Today it’s the 1st of September, and for those of us in the Southern Hemisphere, the first day of spring. A time for mew beginnings, turning over a new leaf, and all that malarkey. Who says you should wait to New Year to make a resolution.
Yesterday, on an absolute whim, I decided to challenge myself to walk over 10000 steps every day for the whole of September. In July I decided to be dry (no alcohol) also on a whim, and it was very easy. The only time I wanted any was a glass of red wine on our midwinter Christmas Day (things are topsy turvey in New Zealand, and quite frankly, Winter without Christmas sucks). I also gave up Chocolate for August. This was way tougher, from about the 4th to the 10th I craved it every day, and intermittently throughout. I’m salivating now thinking of chocolate, in fact, I might just have a celebratory bar right now 🙂 My 10000 steps a day challenge is for 3 main reasons though.
Getting Out More
I’ve been an expat in New Zealand for nearly 6 months now, and I have spent 1 weekend away, when I went skiing for the first time, since I settled here. I have not explored enough of my local area, which is just plain silly. I live a 2min walk from a beach I’ve been to about 5 times (ok, it’s been Winter which hasn’t helped, but still). I’m surrounded by hills, with everything from short 10min walks to multi day hikes pretty much on my doorstep. I have been hiking every couple of weeks with a group, but I enjoy hiking solo too, despite a few irrational fears, and haven’t made any effort to do so. I also work shifts, which means I either start at 2pm or finish at 3:30pm, which gives me a good few hours for exploration, that I’m not making the most of.
Increasing my Fitness
I’ve never been that fit, and my best was probably when I was 15, swimming twice a week or more, and doing a martial arts class. That was 13years ago. Being realistic, It’s going to be pretty hard to get that fit again, but I want to be as fit as I can because it makes traveling easier. It makes hefting a backpack less awkward, being stronger makes it seem lighter, and being fitter means that I can hike without trouble, or at least be less affected by heat/humidity and the local climate. It means it’s easier to try new things too.
I treated myself to a much needed new phone at the weekend, and it has a pedometer. Sure, it’s not the most accurate, but \I reckon it’s good enough for these purposes. I’m curios to know how many steps I do in a working day (today was about 4500) and on a hike with friends, or something as simple as wandering around the supermarket. How achievable is it to walk that many steps in one day. Is a 30min power walk enough extra to reach my target?
This is something I never would have done back home. I’m lazy. So why have I decided to embark on a third month long challenge in 3 months, and will I have a new one for month 4? Honestly, I don’t actually know the answer, but I suspect it’s something to do with not feeling as challenged in my everyday life. I’ve settled into work, I’ve made some friends, I know my way around. These are all things that you lack when you’re traveling and constantly moving on. It’s great to have that familiarity, but it can become monotonous, I suspect that part of the reasons I’ve decided to challenge myself is because I’m not facing the daily challenge of travel. I know what I’m doing each day. When I was traveling, I often didn’t know where I’d be sleeping that night, let alone any of the less important stuff. I guess I miss having that challenge in my life, and this is my way of combatting it while I save for more travels.
What are you thoughts? have you ever done anything like this, and would you be interested in giving it a go? It’d be awesome to have some supporters doing the same, (especially as I’m worried rain will stop me from achieving my goals) so it’d be great to have some ideas on where to go then! Wish me Luck!