Sheri’s Story…The Creation of “Transformational Trekking”
The seed for “Transformational Trekking” was planted several years ago when I worked as a social coordinator on a cruise ship and took a 3-month backpacking trip around Europe. I loved both of these adventures – the privilege of helping cruise ship clients learn new skills, and the freedom of exploring new worlds on foot with just a backpack.
When I returned from Europe I put my Physical Education and Health Degree to use teaching in the Shoreline Public School District. The work was rewarding; allowing me to teach others how to stay healthy and fit and giving me summers off to continue my own exploration. Every adventure broadened my knowledge of our amazing planet while providing transformational insights about myself and my connection to the world. The more I explored the remote places and the paths less traveled, the more I knew that my future would involve adventure travel, I just didn’t know exactly how yet.
I took class after class in the health and wellness field and engaged in different types of adventures. These adventures were both spiritual and physical and took me to ancient power sites like Machu Picchu, Stonehenge, the Mayan pyramids of Tikal, Guatemala, and the great pyramids of Egypt. From each adventure I gained more insight into myself and many of life’s questions.
My trip to Peru was the genesis of Transformational Trekking. I had planned two very different adventures in Peru. My first adventure found me hiking the 500-year-old Inca trail into Machu Picchu, enjoying nature as I discovered ancient sites on foot. The second adventure was with a spiritual group, traveling by vehicle to ancient sites, to learn about Peruvian Shamanic ceremonies. While participating in one of these ceremonies I realized that I didn’t want to spend weeks driving in a vehicle to ancient sites, I felt trapped. I wanted the direct experience I had on the Inca trail, hiking in nature, discovering ancient sites by foot, not by vehicle. The emotion of the moment took over and I began to cry. At the time I didn’t realize how powerfully transforming this moment was for me.
One of the trip leaders helped me process this strong emotional reaction. He knew about my fitness and travel background and asked if I had ever thought about training people for adventure travel. Like many of life’s questions, it had a simple answer, but an answer I had been searching for over the years. This question was the beginning of the end of my searching!
I remembered trips I had taken where other travelers were not fit enough to enjoy the journey. They struggled walking short distances to ancient sites. They were wiped out as they climbed up the inside of the Great Pyramid. They found trekking along some parts of the Inca Trail to be so taxing on their lungs and legs that they constantly had to take breaks and were afraid they would not make it to their destination. Unfortunately their physical limitations kept them from fully enjoying their adventure and some even suffered injuries that ended the adventure of a life time. Having had my own experiences with physical pain and injury from my collegiate running career, I empathized with these individuals. I knew exactly what it was like to see a dream postponed and not able to do something I loved because of pain and injury.
Much of the joy I experience on my trips comes from the fact that I feel fully alive and energized, especially on physically demanding adventures. I decided that I wanted to help others experience their adventures with the same feeling of energy and well-being. I knew with all my years of being an athlete, keeping myself fit, coaching long distance runners, and teaching physical education and health that I had the skills to help others get in shape so they could feel fully alive and free on their treks.
My experience as a collegiate athlete with a couple major heart-breaking season ending injuries, taught me the importance of proper progression of sport specific exercises and endurance training. I knew this would transfer to training people for their trips and helping to prevent pain and injury along the way!
After returning from Peru I completed a personal trainer certification course. I had also been doing a type of energy work known as Reconnective Healing for several years. I knew both of these skills would be useful in my future career, but felt something was missing. I had no way of helping people deal with the powerful emotions that can come with these adventures. I discovered the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) and learned to help others strengthen and heal on an emotional level as well. Becoming proficient in these three disciplines provided me with a unique set of skills that I could use to not only help people live a vibrantly healthy life, but also prepare them for their life transforming bucket-list adventures!
Knowing how much trekking adventures have transformed my life…. it is now my deepest desire and my joy to help you get the most out of your desired trek. I have created unique trek training programs (individual & group) to ensure that you don’t just survive, but thrive on your trek of a lifetime! These programs will not only help you feel fully alive, energized and fit for your trek, but jump-start the transformation that you desire.
PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE AND EDUCATION
Owner of Transformational Trekking
- Trek Trainer: Preparing individuals and groups for trekking adventures around the globe
- Personal Trainer (NPTI Certified)
- FMS Certified
- First Aid CPR Certified
- Yoga Fit Certified
- Emotional Freedom Techniques
- Reconnective Healing Certified
- NOLS Wilderness First Aid Certified
Past Professional Experiences
- Shoreline School District PE/Health Teacher
- Kellogg Middle School (2000-2004)
- Shorecrest High School (2004-2012)
- XC and Track & Field Coach (2000-2019)
- Eddie Bauer Corporate Employee Fitness Trainer (2013 -2015)
Education: University of Puget Sound
- BA in Physical Education
- Endorsement in Health
- Masters in Education
- All American Cross-Country and Track & Field Athlete