8/1/2014

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Woman is living the REI life -- all of it!

Woman is living the REI life -- all of it!
Beautiful Existence
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ISSAQUAH, Wash. -- An Issaquah woman approaches life one year at a time, really, one challenge at a time.  You first met here a few years ago, when she challenged herself to shop solely at Goodwill.  Last year, Beautiful Existence (yes that’s her legal name) ate only at Starbucks. This year? She's decided to try every recreational sport that she can get equipment for from REI.

"There are so many activities and recreational options," Existence said.

She's mapped out more than 80 activities so far and she’s already ticking them off the list.

Existence tried Parkour and snowshoeing, plus she's working out with a trainer, running stairs and training for a marathon, ultra marathon and tower climb.

So what else is on her list?

"I see people scaling frozen waterfalls and I'm just like, yes, I want that picture of me doing that," she said.

In the water sports category,  she can try standup paddle boarding or maybe kayaking. And with cycling on the list, which bike do you choose? Road, mountain, hybrid?

Another sport Existence has never tried is skiing.

But this one's expensive, with bindings, boots, poles and skis -- you’re talking thousands of dollars just to gear up before buying a lift ticket.

"I do have a budget," she said.

Good thing REI rents equipment!

And she said she plans to take advantage of free classes.

"We have a host of really educational instructors out there to get you outside for that first step and feel comfortable," said REI Outreach specialist Marian Garrison.

Garrison said REI is not a partner or a sponsor, but will help guide Existence like they would any other member or customer.

"I'm doing this challenge yes but it's a platform for other people to be able to see a sport that I'm doing possibly engage in it by teach other people that teach it. And how it looks when you do it," Existence said.

As a full time student, part time employee and mom, Existence said these activities will give her more time with her kids this year.

"My older son really likes bike riding mountain bike in long boarding and all of that's a part of my list," she said. "And so now I have more of a reason to engage and get to learn and engage in all of the things that my children like too so."

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