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    STEPH-KNEE   80,531
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Me?! In A Walking Group?!


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Thursday, April 17, 2014

Joining a walking group probably wouldn't be a big deal to most, but it is a huge deal for me for two reasons. The first is physical, I was a girl who was 272 pounds and would go up 7 stairs to my bedroom and have to stop and rest. I am obviously not that same girl anymore, but I do still have arthritis in my knees, a metal plate in my leg and screws in my ankle. The second reason is the fact that I am shy at first, so agreeing to join a GROUP of strangers was something I would have never done before starting this weight loss journey.

I had been having a rough time emotionally, and I don't necessarily want to go into all of that here, but that paired with TOM sent me reeling and I needed a change. I need to get out there, I needed to do more, I needed to meet new people. As I was googling I came across a site called meetup.com. I decided to check it out. I love to walk so I wanted to find a walking group in the area. At first I almost gave up, because most groups were HIKING groups. I can walk like a champ, but hiking, not so much! What I did appreciate about this site is they were very descriptive and specific in what they were doing. They would tell you mileage/hills/stairs etc. A lot of these people were doing big hikes in the mountains, and that is simply not for me. Not just because of the fact that I am out shape, but also the fact that I am clumsy. I am the female Steve Urkel. I mean, I can trip over my own 2 feet, I earned my metal plate and screws breaking my leg and ankle falling down the stairs. emoticon So I have to be careful not to have a repeat of that incident.

When I was about to give up, I found the golden nugget. A group that meets 5 minutes from my house and walks 3.5 miles at the college once a week, and at 6pm. That is huge for me as I work nights, and many people were walking at 8am. I was a little intimidated because they said there would be hills, but they encouraged me to come.

I went, and at first I wasn't so sure about this. We started off with a lot of stairs. They were skinny (in height) and there were a lot of landings, so it wasn't too terrible. I was breathing hard at the end of it and my heart was pounding. I immediately thought "I'm not doing this again." Then we hit the trails. Okay, then I thought, I REALLY am never doing this again. It wasn't so much that the hills were hard (okay they were), but the scary part for me is the rocks and the paths, and even though it is a trail it is very uneven. All I could think about was that I was going to bite the dust. I was also in the back of about a 13 person group, but I had company with one fabulous young lady. I told a few people about how I was clumsy and I had to be very careful not to fall.

Every so often, the group would stop and allow us slow pokes time to catch up and regroup before moving forward. I appreciated that. I also appreciated that no one seemed to really be bothered by having to wait, and no one was ever telling us to hurry up. I would rather be slow, careful and not fall than try to hustle and catch up and hurt myself. So I like the fact that they were understanding that I was slower and starting out. As the walk went on, I felt more confident in not only being able to complete this but I also felt more steady and less likely to fall... although still cautious lol.

They said this was the longest walk they ever did, which was accidental because one of the gates was locked and sent us on a detour. 4.25 miles we did, and they usually do 3.5. The only bad thing was, the route we took was longer, but not as many hills. So next time it will be shorter but it will have more hills, and that's a little intimidating.

The true test well come Thursday afternoon when I wake up. If this has managed to flare up my arthritis and caused my knees to swell, then I won't be able to keep doing this. I am really, really hoping that my knees are okay with this, because I really enjoyed it and plan to keep up with this weekly for quite some time. So wish me luck that I don't wake up with knees the size of bowling balls. emoticon

Of course Sparky still needed his walk, so after a few hours of rest he got a 1.5 mile walk, and he was happy with that. Overall, I had a blast, and stepping out of my comfort zone and meeting new people was totally worth it. Hopefully I will improve and even if I'm always destined to "bring up the rear", hopefully the rear won't be too far from the front. :)

Thursday afternoon update: My knees are not sore or swollen so if it stays this way I can join them next Wednesday! I'm very excited! :)

The bonus, we got to see some of the farm animals at the college. I couldn't get a good picture of the calf, but the sheep and goats were adorable. :)




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Member Comments About This Blog Post:
GRAMPIAN 8/19/2014 6:23AM

  Well done! emoticon

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WHITEANGEL4 7/22/2014 5:14PM

    Great for your efforts.. Sounds like a great group t be with

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MCJULIEO 5/14/2014 8:28PM

    What a great group! Good for you!

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DARSHAN130 5/5/2014 2:53PM

    Awesome job!


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NASFKAB 5/5/2014 2:29AM

  emoticon emoticon emoticon

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FRABBIT 5/2/2014 3:46PM

  Congratulations. Way to go!

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BESSHAILE 4/22/2014 3:00PM

    You go girl! I'm sorry you've been down but I'm so proud of you stepping outside of your comfort zone. How wonderful your knees didn't mind after all and how good of them to be patient and encouraging. You are one brave honey.

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THEVOW2013 4/22/2014 1:34PM

    emoticon You know how you wrote in the blog before this "there is always an excuse to eat"
Well, same is true with activity , there is always an excuse not to move. I have shifted knee caps and I run now...I was that 288 lb girl who crapped her pants trying to run the required 1 mile in gym class!

Take your limits off Steph and lets continue to get it done!
So proud of you!!! emoticon emoticon and that's that!

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KMS3333 4/21/2014 6:36PM

    emoticon emoticon You are doing great. Keepi it up!

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SLLYONS51 4/21/2014 3:39PM

  emoticon emoticon

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PIGGYWAY 4/20/2014 7:55PM

  emoticon emoticon

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RADIOACTIVEGN 4/20/2014 2:21PM

  Good luck - I hope that you woke up pain free and will be able to join the group again. I'm going to look up meetup.com to look for something in my area!

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BHENDRICK2 4/20/2014 1:34PM

    emoticon

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DAWNDMOORE40 4/20/2014 1:17PM

    Sometimes to change our lives, we have to step out of the box, out of what makes us comfortable! It sounds like you are doing that with this walking group! emoticon emoticon Keep it up! You never know what great things lye around the corner for you! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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TINAJANE76 4/20/2014 5:08AM

    I love that you got out of your comfort zone and wound up having a great time. Sounds like a great way to get out there and meet new people while helping you to reach your goals. Keep up the great work, girl!
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WENDYANNE61 4/20/2014 2:13AM

    Yes - you in a walking group! Change can lead you down many new paths and open your mind to new ways of moving forward......

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JUSGETTENBY42 4/20/2014 12:46AM

    emoticon

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TEXASFILLY 4/19/2014 11:33PM

    emoticon emoticon You are rockin' it, li'l sister~ emoticon emoticon BB~ emoticon

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68ANNE 4/19/2014 10:37PM

    You are doing so amazing! The good times are so much more than any bad

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AJB121299 4/19/2014 10:17PM

    nice

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BLUEJEAN99 4/19/2014 8:01PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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DOILIEQUEEN 4/19/2014 5:59PM

    emoticon

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LAWANDMUSIC 4/19/2014 3:14PM

    Way to go!!

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DUSTYPRAIRIE 4/19/2014 10:52AM

    Walk on! emoticon

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KNEEMAKER 4/19/2014 10:47AM

  Just keep on keeping on. Step by step you are getting there. Enjoy the journey. We have but one life to live. Go out there and live every minute and every day. Congratulations. emoticon

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HAWKTHREE 4/19/2014 8:49AM

    You are very courageous to have done this!

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KIM-CAN-DO-IT 4/19/2014 7:30AM

    So glad you took a step out of your comfort zone! Sounds like you had a great time. Thanks for sharing!

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EBONYSOL 4/19/2014 7:14AM

    Way to go! I remember hearing about the site you mentioned and forgot it later so I am glad you mentioned it because I want to see if there is a walking group in my neck of the woods. Thanks!

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ZELLAZM 4/19/2014 5:26AM

    Great! So glad your knees are cooperating! That mutual support of the meet-up group is like Spark "with skin on"!
I go Nordic walking with a meet-up group when I'm in Florida- have you thought of trying it? Pole-walking aka Nordic walking? It might be just the thing for you with your joint issues!

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CARRIELYN56 4/19/2014 5:03AM

    emoticon

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ROXYCARIN 4/19/2014 3:50AM

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BANNERMAN 4/19/2014 2:00AM

  Thanks for sharing.
Keep on Keeping on!

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WRITERWANNAB 4/19/2014 1:22AM

    This sounds great for you & I hope it works out for you to keep doing it. I'll be rooting for you! emoticon

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CORNERKICK 4/19/2014 1:08AM

  emoticon

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SUGAR0814 4/19/2014 12:47AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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JAMER123 4/19/2014 12:13AM

    emoticon for sharing your blog with us!!
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CICELY360 4/18/2014 11:50PM

  Good blog

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MAYBER 4/18/2014 11:37PM

    Thank you for sharing your journey best wishes as you continue to walk
One day at a time love prayers peace God Bless
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KIMBERLY0916 4/18/2014 10:42PM

    AWESOME because no matter how much you hurt or felt like a slow-poke ... YOU JUST DID MORE THAN EVERYONE .. THAT HASN'T TRIED ... hasn't gotten off the couch .. hasn't walked around their living room .. them wandered outside to walk their parking lot or their neighborhood

and look at you!! even with the fall risk and nerves and group setting .. YOU DID IT !!!

and that whole social thing .. gets easier with time! .. and so will those trails

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SCRAPBECCA 4/18/2014 10:26PM

    Well done you! How awesome that you have challenged yourself to do this!

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DCWILLIAMS831 4/18/2014 10:18PM

    emoticon emoticon

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CLAYARTIST 4/18/2014 10:17PM

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DANAPRIME 4/18/2014 9:29PM

    emoticon

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MIMIDOT 4/18/2014 8:57PM

    Congratulations for stepping out of your comfort zone and meeting other walkers. Sounds like you picked a good group. Walk on!

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WALLPER26 4/18/2014 8:27PM

    emoticon on stepping out of your comfort zone. It took a lot of courage to follow through and go walking! I'm so glad you had a positive experience!

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IAMAGEMLOVER 4/18/2014 7:58PM

    emoticon

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MSROZZIE 4/18/2014 7:07PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ADAGIO_CON_BRIO 4/18/2014 7:00PM

    Good for you! You've done an amazing job of getting out of your natural comfort zone---and for many of us (I am not meaning you, necessarily) the comfort zone is a place that keeps us unhealthy.

So your blog has inspired me to try something similar if I can find it near me. emoticon

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LIVELYGIRL2 4/18/2014 6:21PM

  oh this is terrific. I hope it works out for you!!!

I do think that the poles are ( walking sticks), real helpful. I got mine onsale at Overstock.com

Maybe a wrap on your knee or these kind of things are good.

Let us know. I am glad for you. I walk every Saturday with a friend. The other groups are far away ( so far). There is also walking groups online through Volksports. They give a patch and chart in logs. emoticon

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KHALIA2 4/18/2014 6:19PM

  emoticon emoticon

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