During my walk tonight I was reflecting on last year's Parish and how much I actually enjoyed the challenge. I suddenly realised that much of the blog over the last few months has focused on training and tips to finish and preparation etc etc. Whilst these are important to think about they are also easy to obsess about too. Whilst I keep telling the family that a bit of obsession is needed I realise that there are nearly 2000 people entering this event around10% will finish and I guess less than say 20% actually want or are really trying to finish. So I realise that out of the 6,500 thousand or so page reads so far (which is a great testament to Murray's fab website and efforts to keep us all interested in the big event) a good proportion of readers are perhaps concentrating on walking to Peel and I haven't really mentioned much about this; or for those of you who are newbies like I was in 2009 - what to expect on the day.
So here goes - enjoy it, is fun, for the newbies you will meet lots of great people on the way whether you walk in a group or on your own there will always be someone new around you and lots of smiling faces and cheering crowds to lift your spirits and help you round the next bend.
For those of you who are looking to get to Peel then I would try to work out a comfortable pace for you to walk at and try to get into a rhythm and relax. Enjoy the day and make sure you eat and drink before you get to the sloc,I found it gets difficult to eat on the way up and you need the energy to help you on the way up. I am not sure about having a beer at the round table - I was very tempted first time :) but managed to resist...
It is a great feeling getting into Peel whether you are stopping there or not and anyone who says "I am just going to Peel" needs to get a different mindset because 32.5 miles up and down dale is a long way and a real achievement so be positive and don't minimise the achievement whether it be a stepping stone to next years Parish or whether you will do this only once - it is a great day - otherwise why would we all keep coming back?!?
Thought I would add a picture to remind us all what it was like when it wasn't wet and windy!!