Monday, November 30, 2015

365 True Things: 246/Walking

I love to walk. I could walk all day, every day—from here to . . . wherever. Walk across the country? Well, that might get boring, in some parts of this great land. But something about the challenge is intriguing.

I'm not sure I'm up for doing a long-distance trail, like the Pacific Crest Trail or Appalachian Trail, though. Not anymore. Not carrying my home on my back. If I were to do a long walk today, I'd want to go from motel to motel, or even better, B&B to B&B.

Landscape near Kinlochewe
We did that in Scotland a number of years ago, walking the West Highland Way. Carried just the clothes we needed. Or thought we needed: as it was, we packed for any inclement weather you could imagine—sleet, snow, hail, rain for sure—but instead got treated to a warm, dry spell: the single t-shirt each of us packed was well seasoned by the time we were done. And the one day of rain happened to be a day my hip was acting up and the only time on the trek when the train joined the path at two crucial points. So we skipped the rain and I was able to give my hip a rest. The next day, it was fine. Thank goodness, because we still had quite a distance to go.

I walked around Mont Blanc, from France into Italy into Switzerland and back to France. That was a glorious ramble.

Nomads' yurt, Ladakh
I walked across a bit of the Himalaya in Ladakh.

And fortunately, there are lots of great places right around here to walk, or hike, as well. I don't need to travel to farflung places.

I've been a bit lazy lately, though. These days I'll go for a short walk to give the dog a chance to do his business, but the longer hikes have become fewer and farther between.

Yesterday, however, I decided to change that, and I dusted off my "Jawbone UP band," a fitness tracker, my goal being to get back to walking 10,000 steps a day. Either that, or do some serious cycling or floor workouts. I can't afford to just let my body go, not at my age.

Yesterday, my UP band told me I'd walked 9,146 steps, after a good hike in our favorite park. I figure I must have walked a thousand steps just around the house in addition, before I put the band on, so there: 10,000 steps! Off to a good start.

Today, I put the band on and set off to the Frog Pond with the dog, three times around, then marched down the street to the local church—to create an Ingress field, but that's another story: the point here is, I walked a good distance this afternoon. Ten thousand steps for sure.

But when I got home and plugged my UP band in: zilch. The band was "seen," but it couldn't sync. I troubleshot, but again: no fix. I set about contacting customer service via their website, but without a serial number, which I no longer had access to after reinstalling the app, I couldn't complete all the necessary fields. So I scribbled down the 800 number, thinking I'd call tomorrow.

In the meantime, I decided to have a peek at the Jawbone "store." And saw that they're having a holiday sale: $50 off on a brand-new band with a heart rate monitor, which I reckon will be useful for cycling (and maybe for running again if my knee gets better . . . gonna see the doctor about that on Thursday, though I fear it may just be age at work and my knee is simply what it's going to be). So, yeah, I ordered a new one: indigo blue, by mistake (I had and liked black), but indigo—I like indigo. I can live with indigo.

And that saves me a phone call. Always happy to avoid the phone. At whatever price.

So, wish me luck as, finally, I embark on a physical fitness revamp. As soon as my new UP band arrives.

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