Week 7 & 21 weeks to go!

Monday –

Skipped – Note: This week I approach 25% (as far as calendar time) toward my goal. 

Tuesday –

Skipped – I went to my first session of physical therapy (PT).  I sheepishly confessed my goal (to walk/run the canyon in September) to the therapists.  Surprising me, both Therapists (I had two) felt it was a realistic goal and they could support it.   They both felt, given my current situation, that September was enough time to make the best of my goal.  That’s great news!  It lifted my spirits… 

Then they started stretching me out.  I’ve always been one of the tightest people alive. Seems I’m tighter than a blood gorged Mississippi tick.  (Besides “tight as a tick”, other idioms I found included “tight as a drum”, “tight as Dick’s hatband” and “tight as bark on a tree”.)   I remember being embarrassed in grade school P.E. class.  They had each student stand on a box to see how far they could reach past their toes.  For me, they had to bring out a yard stick and measure up from the box.  I sure hope PT will loosen me up as well as correct my gate.  :- )  My primary therapist seems to think she could help me with my flexibility but frankly told me I’d never be a Gumby.


Wednesday –

I walked four miles today and noticed that my pace was more than 4 mins faster than the last time I walked that distance.  You know, sometimes you have to take the good where you can find it.

Thursday –

I walked 3 miles and got my second dose of PT.  She worked me over pretty good.  I felt totally exhausted by the afternoon… rough time staying awake.

Friday –

I walked 5 miles today and felt pretty good.  Finally had a good night’s sleep.  My walking pace has picked up some.  Wednesday – Friday were all faster “walk-only” times than I’ve posted so far – Averaged 17:29/mile.  My best was 17:39/mile before… and that was when I was running some of it.   So let’s see… At an average of 17.29/mile, I could make the total distance of 23.9 miles (via the North Kaibab Trail (elevation 8,241 ft – 14.3 miles – mostly a descent) and the Bright Angel Trail (mostly an ascent – 9.6 miles – elevation 6,860 ft) in just under 7 hours.  If I leave at 6:15AM, that would put me at a finish time of around 1:15PM (if I didn’t stop – but I will stop for photos, lunch, water, rest… whatever I need to do).   Of course, I hope I can run some of the way.  The estimated drive time around from the North Rim to the South Rim is estimated at 4hrs and 4 mins and I don’t want my ride to be waiting 3 hours for me to finish.

Saturday –

Skipped today but plan to do my PT exercises.  Tomorrow the plan is a 7 miler… Will probably take me nearly 2 hrs.  Hope I can start running soon.  (PS: My plan to do PT exercises didn’t pan out today.)

Sunday –

I walked the 7 miles I planned this morning.  It took me just over two hours (2:01:41) to cover the distance.  That’s a pace of 17:23/mile – so again I’m noticing that my pace is quickening (wa hoo!).  It kills me because I know I could cover that same distance in half the time if I could run it.  I estimate that since I weigh between 225 and 230 lbs. that I burn about 130 calories / mile walked.  That means I burned about 910 calories this morning.  A person jogging burns calories at a rate of about 75% of their body weight for every mile they run.  For me that’s approximately 171 calories / mile.  When I run 7 miles, I could burn about 1,200 calories.  Conclusion: If I could run I’d spend less time and burn more calories over any distance.  Anyway, the good news is I’m finally starting to see some weight loss (down 4.2 lbs. this week) and I’m catching up on my weight loss goal (1.5 lbs./week) at this point of my training.

Today it felt hot outside.   It was 710F at 6:40AM (15% Humidity) when I started my walk and by the time I finished it is was 840F (11% humidity).  With the temperature going up 13 degrees and the humidity dropping, any sweating I did was literally being sucked up by the thirsty dry air.  I should have been coated in sweat but instead my skin was dry and hot.  I actually began to worry about heat stroke.  So, I’ve made a vow to carry water (or Gatorade) with me anytime I’m going to be out in the heat for more than an hour.  I’m also going to work at getting out of the house earlier – way before sunrise (which was 5:33AM today – that’s over an hour earlier than when I got out the door).

Something else occurred to me during my walk today.  If I had started this effort in November of 2017 (when I first announced to my face book friends that I was going to “check off a major item in my bucket list”), I would have started losing weight and building strength before the end of last year.   It made me wonder if that earlier effort would have avoided my chronic stenosis attack in February??    Not that it matters now, because that is just a fantasy and reality is only the facts of the current moment.  But here’s the point that was hammered home to me today… Don’t put things off.  This really hits home when I think about my Christian walk as well.  I’ve been telling myself that I need to step up and do more for the Lord and for my church.  I shouldn’t be waiting until I retire and “have more time” on my hands.  The truth is… time and life are short.  Not to sound to “Ferris Bueller” here… But take the time to do the important things in your life now… If not, life moves pretty fast and it’ll pass you by.

Picture of the week: 

This is “the long and winding road” I walk.  It’s a path near my home that runs alongside the local roadways.  At the point of this picture, I’m on my way back home (turned toward and heading for the barn) with only about 1.5 miles to go.  In the background are the Catalina Mountains.

0506180817a (2)

Here are some motivating words on how to turn a “Dream” into “Reality”…


And finally… Kyle’s Miles for the week… Logged my longest walk yet (7 miles!).

KylesMiles Wk 7

2 thoughts on “Week 7 & 21 weeks to go!

  1. Duane W Wheeler

    Hi Kyle. Great going. Good on your two PT’s encouragement to you. I am proud of you and your determination. Just one step at a time. Some of the people that I have known have been as tight as bark on a tree. LOL. Keep up the good work


    1. Dad… You’re still my biggest (okay, only) fan. However, I’ve had several international views – India, China, Australia and United Kingdom – and 4 likes so far. That’s cool! Thanks for the encouragement.


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