Ten Y Fan

The Ten-Y-Fan challenge is an annual walking challenge set in Wales that sees people walking up and down Pen-Y-Fan (the highest mountain in South Wales UK!) 10 times in 24 hours all for charity, over 40 miles in total will be covered by each participant!.  The challenge this year is supporting 2 fab charities – Wish Upon A Star (a bereavement service for families who loose a child unexpectedly), monies raised will help them to improve services available, and Dreams And Wishes which helps children with serious illness see their wishes come true.

For more information on the Ten-Y-Fan challenge, to sign up or donate please visit http://www.ten-y-fan.org/home

Are you taking part in the challenge?

Week 7 – 12/2/17 – 18/2/17

Last week I said that I hoped to improve on that weeks total step stats and this week I can now reveal that I really did improve!  I hit a total 59860 steps, that’s an average of 8551 steps per day!  I hit 10000 steps (or over) on 2 days, over 9000 on 3 and I’m not far off reaching 10000 steps per day overall!  I am still struggling with Saturday and Sunday, though this is something I have been aware of since I started this blog, for me Saturday and Sunday are days of rest and catching up on things I haven’t done in the week, spending time with my partner who works away mon-fri and generally chilling.  In order to hit my goal of 10000 steps a day average I am going to need to absorb 20000steps into my normal week (mon-fri) so that anything else I move on the weekend becomes a bonus!  This means that I realistically need to be hitting 14000 steps on 5 days a week.   I think this may be what I am going to start aiming for instead of 10000 steps a day just to fit my lifestyle a bit better and stop me feeling so bad for having lazy weekends (not that there is anything wrong with a lazy weekend!)  Once the weather starts to improve and it is both lighter an warmer I may adjust this as I seem to be more active in the warmer months.

I dont think I will be making it my goal to hit 14000 steps 5 days out of 7 just yet…its a bit of a leap from an average of 8551 steps per day, so this week my goal is to push my average to around 9500 steps a day.

What are your goals this week?  How have you improved?  What do you want to change?

Fun Facts Friday

Today’s Fun Facts Friday post is looking at steps and stats!

How many steps could you walk a day?

On a day to day basis you have a possible 24 hours to take your steps, theoretically 8 of those should be rest hours, so for that lets deduct 8 from 24 which leaves us with 16 possible walking hours.  You can probably cover 100 steps a minute at a normal walking pace (not so fast that you are out of breath, or too slow that it could be classed as dawdling!) This means that you can cover 6000 steps in an hour.  So, theoretically, if you walked for 16 hours then you could take 96000.  This sounds really impressive but is based on taking the same number of steps for the total amount of time which is not really possible, we humans can tire easily!  The calculation does not take into account the terrain or whether it is up hill or downhill, and unless you walk on a treadmill you will be changing speed due to the terrain.  And lastly, the calculation does not take into account comfort stops (re-fueling, drinks, rest or toilet breaks).

What is the measurement of a step?

Your step measurement is different from person to person and will depend on how tall or short you are, taller people tend to have longer legs and therefore, longer strides.  To find your step measurement you will need to mark out 30ft on level ground and count your steps from one end to the other then divide 30 by your step count.  This will give you your step measurement. (You may want to do this 2 or 3 times and then work out the average of the readings).

How can I get to 10000 steps easily?

I’ll share with you a method that I have been using recently to try and reach my 10000 step a day goal 🙂  Its fairly easy and most people should be able to utilize this method regardless of job or activity/fitness levels.

I base this on 16 hours of the day…

In 16 hours I want to be hitting around 10000 steps which means in

8 I should be hitting around 5000,

I should be hitting 2500 in 4 hours

1200 in 2 hours

or 600 an 1 hour.  If you can attempt 600 an hour then you are well on your way to hitting 10000 steps!  🙂

How many steps would it take to get from earth to the moon?

It would take around 478000000 (thats 478 million steps) and would take around 79619 hours (nearly 10 years of continuous walking!) (http://trainlikeanastronaut.org/wttm )

Poems And Stories

I chose this poem as it seemed fitting after the weekend where we saw a flurry of snowflakes Friday night, Saturday and Sunday.  I am still not sure whether it was a good thing or not that the snow didn’t stick.

Snow-flakes

By Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Out of the bosom of the Air,

Out of the cloud-folds of her garments shaken,

Over the woodlands brown and bare,

Over the harvest-fields forsaken,

Silent, and soft, and slow

Descends the snow.

Even as our cloudy fancies take

Suddenly shape in some divine expression,

Even as the troubled heart doth make

In the white countenance confession,

The troubled sky reveals

The grief it feels.

This is the poem of the air,

Slowly in silent syllables recorded;

This is the secret of despair,

Long in its cloudy bosom hoarded,

Now whispered and revealed

To wood and field.

Look Out For – February/March

Winter is now giving way, slowly, to Spring and there are signs that the season is nearly upon us at every corner.

Things to look out for this month is very spring orientated…

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Spring bulbs (especially Daffodils and Snowdrops) starting to make an appearance through the brown earth!

Catkins starting to flower on hazelnut and willow trees.

Lambs and other new born animals leaping about in the fields!

Have you spotted any signs of Spring yet?

Rest Days and Their Importance

Rest days are really important for your body, they help your body recover, heal and recuperate as well as letting the salts and minerals that your body has used return to normal levels.

When you exercise you cause micro tears in your muscles which need time to repair themselves, not resting can cause your muscles to not repair properly and can cause health implications down the line.

I try to have at least one rest day a week when I am hitting a step target of 9000 + steps a day as I have found that the following week, if I don’t have a rest day hitting my target can be a lot harder and maintaining my targets through the week is nearly impossible. My motivation wains and dips, as do my energy levels which leaves me feeling a bit like a low battery that still has a bit of power but not nearly enough to keep everything running at optimum speeds.

One of the best ways I have found to rest and recuperate is to have a hot bath after exercise, keep hydrated with either water or a sports drink that has vital salts and electrolytes in it and take it easy for a few days. Listen to your body, of you have any aches and pains then rest for a bit longer before starting on your path again.

Walking Routes

I still have not managed to get out and explore any new areas yet on walks but I am now able to venture a bit further of an evening as the nights are getting slowly lighter. I have been thinking about walks I would like to do though and am thinking about heading back to St David’s over Easter and walking along the coast again. The route I think I might do is one that was featured on Weatherman Walking the other week (series 10 episode 4 … which can be found here on iplayer). The route that Derek Brockway took is very similar to the one that I walked the previous year and takes you past the Blue Lagoon and Porthgain (can you spot me on googlemaps in Porthgain?!!!) .

I have really been enjoying the Weatherman Walking series as Derek has been to a few places that I have been but not explored properly, the other episode that I really enjoyed as I had been there is the Three Cliffs Bay episode. I am definitely going to be exploring his route when I next visit the Gower!

You can find lots of information on his walks and walking routes on his website – www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/4r0gdLJc3Hnm7t0k2cD3ZP4/maps-and-route-information and is worth a look at as it has some fab resources on it!

Have you seen any of the Weatherman Walking episodes? Where do you want to visit and explore from the series?

Week 6 – 5/2/17 – 11/2/17

Last week I challenged myself to beat the previous weeks stat total which I have actually managed!  This weeks stats are 47405 total steps, nearly a whole days worth of steps more than last week!  Monday and Friday were my best days when my steps nearly hit 10000!  I have been trying to find ways of sneaking in extra steps which has really helped – using the toilet in work on the 3rd floor instead of the ones on the same floor as my office, parking further down the car park so I have to walk a bit further to and from my office, doing the tea run in work, pacing when on the phone and when waiting for things to cook…basically seizing any opportunity to move around!

This week I am aiming to better this score again, I averaged around 6772 steps per day last week, aiming for 7000 steps per day this week.  And now the evenings are getting lighter there is more opportunity to get out for a bit longer with Roxy so that should help me hit my target!

What was your total last week?  What are your aims this week?

Treasure Hunt

There are many different types of treasure hunt that you can do on walks, from previously going out and doing the walk alone, hiding things along the way and marking the points on a map, indicating where treasures can be found by saying “hotter” when the finder is getting close or “colder” as they move away from the item or leaving clues as to the location of the next treasure. All methods of “finding” the treasure can teach little ones valuable skills – from map reading to orienteering and problem solving, however this treasure hunt method requires forward planning though and may be something that is difficult to plan in advance.

My favorite form of a treasure hunt comes in the form of a Scavenger Hunt, which is essentially a list of things to find on your walks accompanied by some tick boxes, as you find the items you tick them off the list. It is helpful to carry a bag or small bucket or box of some description which you can place your found items in so you can show all the people in your group at the end. This kind of treasure hunt is brilliant as you can add different things to the list depending on the season or where the walk will take place, and you can break the list into different types too… Easy Things to Find/Hard Things to Find, or assign points to each item – the person with the most points or items wins.

Here’s a list you could use

Easy Things to Find – 5 Points per item

* Hazelnut seed (5pts)

* Oak Leaf (5pts)

* Moss (5pts)

* Twig (5pts)

* A smooth pebble (5pts)

* Blade of grass (5pts)

* Bit of bark (5pts)

* A rough stone (5pts)

* A dandelion flower (5pts)

* A dock leaf (5pts)

Score (A) = /50

Hard Things to Find – 10 Points per Item

* A Snail Shell (10pts)

* Animal Fur (10pts)

* A key ring hoop(10pts)

* A piece of String(10pts)

* A coin (10pts)

* A round stone (10pts)

* A seed pod (10pts)

* 3 pine cones on a twig (10pts)

* A Huge leaf (10pts)

* A  Bird Feather (10pts)

Score(B) = /100

Total Score = A + B = /150

Have you been on a treasure hunt or created one?  What sort of things did you “hunt” for?

To January

January was a cold and dark month that seemed to be never ending, the darkness in both the morning and evening impacted on my walks which then affected my steps per day.  I have been logging my steps per day and have set myself a challenge each week to try and beat the previous weeks step total which is encouraging me to get more active in the day and to find ways to get more steps in day to day.

The weather is not really getting any better yet, this weekend we are predicted to have snow but I’m hoping that it isn’t too bad.  The nights are starting to get lighter though which is lovely as it feels like spring is now within reach and gives me a bigger window of opportunity to get out, even if it is only for 20mins with Roxy.

I achieved a total of 163800 steps in January, an average of 5284 steps per day.  I’m aiming to beat this in February, and am aiming for around 7000 steps per day average!

I’m hoping, this month, that I will be able to hit 10000 steps on more than one or 2 occasions, and be able to get out for longer walks each night.

What did you achieve in January?