, I present a challenge to you: get outside! I truly believe it safe to say that no matter what reason you find to do so, you will not regret your decision. Step out of your comfort zone. The walls of your mind may be the thing keeping you trapped inside; not work or “obligations.” Make yourself your obligation.

Don’t think you have time to hit the trails? Then go for a run, ride a bike, or take a walk after dinner. Don’t worry, everything will be there be there when you get back. Find something you love and go have fun with it.

Yoga is my passion. Outdoor yoga? Say no more. Enjoy the beauty of Oregon or wherever you are around the country this summer with some of the following events.

Hiking Yoga

Hiking Yoga is in thirteen cities nationwide and mixes two of my favorite activities. The best part is that it will appeal to city dwellers and granola crunchers alike. Imagine this: exploring the hidden corners of your beautiful city, taking photographic pit stops to stretch it out, and getting your day’s cardio taken care of all at once.

To find Hiking Yoga’s schedule in Portland and to find out more information, visitwww.hikingyoga.com.

Yoga Rocks the Park

Yoga Rocks the Park is a national celebration of yoga, live music, and the health and wellness community. Every Saturday in parks around the country, join locally and nationally celebrated yogis from a variety of backgrounds and traditions. Yoga Rocks the Park starts Saturday July 13th in Portland at Laurelhurst Park. 10% of proceeds from Portland’s YRP go towards Living Yoga, a non-profit working to bring yoga and natural healing practices to alcohol and drug rehabilitation centers and transitional facilities. Kids can even participate through Camp Yoga Rocks, a fun and interactive camp where kids ages three to ten can learn yoga, hoola hooping, and have fun with art, face painting, and other activities.

Find schedules, teacher and musician lineups, and more information onwww.yogarocksthepark.com.

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