Walk in Her Shoes Challenge Update – 2 weeks to go

This week I’m combining my weekly review (23 February – 1 March) with my Walk In Her Shoes Challenge update, because it was such an uneventful week except for that.

Last week’s goals:

  • 19,000 steps per day – 7/7 days, weekly total: 153,137 steps, average: 21,877 steps per day
  • [Private goal] – 1/7 days
  • Go to bed before 11.45 pm – 3/7 days. I’m finding that going to bed earlier has totally disrupted my sleep and instead of sleeping through until it’s time to get up and go walking, I’m waking up at 3 or 4 am and not able to get back to sleep. So not only am I not getting any more sleep, I’m getting lower quality sleep. I greatly dislike this.

The biggest thing last week was my photo shoot for The Mercury on Tuesday and the story in the paper last Thursday about my walk.

When I signed up for the challenge, one of the questions I was asked was whether I’d be prepared to share my story with any local media that might be interested. I said I was, and CARE sent me a list of questions to answer about why I’m doing the challenge, how I’m going about it and what I hope to achieve, which they could  send out to the media. It was a bit of fun having my photo taken, and the photo they used might well have been titled “Minister for Silly Walks”. It’s been a talking point with people I know over the last week. Here’s some of my Q and As:

How did you find your previous experience when participating in Walk In Her Shoes? (Was it difficult? Did you struggle to complete your chosen distance?)

I only signed up about 2 weeks before the challenge started last year, so I didn’t have as much time to build up to 20,000 steps as I would have liked.

In the 2 weeks leading up to the walking week I increased my daily step goal from 10,000 to 15,000 and then 17,500 steps a day. I started to get up earlier in the mornings to go for a walk. I found this was a fairly easy way to increase my step count from 10,000 to 15,000.

I had a street circuit for my morning walks that took me about 40 minutes and was a bit under 4 km, which worked out at a bit less than 5,000 steps.

To get to 17,500 and then 20,000 (which was secretly 25,000), I started walking as much as I could. This included getting up at 5.00 every morning for a walk of anywhere between 20 minutes and 2 hours – depending on what day it was and what time we had to leave for work.

I fitted in as many extra walks as I could during the day as well – at lunch time, while dinner was cooking and after dinner.

On the Saturday I was going to be busy all day (Tassievore Eat Local Feast Day), with no chance for going out for a walk, so I knew I had to get as much walking done as possible early in the morning. I set myself a target of a 2 hour walk to see how far I could get. I ended up walking 12 km in just over 2 hours. I hadn’t factored in that I’d be busy on my feet most of the day, so I ended up doing over 30,000 steps that day.

I didn’t find reaching my goal difficult, but it was challenging. I had to be organised, commit to getting up when the alarm went off, and take advantage of any windows where I could go out for a 10 or 15 minute walk where I might have otherwise sat down and done nothing.

What do you hope to achieve?

I’m going to try to beat my longest walk from last year (12.21 km) at least once during the week. I also hope I can beat my 2014 step count of 183,214 (so, even though I’ve set an official goal of 20,000 steps a day I guess I really want to get to 25,000 steps per day).

I hope I can raise awareness of CARE’s work through participating in the challenge. I’ll aim to keep my Facebook, Twitter and blog updated leading up to the week and during the week about what I’m doing and about my progress.

When the week is over I want to continue walking more than I had been (maybe 15,000 steps a day) and to build this exercise into my life.

Why have you chosen to walk 100 Kilometres (20,000 steps per day)?

This is a distance that I know is challenging and will require me to walk more than I do normally, but is a target that isn’t unrealistic for me.

How do you plan to cover your chosen distance? (E.g. walk to and from work? Take your children to school?)

I’ll do the same things that I did last year, including walking early in the mornings, walking to and from work and going for a walk at lunch time and after dinner. I have a program on my computer at work that prompts me to take breaks from the computer, so I’ll use that to make sure I go for brief walks around the office, or even outside, during the day.

So there you have it. There’s less than 2 weeks to go now and I’m doing a lot of walking. My blisters are starting to heal and walking is becoming less painful. Hooray!

The only other interesting thing that happened last week was Juniordwarf’s school athletics carnival. This was the first year he was in the big kids’ carnival, and he had to run some serious distances (100 metres and 200 metres), as well as participate in some novelty events.

I can remember him saying to me one day a while ago, “Mum, I can’t run very fast.”

To which I replied, “That doesn’t matter, I can’t run very fast either.”

“Yeah,” he said, “But you’re old.”

Yep.

He tried his best and he ran all the races to the end, which was great. And right at the end in the relays, he was beyond excited that his relay team won their race, and then that his house won the carnival overall. It was a fun day and he really enjoyed it.

Now what did I forget last week? Oh yes, photos. Although there’s only so many photos of my feet walking on different surfaces that one blog post can handle. Here are a couple from some of my walks.

Yes, it's "those" leggings.

Yes, it’s “those” leggings.

New Norfolk Bridge from underneath

New Norfolk Bridge from underneath

My longest walk this year. Closing in on that 12.21 km record.

My longest walk this year. Closing in on that 12.21 km record.

If you want to follow my progress (and complaints about sore feet) on Twitter I’m @realsleepydwarf

This week’s goals:

  • 21,000 steps per day
  • [Private goal]
  • Go to bed before 11.45 pm
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