Juneathon 2017, Day 18 – A Day of two parts

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Oystermouth Castle, Mumbles


Early this morning, after leaving the Hawaiian themed party, I decided to wander up to the geocache I maintain in the castle grounds. Quite a few people have found it since my last visit and it was time to check on it. That, and when I passed the taxi office it was heaving with people who’d just been expelled from all of Mumbles’ pubs. I thought that by the time I’d visited the cache I’d be able to at least get to sit down in the office.

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Sharpening the pencil

So it was that I found myself at 0030hrs sitting in the dark, on a grassy hill sharpening a pencil with my penknife. The rest of the cache was in good order except for the fact that it looks as if some blighter has nabbed the bag to put trackables in. (Trackables are small items with unique tracking codes that move from geocache to geocache and are “logged in” online. Some trackables move thousands of miles in the time that they’re out in the wild.) So at some point in the near future I’m going to have to traipse back up the hill with a replacement bag.

And yes, by the time I arrived back at the taxi rank everyone else had gone and I was able to get a taxi within 5 minutes.
That was the first part of the day.

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A bit of crocheting

It was scorching today. It was easily the hottest day of the year. Even the Old Trout headed out for a bit of sun. Apparently that didn’t go too well, as she went to lie down and promptly broke her sunbed. *snigger*

Part two of today’s Juneathon exercising involved not walking anywhere in the heat. Instead, I first completed a 5 minute “bed stretch” and then realised that my new garden has a couple of rather solid, and quite shallow, steps.

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Just in case you don’t know what a step is

I waited until about 9pm and then started stepping. I lasted for roughly 15 minutes. At first I was going too fast as I was moving along to “Uptown Funk”. That got my heart racing and I collapsed afterwards. But a few slower songs ensured that I was able to continue for what I consider to be a really good amount of time.

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Sweaty and happy

A Day of Two Parts: Short walk to Oystermouth castle, bed stretch, 15 minutes of stepping
Steps Taken: 7,182
Difficulty level: Intermediate

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Juneathon 2017, Day 8 – Election Day

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Outside Mumbles’ Polling Station

I did it!
I’m incredibly proud of myself today, because I voted.
It took one heck of a push to get myself outside and walking to the bus. I was just so highly stressed about the whole thing.
I’ve had a postal vote ever since I’ve been allowed one. But for that last few years, no matter how many times I sent my form in I never seemed to be signed up for the postal vote. And so it was with this snap election: along came my voting card as opposed to a postal ballot. And because I hadn’t updated my details since my move, I had to head to Mumbles once again in order to cast my vote. That probably made it easier in a way, because I know Mumbles well and have often been inside the village hall. It wasn’t as nerve wracking as entering a new place would have been. And Mumbles isn’t a bad place to go to. After all, look at the view from the polling station of Oystermouth castle.

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Caswell Bay

And afterwards I took the opportunity to do something else I’m rather proud of: I went for a walk to a couple of geocaches that I haven’t been to for quite some time. They’re ones that I look after with my family, but that I haven’t been physically able to get to for a couple of years.

And look: I walked far enough that I can actually show you on a map:

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A map of my walk

I am so flipping chuffed!

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Arachnophobia

I’m probably not going to make too much sense in this blog because I have not only worn myself out, I’m also on a natural high from finally being able to get out and go for a walk away from level pavements.

Arachnophobia is the first of two geocaches that we maintain in Bishop Woods. It’s a night cache. You get to the starting coordinates and then at night with a torch you follow the reflective strips that we’ve placed in a trail around the woods until you finally get to the cache. And in this case: the spiders’ lair. It’s holding up well considering.

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A good place for a quick rest


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Onwards and Upwards!

Just look at how uneven that path is!
And did my knees complain? No they did not. (Well, perhaps just a little)
As I was slowly making my way uphill, a woman passed me with her dogs saying “It’s a long way up isn’t it?” – probably thinking from my sweat smeared face that I was having a rough time of it. But I was just grinning from ear to ear when I replied “Yes. Yes it is isn’t it?”. To think that 6 months ago I was still having difficulty crossing a room!

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Why am I walking inside a bush?

The path to the next cache had me a little stumped. It was all rather more overgrowth than when I was last here and I found myself engulfed in foliage for a good 15m. I knew the path was beneath my feet, but as to where the dratted sky had gone? Well, that was a bit of a mystery.

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The Bishop Woods cache

Thankfully I emerged in the right place. I did my little bit of maintenance: wiped the box clean, topped up the swag, replaced the log and unstuck a couple of slugs using the underside as a meeting place.

And, with my jobs done for the day I wandered off to find my way home.
What a fantastic day!

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A foxglove

Election Day: A walk around Bishop Woods
Steps Taken: 13,366
Difficulty level: Easy

Janathon 2017, Day 10 – A trip to the Castle

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It looks as if I’ll be sleeping on the settee for at least another night. Because, with my old bed in pieces and only the headboard of the new one put together, I decided that I’d head out for a walk today for Janathon.

I went up to Oystermouth Castle and around the castle grounds, which are essentially a public park. My main reason for going there was to check on a geocache that I look after in the grounds. But that was really just an excuse to get out.
There was a point at which I doubted I’d get outside, because I couldn’t find any clothes to wear. I should have moved all of the bits of dead bed away from my chest of drawers to get at some clothes. Instead, I scrabbled about, sniffing hopefully at a few things I’d discarded at the edge of my bedroom. They seemed okay…

From my front door I headed down to the sea front and then I made my way up the hill to Oystermouth castle grounds. I never saw the sun, but it also didn’t rain the whole time I was out. All in all, a lovely, if uneventful walk for today’s exercise.

 

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A trip to the castle day: 1.3 miles
Steps Taken: 6,152
Difficulty Level: easy

Oystermouth castle

Juneathon 2015, Day 30 – The Castle Run

At last Juneathon and blogging have come to an end!

(Well, perhaps not the blogging part. I’ve been enjoying that more than I’d expected)

I don’t know what everyone else has managed for their last day of Juneathon (I will take a long look after writing this), but I was determined to make this day memorable. Alas, it was very nearly memorable because I was asleep for all of it. I managed to get an hour outside in the sunshine at lunchtime. And then… when I next managed to open my eyes it was 10pm!

But, that meant that I’d still got 2 hours left to complete my Juneathon workout in. (More, if I work by Ice_Badger‘s ruling on Day 25, and I can count any hours after midnight as the same day, if I haven’t been to sleep.) Clothes were frantically put on and items gathered for what I was about to do.
I was going to go up to the castle. And whilst there, I would run. Yes, actually RUN. Well, I’d try to anyway.

I’d asked my sister if she would help. At the very least she could help me up from the floor if my knees gave way. And she would be there cheering me on, giving that constructive criticism that my family is so fond of. After all, she’s completed a fair few 10ks in her time. I’m sure I could do with some pointers.
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Unfortunately we didn’t manage to meet up in the end. So she was unable to help. But I feel in retrospect that I may have been asking too much from her.

So, I walked up to Oystermouth castle in Mumbles. Whilst there I quickly checked on my geocache (still safe) and popped in some new swag.

Geocache swag
And then it was time to prepare for my run.
I thought that I’d probably done enough stretching whilst trying to retrieve my cache from the bushes. So, all I had to do was get to the start. I feel I chose the route well.
Up at the castle there are 2 seats, roughly 20m apart. Half way between them is a rubbish bin.
I would start, jog to the half way line and then sprint to the finish. And I could collapse neatly on to the finish seat.

the castle run

So, I started. I was rather amazed when my knees lifted off the ground and managed a slow jogging pace. They haven’t done that for a while. It all felt rather “hefty”. But then, it would, wouldn’t it?
At the half way point I felt that I was ready to give it my all. Jogging hadn’t killed me. I would sprint my way to the end of Juneathon!
And erm… 12 metres into my run it all went rather wrong.
My legs were going like the clappers. But I wasn’t actually getting anywhere. Nowhere at all. I seemed to be sprinting on the spot!
And then I had to stop, because my knees were getting sore. I may have needed my sister’s handy hints after all.

But, after a few minutes rest, I tried again.
And this time, I was successful 😀 I don’t think that the “sprint” was much faster than walking pace, but at least I actually managed to move forward.

I’m at home now, nursing a couple of sore knees.
But I’m really happy.
As I said in my last post: Juneathon has managed to get me moving again after a very bad winter and spring. My movement is far better than it was at the start of the month. And I’m full of hope for the difference the next 30 days might bring…

The Castle Run Day: 1.3km walk, 20m run
Total steps taken: 4,178
Difficulty level: Easy