Most people who know me, are aware that I love a fitness challenge. There are so many benefits for me, of setting goals and doing a fitness test at the beginning and then at the end, which is usually 12 weeks later. Usually when I’m participating, I get myself in a good headspace, where I show up for every session that is required. My nutrition tends to be better, when I’m accountable. My first fitness challenge was in 2010 and I’ve done at least one every year since, but usually more than one.
I’ve seen many posts on social media about the challenges in the The Conqueror Virtual Fitness Challenge Series. The idea is to choose your challenge from the many in their series, choose a time frame to complete the challenge, and enter your daily activity. Some of the challenges are The Inca Trail, The Grand Canyon, Great Ocean Road and many more.
Participants have the choice to either enter the length of their activities only or their daily steps. There is also the choice to enter all activities done, such as walks, bike rides and swims. As activity data is entered, the distance is plotted on a map. This really appeals to me, but I haven’t been able to commit. That is until a new event was added: The Camino de Santiago Virtual Challenge. I knew immediately that this was the event for me. As I have actually walked the Camino de Santiago in real life, seeing my distance plotted on the map will bring back many memories for me.
Today is day 4 and I am already totally committed. At the end of the day, I love checking the map to see where I have finished. I’m also able to look at the satellite map and street view of the area. Starting at St. Jean Pied de Port, The Camino de Santiage Virtual Challenge is a distance of 772 km, starting in France, and finishing at the shrine of the apostle Saint James in the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela. My distance so far on day 3 is only 23k. This is because I entered my walks only, on the first two days. I am on my feet all day most days, so feel it’s appropriate that I track my steps. I have twelve weeks to complete the challenge.
At the moment, I have just finished crossing The Pyrenees, and have been having many memory flashes. Back in 2014, before I began walking, I wasn’t at all confident of being able to cross The Pyrenees, due to my dodgy knee. I had many thoughts of having to pull out on the first day. By the end of day 1, I was ecstatic that everything was going to plan. That dodgy knee wasn’t bothering me at all. As I look at the map of my virtual Camino, those memories are coming back to me. The photo below, though a dreadful selfie, is one of my favourite photos ever. When I look at this photo, I’m immediately taken back to the day I walked across The Pyrenees alone, in the fog, sleet, rain and hail. I purchased an Altus, which is a long length poncho at St. Jean Pied de Port on a whim. It’s the perfect wet weather coat, and this is the only day I needed to wear it. The day would have been very difficult without it.
The virtual challenges are either team based or solo. I am doing a solo challenge. For me, this is a perfect challenge for this time in lockdown, as it gives me something to look forward to each day, when there really isn’t much to look forward to in these covid-19 times. Added bonuses will be the postcards I collect and badges l received at the end. I told you I was excited, but did I tell you I can be a child at times?
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I realise an online fitness challenge is not for everyone. If you have participated in one, I would love to hear about. Even if you haven’t, I’d love to hear your thoughts and promise to reply to all comments.