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Friday, Sep 29, 2023

Late-night workout attracts fitness fiends

Despite the uncharacteristically cold April evening, guide Nick Lynch and his fiancée Natalie Valente proceeded as usual.
“It looks like it’s going to be a beautiful sunset,” said Lynch, who led the full moon workout Hike up Chipman Hill on a section of the Trail Around Middlebury (TAM), on Wednesday, April 28.

Lynch is a personal trainer, a nutrition guide and the owner of Superb Health LLC, a fitness company that promotes healthy lifestyles through exercise and diet.

On the evenings of the last three full moons, Lynch has led groups on hour-long hikes and workouts through on the TAM, charging $10 per person to benefit the Middlebury Area Land Trust (MALT), which uses the money for trail conservation.
As the group passed a clump of fiddlehead ferns, Valente mentioned the high price of the vegetable in the local stores.
“They charge $9.99 per pound for something that grows freely all over the woods,” she said.

Lynch’s company supports the local food movement. He and his fiancée are strong supporters of buying and eating healthy food that benefits the local community. Lynch actually plans to incorporate local food into his hikes. This summer he hopes to continue leading groups and ending each workout with a flatbread feast and a community gathering in downtown Middlebury.

About halfway through the hike, Lynch led the group down a snowy slope. He proceeded to have them then turn around and run back up.

“These woods are like a natural agility workout,” said Lynch.

He is quoted on his website. “[We welcome] all levels of health, open-minded folks looking for a fun, structured, adventurous workout you won’t forget.”

About 40 minutes into the hike, Lynch stopped the group and began his “core” section of the workout. Each individual did a quick series of abdominal exercises before continuing down the trail.

“It barely gets darker than this when the ground is snowy,” said Lynch. “The moon shines through the trees, it’s like a lantern in the forest.”

Those students who plan to stay in Middlebury over the summer should look for the dates and times of Lynch’s hikes. There is also a 5K Race — Kyle’s Race 5K — on May 23 to benefit the Joshua Frase Foundation, an organization involved with myotublar myopathy (MTM) research. MTM is a rare muscle disorder that interferes with the ability to swallow or breathe and leads to weak skeletal muscles. The 5K will be in Vergennes, Vt. and is in honor of thirteen-year-old Kyle Grant who suffers from MTM and hopes to someday live a normal life. Lynch hopes people will enter the race and that his Full Moon Hike can impact the preservation of nature, while helping to build healthy minds, bodies and spirits across the Middlebury community.