Mini adventure #2; I have been on a mission lately to regularly exceed the step count recommended by my Garmin fitness watch. Some days my work naturally has me on my feet moving around and achieving the goal is pretty easy while on others I spend too long sitting and have to work a bit for the step count. One of my ways of picking up the extra needed steps is walking along the train line on the way home. When I reach my step count goal or I have had enough of walking I can jump on the train and ride the rest of the way. The furtherest I have walked is from the City to Bassendean station which is about 11km’s, a comfortable walk even after a day in the office. The practise got me wondering though what it would take to walk all the way home. I live in Kalamunda about 23kms from my office in the city with a roughly 300m climb at the far end of the walk.
This week I decided to give it a trial run just to see how I would go. Instead of walking along the railway line I decided to walk across Windan Bridge and follow the Graham Farmer Freeway, Orrong Road, Welshpool Rd and see how far I could get. I pre-arranged it so that Lisa would be on standby to come pick me up before it was time to put the kids to bed and/or if I got into trouble. Here’s a shot of the view from Windan Bridge looking towards Belmont Raceway, the hills you see in the far distance is the Darling Range and my destination.
I had aimed to leave the office at 4pm but didn’t make it out of there until about 4:30pm which set me back right away. In the end I walked to the Puma petrol station in Wattle Grove which Google maps tells me was about 15kms from the office. I stopped walking about 7pm. Average pace about 6km/hr which when you consider the amount of traffic lights and road crossings along the way is not too shabby.
A couple of notes: I should have packed water (well doh!), it wasn’t a big drama as I picked some up from a petrol station but it was another single use plastic bottle that didn’t need to be purchased. Also it gets dark and while there was plenty of light for me to see I wasn’t as confident that I could be seen. I did have a handheld torch if I needed it but a clip-on front facing light and a flashing red light like cyclists use might be a good addition for future walks. Packing some scroggin or snacks would also be a good idea, I wouldn’t head out on a bush hike of that distance without food. Because I was in a “commuting” mindset and keen to see how far I could get I didn’t take any breaks other than some extended stops at traffic lights. Again if I was hiking in the bush I would take regular breaks to rest and stretch and if I had done that I might be a bit less sore today.
Walking along the roadside in peak hour traffic is not really my idea of a great time but I did really enjoy the walk and the challenge of it. If I really had to I am sure I could have made it all the way home but I am glad I didn’t have to, I think I stopped at a good point for my current level of fitness. Next attempt I will aim to leave the office earlier, pack some food and water and plan on some breaks along the way. I may do a Perth Station to Midland Station which is about 17kms before I try the whole way again though.