As it says on my C25K page, I’m not starting from scratch here. Having spent three months gallivanting around New Zealand, Fiji and Australia, I’ve been doing some pretty spectacular practice walks.
Back when I was in hospital, I was weak, but could walk around a little bit. By the time I left, I could walk pretty much normally, but stairs were tricky. A few weeks later, stairs were all good, but I tried to run for a bus and that didn’t go so well.
Ultimately, things got better gradually, without much conscious effort on my part. It’s amazing how resilient our muscles are, and how quickly they get used to a bit of exertion. By Christmas, when we left the UK for our travels around New Zealand, Fiji and Australia, I was legging it for trains again.
New Zealand is full of incredible scenery and world-class hiking. There were things I wanted to do and accepted I shouldn’t (Tongariro crossing, I’m coming back for you), but the husband and I did take on some smaller and friendlier strolls.
In Waipoua National Park we spent an hour and a half walking through the Kauri forest, visiting the enormous thousand-year-old trees. On the South Island, the three-hour Hooker Valley track took us through the scenery of the Mount Cook/Aoraki National Park to the foot of the Mueller Glacier
In Fiji, although we mostly sat in hammocks and drank cocktails, we did hike to the highest point of one island for sweeping views of the Yasawa archipelago. OK, that one was only 30 minutes each way, but it was very steep and very hot!
Finally, in Australia, in Noosa National Park, about an hour north of Brisbane, we walked the 5k coastal trail, plus another 3k or so to take a shortcut back to the car. This was also very hot, but I did it without any real problem at all. Later, it felt significant that I had been much more worried about the spiders than I was about my legs (seriously the spiders though).
I think I’ve pretty much got walking down now. Let’s pick up the pace, shall we?