WALKING - My New Hobby for 2020 & Onwards

 

Yes, looking back now, 2020 was certainly a difficult year all round….  But the Covid pandemic lockdowns have had a few plus sides (if you look closely enough)…

And the main one for me has turned out to be WALKING!

My mother, a keen walker, has nagged my sisters & I about regular walking since we were small.  So, naturally, we have resisted furiously!

And all “advice for small business entrepreneurs” mentions the STRONG recommendation for daily walks to clear your head and to refill you with energy & inspiration!
But when you are head down amidst a pile of admin & orders (plus you can see that it’s raining outside), it’s extremely difficult to motivate yourself to stop & set out on foot…

BUT – the first UK lockdown (March – June) suddenly offered extra time during the day (LOTS of it!).
PLUS the weather was absolutely superb.
AND when the only reason you are allowed to leave your home is for one hour of exercise per day – then the exercise hour suddenly becomes hugely exciting!

I tramped on walks around the block with Lee everyday – but slowly, as Lee was recovering from a toe amputation.  He could manage pavements, but no uneven paths.
And I began to be tempted by the lovely Surrey countryside all around Redhill – and we are lucky enough to live right next door to beautiful Gatton Park (filled with VERY uneven National Trust footpaths)…

Once June arrived &, with it, a little relaxation of the lockdown rules, I found myself undertaking longer & longer walks with my mum – who led me:

- up Box Hill & Ide Hill
(that's my mum, racing up the hill way ahead of me.... she's nearly 80!!)

 

- over the cliffs at Seaford & the shallows of Cuckmere Haven
- onto the beach at Brighton
- off to smell the lavender at Castle Farm near Shoreham
- up & down all sorts of different hills at Forest Row
- through the fields of sheep at Shabden Park, Chipstead

- round the graves (& ponds) of Old Godstone
(this was just after Christmas - and look at those daffodils!)

- through the autumnal trees at Norbury Park
- round the lakes at Tilgate Park in Crawley
- and through the woods of Friday Street & Leith Hill

 

By the time we got to the November lockdown I was out & about each day, as, in the absence of a longer walk, I would pop out for a 3 mile walk around the block every morning.
And Lee was now able to manage longer distances and even rough terrain!  Here he is at the local Holmthorpe Lagoons.

Such WONDERFUL countryside – and all pretty much on the door step!

And it turns out that my mother was right all along…
One sister says that walking is the only thing that’s kept her sane this year (the result of home schooling 2 teenagers through lockdown!), whilst my other sister now lives in the Scottish mountains, where she takes her dogs out for long hill walks every day (they sometimes object to this!)

 

Are you lucky enough to be able to walk near you? (Even if it’s just around the block)  Or have you found a new but different hobby during lockdown?

4 comments

  • What beautiful photos! I live near Acadia National Park in Maine, USA, and have taken up walking too, with a new German shepherd puppy to keep me company. The carriage roads in the park are too snowy for me right now, but perfect for most of the year. Right now we walk in a tiny little coastal town of Sorrento with friends 3-4 days a week( I swim for an hour 3 days a week, too, and can’t yet manage both ), on dirt roads along the ocean, and on their golf course. Both Mac and I look forward to it . I am 67 and in the best shape I have been in for 30 years!

    Leigh
  • Walking has been a lifeline this past year. It’s the perfect opportunity to unwind and get some valuable headspace away from the same four walls. Lovely photos – inspiration for new Ornately designs perhaps?

    Jane
  • Thanks, Nicola! I’ve made a point of taking photos on all my walks – and I’m so glad I did now, it’s lovely to look back on them all..
    And I quite agree about the effect walking has on a reluctant body!

    Clare
  • Excellent photography! Yes, I would say even when every part of your body is screaming that it doesn’t want to go for a walk, you always feel better for doing it.

    Nicola

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