Friday, 22 October 2010

In training

A dull and dismal day here in Elgin today. I was going to go for a walk but decided to go to the gym instead. I've been going on and off all year but now I need to step it up a bit and make it a regular thing especially when the good old Scottish weather puts paid to walks in the hills.

Fitness will obviously be an issue for the walk but I don't think that you have to be some kind of super athlete to finish it. When I started to research it I read a story about a walker who was blind and completed it with his guide dog and also about a 10 year old girl who completed it with hyer parents. I thought to myself 'if they can do it I'm darned sure that I can!'. 

Along with physical fitness I think it's important to think about mental fitness as well. It's all very well being as fit and as strong can be if your head isn't in the right place. You've got to believe that you will finish it and realise that there will be moments or even whole days where you think 'what the heck am I doing here....? If you are on your own, this becomes much more of an issue - there is nobody to spur you on, nobody to have a good whinge at when the rain is leaking down the back of your neck and you've taken a wrong turn adding a couple of miles to your day. The only motivation is what's in your head and it's down to you to have a wee word with yourself and plod ever onwards. Although I don't plan to have any rest days, there are a couple of short days to look forward to and knowing that a hot shower and a night at a bed and breakfast or a youth hostel is in prospect won't half spur me on. A friend who I used to walk with many years ago used to navigate the Yorkshire Dales by the pubs en route and he used to swear that he could 'smell the barmaids apron'. The prospect of a pint had a marvellous effect on the energy levels at the end of a long day.

Suie in the Ladder Hills, Glenlivet

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