Where do I start! I have made some ambitious changes to the walk over the past month. I think I will start with how my training is going.
My hip has really started to calm down this month. It is still painful when compressed but other than that the stretching regime and icing seem to be having a great effect. I have started slow and have been walking 5 kilometers twice a week this month. My gait to begin with was all over the place and my speed was down to about 3.8 kilometers a hour. I need this at least to be above 4 kilometers an hour to match my times that I have planned. I have been practicing using walking poles this month which are a massive help. I have been able to really control my stride and get my gait back to normal while using the poles. My last walk I smashed 5 ks in 1 hour and 15 minutes at a speed of 4.1 ks a hour which is back to my best speed. Bring on the 7 ks tomorrow!
I have also started a weights program this month. It is only 1 weights session a week but it lasts about 2 hours. I am mainly targeting my legs, working the back and shoulders in between rests. After the 1st session it took me 15 minutes to walk back to my car when it usually takes 5. Baby steps all the way. I was getting some odd looks but that’s something I have to get used to. Overall the training is going really well with my hip and back holding together well. By the start of March I would have completed my 1st 20 kilometer day and getting ready to start walking hills around Adelaide.
As for the fundraising we had a movie night at the start of February. This was our 1st fundraiser and we smashed it. We had 85 people show and were able to raise about $1000. I was quietly freaking out about having to speak to the crowd and I promised that next fundraiser I would make a speech. I think we will have another movie night before I start walking. It was a really easy event to organise and a great way to spread the word about Walking for Ataxia. I plan to do a number of different community events over the next few months in hope of spreading the word about Walking for Ataxia and FARA. I will keep you posted on Facebook about these events.
The biggest change I have made is that I have decided to buy a van and custom build it for the 4 month journey. This includes building a bed frame, compartments, installing a fridge and attaching a awning. I decided to go down this road because hiring a vehicle was going to be just too expensive and restricting. We were looking at a $4500 hiring fee. I can buy a van and fit it for less then that. It means even more work for me but it is the right move considering our small budget.
Lastly I am heading to Melbourne on the 27th of February. I will be going to my FA clinic where I will be poked and prodded by a bunch of neurologists. They will be seeing how my progression has changed over the past year. I thought it would be a great opportunity to catch up with FARA and finally meet the people I have been pestering for about 3 months now. I will let you know how it all goes when I return in March. I will put up some photos of my training track next blog.