As my fortnightly walks roll on the weather will begin to take a turn for the worse and the thought of getting out for a walk will be less appealing. Getting totally soggy and cold doesn’t sound like a lot of fun and I, for one, can be inclined be to shut myself away indoors.
The best thing I can do to keep up my walking adventures is to be a little bit more prepared for inclement weather.
Earlier in the year, during lockdown, pre chemo, I did quite a bit of walking. But it's a bit more difficult now. I suddenly stopped. Suddenly stopping has a definite impact, not just physically, but mentally as well.
I've just finished the last episode of Mortimer and Whitehouse; Gone Fishing. 24 minutes into the programme Dr Anand Patel appears. This is what he said.
"When you're depressed your body thinks you're ill so it wants to curl you up under a blanket. But actually what you do need to do is exercise, to get out, to socialise, to see people, to be a part
of something larger than yourself, partly because it distracts you but also because partly our bodies really relish that".
I'm pretty sure I'm not depressed although I sometimes think I'm an ideal candidate.
There's loads of studies that have shown that exercise and fresh air is just perfect for our mental health. In fact we don’t need to read studies to realise this, we know how good we feel after a decent walk and some fresh air.
So, rain or shine, throughout the autumn and winter months I'm going to try to continue to arrange a walk every other Thursday.
When it's sunny, walking is pretty easy. But here are 7 top tips (that I'm passing off as my own) for walking in the rain.
1.WATERPROOFS Be sensible and take your best waterproof jackets, the less wet you get the more comfortable you’re going to be and the more you’ll enjoy your walk. If it is really wet consider a jacket with taped seams to make it fully waterproof. Waterproof trousers are also a brilliant option. 2.LAYERS So you’ve sorted your waterproofs out but what are you going to wear underneath them? Layers are definitely the answer. I favour the 4-tier system; BASE LAYER- a lightweight, comfortable under layer that isn't restrictive. Probably man made fibre.
SUPER BRIGHT SHIRT- one layer really ought to be the bright shirt otherwise there's too many compost colours. And you've gotta look cool. Or is it just me? FLEECE - fleece is a great synthetic insulator that will help retain your heat even when exposed to rain. WATERPROOF - pop your waterproof, that I discussed above, over your layers and you’re ready to go. 3.PICK YOUR ROUTE SENSIBLY Choose your walking route according to the weather, there is little point in climbing to the summit of a hill and being disappointed by the lack of view. I use https://www.iwalkcornwall.co.uk 4.PICK THE RIGHT SOCKS & SHOES When hiking in the rain, go for walking boots that have a sturdy rubber sole. Rubber is great for providing good traction on wet surfaces. Don’t forget to think about what type of walking socks you’re going to wear. Mine seem to have shrunk in the tumble dryer. Get decent socks! 5.WATERPROOF YOUR BACKPACK Either cover your backpack in a bin bag or make sure the contents are in waterproof bags.
6.BRING THE RIGHT SNACKS Bring foods you can eat on the go and share with me. We won't be stopping for a picnic! Bring some water or maybe something hot.
7.HAVE THE RIGHT ATTITUDE Embrace the rain, don't moan about it. See how different things look on a rainy day. You’ll enjoy walking in it much more.
Put my top 7 top tips to the test on Thursday at Lerryn at 10am.
Stick this in your sat nav PL22 0PT
Go here to donate. www.justgiving.com/fundraising/cornwallwalkstogether
Look at the walk here. https://www.iwalkcornwall.co.uk/walk/lerryn_to_st_winnow
I need to stop now Bake Off is starting.