Sunday, May 15, 2011

A Haslemere Circular

This was my first training walk in a while, though I did spend the three weeks preceding it doing quite a bit of exercise: cycling 324 from Northumberland to Aberdeen with my tent on the back of bike, learning to dive in a dry suit in the Orkneys and sea kayaking and walking in the Shetlands.

But, back in London now, and with only a couple of months to go until the big event, I decided it was time to get on with the training walks.

So, along with Deborah, I set off for Haslemere, about an hour out of London, for a ten mile circular walk from the good ol' Time Out book of Country Walks. This was a relatively short and gentle one: although, in theory, all that holiday exercise was good for me, I managed to screw my right knee and Achilles tendon, so I am trying to ease back into it gently.

The weather and countryside were gorgeous, with some fine views, blooming rhododendrons, and varied woodland. The lunchstop was roast beef in a country pub garden, the most difficult challenge of the day being leaving the pub for the rest of the walk.

It was also my first walk trying out walking poles, which are supposed to reduce strain on the legs and particularly the knees, so they seemed like a good idea. Trailwalker advises people to use them for the long walk. I'm pretty sure that I looked like a bit of an idiot, and it felt a little like I was just making my tiredness to my arms as well, but my knee certainly held up. I'll see how it goes when we do something a little more hardcore in a couple of weeks.

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