Test walk 1 – 23 km

Distance: 23.28 km
Time: 4h57m
Speed: 4.68 kmph
Calories burned: who gives a flying fuck?!

trees in water

After a relaxing weekend away I decided to take the shoes I bought last week for a test run, or more accurately, walk. This was the first time I wore them for more than a couple of kilometres, so starting with 23 was maybe not the best plan. Then again it wasn’t so much a plan as it was “let’s see how this goes, oh that’s 12 km, better turn around!”.

My little toes have turned into blisters, and there’s a few others blossoming here and there, and I’m sorta hobbling a little bit, but it’s the first time in a very long time that I’ve walked this far and with almost brand new shoes. So it could have been a lot worse.

Besides, I was talking to this woman who cycled from Amsterdam to Berlin the other day and she said you feel pain the first few days and then you get over it. It’s mostly a mental thing.

But.. That got me thinking… Is this really a body positive thing to do? You know, choosing pain?

I’ve been grappling with this question since last week and I have come to the conclusion that for me the answer is: YES (convenient, I know..). I think it’s mainly down to motivation. I am not doing this to punish myself or to lose weight. I am pushing my body to the limits, but I am doing it lovingly and while listening to my body, trying to connect with it. My top priority is making sure I’m adequately fuelled and hydrated while on the road, and as well rested as I can be.

I am someone who only really started appreciating physical exercise in her 30s, and I enjoy exploring what my body is capable of. It is a wonder to me, and something I appreciate and am thankful for every day. By mindfully and joyfully moving my body and supporting a cause that is very dear to me – acceptance for all bodies – I think I can only become closer to myself, be truer to myself. It is a form of meditation and of gratitude, though there are admittedly some physical discomforts.

green path.jpeg

Thoughts and observations

  • If I can walk 23 km with no buildup in almost new shoes and only slightly mangle my feet, I can totally, totally do this (at least with a little help from my friends, and my strangers…)
  • Asphalt sucks, forest paths rule
  • Walking close to water is soothing, even if I can only hear it
  • A cheese sandwich and a peanut butter sandwich after 8 km taste pretty much as bland and boring as after 0 km (but it was handy fuel to bring with me)
  • An apple after 16 km tastes like magic juicy awesomeness
  • Judging by the number of flattened mice I saw on the bike paths, they do not have the best survival instinct
  • Why is it that flies and some other bugs seem to simply insist upon flying right into my ears? What’s the appeal?
  • At some point during this whole walk I’m probably gonna have to pee in a ditch next to the highway and just not give a fuck
  • Pizza (yes, that is a complete thought)
  • Carrying 2+ litres of water in my backpack with the stomach strap clasped feels almost literally like nothing, which is encouraging (though of course I’ll be carrying more stuff once this thing kicks off for real)
  • I have this strange reluctance to stop, even to get some water or food or my phone from my pack once I’ve started walking
  • Fire bad, tree pretty
  • Oh and did I mention that asphalt sucks?

selfie under bridge.jpeg

Until next time,

Sarah

Leave a Reply

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: