Driven By Podcast

27. Going Against the Grain. What Do You Learn When You Remove Yourself From Society?

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My guest this week is Warren Doyle. Warren holds the informal record for hiking the Appalachian Trail the most times. That number is 18 times. Yes, he has hiked 18 total times from George to Maine, which is 2,190 miles and typically takes 5-7 months to complete. In 1973, Warren set the unofficial endurance record of hiking the trail in a record time of 66 days. Since then, Warren has gone on to start the Appalachian Trail Institute, which teaches and equips hikers with the training they need to have a better chance at completing the trail. The trail has a 75% failure rate. This conversation is much more than just about hiking the Appalachian Trail. It also covers, What drew him in early on, going against the grain, how the trail changes you, the power of nature, how society can conform you, dancing, joy, and more. I hope you enjoy this week’s episode, and I hope this episode gives you more clarity on the power of nature, being tested, and much more.


17 Seconds: Don’t know whether I would call it struggling, I was wondering, that’s a little bit different than struggling

2:04 I decided to go on and covered and remove myself from the society that I was being conditioned for to fit in and remove myself to some place where I could look back in and get an unbiased on prejudice, undisciplined motivated viewpoint of the world.

4:10 The expectation for our first generation working class, college-educated people is to become a member of the middle class, and basically the middle class expectations was to get educated, to get a job, to find someone, to marry someone, to start a family with sub on and to buy a house, and to work and be a responsible husband, father until you retire, and then hopefully to be able to hang on somewhat comfortably until you die

6:29 I wanted to see not how much I could take, but how much I could give up how much I could give up of the cultural conditioning that I had had up to that point in time in my life

8:45 So everything has to be done intrinsically, there’s no extrinsic motivation to do the trail, no one has ever gotten rich doing the trail, but now the trail, if you allow it, if you humble yourself to it

12:02 I never really wanted to be an administrator. I’ve been director of a few things, but sometimes you have to report to people on a college level who have no idea about teaching and effective teaching, and they’ve just risen up to their highest level of incompetence

13:45 another good thing that you can’t change the trail

17:47 . I sit in the front of the class, but when I got into middle school, if I raise my hand and set the right answer, I would be be little or even beat up on the playground by bullies

22:21 he would listen to people and he would listen to their posts their dreams and their frustrations and their anger, and he would write these beautiful poems of their thoughts

49:34 you should go to see people who have been successful at something that you wanna try to do