Ten day festive challenge

So yesterday I began my ten day festive challenge. I am recovering from a bout of a nasty flu type virus which hits the head and the chest. It’s not pleasant and really takes the wind out of your sails. I am just beginning to feel human again and so have embarked on my own test over Christmas.

Not a mountain, not even a significant trail. Simply to walk every day and gently aid recovery. I am the worlds worst self motivator when it comes to doing something regular and consistently. I get bored easy you see. So what better way to help get my health and fitness back while offsetting the indulgences of the season.

It began on Christmas Eve on the way home from collecting the Turkey. I impulsively said to Mr Smith “stop here, I’ll walk back”. It was a freezing cold day with intermittent snow showers. Not a massive distance but a tick in the box, Day 1 done. Now I could get on with preparing the turkey in time for tomorrow.

So Day 2 it’s Christmas Day. With Storm Connor about to hit the scene the winds were high. Though 11 degrees centigrade is probably one of the warmest 25th of Decembers we have had here in some time. We have had colder summer days! Every year Mr Smith and I take the dogs along. They just seem to know when it’s not a serious training day. Bouncing about you’d think it was Christmas! Maybe it’s my hat :). For those who have never walked out of the rear gate at Gallowhill onto the hill behind – it’s quite an ascent. Surely tests even the healthiest of lung capacities, so you can imagine how my chest felt with a 30 mile an hour wind in my face.


Time to stop for the traditional Christmas Day photo. Oops that’s Mr Smith’s hat gone. But that’s the beauty of having trained retrievers as your companions. Sally is sent and returns cap in mouth and hands it over – not to Mr Smith – but on to the floor for Isla – her daughter! And that’s it gone again.

Twice more this goes on with Mr Smith getting more and more frustrated until he realises? She’s trying to show Isla how to do it :D. Sweet! Meanwhile Ruby our old spaniel is loving a walk onto the hillside. She has gone from being a “cocker on Duracell” to one who’d sooner settle down with a cocoa “if it’s all the same” in less than a year. Today was a good day, not stiff and just enough energy to enjoy the walk.

We have walked most Christmas Days for as long as I can remember. Even if it’s only half an hour after all the family calls are made and before the turkey needs its first check. It always finishes with Christmas doggie treats (for the hounds that is!) before heading back indoors to crack on with dinner.

So today was always going to be an easy “steps” addition to the challenge provided I could breathe. 45 minutes it took to do just about a mile. No great distance, but enough to get the heart pumping and the lungs expanding. Eight more days to go and here’s hoping the distances continue to grow as my own health improves.

Meanwhile it’s a very Happy Christmas to you all. And my thoughts go especially to those who will be spending it without loved ones this year.

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