5 Women Who Will Inspire You to Get Active & Live a Large Life

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Don’t let your outdoor skills fade just because we’re getting closer to winter. If you’re having trouble with your get-up-and-go, here are some insanely motivating females from past and present who have never let cramps or the winter blues stop them from kicking some serious butt.

And don’t forget to ask Santa for some new girlie outdoor gear — because who doesn’t love pink camo? At least Dad and the mountain man in your life won’t complain about shopping for you this year.



Kidnapped at age 12, sold as a slave and taken from her home in present-day Idaho to what is now North Dakota, Sacagawea was the teen guide of one of the greatest expeditions in U.S. history, the Lewis and Clark Expedition. She blew the entire crew away with her unwavering calm while traveling over dangerous terrain and under the most dire of circumstances — and all with her infant son, Jean-Baptiste Charbonneau, in tow.

Do it: Get yourself a pair of Under Armour Women’s Speedfit Mid Hikers and hit the trail.

Nellie Bly

Nellie was a bookworm who turned into a legend. A female journalism pioneer, Nellie got her first big break in 1885 when she called a magazine editor out on a sexist article in which he called the modern working woman a monstrosity. The editor was so impressed by her argument that he hired her. But Nellie went from journalist to incredible outdoorswoman when she traveled around the world in 72 days à la the popular fictional character from the Jules Verne novel, “Around the World in 80 Days.” She traveled by ship, train, donkey and hot air balloon, to name a few. She also received international press and millions of people followed her journey via telegraph.

Do it: Book a hot air balloon ride in your city and have a blast.

Gertrude Ederle ‘Queen of the Waves’

Gertrude was a native New Yorker and the first woman in history to swim the English Channel. In 1924 she won 3 gold medals at the Paris Olympics. And she didn’t slow down after that — by the next year she was training to swim across the 21-mile, freezing cold channel that only five men and been able to swim before her. She slathered herself in lanolin to protect from jellyfish stings and frostbite.

In 1926, in a two-piece swim suit, goggles and a swim cap, Gertrude swam the English Channel in just under 15 hours, making her the fastest human being to do it ever. It was a record that remained unbroken until 1950.

Do it: Too cold to swim where you live? No sweat. Sign up for your local YMCA and use the indoor pool.

Bethany Hamilton


Bethany was another rising surf star when the unthinkable happened. One fateful morning, a 14-foot tiger shark took her arm in what could have been a deadly attack. But blessed with her life and an unwavering passion for life, Bethany has gone on to not only survive but thrive as a wife, mother, inspirational speaker and yes, professional surfer.

Do it: If you live near an ocean, no excuses. It’s time you learned how to surf.

Kim Soo Nyang

Kim Soo is an archery star who Olympic experts are calling the greatest female archer of all time. She won a gold medal at the age of just 17 at the 1988 Olympics in Seoul and a team gold medal in 1992 in Barcelona. Archery is making a comeback with young women like Eva Shockey leading a new generation of female archers in the field and new archery equipment that caters to the female form.

Do it: Get the latest archery equipment and get shooting.

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