Finding Ways to Challenge Yourself

Finding Ways to Challenge Yourself (2)-min

Craving a Challenge

I’ve been in need of a challenge for a while now. Something to get my teeth into, to push me to my limits and show me what I’m capable of.

I’m a bit bored with where I am right now.

I need something exciting and exhilarating in my life.

Plus, I’m naturally competitive, so a lack of challenge is not good for me.

Lately, I’ve been very frustrated with my fitness journey and my lack of enthusiasm and motivation towards it, so it seemed like the best place to start.

I love to hike and find it the easiest way to stay fit. However, since relocating, I’ve struggled to adjust to being a solo hiker, and have lacked motivation and confidence to head out to the hills, which is where I love to be.

I now live at the foot of Ingleborough, one of the mountains that forms part of the Yorkshire 3 Peaks Challenge.

Around 9 years ago, I completed the Yorkshire 3 Peaks Challenge as part of my training to climb Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa, and I want to go again!

Finding Ways to Challenge Yourself-min

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My Challenge

The Yorkshire 3 Peaks Challenge is a 25 mile hike with over 1600 meters of ascent and descent.

It’s not for the faint hearted and requires a good level of physical and mental fitness to accomplish it. In fact, it has a drop out rate of around 25%, as most people don’t prepare for it properly.

To achieve the honour of completing the Yorkshire 3 Peaks, the walk must be done in 12 hours or less. When I did it 9 years ago, my goal was to complete it in 10 hours, which I missed by 10 minutes. Coming in at 10 hours and 10 minutes.. It’s time to finally achieve that goal. But can I do it 9 years later, at the age of 45 (as I will be by then)?

Y3P Training (1)-min

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The Training Plan

After neglecting my health and fitness during the pandemic, it’s going to be a tough journey getting back into shape, and something that I know I need to train properly for.

The plan is to train for three months, and then go for the challenge on 7th September.

For the months of June, July and August, I plan to regularly hike, with a bit of mountain biking thrown in to increase my fitness. Each month will build on the previous month, as I increase my distance and pace.

I also plan to summit all three peaks and walk most of the route in sections as part of my training plan. This will help me familiarise myself with the terrain and gain a better understanding of my strengths and weaknesses on the route.

By the time September comes, I hope to be ready to complete the challenge at a pace that will allow me to accomplish it in 10 hours or less. However, to officially complete the challenge, it must be completed within 12 hours, giving me a two hour window of flexibility.

My friend, The Feisty Endurance Junkie, and long distance runner, talks about setting three goals, so that there isn’t just a complete or fail. So my three are:

  1. Goal A is to finish within 10 hours
  2. Goal B is to finish within 12 hours
  3. Goal C is to just finis

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How Things Are Going

As I write this, it’s early June and I’m in my second week of hike training.

So far, things are going well, and I may have even underestimated my capabilities when setting my distance goals for this month.

However, my first big weekend hike was more of a bimble after turning back to find alternative routes multiple times due to cows in the field. I need to plot routes that are less likely to have animals in at this time of the year.

Right now, I’m enjoying the walks, and I’m finding that having a challenge to work towards is keeping me super motivated to the point where I’m actually craving my hikes.

I’m also recovering well, and only need 24 to 48 hours of rest between hikes, depending on length.

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Monthly Progress

I will update this blog at the end of each month with my progress, so watch this space for that. You can sign up for my newsletter so you don’t miss out by clicking the link below.

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Tell me Your Thoughts

Do you need more challenge in your life?

Are you more motivated when you’re working towards a goal you’re passionate about?

Do you have any challenges you are working towards right now?

Sarah Cornforth Astrology & Artist Black

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