Week in review 9-15 March/Walk in her shoes update

This was the last week of my training for CARE Australia’s Walk In Her Shoes Challenge. Tomorrow (16 March) is the start of the challenge, and I’ll be aiming to do 25,000 steps a day every day for the next week.

The training hasn’t been part of the challenge. I’ve just been doing it to get myself used to walking more than normal. I’ve slowly built up my step target from 12,000 in early January to 21,000 for the last two weeks.

Until I boosted it to 21,000 I’d been reaching my daily target without a lot of extra effort. 21,000 has meant I’ve had to do extra walks at the end of most days, so I can see that these extra walks are going to get a lot longer if I’m going to get to 25,000 steps.

Lunchtime browsing in shops is going to be replaced by serious walking. And I’m going to actually get up from my desk when the Exertime reminder comes up on my screen.

Getting up at 5am to go for a 40 minute walk has been challenging, especially now that it’s still dark in the morning, and is starting to get cold.

But this is a habit I want to stick with after the challenge, because it’s the best time for me to get a decent walk in. It’s quiet, there’s very little traffic and I can use the time to think, listen to music or a podcast, or to just take in everything that’s around me.

Last year I had a very short build up to the challenge. As soon as it was over, I was so exhausted I stopped walking altogether. I’m one of those people who finds it very difficult to interrupt a habit and then get back into it. So by missing the first day’s walk after the challenge, it was easier to miss the second day and then the third and then the rest of the week. I didn’t get back into walking until December last year.

I certainly don’t intend to keep on walking 25,000 steps a day after next week – or even 20,000 – but I want to keep the walking habit intact. I hope that by building up to my target slowly, and doing some longer walks on weekends, I won’t be as exhausted by the end of it as I was last year. Not scheduling an all-day cooking marathon on one of the challenge days will probably also help.

Highlights of this week have included a nice story in the local paper about my walk – same photo session as the picture in the Mercury a couple of weeks ago, but a far more sensible picture. This morning I called in to our local community radio station to have an on-air chat on the breakfast show about what I’m doing.

I’ve exceeded my fundraising goal of $500, which is fantastic – and thank you to everyone who has sponsored me.

I discovered there is a new coffee van setting up on the Esplanade, which is one of my go-to walks on the weekend. I think I can time my Saturday morning walks to align perfectly with the time it opens.

This morning was beautiful. I patted a 9-week old puppy. I climbed up these steps

20150315 Steps IG

And was rewarded by this view. This is a really lovely walk.

20150315 River Derwent

Juniordwarf gave me Zoe to take walking this afternoon. I don’t know, some people passing by seemed to think it was a bit weird for someone to be going for a walk with a small orange teddy and taking selfies.

20150315 Me and Zoe

Tomorrow the challenge begins.

To make it more fun (because walking 25,000 steps a day is fun right?) I’ve decided next week is leggings week, and I’m going to wear a different pair of leggings every day. Juniordwarf is very excited by this and loves the idea. He’s been talking about it all weekend! I’m not sure how this is going to play out at work, but it’s only for a week, so who cares.

Gratuitous leggings at work photo
Gratuitous leggings at work photo

Besides the 25,000 steps a day goal (please talk me out of this!), the only major challenge I’ve set myself is to do a 15 km walk during the week. My longest walk to date has been 12.45 km in 2 hours 14 minutes, so I expect this is going to take about 3 hours.

And in case you were wondering, this week’s goals:

  • 21,000 steps per day – 7/7 days
  • Go to bed before 11.30 pm – 2/7 days. Oops.

Next week’s goals:

  • 25,000 steps per day
  • Go to bed before 11.30 pm

If you’d like to sponsor me for the walk, my page is here.

And you can follow me on Twitter @realsleepydwarf for my complaints about my sore feet real time updates on how I’m going.

It’s going to be a big week.

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