19. Liz Forkel, Fitness Coach + Future Thru-Hiker
Play • 1 hr

Melissa recently had the absolute honor of guiding Liz Forkel on a 5-day backpacking trip. Liz is a personal trainer, fitness coach and owner of LizFit, a fitness center in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Nearly seven days a week, she helps her clients find their way to a fitter and healthier lifestyle by leading them in small group classes, personal training sessions and nutrition consultations. She works side by side with them to help raise their confidence and reach their fitness goals, but like many small business owners and busy entrepreneurs, it’s rare for her to be able to take some time out for herself.


Liz has had thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail as an item on her bucket list for nearly 30 years now, and with a milestone birthday approaching next June, she has decided that 2022 is her time to attempt it! But setting aside your actual business and only form of income for a 6-month trip on trail isn’t a decision made lightly. While she is starting with a base fitness level that is unparalleled, and has every intent on success, she’d done no actual backpacking up until a few weeks ago, so she knew she needed to seek out a trusted source to help show her the ropes. A google search gratefully brought her to Girl Gotta Hike, and after a couple of zoom planning sessions, Melissa was stoked that Liz decided to choose GGH to be her guide. We spent 5 days and 52-miles together from New York to Massachusetts, hiking the entire Connecticut section of the Appalachian Trail.


What follows is their post-hike convo. They started recording just after they reached the Mass border in order to catch her in the moment – feeling accomplished and proud but not too far removed from their 5 days and 4 nights, (some of them rainy and cold), out there. Liz is super insightful about her time on trail, and at almost 60 years old, proves that there’s no time like the present to fufill a dream!



Gossamer Gear Discount — use code “GIRLGOTTAHIKEGOSSAMER” for 15% off your first purchase at GossamerGear.com

Link here to check out GG’s Vagabond Jet Backpack

LizFit – Instagram

LizFit - Website

Appalachian Trail Conservancy

AMC - Connecticut Chapter

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