Back Home. A Status Report.

I am back home!

Back in Basel. Arrived at the Airport.

I see my mum and two wonderful friends waiting for me at the “Arrivals”.

I am totally overwhelmed. It is so very nice to see them again and give them all a big, very long hug.

“Oh so good to see you all!”.

I am so happy that you all came out here, in the middle of the night, to pick me up. That is the nicest thing you can do for me at the moment.

I am spending my first night at my mum’s place.

That feels good!

I am going back home to my own flat today and try to adjust.

I try to adjust for quite a while now. When I go out into town, I am wearing earplugs. I can’t stand all these noises, and people.

Of course, Basel is a nice city, and not even a particularly loud one.

But it is all just too overwhelming.

It seems to take me an awful long time to get rid of my Jetlag.

Is this normal? Maybe there is more to it than just Jetlag? Maybe it is some sort of “deprivation”?

Seems all I do at the moment is to sleep a lot at odd hours and being awake a lot at odd hours.

Well, it is time to face the truth and step on my scale.

Holy shit!

I lost 13.5 kg (29 pounds) on the PCT.

Nice! Wow!

(Well, I had realized while hiking that my pants got rather loose and I had to hold them up with a carabiner. But 13.5 kg!)

So the mission now is to DEFINITELY try to keep it that way!

How? We both know the trick, right:

A) Eat healthy
B) Move your ass

That’s it. It is that simple.


So my friend Dunja will drag me to all these sport classes. She will help me to try them all out. The ones I can sort of see myself perhaps sticking to, I will, well, try to stick to, on a weekly basis.

Fullstop. Target set.

Today we will try Hata Yoga. That’s an easy start. Lots of breathing and easy movements.

OK, that’s done. It was nice. Check. I subscribed.

Tomorrow we will do Power Yoga.

OK, that’s done too. Uhm, I think I stick with Hata Yoga for the moment.

Now the next one is BodyToning.

Holy smokes! That was something! Everything hurts big time now! Have you guys ever tried BodyToning? It is super exhausting! It is supposed to be a strength training for the whole body. And that is exactly how it feels like. I am so very sore now!


I can hardly sit down, let alone get up. The lesson was one hour. I did sweat like a pig as of minute four.

But I did not give up.

Remember what I had learned on the PCT?

PCT = Pain Constantly Tolerated


PCT = Persistence Creates Toughness

So I penciled myself in. BodyToning, every Tuesday. Check.

Tomorrow, we will try DeepWork. Then Pilates. Then Zumba. And then, finally, CrossFit. (I am greatly inspired by Felix to try out CrossFit – I am sure you all remember Felix!)

I will keep you all posted about how my new fitness life goes. I am so not a sporty person. I am the sort of person who pays CHF 1000 plus for a Fitness Abo… and then hardly ever goes! I can hardly bring myself to bloody drag myself into there.

So but now perhaps things are a little different! Now that I have hiked the PCT!

Now I can do anything!


Well, there is only one way to find out!

So it seems my PTD (Post Trail Depression) never really kicked in!

Yes, I do miss being out there on the PCT tremendously. I miss being outdoors every day, being in nature every day. Hike every day. To sleep in my Big Agnes. Wake up in the morning, pack up and go. Oh I miss that.

And I miss seeing these cute little critters every day, I miss the fresh air, the trees, the mountains, the landscape, the views (oh the views!), the excitement, and awe.

I miss hiking, I miss the crunching sound my boots made on the trail, (crunch – crunch, crunch – crunch, crunch-crunch, it is still so much in my ears).

I miss the tiredness in the evening, I miss being super hot and super cold during the course of just one day, I miss swimming in lakes with my clothes on, I miss arriving at a stream to filter my water.

I miss the fresh air, the quietness (oh it was so so wonderfully quiet!), the healthy-ness of the life out there. (Seems even the two Snickers per day could not do me much harm..).

I miss wearing the same cloths every day, the uncomplicated, easy life (well, I guess it was not that easy with all the snow and ice, and wildfires, and thirst, and hunger, and pain, and exhaustion, and my occasional emotional outbreaks.)

I miss Felix’s big smile and his wisdom.

I miss chatting to other hikers along the way.

I miss the routine of pitching my tent (!), blowing up the mattress, chucking my sleeping bag into the tent, boiling water in my little stove for the freeze dried dinners, eating, and then going to sleep.

I even miss getting out of the tent at 2am for my nightly poo while looking at the stars.

And there is lots more I miss. Lots more.

But I have to say, it seems I came back with my batteries fully charged up. I am filled with gratitude, and a weird feeling of, hm, how can I describe this: “satisfaction” perhaps?

Or “fulfillment” maybe?

I went hiking with Tim in the Bernese Oberland. That was nice! It’s beautiful here too!

And Swiss cows are so pretty! Probably perhaps prettier than US cows?

And I saw my two US friends Kathy and Linda who came to visit Switzerland. Both had helped me greatly getting started in the US, back in April. They gave me a t-shirt with the following message:


Ha! Oh dear, guess my language on the blog was a bit questionable! 

Today, I am going to meet Steffi for lunch. Do you remember Steffi? We met at Scout & Frodo, the Trailangels in San Diego. We hiked together for a while (until I had to pause for a week because my feet where shredded).

“Hi there Steffi!” Oh wow, so nice to see you again!

We chat all afternoon and stroll through Basel. It is so summery today! So nice to walk along the river Rhein.


So yes. It is good here too.

Oh and, something else.

I need to have a tattoo done now! I have the urge to get this tattoo branded into my arm. For years I wanted a tattoo. But now it is crystal clear to me what it is going to be…

It is something profound. Something I learned on the PCT.

My appointment for the puncturing is soon!

(Perhaps I keep you posted about this too. We will see ;-)

So yes. I am doing well.

No PTD so far!

18 replies
  1. Sandy says:

    Heidi Heidi Heidi…….was machst du nur für Dinge ; du brauchst weder Kopfstand Yoga noch Hinkelsteinwerfen noch irgend ein ABO in einem Mucki Shop 😁💪! Ab Samstag bin ich zurück und dann nehme ich dich ( und Dunja sehr gern auch willkommen!!) mit auf die 6 stündige 4 -Felsentour , 1x wöchentlich, nur mit Leichtrucksack und in Schnelltempo. Das ist Outback-Cross-Fit inkl. Naturerlebnis und wird dir gefallen. Deal ? Lieben Gruß von der Seehund-Küste und bis glii , Sandy

    • Heidi says:

      Hi Sandy! Das eine schliesst das andere ja nicht aus!! :-D Bin determined! Ich freue mich riesig auf unser OutbackCrossFit!! Das ist vielleicht auch eine Marktlücke!! :-D – Bis bald!!!

  2. Charlotte says:

    Congrats, Heidi! I always so hoped you would make it and I will miss reading your blog. Just awesome what you achieved – agree, you do not need one of those fitnessclub abos! Real world hiking is much better, gives you better adventures to tell and memories for a lifetime, anyway. Enjoy being back home- z’Basel.

    • Heidi says:

      Thank you Charlotte! Well perhaps I consider it fun one day, if I go often enough ;-D – but you are right, it is nothing compared to RWH! (Real world hiking!)

  3. Linda says:

    I enjoyed your blog and was sorry when you finished. It’s nice to here how you are doing now that you’re home.

  4. Cristian says:

    I’m a grown man, but I almost cried a litte. Beautiful writing. I can definitely understand your cravings (although never lived something similar to your grand experience). Welcome back to your life and to your new appreciation of it!

  5. Elke says:

    Hallo Heidi,
    vielen herzlichen Dank für deinen wundervollen Blog und dass ich und andere Leser den PCT sozusagen mit dir erleben durfte/n……
    Ich plane den Trail auch einmal zu wandern . Jetzt hast du mich aber etwas geschockt mit der Ausssage, dass du 13,5 kg verloren hast in der Zeit auf dem Trail.Ich wüsste gar nicht, wo ich die bei meiner Figur noch über hätte. Sollte das bedeuten , ich müsste mir vor dem Start meines Hikes noch richtig Gewicht anfuttern?
    Viele Grüße

    • Heidi says:

      Liebe Elke! So schön, dass Du quasi mit mir mitgehiked bist! :). Also ich bin ja mega happy über meinen Gewichtsverlust ;), aber es scheint doch sehr schwer, das so zu halten… Trotz meinem neuen Fitnessprogramm….. Ich würde nicht extra Gewicht anfuttern vor dem hike, sondern eher Muskeln aufbauen. Denn die Hiker die viele Muskeln hatten, haben weniger Gewicht verloren. Es ist mehr das Fett das auf dem PCT schmilzt…. Mach Dir keine Sorgen deswegen, das wird kein Problem sein!! Ganz liebe Grüsse! Heidi

      • Elke says:

        Liebe Heidi, vielen Dank für die schnelle Antwort. Damit hast du mich schon sehr beruhigt. Da ich von Natur aus eher muskulös bin und beruflich körperlich arbeite , dürften wohl genug Muskeln vorhanden sein.
        Viele gute Wünsche für die Zukunft

  6. Carol says:

    Hello Heidi, We are still in Greece. However, when I saw that cow picture I longed to be back in Switzerland. You lost 29 pounds, that is amazing …. but then so is hiking the PCT …. an experience you will never forget. You are very strong!! Take care and keep in touch. Also, say hello to Tim & Walter. And a very special thank you for sharing your blog with us.


Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.