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Day 24

Today was a lovely walk at Badbury Rings. Last time I went there was the year before and it was a bitterly cold day. Today was much warmer but a very brisk wind so my thermal hat was firmly on!!

So if you are unfamiliar with Badbury Rings, there is evidence of Bronze Age, Iron Age and Roman occupation at Badbury. However, the site is known mostly for its Iron Age hill fort with its three rings. It is thought the inner most ring dates from around 500 - 600 BC.

A number of tribes settled at Badbury Rings. Among them were the Durotriges – a Celtic tribe who lived in parts of the South West of England prior to the Roman occupation of 43 AD. 

These rings are around 20 feet high and steep (as you would expect from a fortification). The walk up to the top of the fortification is a slight slope, its actually not that slight and its quite long. Last year I was out of puff when I got to the top apparently. Today, slightly out of breath for someone who had a major operation a month ago. Not bad going at all and very pleased that there was no pain, no sign of the heart screaming to get out of my chest and because I am a non-smoker now, the lungs were clear and not an issue at all. This is going well, and I am very eager to go further (which at this stage I could easily do) but my cardiac rehab nurse has indicated to think about what the heart has gone through and its still in the process of getting over the shock of major surgery. So i need to rein in my eagerness for another couple of months, but then I will be running anyway, so the long walks will be absolutely fine to do.

For those reading this that have had surgery or are going to be having surgery, do not fear what comes after the operation. In a short space of time you will recover and you will be doing what you used to do but a bit more slowly to start with. Its all very possible with the right positive mental attitude and determination. I am getting there, and theres no reason for you not to either.


Day 56

Today was a walk in the countryside. I was a bit apprehensive about this walk as it was a walk I had done before my heart attack and it was a long and mostly uphill walk. Last time I did this I had to stop every 50metres or so to catch my breath and also because of pain in my calf muscles due to what I thought was the steepness of the hill.

Today was so much easier than before. It was emotional just how much I was struggling in the past, but now I feel like I could walk forever. It was a strange emotional feeling but elation was the main feeling. I could do this walk without issues, yes slightly out of breath when i got to the end, but that would not have been possible before, i would have been gasping. This is mainly due to smoking and of course over the years the arteries were getting reduced due to this, so oxygen getting around my bloodstream was more difficult and hence why my calf muscles were aching i think. Today, there was none of that.

The walk was from Stourhead to Alfreds tower in wiltshire. 4.7 miles and only 10,833 steps. This is 8 weeks post op, not doing too bad I think, but am aware of not overstepping the mark. Tomorrow i will probably take a rest and not walk anywhere, although I could easily do that, I don't want to push it too much, I think i have already done over and beyond what I am supposed to be doing but I do feel fine, but don't want to risk it. Heres a couple of photos of the area. Beautiful scenic route. If ever you find yourself in Wiltshire, its always worthwhile to visit Stourhead for a walk. Run by the National Trust, its iconic in Autumn. Highly recommended.

Day 73

It was a long walk today on rolling hills. The start of the climb was long to reach the top of the Mere Down Ridgeway. Its also high up and the wind blows strongly. Slow walk at the end as my muscles were starting to ache a little, and the calf muscles especially. Definitely out of breath when I got to the top, but not gasping for breath as I have done in the past. I think I didnt have enough fluids in the morning which may have contributed to my slow walk up this monstrous hillside!!

Saw some deer whilst walking along the ridgeway, that was nice, and a steep walk down the hill side, slipped up once, but managed to stay upright. This walk was about 5 miles and once up on the ridge, you could see for miles. Great walk.

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