Friday, October 1, 2010


I’m having a lot of trouble coming up with this milestone thing we have to do.

Since my early 20s I’ve pushed myself to do quite a few physical challenges – thanks to my Other Half, who I have followed (accompanied!) blissfully and devotedly down rivers, up and down gullies, cliffs and canyons, and lately, on two wheels along hundreds of kilometres of roads.  I’ve done canoe marathons. I’ve ridden 100 miles in a day. I’ve done canyoning trips that have taken 12 hours or more.  Sure I could go further, harder – but the concept of building up to, and then doing, a physical challenge isn’t foreign to me.  It’s not that I never liked doing exercise! 

It’s just that in between all these challenges, everyday life got in the way, and I didn’t do as much, and ate far too much of the wrong stuff, and kept putting on the flab.

In my ideal world, sure, I’d like to be able to run. I could do a small triathlon then, even, as I can ride and swim!  I know Michelle thinks just about everyone can run – but I know what my back is like – and the pain of one’s back or hip being out – being pinched – is something that is just plain insanity to push through. 

In my dreams I’d be able to do an Adventure Race (with my husband – without slowing him down so much)… but apart from the issues that my back (and indeed my joints) present me – these events require planning to get away for weekends and of course, don’t necessarily line up with our 4, 8 and 12wk milestones.

This is the sort of thing I would actually love to start doing – rather than triathlons. – I’d happily aim for the November (novice) event, but that’s in Canberra, and I just don’t think we can swing a trip to Canberra then. However I have just told Himself that I’d REALLY like to do one.. next year? Mind you, there are so many other things we’d do given the chance to get away without the kids. Some people go away on resort-style holidays. Our list would include another multi-day tandem tour. Hiking in NZ. Doing the Lake Taupo Cycle Challenge.  Oh the things we would do – and none of them would involve sitting around in spas.

With me it’s not about pushing through pain barriers. I know muscle soreness – I LOVE muscle soreness!  It tells me I’ve worked hard. I have no qualms about pushing my muscles so hard, that I can hardly walk for the next couple of days!  I wear it as a badge of honour.

Back pain is different.

So, as much as I’d like to set running as my challenge, I don’t think it’s realistic for me over the next few weeks – even by the end of Round 3.  It doesn’t mean I’m not going to try and build up to see if I can, but I’m not keen to put such a time limit on it.

Realistically? A miracle-milestone for me would be being able to do a few situps without f***ing up my back!

However…  in the spirit of all this, I need to come up with something…

A coast walk from Woolgoolga to Coffs Harbour?  Around 24 km by my reckoning.

Mini milestone would be to go halfway to Moonee Beach.

Sand, and headlands.

It would be a good test for this imperfect, recalcitrant body of mine.

Yesterday I felt improved enough to go out for a good hard walk! Instead of my usual flat beach walk (to the north) I headed south over a couple of little headlands, and along the soft sand of the ‘back beach’. I looked for as much ‘UP’ as I could, and even climbed up my destination headland twice.

I plotted it on ‘’ – unticking the ‘follow the road’ option. I can get an elevation profile from it – so that is something for me to use as a comparative measure. (Yes, yes, I know we are supposed to be measuring calories ‘smashed’, but I don’t have a heart rate monitor as yet – and this is free!)


I’m planning this afternoon to go a bit further, and walk up the headland at the other end of the at the next beach along. Ms 11 even said she’d come with me!  I’m still not 100% though – blasted mucus in the back of the nose and throat thing happening… blech…. (Sorry TMI!)


But, you know… when you live right near a place like this, it seems pretty crazy to go walking around the streets! And I’ve actually got state forest – and hills – to the west, where I can do some serious UPs. So even if I can’t run, I can walk UP!

OK.. enough! The biggest danger is that I’m spending so much time mulling over what I should do, I’m likely to not get around to doing it.

I think I’ll talk about the food next time! In short, the Roast Chicken with Lime was well received – and husband is at least impressed with the fact that this program has got me out of my culinary rut! Spaghetti and lentils tonight – it will be interesting to see what they all think of that.


  1. Tracey you are such an amazing woman. You have accompklished so many amazing feats. I'm in awe of you. I'm quite sure you will come up with a milestone that is more than appropriate and sutiable. Good luck with the Spaghetti and lentils. It wasn't a favourite in our house

  2. Right now, Linda, I'm in awe of anyone who can run!
    The spaghetti and lentils went ok tonight. Bit bland, needs a bit of chilli! (Can't believe I'm saying that!)

  3. I think you are pretty amazing too! However, I think all that you are saying can be summed up by: you can try as much as humanly possible, but you're only human! I just made that up, but really, if things are causing you pain - don't do it. The beach walk sounds achievable and fun if your daughter goes too. You are making headway with the food plan and you are losing weight. What more could you want. My advice (for what it's worth!) is don't overdo the exercise thing, you'll just burn out and lose interest. Good luck with the lentils. I'm going to try the roast chicken tonight. I'm really out of whack with the whole thing so I'm probably not best placed to give any advice IMHO!

  4. Hey Wendy - that doesn't sound good... (ie. being 'out of whack' with the whole thing...) And I know you've got the problems with your feet: here I am whingeing about having trouble running, and you'd be happy to be able to walk from A to B without pain. I'm definitely a believer (and proof) in that it's 75% (at least) to do with what you put in your mouth... So at the very least, don't go too far off the track with the food plan, and you've got to lose!