So is 2019 the year when, finally, I get fit and healthy? Every year I aim to be this magical fit woman, filled with energy, but the efforts of becoming this person is just too much for lazy me. Sure, I can trek up mountains but walking up those steep hills is tiring indeed. How wonderful to feel I could run up them instead of panting and puffing, in some discomfort, as I do presently.
Last year I set myself a fundraising swimming challenge (eight miles in four months) with proceeds going towards Butterfly Conservation and The Donkey Sanctuary. This was from February to May. I decided I still liked swimming but not that particular pool (it was too busy). I also walked 10,000 steps a day for a fortnight for The Big Issue Foundation, a homeless charity, in March.
And so when it came to Scafell Pike in April, it felt easier than I expected.
So challenges help me to keep motivated and so I have devised new ones for 2019, to be spaced out over the year so I always have something to aim for.
1. I signed up for RED January. It is a challenge, created by mental health charity Mind, to help people support their mental wellbeing through exercise. It’s also about raising awareness of mental health issues. R. E. D actually stands for Run Every Day, but thankfully this is not essential (I’m not keen on running!) It’s more about getting active every day in some way. I’m aiming to walk more, at lunchtimes or to work.
2. I’m also aiming to walk 100 miles in the month of January. Originally it was 150 miles, which would be great but I’m not sure I will be able to achieve it in such a dark, cold month.
3. I signed up for Country Walking magazine’s 1,000 miles in a year challenge. I did this, one month late, last year and just scraped through. http://www.walk1000miles.co.uk
4. To walk the 21-mile Preston Guild Wheel in one or two days. Perhaps in April or May?
5. To do one long-distance walk of at least four days. How wonderful to do the Coast to Coast Walk (12 days!) Maybe in September?
And there is always the dream of walking up Ben Nevis. Will it be this year?!
I will write a monthly update on my training programme and how far I have progressed with plans. Surely if this doesn’t motivate me, nothing will! Have you got any fitness goals this year?