First “out of the car” sightseeing outing in over three months…”Cruising on down the road”…

Cashel Catholic church, not far from us.

“Fascinating Fact of the Day About Ireland” 
The Irish drinking song “The Hills of Connemara” has been recorded and performed by several Irish and Celtic-themed bands.

Today was the first time in over three months that we went out on a sightseeing tour. I haven’t felt motivated or energetic enough to engage in the walking often required on such tours during my recovery period.

Low rocks walls line most of the properties in Connemara.

In this past week, as I’ve worked toward my goal of walking 10,000 steps a day (the highest day was 9500. I’m working on the rest!) while doing a series of circuit training type exercises in the process using household items as props.

As it turns out, there isn’t a fitness center nearby, not within an hour’s drive. There’s no way it makes sense to drive two hours a day to go to a fitness facility when I can exercise at “home.”
Cattle on the side of the road.

Thank goodness for this past week’s exercise. Had I not done it, there’s no way I’d ever have been able to participate in any self-tour. Not only was there a lot of walking and standing within the facility, but with many outbuildings, a garden, steep rocky walks, and hills to navigate, it would have been impossible.

Most patients three months after cardiac bypass surgery can engage in such activities since they began walking right after surgery. For me, the leg infections and two additional surgeries prevented me from walking and exercising up until a little over two weeks ago.

Chaiseal describes a “stone fort” in the Irish language.

One of our kindly readers/friends wrote to me concerned I am too hard on myself by attempting to catch up so quickly. But, I decided if I could do without strain, to proceed without fear and excess caution.  

A few days ago, when I managed the 9500 steps in one day, I was elated but exhausted. Never during the walking itself did I struggle. I only had to ease back a little the next day to 7500 steps when my legs were tired.  Today, with our outing and the climbing up and down hills, I should accomplish around 8000 steps, again striving for the higher number.

View across the bay.

I have to remind myself that walking the 10,000 steps is equivalent to walking over eight km, or approximately five miles. A little over two weeks ago, I gave up using a walker and had trouble easily walking across a room without holding on.

Our bodies are amazing. They so much strive to homeostasis, described as: “The tendency towards a relatively stable equilibrium between interdependent elements, especially as maintained by physiological processes.”  Our bodies strive to be well. We need only to pay attention to this process.

View across an inlet, a bit tilted to avoid the car’s side-view mirror.

I don’t have all the answers. I only know my situation, and it may be entirely different from others in a similar position. All I know is I am bound and determined to be as healthy as I can be based on the fact I still have bad arteries throughout my body, a genetic condition over which I have little control.

When we returned to the house after the tour, this late in the afternoon, I wasn’t up to preparing a detailed story about the history of Connemara, its people, and its heritage. Tomorrow is another day, and after a good night’s rest, I’ll be looking forward to sharing our photos (of which we took many) and the exciting history of this area.

We’ll be back tomorrow with much more…

Happy day!

Photo from one year ago today, May 24, 2018:

This warthog we spotted in Kruger had tusks that were almost a full circle. For more Kruger National Park photos, please click here.

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