April 11, 2015
So this week we have spent four nights in the Lake District, hoping to do some tough hill walking for the first two days and something less arduous for the third. In anticipation, hubby did all the planning and all I had to do was turn up. He felt it was a holiday and I felt it was a training camp. It turned out to be both.
So here are the things I learnt (well, those that are relevant to the Coast to Coast!) :
- I felt physically OK in terms of fitness. Hell, we walked up Helvellyn – 3000 feet and I didn’t crumble. I felt mentally OK in terms of capability. Unfortunately I twisted my knee which made downhill bloody hard going. But am hoping it’s nothing serious. It was helped using hubby’s knee support and Nurofen. Luckily his torn cartilage didn’t play up enough to need the support himself. But we might need to think about carrying a spare….
- I felt absolutely fine the following morning – in complete contrast to the previous Lake District escapade. Probably because I did a bit of stretching when we’d finished.
- The terrain is really hard going. All those bloody rocks and stones. It’s as if the walking isn’t bad enough, there’s the hills themselves but on top of that is the terrain. The South Downs and Chilterns are just not a remote substitute or training ground. Everything underfoot is uneven and we were doing it in perfect conditions. Given rain the slipperiness would be really tricky.
- The weather can be mental – baking sun in April meant we should have had protection that can’t be sweated off. And some kind of headband to keep the sweat out of my face. My little towelling wristband was a godsend.
- Even Shellac got destroyed scrambling up rocks. No nail varnish on the Coast to Coast!
- Testing out socks gave me a blister on the final day. They were ones without liners so I think I’m going to stick to sock liners.
- Look before you leap – obvious but equally applies to cutting what I thought was a toenail that was pressing in to me. Transpires I cut the top off a blister with nail clippers..
- Compeed is way better than the generic alternatives from the likes of Superdrug.
- I got too hot in my Craghopper long trousers which up to now have been my favourites. They’re only going to be worn if it is unseasonably cold in June.
- My new Berghaus long sleeve stripy top and Jack Wolfskin jacket were great. But think I need a top with a collar to stop rucksack rubbing as when I didn’t have the jacket on I could feel it a the base of my neck. Ah a retail opportunity…
- And the Lakes own gin, Bedrock, has convinced me it is the drink for me. Ah, another retail opportunity…
April 1, 2015
So I’m half way through my Personal Training – the Coast to Coast walk starts in just under ten weeks. We have our first serious test next week with three days walking in the Lakes (hubby’s knees permitting). And I’m ready for it. I continue to feel stronger and fitter despite continuing to go out and get lashed. And despite being unable to get past chips on a menu. But I’m still drinking the water and not drinking alcohol unless I’m socialising (and yes, weekends at home count as socialising). So I’ve cut down on that front. And I continue to do PT twice a week and hopefully they are getting harder as I’m getting fitter. Still enjoying the outside fresh air and feel better all day. Then this weekend just gone I felt great. No, really great. I suddenly actually felt fit again. Yes, I’m still purple in class and sweat more than anyone I know, but I feel stronger. Still not light on my feet or agile, but definitely stronger. And mentally more prepared!
And I’ve lost a stone. It’s bloody hard work – the ‘making healthier choices/thinking about what I’m eating’ – much harder than the physical stuff . Probably because the physical stuff at the moment lasts an hour or perhaps two whereas I’m constantly thinking about food! And living with an incredible cook whose baked goods I find really hard to resist. And going out a lot. But getting there. Getting there. Fingers crossed.