Jen581791

Vacay time

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I'm off to France for a walking trip, leaving this evening. We'll be walking from village to village, staying in hotels and B&Bs, but carrying our own gear this year instead of having it transported every day as we've done before. I feel a whole lot more confident about it than I did last year when I did a similar trip. I already know, for example, that getting in enough calories every day will be a bit of a struggle - I'll be walking 6+ hours per day (with a pack this year, so more calories to make up for, yikes) and also running when I can since I'm in the middle of marathon training, so I'll be burning a whole lot of them. My tricks include: carrying a few protein powder pouches for days I really need them, buying a jar of peanut butter as soon as I land, eating all the cheese, eating lots of peanuts, yogurt, and tuna pouches, and stuffing myself with pastries if I start feeling really low on energy. I'll probably be eating meat on this trip, as I did last year, just because there's almost no way to avoid it if I'm needing so many calories and I'm staying places without kitchens I can use. 

Anyway, I may not be checking in very regularly over the next couple few weeks, but rest assured I'm thinking of you all. Wish my feet luck: it's the blisters that will be my downfall if anything. 

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I wish you a wonderful vacation Jen - France is one of my favourite vacation spots.

Have a wonderful time and take lots of photos.  

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Have fun!  What area of France?  Our daughter went to high school in Limoges and then lived in Toulouse for 8 years before moving back here..  B and B’s were most fun.  

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Wow. Have fun. We will be thinking of you. 

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On 6/11/2019 at 6:15 AM, Jen581791 said:

... Wish my feet luck: it's the blisters that will be my downfall if anything. 

Socks. Have good socks...

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Thanks, @cinwa @Cheesehead @Res Ipsa @BurgundyBoy

I’m on day three and all is well. We’re in the SW - our favorite area. We’re in Rocamadour for the night, which is always gorgeous but improves after the sun goes down and the tour buses leave. Started in Figeac and will work our way in loop-de-loops up towards Brive. 

Limoges is nearby, actually. I went to HS in La Rochelle for a year and university in Montpellier for a year, so I am a long-term Francophile :) 

The socks are treating me well so far, @BurgundyBoy. Two layers: good wool ones over the top of thin high tech ones. 

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Eeee!!! I hope you are having a blast! As always, you are my hero. 

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467C1456-DDB7-4525-933B-0F4CC9BBB6F3.jpeg

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How is the food and the wine?  (Said with a lot of jealousy....)

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Hope you’re having a fabulous time, Jen!!

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Sounds awesome (especially the eating part...LOL!) can’t wait to hear how it went and to see some pictures! :)

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Back from vacay. 

The first two weeks were great: tons of walking, gorgeous countryside, lots of good food and drink, cute little villages, etc. Then the heatwave started. This coincided with me suffering from a running injury (re-injury? re-activation of an old injury? My ACL is acting up in my right knee, the product of a 30 years ago soccer injury. It hasn't bothered me in a decade, I think. It's not happy with marathon training, apparently) so we decided that in the face of knee issues and 40+C degree heat (105F in Freedom Units), it would be a good idea to rent a car. Dragging myself and a 20 pound pack up and down hills for 25km per day seemed not that fun in that kind of heat. So, we spent the last week driving around to the places we would have walked. We also canoed one stretch of our planned walk. It was good, but not the same as walking. France is an awful place to suffer through a heatwave because there's very little AC available. It meant for some very very hot nights in hotel rooms not even equipped with fans, let alone AC. Glad to be back on the Arabian Peninsula where there's AC everywhere! It's only 40C outside.

My weight stayed stable overall because it dropped while walking a lot (I got 40,000 steps most days of walking) and then, um, resumed it's normal level when the walking dropped off but the eating did not drop off to the same extent ;) I had some difficulties with large meals, as I did last year, but since we were mostly eating in restaurants rather than BnB things (where I'd had to actually personally offend the person who cooked the food if I didn't overeat terribly last year, as they were usually sitting at the table with me :() I could call it quits with a little more grace. I still ate a ton, though, and food that was mostly unfamiliar to my pouch, so there were some definite upset tummy nights. Breakfast of 100% carbs (typical in France) is hard for me, too - baguettes are a difficult food for me, although I love them. It's that and/or pastries for breakfast, every single day. 

I did two long runs of 30km (20 miles), but I hurt myself on the second one, so it ended up being not fun at the end there (fun until then, though!). The first one was like heaven - I can't believe what an actual runner's high feels like, so strong. It was awesome. I was feeling like I wanted all my future travel to involve long-distance running as a major activity. I had a few other shorter amazing runs, too. It's so much more fun to run outside on a beautiful country lane on a cool morning, waving to sheep and cows and admiring the roadside wildflowers than to bang out a run on a treadmill in a hot gym. There is unfortunately no cool time of the day in my part of the world at this time of year, so gym it is. I'm trying to figure out how to continue marathon training while being injured. I think I'm going to try pool running. I really don't want to give up, but I'm in the last month before the race and I'm stressed out that I won't a) be healed in time, and/or b) be trained enough by race day. 

Some photos. 

IMG_3831.thumb.JPEG.acbc6f4f676270ea30b672e4cc14582b.JPEGRocamadour, a medieval pilgrimage destination.

IMG_20190616_164047623_HDR.thumb.JPEG.32233a3a591626d3e57fb36dfe2ec25a.JPEGRocamadour - dressed in my evening outfit rather than hiking clothes.

IMG_20190618_112052694-ANIMATION.thumb.gif.1b44a2a2145cb3c2b4b22be3eb54d6a9.gifMe and the cutest little kitten I found on the trail. 

IMG_20190618_114013984_HDR.thumb.JPEG.c8b7ff7ea58b852fa624862c890de121.JPEGMe overlooking the Dordogne River Valley. 

IMG_20190619_105728964.thumb.JPEG.0d81f7aeb1b7408d34b659ed87780f69.JPEGMe at Castelnau Bretenoux, a gorgeous castle

IMG_20190619_113914982_HDR.thumb.JPEG.9b67fc773a486e7b1753c1a0a3e0aa95.JPEGMe stealing cherries for the millionth time.

 

 

Edited by Jen581791

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@Jen581791 Thank you for posting an update on your amazing trip along with so many photos!  I am jealous of you, and hope to plan a similar trip for next year.  It sounds like you had a wonderful time even with the heat and the injury. 

As your post shows, one of the great joys of reaching your goal weight is the ability to lead an active lifestyle. Your weight loss success continues to be an inspiration to us all. 

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That is some spectacular scenery Jen - thank you for sharing the pics.  I am so envious.

I'm sorry to hear that your ACL started playing up but maybe you were able to pack in a few more excursions than you would have otherwise with the car.

 

 

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Looks like an awesome trip @Jen581791!  Your trips always sound so exciting.  Granted the injury, not so much.  It was smart to realize your limits w/ the re-injury and taking a car (and I love the canoe idea, ingenious....you worked out your upper body while the lower body was rebelling!). 

We are having terrible heat lately and all the accompanying humidity thunder storms and right now are under a tornado watch.  BUT our weather today was 98 F, not 105....yuck!  My kids are heading overseas (their plane is leaving in 45 mins) and one of their stops is in London and i heard they were having a heat wave...so my DIL looked up some places to take my granddaughter swimming! :)

thanks for sharing the pics....loved the scenery, the kitten and the fact you’re so dang ACTIVE!!!  GO YOU!!!  (PS don’t know what the medical care is like where you are, but if you have a sports med doc, go see them so they can help you heal before the marathon!)

Edited by CheeringCJ

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Amazing photos!  Hoping for quick healing for your injury!  When is your race?

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14 hours ago, Cheesehead said:

When is your race?

I've got a half marathon on July 20, I think? And then the big day (whole marathon) is August 3. It sounds funny to do a half just before a whole, but by that time, a half will be a short-to-medium run for me... :blink: My last long run before tapering down for the big day. My knee is being babied this week by doing running only in a pool - but like a couple of hours per day, so a pretty good workout still. We shall see! 

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Jen, you take care of yourself!  You don’t want an injury that will last a lifetime.  Let your body be the guide.  

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6 hours ago, Cheesehead said:

You don’t want an injury that will last a lifetime.

Yep, since this is an injury from 1990 raising its ugly head, I guess that's what I've already got! <_< It's feeling very good doing pool running, so I'll do that for a little longer. Thanks!  :wub:

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16 hours ago, Jen581791 said:

Yep, since this is an injury from 1990 raising its ugly head, I guess that's what I've already got! <_< It's feeling very good doing pool running, so I'll do that for a little longer. Thanks!  :wub:

Jen, lovely photos and story line. 

Didn't you do the Camino de Santiago last year? My nephew and I were talking about it last week... 

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On 7/10/2019 at 12:46 AM, BurgundyBoy said:

Didn't you do the Camino de Santiago last year?

Thanks, BB! 

Yes, last year we did bits of the Santiago - and actually this year we did a few bits of it, too. There are lots of different Santiago routes once you get up into France, and they all sort of feed together like rivers into main channels from various setting-off points. We really like that on the Santiago routes, there are tons of medieval churches and shrines and things to go see just right on the path. The France portion apparently is quite different in terms of atmosphere and demographics than the Spain portion - in France, it's mostly French people, mostly retirement aged, mostly staying in B&Bs, and not quite as religiously-oriented. The Spain portion is a whole lot more crowded, as well, and with more road walking, more hostels, and more heat in the summer. You can hear my opinion about the two coming through pretty loud and clear by this time, I suppose! :lol:

That said, any walking holiday is a great opportunity to spend a peaceful time away from the bustle, with a clear goal for each day, and plenty of time to enjoy the scenery and get some exercise, not to mention eat and drink some great things! Let me know if you and your nephew decide to give it a go - it's a very cool thing to do.

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4 hours ago, Jen581791 said:

Thanks, BB! 

Yes, last year we did bits of the Santiago - and actually this year we did a few bits of it, too. There are lots of different Santiago routes once you get up into France, and they all sort of feed together like rivers into main channels from various setting-off points. We really like that on the Santiago routes, there are tons of medieval churches and shrines and things to go see just right on the path. The France portion apparently is quite different in terms of atmosphere and demographics than the Spain portion - in France, it's mostly French people, mostly retirement aged, mostly staying in B&Bs, and not quite as religiously-oriented. The Spain portion is a whole lot more crowded, as well, and with more road walking, more hostels, and more heat in the summer. You can hear my opinion about the two coming through pretty loud and clear by this time, I suppose! :lol:

That said, any walking holiday is a great opportunity to spend a peaceful time away from the bustle, with a clear goal for each day, and plenty of time to enjoy the scenery and get some exercise, not to mention eat and drink some great things! Let me know if you and your nephew decide to give it a go - it's a very cool thing to do.

Thanks Jen - Must confess I am a Francophile as well.  My nephew spent a semester in Spain but never got north of Madrid, and we are both interested in the green, verdant NW corner of Spain (where a whole bunch of interesting wines, like Albarino, are made :rolleyes:; not that BurgundyBoy would have such interests). My wife and I cycled through the Dordogne river valley in the early 80s... it was wonderful!

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18 minutes ago, BurgundyBoy said:

Thanks Jen - Must confess I am a Francophile as well.  My nephew spent a semester in Spain but never got north of Madrid, and we are both interested in the green, verdant NW corner of Spain (where a whole bunch of interesting wines, like Albarino, are made :rolleyes:; not that BurgundyBoy would have such interests). My wife and I cycled through the Dordogne river valley in the early 80s... it was wonderful!

Ah, yes, that's a lovely corner of Spain. I don't know much about the wines there, though, sadly. Lists of things to do. 

Cycling would definitely be another nice way to see the Dordogne - that's a very popular circuit these days. Faster speed = more villages + more castles! 

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Thanks for all the vacay info and pics! Looks wonderful!!! Hope your recovery is going well. 

I'm interested in your hiking calories. My DH and I and 4 other couples are going to hike 14 days in the Alps in September, one of those hut to hut hikes. Very challenging, so I am trying desperately to get in shape for it, even though I'll no doubt be kicked in the butt by the altitude!! Anyway, I'm sure the calorie intake will be a huge challenge. What successful snacks did you take? Did the peanut butter idea work? 

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11 hours ago, Cindy Lou Who said:

Thanks for all the vacay info and pics! Looks wonderful!!! Hope your recovery is going well. 

I'm interested in your hiking calories. My DH and I and 4 other couples are going to hike 14 days in the Alps in September, one of those hut to hut hikes. Very challenging, so I am trying desperately to get in shape for it, even though I'll no doubt be kicked in the butt by the altitude!! Anyway, I'm sure the calorie intake will be a huge challenge. What successful snacks did you take? Did the peanut butter idea work? 

Thanks, Cindy Lou!

I couldn't find peanut butter when I got to the small town we were in, so I was stuck with the next best thing: peanuts! I ate like a half a pound of peanuts per day every day. I kept them in my front pocket and just grazed all day. According to my Fitbit (notoriously inaccurate, but something to start with) I was burning like 3500 calories per day on the big days (8 hours of hiking) so I was busy eating everything in sight then. I had a few bars and shake packets with me, but I mostly just picked things up along the way without worrying about carbs (no need at that level of calorie burning). Since I was carrying everything, I didn't want to bring along a bunch of stuff from home, although I would have been happy with some protein bars now and then.

I dropped a few pounds over the two weeks, but managed to pack them back on in the inactive (relatively) week we spent driving around at the end just by sheer force of will: I kept eating non-stop, basically! -_- While we were hiking I just ate every time I had the opportunity, which was a lot, and I was fine as far as keeping up my energy went. 14 days of hiking in the Alps sounds AMAZING! The altitude will be a challenge for sure (I live at about 2 feet above sea level, so I get you there), but so cool. I would love to do that! 

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