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Brave Girl - How to Travel on a Budget, on a Diet, and on a Mission

I think I've been traveling since I was an infant. There are stories my parents tell me of our travels up and down the west coast, during which, I was apparently a tiny angel or a screaming banshee--there was never an in between.

My soul has always craved adventure. I was a fairly mild-mannered kid--banshee tendencies aside--and I don't think it was until I transitioned into a private school that it occurred to me to be bold in any way. At private school, I learned about the raw power and intensity that was the Vikings, and it felt like something in me woke up, came alive, and said, yes, yes, yes! These are my people! This is my path!

I've never been someone who took a whole lot of stock into horoscopes. Being raised in a Christian household, I was brought up to see beyond the surface of spiritual mediums, so I always approached the spirit world with caution. It wasn't until I was an adult that I genuinely began to acknowledge and look at my horoscope, and what I found amused me to no end.

I am a Sagittarius, and anyone who knows the sign can tell you Sagittarius are impulsive, lighthearted, foot-in-mouth idiots that are fueled on passion, adventure, and travel.

I honestly have never found a more fitting description of myself.

In 2013 I moved back to the United States from a year living in Norway (I could write a novel on this experience alone). Instead of moving back to my native California, I settled in Minnesota to finish my undergraduate degree. It was there that I had I first decided that I wanted to see all 50 United States, before I was 30. Yes, that meant in 7 years I was somehow going to see 29 states.

Fueled on impulsive decisions and unrelenting passion--that's me.

On December 2, 2018 (two days after I turned 28), I drove across the state line to my 50th state two years before my deadline. For the first time in my life, I feel as if I can finally, finally, say I've seen the US, that I know it. It wasn't all amazing, but I wouldn't give up a single moment of the journey.

As you might have guessed though from my year in Norway, I've done a lot more than just State side travel. I've been privileged to spend a tremendous amount of time running around the world, and through this experience, I've learned so much. One of the most common questions people ask me is how I manage to do any of it. How do I manage to travel cheap, or how do I stick to a diet while on the road (in 2018 I traveled a lot and I managed to stick to a diet that I lost 111lbs on). It's not an easy question to answer--every situation requires a different approach--but my hope for this blog series is to start providing insight into how to travel on a budget, on a diet, and on a mission.

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