million steps – day twenty nine – fruit and football

The early morning walk this morning set me up for a very busy day.  I needed to buy fruit before breakfast so changed my walk in order to call at the supermarket on the way home. It made a nice change.  I walked through the shopping streets and along a busy enough road, for a minute there was no traffic and I was amazed to hear so much bird song, just shows what is hidden behind the noise of everyday life.

Anyway fruit was purchased and I made my way the last quarter of a mile towards home. Again carrying a heavy bag I was reminded of how much weight I used to carry with me all the time, at least this burden is put down once I get home.

The rest of the day was busy, big changes in our little shop meant moving lots of heavy items around.  This is something I would not have been able to do just three months ago. Eventually it is done and it is time to pop home to get ready to go out.

When a football club invites you to talk about your charity there are a number of things you may well expect to happen.  It is a function, in a club bar.  There are over a hundred and fifty people there.  What I didn’t expect was to be in such a welcoming and nurturing space.  The walls are decked with banners, they read:  Football has no gender, We are all immigrants, refugees welcome.  It is an extraordinary place.  It is run mostly by men, who all decided that they wanted to do football differently.  And that is what they do.  We were made so welcome and our talk went down really well.  The rest of the evening was great fun too.

It taught me a lesson. Once again I was forced to acknowledge how my preconceptions can be so far off the mark.  My colleague who was with me commented on the way home how the evening felt very much like an evening we attended at a Church Fellowship.  I knew exactly what she meant.  That night was run by women of a certain age, who made tea, sold items and listened equally attentively to our talk.  They also welcomed us and were interested in what we do.  So very different and yet so much alike.

I suppose the lesson I take away is that kindness is everywhere.  People reach out to help and support from every area of life.  The clever trick is to make sure you are open to see what is around.  From birdsong behind the traffic noise, to warmth on a football pitch, it is there if you look for it.

By the end of the night, and it was a late one, I had clocked up over 16,000 steps towards my million steps.  Today was a good day.

Million steps – day twenty eight -indoors, outdoors

When you start the day with a four and a bit mile walk, everything else seems easy.  Warm sunshine and a spring in my step meant I just kept walking this morning, winding down roads with very little traffic.  It was a delight.

Later it was an in the house day.  Just as well because soon after breakfast the sunshine had gone and in it’s place pouring down rain and wind.  No matter I had jobs to do.  First thing was to sort my wardrobe.  I have so many clothes that are far to big for me now.  Trousers, jeans and tops all in pile ready to go to help someone else.  A few really nice clothes are new, and it is sad that I won’t be able to wear them, these I put to one side to think about adjusting them.  My sewing skills are non existent, but then again my walking wasn’t up to much til I tried, so who knows?

So, a pile for the charity shop, and suddenly there is space to actually see what clothes I have left.  Wardrobe completed I moved on to the drawers and the charity shop grew even more.  Luckily I still have some things that fit me, I am reluctant to shop while I am still losing weight.  It is an amazing feeling to drop a couple of dress sizes.  I look very different and feel so well.  Yes I have been eating very healthily but without the exercise I am getting walking I am sure I would not have lost this much at all.

By evening time I am surprised to see I have added almost 5,000 steps to my daily total, all done in the house.  To be fair we have a fair few stairs and I was up and down a lot, but it just showed me how much I move without realising it.

A respectable 14,000+ added to the total, the million steps are getting nearer every day.

Million steps – days twenty six and seven

Monday’s walk was nothing out of the ordinary, usual route, usual steps.  Just saying it is crazy, to casually say it’s usual for me to be walking!

Tuesday started wet and windy, for the first time in a week or so I needed to wear my coat.  I did a fast route covering a couple of miles before the rain stopped and sun was starting to show.

Later I travelled with my daughter in law and beautiful Granddaughter to visit a very special place.  We went to the seaside, to a park where fairies live.  My gorgeous little girl loves fairies very much.  The first thing we saw was a wooden house, oh the excitement as we opened a tiny door and inside there were the fairies.  The look of wonder on a little face made my heart happy.  There were other fairy houses dotted around and we spent a happy hour peeping inside and squealing with delight.

I feel so happy to have a lovely family and am ever grateful I am fit enough to have fun with them.  We walked along the sea front to the beach where I was able to take a photo of my Granddaughter and her Mummy standing on the sand with the river behind them.  A poignant moment for me, as I have a photo of me as a two year old on the same sand, in almost the same place, with my Mum standing beside me.

The circle of life I guess.  My Mum never got to meet any of her Grandchildren, sadly it was not to be, so I feel the love and fortune all the more for having these special people in my life.  Down there on the beach with the same river lapping the shore, I feel connected to my past more than anywhere else in the world.  I am thinking of childhood summers on the shore, picnics and play, I am thinking of me on roller skates up and down the seafront and later as a teenager looking at the water and imagining the world at the end of the waves.

Our home town is miles away from the sea, my Granddaughter will grow up with the hills as her world not the sea, but just spending one day, on the beach and the circle feels complete.  She will never know the family who would have loved her so very much but I hope she will always understand the connections we have to the river, to the sand and most of all to each other.

By the time we arrived home I had completed a respectable 14,000 plus steps on a sunny day when memories were both remembered and made.

million steps – day twenty five

this million steps takes some walking, every day I am adding to my total but the end seems a long way to go.  I was delighted to have taken my 400,000 step sometime today, not bad from the woman that never walked anywhere.

I reckon 400,000 steps is about 170 miles or so, which is about the distance from my home town to London!!  Every step has counted, and every step has helped me to fitness.  Some days are difficult and others a breeze.

Today was a good day, I started with the short walk I had done with hubby last night, it was lovely to be in the countryside rather than the town, even if only for a mile or so, I then carried on with a few diversions, following one of my regular routes.  By the time I was nearly home I was feeling it, the pedometer registered just over four miles, it felt much more.

I have again been contacted by a friend, a woman just like me, who is going to start walking.  This thing has legs for sure!!  You see when the woman who never walked anywhere is walking 400,000 steps everyone else knows they can do it to.

Big love to the guys at Diabetes UK for thinking this challenge up at exactly the right time to inspire me.  I hope they make lots of cash, and get even more people putting one foot in front of another.  It really is that simple.

Million steps – weekend walking – days twenty three and twenty four

it has been another bright warm and sunny weekend, great for getting out and about and walking.  Sadly on Saturday my body felt otherwise.  I was up early and out of the door before 6.30am but I just couldn’t get going.  I felt sluggish, tired and was generally not feeling it at all.  I stopped often, took photographs, seeing the town in the early morning glow was great, I decided not to worry, at least I was out and about, and any exercise is better than none.

A busy afternoon in the shop followed by fun with my Granddaughter clocked up enough steps for the day, and by evening I was feeling fit again.  I was thinking hard about how to vary my steps and decided to do something different on Sunday.

Sunday morning I had a lie in, I was up and out by 8.30am and planned to combine walking with swimming, to give me a change in activity.  Rather than walk the direct route to the pool I set off on my usual route, eventually arriving in the park and at the pool.  I used to love swimming, in my youth I was always in the water, the sea, the swimming pool, where ever I could swim I swam.

The last time I tried to swim my pains were strong and I was fearful of not being able to climb out of the water.  I decided to give up.  That was a few months ago, things have changed.  Once in the pool and swimming I remembered how much I love being in water. I managed a few lengths and felt well.  I walked the rest of my usual route home, feeling quite energetic and back on track.

By late afternoon I had completed chores, walked to the supermarket and then spent too long on my laptop.  I decided it was time to get outdoors.  Hubby agreed to come with me and we set off together.  We did a quickish circuit from home, winding down a country lane, enjoying the green and pleasant land all around us.  Almost home and the rain started, falling light at first it quickly became heavy.  It was deliciously cooling and refreshing.  We made it back before we were too wet.

So, another weekend in this crazy challenge,  I managed to walk about 27, 000 steps towards a fitter me and closer to completing Diabetes UK’s challenge.

changing faces

the times are a changing, and with my shrinking body, new found energy and my extraordinary walking ability, comes changes to my blog.

I have been writing for almost three years, have had readers on every continent, and over thirty different countries, all reading, commenting and generally supporting my ramblings on life, love and the universe.

The time has come, my lonely website, which has sat unused for quite a while is now ready to handle everything I need it to do.  So from this week the blog will be found here on

Having a fabulous son who understands these things has made life very easy, and readers probably won’t even notice the changes.

So new me, new website, same blog.

million steps – day twenty two

this is morning’s walk could have lasted forever.  Warm sunshine peeping through white cloud, the temperature rising with every step I took, and I was full of energy.  I decided to take a diversion from the usual route and headed up past the cricket ground.  I then chose to walk further again up a very steep hill.  What goes up must come down and round the corner the slope began to fall.

Already I had done more than planned and now there was another choice.  I turned right and headed even further away from home.  This road was busy with traffic thundering by, people are waking up now.  I soon turn off and rejoin a familiar road, this time heading home.

I am moving along in this challenge, some days are better than others, today was a good day.  Later I managed to add to the steps just doing my daily routing and ended up on a respectable 15,000 odd steps.  Diabetes UK really knew what they were doing setting this challenge up.  It is hard enough to feel a sense of achievement, yet do’able enough to succeed.

million steps – day twenty one – going red

A quicker than normal walk this morning meant I was playing catch up with steps all day long.  Lots of exercise though.  We had hundreds of rubble sacks to load onto a van, most had to be moved up a flight of stairs too, so lots of energy was required.

Home after lunch I was waiting for my lovely hairdresser to come and cut my hair.  Since losing weight I am choosing a shorter style,  but it was time for a new colour.  When reaching for my ‘normal’ colour in the supermarket my eye was drawn to different shades.

I picked a lovely reddish brown, dark and warm and more like my original colour.   Anyway half an hour or so later and it was done.  I looked so different, but in a good way. Hairdresser arrived and cut it all just a little bit shorter, just what I wanted.

Since starting this challenge for Diabetes UK I have made so many changes.  Less food, more exercise, lots more walking and less sweet treats.  However becoming a redhead albeit reddish brown, is the most striking change yet.  I love it.  Oh and yes I managed to achieve 13,000 odd steps too.


million steps – day nineteen – what a scorcher

my early morning walk this morning was absolutely brilliant.  I walked through streets of pretty houses, passed the park and soon I could see the sea.  Even though it was early it was already very warm and I could feel myself getting hotter and hotter.

I pass dog walkers, the occasional cyclist and jogger and we all nod hello, the odd comment ‘it’s going to be a warm one today’ as we all share the same space and beautiful views. I stop to take some photographs, I always feel happy near the coast and being there so early was a real treat.

I soon completed my three miles and walked back up to the car.  Arriving home to have my breakfast in the garden it soon became clear that sitting in the sunshine was too much today.  The rest of the day we sat in the shade, drinking cool drinks not moving much at all.

It is one thing walking in the rain and the cold, but I found out today that the heat is the most challenging weather.  I managed to walk enough steps, but only just.  It was actually quite lovely to spend the day not doing much at all.



million steps – day eighteen

to be honest a million steps is a lot of steps to walk.  At least that is what I was thinking on my morning walk today.  I was on my usual route, with a slightly longer diversion, to avoid boredom, as I clocked up about 7500 steps.  At least it was dry and a very pleasant morning to walk in.  But a million steps is still a lot of steps.

When I reached the 300,000 mark I thought I was well on my way, and I suppose that is true.  However there is still over 600,000 steps to do to reach my target.  I am beginning to wonder how many different routes I can devise to make this more interesting.

Later I drove to join my lovely hubby at our caravan in North Wales.  After almost two hours driving I was ready to move, so as soon as we had had lunch we drove the short way to the coast and walked along the seafront.  Steps done with company disappear much more quickly that those done alone, and by the time we returned I had clocked up enough to make the days tally respectable.

I always knew it would be a challenge, the woman who didn’t move much for ten years or more is certainly more active that I would have dreamed possible, but 600,000 is a mission.  Luckily I am sure I am up to it, and if I can do it anyone can.  Thanks to Diabetes UK for motivating me, I really am doing the best I can.