Ok so what do you do to train to walk for 26 miles over three large hills? well I guess you had better make sure you can walk 26 miles, and that and you can climb big hills, sounds straight forward. Well I know I can do the climbs but just in case there’s any doubt its off to complete the famous three, having already done Ben & Snowy it was the turn of Scafell Pike.
that’s me on top of the Pike, the last of the big three done in under twelve months not quite the 24 hour challenge but done nevertheless. So can I walk 26 miles? only one way to find out I guess and that’s put a rucksack on and walk. So that’s what I did, a few months ago I rode to my Mums house in Gravesend and back again, which was 28 miles and jokingly said at the time maybe I’ll walk it next time, never a true word spoken in jest. with my route chosen I set off on Sunday morning nice and early for my Summer Stroll, hell-bent on just making it to my Mum’s house, weight down with what started out as a pretty average weighing pack. Walking through the towns of a Sunday Morning was peaceful just a few people clearing up from the Saturday crowds, through Rochester and onward to Gravesend.
Above Rochester Cathedral and Castle
After 11 miles I got to Gravesend Clock tower,
The pack seemed to be double the weight from when I left home and I could feel my feet starting to blister, something I never really suffered from, anyhow onward I trod, finally knocking on Mums door some 14 miles and 4 and half hours later. As I sat on the door step, too scared to go in a sit on a comfy sofa for fear of curling up and getting some well-earned Gonk ( Sleep) , I chatted to Mum and scoffed food down my neck filled up on the fluid again, I thought I’d best check out the blister situation. really wish I hadn’t, not a pretty sight as both feet had quite large blisters on the balls of the soles. ‘ Your Not going to carry on now Boy are you?’ don’t you just love it, being 40 odd years old and your Mum still refers to you as boy, ‘No worries mum only going to do a few more miles, then I call for a lift the rest of the way’. So a couple of Painkillers for the feet and off I went wanting to hit the 20 mile mark. The few miles were although painful pretty non eventful except when I bumped into my nephew who asked where I was going and I told him I was walking back home, after a brief chat he called me a Nutter and we parted company. Time past and the feet were sore I eventually got to the 20 mile mark, I was made up but then I thought I was so close to completing the 26 miles I’d go for it Now I had worked out that 26 miles would stop me just short of the biggest hill in the Medway towns, so that would do nicely as I really didn’t fancy walking up that, so after a break and a few more of the pain killers I moved off very slowly as the body had started to stiffen up because I’d taken far to long over a fresh brew and food, yep the body was not as keen as the mind was to carry on, the next few miles went slowly as the feet were really quite sore now, but as the target got closer I was determine not to stop, then to my horror, I got to the foot of the said hill, checked the GPS and I was on 25.1 miles, so yes If I wanted to do the 26 then I’d have to climb the hill. Into the newsagent I went to purchase a can of the stuff that gives you wings, and in my now exhausted state hoped and prayed it was going to give me them wings…….after waiting for a few minutes ‘no wings’ so it was back to shanks pony and I started the slog, as painful on the feet as it was I made it, 26 miles 385 yards, marathon distanced, ok it wasn’t in under four hours, but who cares I did it in 8 and a half hour from leaving home with a large pack which now seemed to have vanished, maybe due to the fact I’d eaten the food and drank all the water, so its only 2 miles to home, do I call for a lift or walk it, no-brainer really, its only 2 miles, well I think they were the longest and hardest of the day, eventually making it home in a further hour, very tired and feet sore, but hey 28.2 miles covered. A hot Bath and soak the feet followed by a Sunday roast, be as good as new.
Lessons learnt ; Invest in a really good socks, and carry spares, load the Ipod up to the max, I can walk 26 miles and climb big hills, now just got to put them all together in under 12 hours.
To be honest Apart from the blisters I recovered next day legs were fine, as I been banging on about the feet thought I’d show you lol