On Monday I went for a walk. Nothing unusual about that per se, I like to walk, and being a bank holiday I had a whole day to partake in one of my favourite pastimes. Except on Monday the plan was to walk further than I have ever walked in one go – at least 30 miles. This was to be my longest training walk for the Lyke Wake Walk and also a bit of a personal milestone; until Monday I had done a handful of marathon length walks on varying terrain, but nothing more than the 26.2 miles that is seen as the cut-off point of possibility for many.
If I am completely honest, and I like to be so here on my blog, I spent the week or so before this walk worrying about the whole idea. It’s been planned quite a while, but I felt overtired and that I had put a lot of pressure on myself. I made the mistake, I thought, of announcing my intentions on twitter during #LincsHour on Monday evening, and lots of my Lincolnshire friends had picked up on it and tweeted me with various messages of good luck. It was lovely, but that was it, I had committed to this and had to at least try.
Half my brain was saying: “I love walking. I’ve done loads of it before. Walking is easy. It’s just left foot, right foot, repeat.”
The other half then added: “It takes nearly an hour to *drive* to Boston. There is no way I can walk that far. I’m too tired already and I haven’t started yet.”
Anyway, despite what half my brain thought, I got on with the business of sorting out my route and my kit and set my alarm nice and early for Monday morning. I had a back-up thanks to my sister in case things didn’t go to plan, and was going to do my best to walk at least 30 miles.
You will know by now because I’ve already blogged about it, that I did achieve my goal and walked 32.5 miles in total. It took me 10 hours. The last six miles was on a difficult footpath along the river and my feet got wet, which put paid to my wish to make it all the way into Boston town centre as I had nothing left by the time I reached Langrick Bridge. Not a failure because I’d already reached my goal, but not a total success as I technically did not walk all the way from Lincoln to Boston. I’ve ticked it off my bucket list anyway!
I am definitely still feeling the after effects of the walk. My thighs and calf muscles are sore, my ankles hurt, and I have a couple of blisters that are a bit better but still niggling. I really struggled on Tuesday to move around my own house which was very frustrating (and painful). I’m nowhere near as bad as that now, but the memory is there, and it worries me.
The other day Challenge Sophie wrote a great blog post on feeling inspired to ride her bike. When speaking of a challenge in Mallorca she’s signed up to, she used the phrase “I might have done something a little silly…”.
Well right now, following my walk on Monday, that is exactly how I feel about this whole Lyke Wake Walk thing. I feel a little silly. Ok, I feel quite a lot silly.
I am no full time athlete. I am no fitness fanatic. I am actually quite lazy; I hardly do any real exercise – I rely on the stuff I can fit in my daily life, and walking. I have very little time for training and when I do have the time I rarely have the inclination. But even with all that I have this strange desire to push myself beyond anything I have achieved before, in small moments of self-confidence I think “I can do that” and off I go with my big mouth and blogging fingers. But when reality hits I wonder what on earth I am doing and how silly I have been in thinking it is possible. Self-doubt kicks in big time and rather than using that to train hard so I know I can achieve what I want, I use it and tiredness as an excuse to eat ice cream and watch rubbish on the television. Mmmmm ice cream.
I’m not unusual, am I?
Right now, a few days after walking further than I ever have before in one go, when I should be feeling pretty satisfied with myself, I am not feeling inspired or empowered or like I can meet the Lyke Wake Walk challenge head on. That walk on Monday has not proved to me that I can do it. Instead I am feeling sore, disheartened and very worried. Have I bitten off more than I can chew? Yes, I think so. I am starting to pay too much attention to those who ask why on earth I’m doing this.
Am I ready to give up on the Lyke Wake Walk? The fact that I have told everyone about it here on Splodz Blogz means I am not going to (just like my walk on Monday!). I know I am just having a moment, doubting my abilities, and hopefully it will pass. I will be attempting the Lyke Wake Walk with Jenni in June. I will give it my best shot. I just know that between now and then I need to do a lot more training and an awful lot more work on my positive attitude.
As always, any and all help/advice/suggestions would be much appreciated. Comment below or feel free to email me. Please. Thank you.