Sunday, 10 June 2007

Climbing Mount Ainslie

Well, I don't know that you can call walking along a path up a mountain climbing as such, but it took me half an hour to get to the top today. Mount Ainslie has an elevation of 842 metres, so it's a little over one third of the height of Mount Kosciuszko. Of course, we didn't climb the whole 842 metres! I looked up the course of the Mt Ainslie run-up to see how far we'd gone. The run is 2.2 km with a 240 m elevation gain.

We probably walked a little further than that, as Alex and I started from the CSIRO car park. I walked to the car park from my place, which took me 25 minutes, and then we headed up the mountain. At times we were both puffed out, which had me wondering about the people who run up this mountain once a month. Whenever I do wonder about them, I think they are crazy, but I also envy them their fitness. Today, while I was walking up the hill, I was wondering if I would ever be fit enough to give it a go. At the very least, I am going to practise walking up it, as a way to get used to hills for the City to Surf. Alex is willing to come along with me, which is great. Company seems to make these things easier.

I found it harder to go down than up. I'm a little afraid of stairs at the best of times, so the various stone steps were a challenge. Mind you, my balance is much better than it used to be, so I handled them better than I expected.

There were lots of people on the path, which surprised me. I don't know why. The people of Canberra are very active. We were passed by a few runners as well, although we only encountered one who ran down and up while we were on the path.

Fernwood Biggest Loser Challenge Finale

The Biggest Loser Challenge awards lunch was held yesterday. Two of my team members came 1st and 3rd, which was pretty special, and Black Team won the team challenge. The gym manager kindly awarded us all star shaped medals. Ours were threaded on gold ribbon, which was a nice touch. We were also given a certificate, a present of some toiletries and a small bag of lollies, and an individual photo album with a series of photos from the event. They had gone to a lot of trouble, which I really appreciated.

I gave my speech and it seemed to go over very well. I was a little disconcerted, because they kept clapping my achievements when I didn't expect them to. For instance, I explained that I used to be puffed out for five minutes after walking up a flight of stairs and that now I could run for an hour without stopping and they all clapped. It was lovely but I'm not used to it, so it took me a while to find my speaking rhythm. Not that anyone there seemed to notice, as the feedback afterwards was positive.

I enjoyed telling them a story about an exercise that I used to see this woman doing when I first started at the gym. I'd be doing the dreaded step ups and she had this great exercise that I envied because it looked like something I could achieve. I demonstrated the exercise to universal amusement. She was doing a chest stretch by putting her hand on the wall and leaning. What's tragic about the story is that it's a true story. I really did wonder why it wasn't on my program!

You could see the difference in the way Team Black had bonded compared to the other teams. There were chairs set up in the function room, and my team turned the neat row of chairs into a circle so that the whole team was included. The other teams managed with the rows of chairs. I was extremely fortunate to be put into Team Black I think.

We headed off for a coffee after the event, and we're having our own breakup lunch in early July. It's taking ages because we don't want to leave anyone out.


I've been having real motivation problems lately, particularly with my eating. Writing the speech was good for me, because it reminded me of the basics. I know what I need to do, I just have to do it.

I'll have to get myself back into a regular routine with the gym. We've been changing things like my personal training, trivia and squash. I'm one of these people who likes to be organised, so I'm going to start working to a schedule again. At the moment the only definite things are the Running Course on Tuesday at 6:45 am and personal training at 6:00 am on Thursday.

Mind you, tomorrow is a Public Holiday, so my gym is closed! Much as I like my gym, it seems to have the worst hours in the world. All is not lost though. I'm meeting up with one of the women I met at the Group Outdoor Fitness Challenge tomorrow for a bike ride at 9 am tomorrow. We're going to ride for an hour. I've no idea how far that will be, but I'm looking forward to it. I love how my circle of friends has increased so much with all my exercise activities.


Em said...

Go Team Black, well done!

And doing well with the Global Challenge as well, 38th place, keep it up, 35th by next week for sure :-)

Jaykay said...

It sounds like your Fernwood is much more sociable than the one that I go to.

But then, maybe it's me that's not social. I tend to walk in, do my exercise and then walk out again. I never see any kind of notices about social get togethers or running groups though.

Once I put in a suggestion to have a notice board put up so that members could put up messages and business cards, but nothing eventuated from it. I think as it's owned by a bloke that says something!!

Celeste said...

I had a slight giggle to myself when you said you were struggling with motivation - I wasn't giggling at you (!) but at myself. I was thinking that motivation and exercise are relative to each individual. I read your blog (with awe) and I don't see any motivational issues. The amount of exercise you do continues to amaze me. If my motivation was as "low" as yours I'd be a happy camper!!! However, it is still a personal thing, so I hope your motivation improves!

Raja said...

Thanks for writing this.