Week 9 26/2/17 – 4/3/17

This past week I have not managed to push my stats to where I would have liked them to be, instead of hitting between 55000 and 60000 this week, I have fallen slightly behind (and also fallen back on last weeks step total) to 48771 total steps for the week.  This is still not too bad, I’m hitting over 50% of the average recommended daily steps and hitting 6967 as an overall average.  I have not managed to get out at lunch times, the weather for the past week has not been too great, cold and wet, which has seen me take soup for lunch to work and put me off of going out at lunch times.

This week I am hoping to hit a step average of 7200 per day, any more will be a bonus!

How did you do last week?  What are your aims this week?


Week 8 -9/2/17 – 25/2/17

Last week I said that I would like to push my average steps to around 9500 steps, I didn’t manage that but nearly maintained the steps I took hitting a grand total of 55133.  I’m not too unhappy about that figure as maintaining is better than being lots under.  Saturday and Sunday are still my most inactive days and I really do need to work at this to get these days to at least 5000 steps, doing this will see a huge improvement on my overall stats.  My best day was Tuesday where I hit 11064 steps though I don’t really know how I managed that as I can’t remember doing anything different to any other day!

This week I am going to try and maintain my steps to anything between 55000 and 60000.  Anything more will be a bonus!  And I will try and get out at lunch time for a walk too!

How did you do this week?  What are your goals for this week?

The Blog Has Landed on Instagram!!!

It’s true!!!  Just search @tenthousandsteps2016 on the Instagram app and you will find us!  The plan for Instagram is to share my stats each day, things I find on my walks and photos that will be coming up on the blog!  It is my way of sharing with you and connecting in a different way that will support the blog and it’s content!

So, head over to Instagram and add the blog!  @tenthousandsteps2016 🙂

Now for yesterdays stats…how did I do?


Still not back to full health but my steps seem to be heading upwards!  🙂

Logging Exercise and Effort Level on Activity Trackers

My Jawbone activity tracker app has a nifty feature which can sense when I have been on a walk or other activity where I have taken a lot of steps and will prompt me to enter my activity type and effort level, this will also come up when you manually enter an activity along with start time and duration.  As I haven’t used any other tracker I am unsure whether they have this feature as well or not.

Why are these things important and what do they mean?

The activity type is pretty self explanatory as the tracker gives you options for activity types you may have done (walking, cross train, bike etc) logging the type will give the tracker app information on the kind of work out you have partaken in and the basic level calories you will have burned (approximately).

Start time and duration are either logged for you, if your activity tracker picks this information up automatically, otherwise, note the time you started the activity and what the duration was.

The last thing to log is Effort Level.  My app for Jawbone gives me a few different options – Easy, Moderate, In the Zone, Difficult and Gut Buster.  But how do you decide which one to use?  I use a checking system based on breath, heart rate, body temp and sweat levels (sounds gross but trust me on this…)  Here’s how I calculate Effort –


Easy – Breathing is normal, heart rate is normal, body temperature has remained the same (don’t feel any hotter temperature wise), not broken out into a sweat.


Moderate – Breathing is a bit quicker but you are able to hold a full conversation with no trouble, heart rate is a tiny bit quicker but not that noticeable, body temperature has risen slightly and skin feels slightly damp (noticeable under arms, and lower back)


In the Zone – Breathing is quicker, you can talk but are out of breath quickly, heart rate is faster and noticeable, body temperature has risen a lot and you feel hot, you are feeling hot in the face, and you feel sweaty (most noticeable on back, underarms and face)


Difficult – Breathing is even quicker, it is hard to talk more than a few words at a time, heart rate is noticeably quick, you can feel it pumping and even hear it, you are hot all over (and may have removed a layer of clothing in order to cool down), you are sweating a lot and you feel damp all over.


Gut Buster – Breathing is hard to the extent where you cant even speak, heart rate is pounding, you feel really hot and the sweat is pouring off you.  (I have never got to this stage!)

The other way you could measure this when walking is by incline and terrain type

Easy –  where the terrain is flat and smooth, there are no inclines or declines that are noticible.

Moderate – the terrain is slightly rocky or pot holed, there are few inclines that gently rise and fall.

In the Zone – the terrain is rough with several inclines that rise steeply but level out after a short time before rising again.

Difficult – the terrain is rocky with steep, long inclines and declines.

Gut Buster – the terrain is unwelcoming and hard to navigate, it is steep to almost vertical and in some instances specialist equipment and knowledge may be needed to continue (think rock climbing and Ben Nevis).

How do you decide on your effort level?

And now for yesterdays stats…how did I do?


I did better than yesterday!  I’m feeling better today and have more energy which is a good thing!  Hopefully I am on the mend!  🙂

Quick and Easy Tuna Pasta


I made this the other week for tea after walking Roxy.  I wanted something quick and easy but filling and on the healthy side.

What you will need

1-2 small peppers

1 tin tomatoes (chopped)

1 tin kidney beans

1 tin tuna

12-16 mushrooms

1 small onion

1-2 cloves of garlic


How to

Prepare all veg (onion, peppers and mushrooms) by chopping into small pieces, prepare the garlic by crushing and chopping  and add all of this to a pan.

Place pasta into another pan and set to boil.

Add a small amount of water (2 desert spoons) to the veg pan and place over heat, stir occasionally.  The water will be absorbed by the mushrooms as they start to cook but it will be expelled from them soon (don’t worry!).

Once the veg has softened and the onion has gone translucent add the tin of chopped tomatoes and stir.  Drain and rinse the kidney beans and add to the pan.  Bring the lot to the boil.

Drain the tuna and add to the pan.

By now the pasta should be cooked, drain and place back into the pan.  Pour over the tomato/tuna sauce and mix well.

Serve and enjoy!

Variations I have used include adding peas or sweet corn, courgette and broccoli (cut up really small) but this will work with a whole variety of other ingredients.

I quite often make a variation of this as it is filling, cheap and quick.  I tend to make more than just one serving, typically this recipe will make 3-4 meals, as I can take some to work with me the following day as a cold lunch option.  The left overs would also make a really good meal to take in a bag when you go walking.

What kind of things do you cook when you want something quick and easy?

Here’s yesterdays stats for you….


I’m pretty pleased with these stats as I’m still struggling with this cold that is niggling at me,  without the lunchtime walk which got me away from the office for a bit and into fresh air, I think I would have done at least half the amount of steps that I did.

Week 8 Overview

This past week I have been struggling with my health in general, after having the flu jab a week ago I have been run down with a cold that has seemed to get no better or worse but has zapped my energy levels and left me feeling really tired, achy and stuffed up which has had an impact on my walks and steps.  This past week (19 Oct – 25th Oct) I have taken 65422 steps (7500 of those was made up from 100 mins of housework) which is slightly more than the previous week.  I hit 10,000 steps 2 times but been under every day since.  I am not too worried about this though as I am giving my body a chance to recover and fight the germs I seem to have picked up along the way.  I don’t feel that it is beneficial to push yourself to achieve goals when you are ill as sometimes it can make you worse.  I have listened to my body and it has told me that resting up is the best course of action right now.

Anyway, on to yesterdays stats…how did I do?


I did better than I expected although I did manage to get out for a walk twice in the day as I felt a bit better than the previous days!

Types Of Map


There are several different kinds of maps and all can be used for different purposes, today’s blog is going to look at the differences between some of these maps and what they are most useful for.


Road Maps, like the kind produced by the AA are fab for finding your way from one city or town to another and showing which road to take.  This kind of map tends to only show roads, dual carriageways and motorways, rivers and canals.  They do not really show any great detail of streets or housing areas.  These maps are really useful for drivers who want to know how to get from A – C via B or the most direct route somewhere.  While I own several of these kinds of map I don’t tend to use them much at home, I prefer to use google maps to look at each part of my journey and plan routes and when I am driving I prefer to use my sat-nav than a map as I can never remember a series of directions!


A-Z’s or Street Maps are great for getting about in towns or cities.  They show the area in more detail than Road Maps, giving street names and places of interest such as parks or places of worship.  These are really useful if you are visiting an area and want to travel around the area a bit or find somewhere specific on a certain street.  I like using these when I am visiting a place and want to see where A is in relation to B and whether I can walk it or whether I should consider a different mode of transport.  They are really good to use to see where you are in relation to other points of interest.

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Now to my favorite types of maps OS Maps (or Ordnance Survey maps) these come in 2 different types – the Landranger series (with a pink band around the top) or Explorer (with the orange band around the top).  The first one we shall look at are Landranger maps.  This type of map is a lot more detailed than your average street map, road map, google map or sat-nav map which have been produced in 2D and are “flat” representations of the area.  Landranger (and Explorer maps), while still printed onto flat paper have the addition of graduation lines –  fine orange lines that join together to illustrate the incline or decline of the land – whether it is hilly or flat, the closer together the lines the steeper the climb and the further apart the flatter the land.  Landranger maps show 2 cm to every km, which is fairly detailed, you get to see path ways and bridal ways, points of interest and can navigate with them whether walking or driving.


Explorer maps show the area in much more detail again, using a scale of 1:25000, or 4cm to every km.  It shows the same things as the Landranger but still even more detail such as buildings, types of terrain and open access land.  These maps are by far my favorite and I tend to use them when I am planning a visit or a new walking route to explore.  Both the Landranger and Explorer maps come in a laminated version called Active Maps, which I find to be the best as they are hard wearing and can be chucked in your bag and used whether rain or shine without having to worry about the map getting wet or torn or damaged in any other way.

What’s your favorite type of map and why?

And now to yesterdays stats…how did I do?


I didn’t do too bad for a sunday – usually one of my more sedentary/lazy days!

Things to Look for on Your Walks

This is another series I am hoping to make a regular feature on my blog.  In this series I will be letting you know of things to keep an eye out for when you are out and about!

I’m sure you will have seen my photos of mushrooms that I have found on my walks and Im pleased to say that the mushroom season seems to be continuing.  I have lost count

ount of different types of mushroom or fungi that I have seen on my walks but its a lot!  I think that the mushroom season is continuing thanks to the warm, damp weather we have been experiencing and from the weather forecasts, though the temperature is starting to drop, in terms of temperature, its still warm for mushrooms to thrive.  The appearance of mist in the mornings has also helped by keeping the ground moist and damp, perfect for a mushroom to form.

The leaves on the trees are continuously changing color and falling at this time of the year, and they are all different shapes, sizes and tones.  Why not keep an eye out for both the biggest and smallest leaves?

Other things to look out for are seeds and nuts falling from trees, from hazelnuts and beech seeds to conkers and helicopter seeds (from the maple tree family!)  I have already found a sizeable collection of conkers and have placed them around my home – apparently they keep spiders away!

Here are some photos I took of things I have found this month on my walks!

And now for yesterdays stats…how did I do?


I didn’t do too bad for a Saturday!

Summer Walks Throwback – Part 3 – Oxwich

This is the third installment of my Summer Walks Throwback series, it is also the last installment which I hope to start up again next year.  As you know from my previous installments, I went away for 3 weeks in the summer and to 3 different places in my campervan, this is the final week of that time away.

I came back to the Gower area of South Wales and stayed in a lovely campsite above Oxwich Bay called Greenways Of Gower.  I chose this site as it had really good reviews and, again, allowed dogs on site.  It is a bit of a trek uphill from Oxwich Bay but isn’t too difficult a walk, though if you have small children or mobility issues then I would advise you to drive up and down from the site.  Oxwich Bay is not too far from Port Eynon where we stayed for the first week of our holidays, it was a nice walk to and from our site so we walked there and back a few times and we also spent quite a bit of our time walking along the beach, when the tide is out you can walk to Three Cliffs Bay!  We also walked along the headland and explored the pathways along the way.

Here are some photos of our week away at Oxwich Bay.

If you go down to the Gower where do you stay?

And now for yesterdays stats…How did I do?


I didn’t hit 10,000 steps but I did do 100 mins of housework which equates to around 7,200 steps which doesn’t show on my Jawbone app.  If you want to convert other activities into steps this site http://www.purdue.edu/walktothemoon/activities.html is really useful 🙂

Types Of Walker

There are lots of different kinds of walker from the beginner, intermediate and advanced, to hobbiest walker and serious expert walker, for me thought, there will only be three kinds of walker, all defined by speed, because, to me, it isn’t about how experienced or inexperienced you are –mountains conquered and paths taken don’t matter as much as knowledge and safety in my eyes, its always been about speed with me.  So here are my Three Types of Walker…

·         Slow And Steady –  the one that is always at the back of a group, being called to “hurry up” but taking their time, neither slowing or speeding up but always keeping a steady pace.  This is the one that takes in most of the surroundings and enjoys the views and sees things that others may miss, and the one that is happy by themselves and a bit of a dreamer and wanderer.

·         Ambler Rambler – the one that is in the middle of the group, neither bringing up the rear or leading the front but flitting between both, the one that likes to chat and know what is going on.  This is the one that will probably pack a flask of tea and enough sandwiches to feed the group.  When out on their own, walks with purpose and determination.  Tries to get along with everyone and help out wherever possible.

·         Speed Walker – Always at the front, steering the group along new routes, head held high and proud.  Walks with speed but doesn’t forget the rest of the group, quiet and thoughtful, makes observances but doesn’t always notice the surroundings.  When walking alone this person likes to get from A to B as quickly as possible.  Can be a bit strict and plans the walk with precision (including rest stops) in military fashion but it means that you always know exactly where you are both physically and figuratively speaking!

I class myself as a “Slow And Steady” walker, I like to look for things and see what I can find and am always noticing little things like berries on bushes, flowers coming into bloom, the appearance of mushrooms or birds in the trees.  I like getting lost in the landscape and daydreaming about who may have walked the paths in previous times gone by.  What type of walker are you?

So, how far did I step slow and steady yesterday?


As you may have read recently, I have not been too well, I have had a niggling cold for a while and yesterday I felt achy all day and really tired so I didn’t hit my 10,000 step target overall, however I did fit in 100 mins of housework which converts into approximately 7500 steps, so in theory I did over 10,000 steps (14,676 in total!)