We are a couple of passionate explorers that love to do CrossFit, and pursue life on our own terms :-).
Our story started WAY back when we had only been dating for a year or so… it was clear early on that we were a fit for each other, so we started planning for the future and asking big questions. One of which was, what do we want to accomplish as a couple…
That one question started us down a road that would change our lives forever!
We have a TON in common, and like a LOT of the same things. One of those things is the outdoors. And early on in our relationship we took a road trip down highway 101 along the Oregon coast and into the Redwoods of Northern California before cutting over to Yosemite, then down to Zion.
It was an amazing trip! We hauled ourselves up Half Dome, and scaled the narrow chained ledges of Angels Landing.
So, when we were setting big goals for our life together one of the first things that came to mind was riding a motorcycle to South America. Exactly what you were thinking, right? 🙂
Well, our second idea was to to go ALL of the 59 (now 61) US National Parks, and in a roundabout way, we came to the idea of not only going to them, but going to them all in one trip!
When you ask big questions you often find big answers. Write that down.
So we started asking ourselves how we could take a trip to visit all of the US National parks in one year…
Around that time Emily’s work had started letting employees do more remote working. This was still a newer idea, but it seemed like it could have some legs. And after all… I’d read the Four Hour Work Week like 10 times, which outlines how to make remote work happen. What could go wrong? And for those of you who haven’t read the book… no, it’s not about only working four hours a week.
And I hadn’t mentioned it yet, but I (Joe) had been doing online business, from online nutrition coaching to affiliate marketing (getting paid to promote other people’s products) since around 2009. As well as running a once a month real estate investing club/meetup.
All of the pieces were in place
We had jobs that seemed like they could be remote (with the exception of my real estate meetup). Now we just needed to figure out the next steps. Like were we going to get an RV, how long with this take, and how the heck was I going to keep running my real estate meetup…
The first step seemed to be figuring out what vehicle we would need/want. More on the want side.
It felt like we literally looked at every RV and camper under the sun! From those little tow behind Cricket things to big class A RV’s. The big RV’s were ruled out almost immediately because can you imagine driving one of those in a city? Heck no! I can’t even imagine driving one through a small town.
The other issue with most RV’s is that they don’t have 4 wheel drive, and we definitely didn’t was to avoid the snow because we didn’t feel comfortable driving in it.
It was around this time that one of our family members sent us a picture of a Sportsmobile pop top 4×4 Mercedes Sprinter van. Amazing!
What about CrossFit/fitness…
I can’t believe that I totally left out one of the key components to our crazy story! We were both high level competitive CrossFit athletes with no intention of leaving that life behind. So, we planned to bring barbells, weights, and even a squat rack with us on our journey.
Some people have asked if our plan was to do a workout in every National Park. I mean… that’s a cool idea. At that time, we were working out 1-3 times a day. So, yeah, we were going to do a workout in all of the National Parks, but that was a given. How could we avoid it…
So, we were this crazy couple that wanted to go to all of the National Parks, carry 500 pounds of workout equipment, continue working full time (no trust funds here), and do it all in a year.
The TV show
It turns out that our story was crazy enough that we got picked up by a television series to fly down to Califonia for an episode. It was a show called Car Matchmaker, where they try to pair you up with your dream vehicle.
On that show we got to drive and play around in a Sportsmobile pop top Mercedes 4×4 Sprinter van. And (as you say) the rest was history.
When I have something that I’m sure I want… watch out folks!
And the rest is history!
So, we figured out how to buy a 2017 4×4 Mercedes Sprinter van, get a Sportsmobile pop top, have Momentum Vans build a beautifully functional interior, and have been on the road for almost 2 years with no end in sight.
You can read the full van build story here.