Nurturing a love of the outdoors
Name: Paul Rahn
Quote: “My friends call me the adventure guy.”
Background: Paul Rahn is an “angel investor,” providing expertise and financing to a wide assortment of business ventures. He’s also an aggressive backpacker, making frequent trips to the Bear Waddle Wilderness in eastern Arizona with his son, Paul Jr., 28. There, they fish, explore and visit the ashes of his other son who died four years ago at the age of 20. Rahn and his wife raised their two sons and daughter in the Valley, first moving to north Scottsdale in 1989. They have recently returned from an extended vacation to settle once more.
When He’s Working Out: Rahn practices Bikram Yoga, a form of yoga where practitioners go through 26 different poses in 90 minutes in a room heated to 105-degree temperatures and 50 percent humidity. The practice is designed to maximize flow throughout the body and to strengthen core muscles, or as Rahn puts it, “all the muscles between your nipples and your knees,” which are crucial to hauling 40 pounds of gear up and down through the wilderness. He also lifts weights daily, and has been getting deep tissue massages from Rolfer Suzanne Lucas for the past 15 years.
When He’s Not Working Out: Rahn has returned to the Valley from a multi-year surf-fishing expedition around the gulf coast with his wife of 34 years. “She gets right out in the surf with me and the sharks,” he says. He also is an avid hunter, pursuing elk, turkey and javalina.
Staying Motivated: “I like things that are real simple, inexpensive and give me a workout,” Rahn says. “No money, no things, no nothing can give me the sense of peace that I get staying fit.” Backpacking allows Rahn to find hunting and fishing spots far removed from more sedentary competitors. While not specifically religious, Rahn is spiritual, and the wilderness helps awaken that aspect of his life. “I can hug a tree,” he jokes. “But I can’t hug cement.”
At Meal Time: Unsurprisingly, Rahn eats a lot of fish, to which he adds a lot of fresh vegetables. He never drinks alcohol, and avoids processed foods. “My wife’s an excellent cook,” he says.
Goals: For Rahn, all this adventure has been a family affair. “I want to be able to hike with my grandkids,” he says, “I look at the extreme sports guys, who do ultra-marathons in their seventies — that’s who I want to be.”