Hiker Jennifer Pharr Davis Achieves the “Impossible”

Breaking Records

Regular readers of this blog know that I love to study how and why people are able to overcome obstacles and achieve success.  I recently had the opportunity to meet Jennifer Pharr Davis, who is the record holder for traversing the Appalachian Trail.  She hiked the Trail’s 2,175 miles in 46 days, 11 hours, and 20 minutes, becoming the first woman to hold the record.

Nothing Can Stop A Determined Mind

The list of obstacles she faced on her journey include physical and mental obstacles:

  • She was struck by lightning.
  • Her eyes were frozen shut.
  • She faced everything from insects to wildlife like bears and rattlesnakes.
  • Critics said a woman couldn’t hold the record.  A hiker couldn’t best a runner.

What I love is that Jennifer faced all of this and kept hiking each step with her goal clearly in mind.

Achieving YOUR Goals

A few tips from Jennifer in accomplishing her goal:

  • “It’s never about how far you go or how fast you go; it’s what you take from the experience.”
  • She consciously tuned out negative voices and criticism.
  • She refused to let the fear of failure prevent her from reaching her dream.
  • Her faith sustained her along the way.
  • Her route was non-traditional in direction (north to south) and method (hiking, not running).

Watch my video interview with Jennifer Pharr Davis, and read the two great books about her experiences.  Her book is Becoming Odyssa.  Her husband, Brew, also wrote a book.  It’s called 46 Days:  Keeping Up with Jennifer Pharr Davis on the Appalachian Trail.

Whether you fall in love with the Appalachian Trail or not, you will definitely be inspired to achieve your own goals.


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