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Discouraged in Florida

VintageElsa1967

PeacefulWarrior
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2021 or 2022
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
 

JohnLloyd

Author of "Go Your Own Way"
Camino(s) past & future
Francés - SJPDP to SdC - Autumn 2018
Portugués - Porto to SdC - Spring 2019
Francés again - ASAP
You walk as far as you want to - there's no minimum distance required.

The only restriction is the time you choose to offer the Camino.

It'll take a little longer if 8 miles a day is your limit, but you're more than likely to be able to increase that as you go. At first, 15-20km a day was a lot, but by the end, I was walking 30+km each day with some ease.

You will be inspired along the Way too.

Your first step is the most important - every step you take after that will get easier.
 

JohnLloyd

Author of "Go Your Own Way"
Camino(s) past & future
Francés - SJPDP to SdC - Autumn 2018
Portugués - Porto to SdC - Spring 2019
Francés again - ASAP
Have a read of this - it may help explain my point a little more.

 

alexwalker

Forever Pilgrim
Camino(s) past & future
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
@JohnLloyd : Good one.

@VintageElsa1967 :
Your Camino starts where you start.
You decide your daily distance.
It ends where it ends (hopefully Santiago).
You can do it.
I am 66. Going many times more, for sure. But don't know when, in these times.
 

André Walker

Never loosing my way: always standing on it
Camino(s) past & future
Holland-St.Jean, Frances, Del Norte, VdlP.
Hello Elsa,

It's always nice to see young people becoming interested in walking a Camino (I'm already 57).

As you might have understood from browsing this forum walking the Frances (or any Camino) might give you experiences and memories that you'll cherish for the rest of your life. Don't let walking relatively short daily distances distract you from that.

If you prefer walking shorter distances, the camino Frances might suit you best. There are a lot of albergues and a lot of other nice pilgrims. You might consider starting in Roncesvalles (or perhaps Pamplona). Most pilgrims start in St. Jean-pied-de-Port. Although there are 2 possible ways from St. Jean to Roncesvalles, in both cases it would mean 12+ miles up a mountain.

After Roncesvalles there are a lot of albergues. And who knows, after having walked 8 miles each day for a number of days, it wouldn't surprise me that you're daily distances become longer. Just take it easy and do it your way.

Don't identify yourself with other pilgrims doing longer distances. It's not a race or a competition. It's a once in a lifetime experience. Unless you become 'addicted' to walking camino's (that is what happened to me). If you do it your way, you might even consider taking a bus (or taxi) if a stretch between two albergues is just too long for you.

And you can take it easy every day, walking a bit, taking long breaks (try the local cafe-con-leche) and walk a bit more. It's all you have to do all day long (and what a joy that is).

If you want to get an idea of how far it is between possible places to stay, take a look at Gronze.com. Although it's in Spanish, it's easy enough to understand for non-Spanish speaking people:

Enjoy your Camino.
 

wayfarer

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-Santiago-Finistera-Muxia. April/May 2012
Sarria-Santiago Sept. 2013
SJPP - Almost Orrison April 2014
Welcome Elsa, if you can walk 8 miles you can walk the 500. My wife walked with me from Sarria in 2013, she is not a walker and had not trained for the walk, she did 23km day one and 22km day two without any bother, we had many stops for coffee and just to take a break. So to answer your question, yes can do it and if you take plenty breaks during the day you can walk 20+ km a day if you wish IMO.
 

Rebekah Scott

Camino Busybody
Camino(s) past & future
Many, various, and continuing.
Times are hard. It's easy to contemplate giving up, but sitting at home is just as boring as walking without any purpose. Start walking EVERYWHERE, to work, the store (with your backpack, to haul things home!), the beauty shop. If you live in the suburbs that might be a bit weird, but it is doable. Smile and greet the people you see out there. Be the eccentric friendly person who walks! Add that to the beach walking you're doing now, and perhaps look around for a state park or other natural beauty spot where there are hiking trails... expand your horizons to keep walking interesting. You will be in great shape for the camino when your day arrives.
(I am 58, I live on the Way, and try to do a part of the camino every year. I don't do specific training walks -- just a minimum of 6 or 8 km each day with my dogs, and some heavy lifting here and there. That keeps me in enough condition that I can pick up and walk 20+ km. daily to Santiago, but your mileage may vary!)

Don't worry about the Camino. There are plenty of other more pressing things to consider these days, especially if you live in Florida!
 

martin1ws

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Somport to Finisterre Jul-Aug 2018; Munich to Lindau (Germany) Sep 2020
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day..... Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

8 miles would be enough. In this old thread there are tips:

For planing on the Camino Frances:
http://www.godesalco.com/plan/frances

I think the risk of getting 'addicted' to the Camino is higher than the 'risk' to quit... but you never know before.
 

sugargypsy

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2019
In progress: CP 2020 and/or CI
It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better.
When I prepared for my Camino in 2019 I had sometimes the same problem. I then drove every second or third week somewhere not too far from home and walked there, which also prepared me a bit to find my way in unknown areas. Though when walking the Frances that was not really necessary, one simply follows the yellow flechas (arrows). But maybe that makes walking a little more exciting for you in between.

Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on.
When I was walking the Camino I just never asked myself that question, whether to continue to walk, I just did.

It's completly different from walking at home, because on the Camino it is the only thing one does: walk, wash, eat, sleep, repeat. You start in the morning, end in the afternoon, inbetween you're taking some breaks in cafés, talking with other pilgrims. No boring chores, no work, no bothering with other stuff, which often keeps cropping up in daily life.

I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health.
Somebody already wrote it, one does not have to walk a certain distance a day. The stages which are proposed by some of the pilgrim guides are just suggestions, no one is forced to walk the Camino exactly that way. One can start and stop whereever, whenever one wishes.

I am, for instance, a slow walker. It took me a bit longer to get to Santiago but I arrived there nevertheless ;).
 
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Jeff Crawley

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Currently on a "Virtual" Camino and striding out across Castile y Leon!
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
Think of it this way - you're not planning to walk 500 miles to Santiago all in one go; you're aiming to walk to that bend up ahead and, when you get there, you'll then aim for that tree a little further along and then . . . suddenly there's a little town up ahead that's where you aim to take a shower, grab a bite to eat and hang out with that Canadian/Spaniard/German pilgrim you met along the way and spent all day chatting to.

Remember: "train hard, fight easy" and, when it's safe to do so, come on over and enjoy Spain.
 

El Cascayal

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Primitivo May 2019
Invierno November 2019
Ingles April (2020) postponed
Elsa, as a fellow Floridian I am compelled to chime in and agree with all other Peregrinos that have responded to this thread. There is nothing that compares to walking a Camino. The experience of having nothing to do each day but to walk, with yourself and sometimes in the company of others who are from every corner of this planet, walking ancient roads walked by many before us and more to come...being in nature, sky, clouds, mountains, streams, rivers, rain, flowers, trees animals of all sorts and welcoming locals is an indescribable experience. Walking at home may get boring and tedious sometimes, today 89 degrees and infernal humidity, yet, it is a metaphor for life, and if the Camino calls you, you will not be disappointed! Buen Camino, Peregrina!
 

Joyce Dunn Rogers

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances
Camino Portugal 2021
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
Frankly, I never thought about the distance. It's like eating an elephant...it's one bite at a time.
There'll be days when you'll think you're nuts for putting yourself through it. Days when you'll cry..just because.
Days when you're thrilled with the beauty & the awesomeness of it all. Days when you're hurt. Days when you're healed.
Then when you're on the hill overlooking Santiago de Compostela and the cathedral spires and you'll cry from the sheer accomplishment of it all.
I felt all of this last year when walking the Camino Frances by myself. I'm almost 20 years older than you and if I can do it, you can, too.
While hugely disappointed to not being able to walk the Portuguese route this year, I am optimistic or 2021.
Hang in there, girl. Maybe I'll see you in SdC!👍
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Walking the Camino is very different than walking at home in your own environment! On the Camino you aren't just walking. You are traveling, walking is simply your mode of transportation. Every day you will walk through a new landscape, new villages and cities. You will also be socializing as you walk, meeting interesting people from all over the world. It's amazing how fast five miles go while you're having good conversation with fellow peregrinos.

Before I did my first Camino I thought "what will I do if I don't like it?" Then I realized that Spain has some fabulous beaches and cities where I could spend my time if I decided not to continue on the Camino.

Of course that didn't happen; I now have 5 Caminos under my belt, and a longing to do more.
 

marylynn

Ontario Canada
Camino(s) past & future
2011-2019 CF, Arles/Aragones
2015 & 2017 HærvejenDK
Then when you're on the hill overlooking Santiago de Compostela and the cathedral spires and you'll cry from the sheer accomplishment of it all..

...or you'll cry because you know the journey is about to end and you might never see your wonderful walking-mates again.
 

Roland49

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF 2019 July
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day.

There are some questions to answer: when you plan to walk? Do you break in good walking shoes / boots? Do you have a well fitted backpack? Did you walk with it 50 miles in total loaded with the weight of your equipment?

I started in SJPdP on 1st July 2019 and ended on 27th July in SdC, 49 years old. The longest walk was 43,8km in a day (Puente dela Reina to Los Arcos @ 38°C), the shortest was 18km. Prior to the Camino I did not know that I am able to cover such distances by foot. I had 30 days in total and managed to walk just 27 days.

There is no minimum distance you have to cover. You walk as long as it is bearable for you or as you wish.
The Camino provides! That is as simple as it sounds. Trust it!

I did learn it on the way.
You will have company when you need it, you will be in solitude when you need it. You will find a bed for the night. Every night! You will have sights and sounds you will not forget. You will talk to stranges about your innermost. Sometimes there is "Camino-magic". The landscapes will change, so will your moods.

Be aware, the Camino is very addictive!

If all of the Covid19-action has ended I will walk the Camino Portugues in spring 2021.

BC
Roland
 
Camino(s) past & future
Norte (2017-18)
Portugues (2015)
Frances (2014)
(snip) I inserted responses to parts in the middle of the quote below.

"If you prefer walking shorter distances, the camino Frances might suit you best. There are a lot of albergues and a lot of other nice pilgrims. You might consider starting in Roncesvalles (or perhaps Pamplona). Most pilgrims start in St. Jean-pied-de-Port. Although there are 2 possible ways from St. Jean to Roncesvalles, in both cases it would mean 12+ miles up a mountain."

(snip)
If you walk the Valcarlos way, you effectively divide that first 1 day of the Napoleon way into 2 if you want to. There is a place to stay around half way to Roncesvalles. I am hoping that, whenever I am able to walk the Frances again, I can walk the Valcarlos path.

"Don't identify yourself with other pilgrims doing longer distances. It's not a race or a competition. " (snip)

What he said, in spades. If you're focused on out-doing the other guy, or being "more authentic" than the next gal, you're blocking off your participation in the pilgrimage. For me, one of the biggest lessons of the Camino, which I'm still learning, is to let go of the control. Yes, it feels ever so much more comforting to look up lots of information and read the guide books--yes, plural--and type up a plan. But in the event it is crucial to let all that be an enriching background, not a straitjacket.

I do build in some rest days in the plan, and a couple of days at the end for flexibility. The last time we walked, we used one of those end days to visit the royal monastery at El Escorial. The only thing I really keep track of, sort of, is when I need to be in the city where we fly out of to home to be there the night before the flight. And if I feel the need to ride a bus, I don't do it in the last 100 km, but early on so I will able to continue walking in that last part. But if you don't intend on qualifying for the Compostela certificate, that consideration is irrelevant.

"And you can take it easy every day, walking a bit, taking long breaks (try the local cafe-con-leche) and walk a bit more. It's all you have to do all day long (and what a joy that is).

If you want to get an idea of how far it is between possible places to stay, take a look at Gronze.com. Although it's in Spanish, it's easy enough to understand for non-Spanish speaking people:

Enjoy your Camino."
Although I will confess that while I can go a 30K day, AKA 20 miles, the last couple of miles are kind of grim. It's okay, they end too and when you've done it you know you've done something. BTW those 8 miles you've cracked out, in the flatlands, work out to almost 13 kilometers. When you do a 10 mile walk you begin to understand how in the famous movie, the guy undoes his pack and leans back on the bridge. I never understood that until we'd walked a 10 mile walk in our training.

I had never walked a "long hike" before we walked the Camino Frances in 2014. I was older than you then...ahem, holding at 29 forever! You can do it.

Buen camino, fellow peregrina.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Norte (2017-18)
Portugues (2015)
Frances (2014)
Times are hard. It's easy to contemplate giving up, but sitting at home is just as boring as walking without any purpose. Start walking EVERYWHERE, to work, the store (with your backpack, to haul things home!), the beauty shop. If you live in the suburbs that might be a bit weird, but it is doable. Smile and greet the people you see out there. Be the eccentric friendly person who walks! Add that to the beach walking you're doing now, and perhaps look around for a state park or other natural beauty spot where there are hiking trails... expand your horizons to keep walking interesting. You will be in great shape for the camino when your day arrives.
(I am 58, I live on the Way, and try to do a part of the camino every year. I don't do specific training walks -- just a minimum of 6 or 8 km each day with my dogs, and some heavy lifting here and there. That keeps me in enough condition that I can pick up and walk 20+ km. daily to Santiago, but your mileage may vary!)

Don't worry about the Camino. There are plenty of other more pressing things to consider these days, especially if you live in Florida!
What she says. Although if you're in the American Southeast, you may look at the local park with an eye to whether you need to wear bug repellant. The 4 miles walk in Ocala National Forest we took while on a road trip was the single ticky-est walk I have ever taken. The darned things were parachuting down like the soldiers on D-Day! But it was pretty. 065.JPG
 

jsalt

Jill
Camino(s) past & future
Portugués, Francés, LePuy, Rota Vicentina, Norte, Madrid, C2C, Salvador, Primitivo, Aragonés, Inglés
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

Hi Discouraged in Florida, welcome to the forum! Yes, getting there is the most difficult bit. It’s scary stepping out of your comfort zone and into the unknown. But once you are there it all becomes very easy, as long as you take it very easy to begin with. So book your first few nights’ accommodation with short distances in between, so you have some security to begin with; get into the rhythm of : walk, eat, sleep. And then just take each day as it comes . . . the weather, who you meet, how tired you are, etc; they can all decide your distance for the day. You have the calling so go for it.
 

David Tallan

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (1989 and 2016), Portugues - from Porto (2018)
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
It is different on the Camino. It is different because you are in a different country and able to enjoy cultural and historic sights along the route, and different cuisines and customs. It is different because each day is, to some extent, a discovery. It is different because you are making progress to a destination or a goal, not just returning to where you started from. It is different because walking is really your only task and responsibility for the day (that and taking care of yourself). It is not something that is in addition to all of your regular life's responsibilities. It is different because you are in a community of people walking with the same goal, each acting as each other's cheerleaders.

The solution to not being able to walk the distance needed daily is to give yourself plenty of time. I advise people to give themselves plenty of time anyways. You never know when you might need a few extra days and you don't want to find yourself racing to Santiago. As others have said, you can walk as much or as little as you want each day. The longest distance between accommodations on the Camino Frances is, I believe, about 17 km (just over 10 miles). Even there, if you don't want to walk that far, you can grab a taxi to accommodations after you have walked as far as you want to and back to where you left off the next day. I knew someone who walked a camino with just 5 km days.

All that said, and much as I and the other people who choose to hang out in these forums love the Camino(s), it is still possible that you will get there, start walking, and find that it is not for you. I'm sure that happens to some people every year. That isn't so bad. There are still many spectacular places to see and wonderful things to do in Spain with minimal walking necessary. If you find that it is not for you you can turn it into a different kind of trip to Spain and still have a great time! Many people visit Spain and enjoy it a lot without walking from pueblo to pueblo.

So my advice would be to go, leave yourself plenty of time if you are worried about distances. That way you aren't nagged by the thoughts of "could I have?", "should I have?" Worst case scenario, yuo find you don't like it. See if you can move up your return flight in that case but still stick around in Spain for a while and see the sights. However it ends up it will be worthwhile.
 
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sunwanderer

Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPdP to Santiago
Sep/Oct 2015

Then when you're on the hill overlooking Santiago de Compostela and the cathedral spires and you'll cry from the sheer accomplishment of it all.
That's a good point - you'll encounter something you might not see a lot of in Florida: hills.

If you can, grab your loaded backpack and take a car trip to some hills for practice on the ups and downs.
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
Walking the Camino is very different than walking at home in your own environment! On the Camino you aren't just walking. You are traveling, walking is simply your mode of transportation. Every day you will walk through a new landscape, new villages and cities. You will also be socializing as you walk, meeting interesting people from all over the world. It's amazing how fast five miles go while you're having good conversation with fellow peregrinos.

Before I did my first Camino I thought "what will I do if I don't like it?" Then I realized that Spain has some fabulous beaches and cities where I could spend my time if I decided not to continue on the Camino.

Of course that didn't happen; I now have 5 Caminos under my belt, and a longing to do more.
I couldn't have said it better. You speak for me, too.
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
Hi Elsa,
In addition to all of the many great responses to your original post, there is something exciting about a "one way" walk in new territory, rather than having to turn around eventually and retrace your steps.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Before fires and smoke made it unsafe to do so I have been walking 5 - 12 miles a day since late March. Knowing that I wouldn't be able to do my Camino this year it's important to me to keep up my walking. Yes, it can be boring to walk the same routes over and over again.
When I'm walking alone I like to listen to podcasts. There are so many to listen to - including Camino podcasts. There are podcasts that will help you learn or brush up on your Spanish or learn about Spanish history. I've been listening to a podcast lately that is helping me better understand Shakespeare. Many people also like to listen to audio books while they walk.
But, as I and others have said, walking at home and walking the Camino are completely different.
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
Trecile, I walk 3-4 miles most days and my flat, countryside trail definately gets boring, but I sometimes drive to some pretty parks with nice trails. If not walking with a friend or family member, I usually listen to music. You are making better use of your time by listening to podcasts...a great idea.
 

domigee

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2020? Looks like.... nowhere! 😁
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
When I started my first Camino, I wasn’t used to walking, let alone with a backpack. I didn’t have much time to train, I was still working full-time then. I did a bit of training, I think the longest walks I did then were 8km. And not that many.

it isn’t a race and if you start with the Camino francés, there are many stops on the way where you can find food and accommodation. You do not have to be a long distance walker when you start, by any means. You will become one, as you go along🙂

Of course, I speak of pre-Covid times! I hear it is a bit more difficult now as some albergues are closed etc. But if you are flexible, I hear that it is still very feasible - as long as you go with no expectations 😉

As for walking at home.... Yes, I am ashamed to say that I found it quite boring at times, especially during the Covid times when all we could do was walking very close to home... And I did, over and over again 🙄 I couldn’t complain as my Spanish friends weren’t even allowed to do that.

Even a few years ago, when I trained for a longer Camino, I just got used to walking
one way and back again, just to practise walking long distances. I was bored out of my head but still enjoyed every bit of it, as it was for a purpose.
Just go for it 😉
 

sunwanderer

Member
Camino(s) past & future
SJPdP to Santiago
Sep/Oct 2015
Or find some convenient stairs.
For myself, I find stairs a poor substitute for hills. Stairs have a significant riser that works (stresses) your muscles and joints in a way that a slope does not.

Also, too high / too often stair climbing can blow out your ACL. Don't ask how I know.
 

Icacos

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2013)
For myself, I find stairs a poor substitute for hills. Stairs have a significant riser that works (stresses) your muscles and joints in a way that a slope does not.

Also, too high / too often stair climbing can blow out your ACL. Don't ask how I know.
The OP indicated she lives in Florida. I hate to think how far one has to drive in Florida to find a hill. Hence my suggestion of stairs. 😊
 

gerardcarey

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CFx2, CPx1
I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily.
I shall restrict my reply to the need to get fit.

I find it essential to find a training exercise regime that I enjoy!
It's gotta be fun so I'll "up and attem" in the morning!
Little stretching exercises in bed every morning. A nice little breakfast before heading out for a walk.
I say hello to nearly every person coming the other way (ignoring the headphone wearers)
Many have become casual friends, and we sometimes stop to chat about equipment, walking routes etc.
These are good motivated people. Exactly those we need for encouragement.
I'm newly considering doing a little pedal work at the gym. Not those horrid weights tho. I don't want to get all sweaty.
I want exercise to never ever be painful.
I wish to feel invigorated, motivated, perhaps even enthused when I get home.
Regards
Gerard
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2019)
.... Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
I suspect that many first timers do think about this, I certainly did. For me, this was one of the most attractive things about embarking on this pilgrimage, the enormous personal challenge of not knowing, before I started, that I could complete this.

During my periods of deepest self doubt before I started, I would console myself by thinking about the millions of people who have completed this pilgrimage. If they could do it, then surely I could too.

Of course, different people have different perspectives but for me, having major self doubt and being prepared to step into that unknown anyway, was transformational.

Keep taking one step at a time and you will be amazed at what you achieve!

Did I enjoy every single moment on my Camino? No.

Did I have continuing bouts of self doubt while I walked? Yes, from time to time.

Were there days when I wanted to stop and go home? Yes.

Would I do it again, knowing what I know now? Absolutely!

Am I going to go back and walk another Camino? Yes unless Europe or Spain disappears.
 

VintageElsa1967

PeacefulWarrior
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2021 or 2022
Hello Elsa,

It's always nice to see young people becoming interested in walking a Camino (I'm already 57).

As you might have understood from browsing this forum walking the Frances (or any Camino) might give you experiences and memories that you'll cherish for the rest of your life. Don't let walking relatively short daily distances distract you from that.

If you prefer walking shorter distances, the camino Frances might suit you best. There are a lot of albergues and a lot of other nice pilgrims. You might consider starting in Roncesvalles (or perhaps Pamplona). Most pilgrims start in St. Jean-pied-de-Port. Although there are 2 possible ways from St. Jean to Roncesvalles, in both cases it would mean 12+ miles up a mountain.

After Roncesvalles there are a lot of albergues. And who knows, after having walked 8 miles each day for a number of days, it wouldn't surprise me that you're daily distances become longer. Just take it easy and do it your way.

Don't identify yourself with other pilgrims doing longer distances. It's not a race or a competition. It's a once in a lifetime experience. Unless you become 'addicted' to walking camino's (that is what happened to me). If you do it your way, you might even consider taking a bus (or taxi) if a stretch between two albergues is just too long for you.

And you can take it easy every day, walking a bit, taking long breaks (try the local cafe-con-leche) and walk a bit more. It's all you have to do all day long (and what a joy that is).

If you want to get an idea of how far it is between possible places to stay, take a look at Gronze.com. Although it's in Spanish, it's easy enough to understand for non-Spanish speaking people:

Enjoy your Camino.
Thanks for advice and the complement as I am 53!!
I can’t wait to go... it’sa dream on my bucket list
 

VNwalking

Wandering in big circles
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
San Olav/CF ('16)
Baztanés/CF ('17)
Ingles ('18)
Vasco/CF/Invierno ('19)
Boredom is relative.
For someone from a camino town, walking from home is probably boring. But we are entranced.
Put them in our hometown, and they might be entranced.

So finding a way to see home with new eyes each day is automatic immunity from tediousness. Which is not to say we don't want to go to Spain to walk a camino, but it makes the time between now and then more interesting.
 

VintageElsa1967

PeacefulWarrior
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2021 or 2022
Boredom is relative.
For someone from a camino town, walking from home is probably boring. But we are entranced.
Put them in our hometown, and they might be entranced.

So finding a way to see home with new eyes each day is automatic immunity from tediousness. Which is not to say we don't want to go to Spain to walk a camino, but it makes the time between now and then more interesting.
So true. Just hard to be entranced by asphalt lol but I think you are right and need to find trails or somewhere to change my environment
 

VintageElsa1967

PeacefulWarrior
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2021 or 2022
Another thing is to think about the Camino as being a series of daily walks. And each day you don't do one long walk, but several shorter walks with breaks for snacks, meals and rest.
I’m just afraid that I won’t be able to make it to the next place where I can stay. Or nightfall comes and I’m still walking. I’ve heard about the race for beds. I have thought maybe if I walk 8 miles rest 30 min and then set out again. I guess I should mention that I am anemic and have low iron so I get tired quickly. I want start in SJPP but the Pyrenees mountains scare me. Funny enough that’s the part I really would love to do.
 

VintageElsa1967

PeacefulWarrior
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2021 or 2022
No need to worry about how far you can walk. With poles and regular stops for eats and cafes con leche, you will be just fine.
That is good because I love cafe con leche lol maybe I can cafe my way through Spain. Is there really many stops along the way? I imagined lots of open spaces and nothing for miles
 

VintageElsa1967

PeacefulWarrior
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2021 or 2022
It has all been said here already. You would be well able for it as you decide how far you want to walk on any day. Fellow peragrinos that I and you will meet along the way are very helpful and supportive and encouraging.Go for it,I promise you wont regret it,ever.
Maybe if I wait at the start of the Pyrenees mountains I can ask people to let me go with them. I know it sounds crazy but I really feel I want to do the how Frances Way. I hate being so fearful of something so many have done.
 

alexwalker

Forever Pilgrim
Camino(s) past & future
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
And after a day's walk and a communal dinner, with fellow pilgrims (new friends), it's time for a glass (plastic) in the afternoon sun... Life is good on the Camino...
IMG_0114.JPG
 
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martin1ws

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Somport to Finisterre Jul-Aug 2018; Munich to Lindau (Germany) Sep 2020
Maybe if I wait at the start of the Pyrenees mountains I can ask people to let me go with them. I know it sounds crazy but I really feel I want to do the how Frances Way. I hate being so fearful of something so many have done.
On this website www.gronze.com you can see the route and where you can buy things or sleep.

If you take the Valcarlos route, you have about 12km between the stopps in the Pyrenees... so this is very close to your 8 miles:
(click 'Ver perfil de la etapa' for the profile of the route; maybe translate with google chrome)

On the Camino Frances you will find many pilgrims for going together... but it is important to go at your own pace (and not faster or longer).
 
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trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
I’m just afraid that I won’t be able to make it to the next place where I can stay. Or nightfall comes and I’m still walking. I’ve heard about the race for beds. I have thought maybe if I walk 8 miles rest 30 min and then set out again. I guess I should mention that I am anemic and have low iron so I get tired quickly. I want start in SJPP but the Pyrenees mountains scare me. Funny enough that’s the part I really would love to do.
I generally walk for about an hour or so (about 3-4 miles), stop for breakfast, walk a few more hours (6-10 miles) , stop for snack or lunch, then walk a couple more hours (6-10 miles) until I'm at my destination.
It seems that lots of people are unreasonably apprehensive about crossing the Pyrenees (I believe I was one of those people once 😊) It's really not that bad. You aren't mountain climbing. Most of the time you are on either a paved road or good trail. There are quite a few YouTube videos you can watch that show the terrain.
I would recommend that you split the Pyrenees section up by staying at Refuge Orisson the first night. It's only about 5 miles from St Jean Pied de Port, but it's the steepest 5 miles on the Camino Frances.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Maybe if I wait at the start of the Pyrenees mountains I can ask people to let me go with them. I know it sounds crazy but I really feel I want to do the how Frances Way. I hate being so fearful of something so many have done.
You will find it very easy to find people to walk with when you start in St Jean Pied de Port. There will be pilgrims everywhere, many of them also solo walkers looking for walking companions.
If you stay at an albergue you will meet many others. Beilari is a good choice y, as they have a communal dinner where everyone gets to know each other.
 

VNwalking

Wandering in big circles
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
San Olav/CF ('16)
Baztanés/CF ('17)
Ingles ('18)
Vasco/CF/Invierno ('19)
Just hard to be entranced by asphalt
Haha, yes...but you'll find plenty of that on the camino.

I imagined lots of open spaces and nothing for miles
Sometimes it's this way.
Sometimes it's walking from one town to another, where they're close together.
And sometimes it's the messy industrial edges of a city.

You'll find more space and time for contemplation on less frequented caminos as opposed to the CF and CP - which sometimes have a bit of a party atmosphere. In the last 100km of the Frances, it can be like an ant trail.
 

David Tallan

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (1989 and 2016), Portugues - from Porto (2018)
That is good because I love cafe con leche lol maybe I can cafe my way through Spain. Is there really many stops along the way? I imagined lots of open spaces and nothing for miles
For much of the camino there are villages every few kilometres. There are a couple of longer stretches. The longest being 17 km (about 10 miles) in the open space of the meseta near the middle of the camino, but that is the exception rather than the rule.
 

linkster

Nunca dejes de creer!
Camino(s) past & future
CF (17) Sarria - Portomarín
CF (17) SJPdP - SdC
CF (18) SJPdP - Fisterra
CP (19) Porto - Muxia
@VintageElsa1967 SWFL here. I walk everyday 4 ~ 7 miles ... depends on the loop. It is road walking past beautiful homes, palm trees, boats, and hotter than HELL midday. BUT, it is boring day after day. The Camino IS NOT. The scenery will be new. It will be a different culture. People from around the world. It will be an adventure.

I would suggest staying someplace like Beilari in St. Jean Pied de Port. The night before you start you will have a communal dinner, and have the opportunity to meet your walking buddies for the next day. Josef helps create a welcoming environment ... you are not alone. Put yourself out there and just ask "Can I walk with you tomorrow?".

Last time I was there, I walked with 3 women I met the night before. They were all capable, but thought I had some magic recipe since I had done it before. I do ... I put one foot in front of the other (walk) until I get there.😂 We all spent the night at Orisson, and then on to Roncevalles the next day.

There are only a couple of stages on the Camino that you will have to walk farther than your normal 8 miles (by the way ... start thinking in terms of kilometers). But don't worry about it. You are not mountain climbing (although the 7.9 km or 5 miles to Orisson may feel like it the first day). Just take your time, you might surprise yourself. It is your Camino, your adventure, you set your own goals, and boundaries.

I can walk farther, but I like to walk about 20km (12 miles) a day. That means that I am not walking the stages in the books. I don't feel tired. I can stop several times for a snack, drink, or lunch. I have plenty of time to take a shower, wash my clothes, and see some sights.

Here is a website that makes it easy to calculate distances between your stages.

¡Buena suerte peregrina!👣:D:cool:
 

Felipe

Veteran Member
You have been given sound and practical advice. I would offer a somewhat contrary view: the Camino is not necessarily for everybody. Some people just don't like the idea (a friend told me, some time ago "We have invented carts, trains and planes...so why the need to walk?) or after some days, become bored or disillusioned (excessive expectations are a common problem). And even Camino enthusiasts (as myself) have some bad, discouraging days; this will come, for sure.
I'd say: try 7, 10 days, and have a "plan b" in store, just in case. Spain has many marvelous places and offer many activities. So, you can feel that you have options, have more peace of mind and enjoy your walk. There is nothing wrong about changing your mind, you don't have to prove anything to anyone. It is *your* dream and your plans.
Having said that, I am sure that after some days, you will like and love the Camino. You have approximately the same age that I had when I went to my first Camino (not sure about what I could find or I could feel), and I come back whenever I can.
 
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Simon B

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Ingles and Camino Frances. VDLP Spring 2019
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
Have no doubt you will be inspired once you start your Camino. It is not like walking at home. The distance you walk each day will improve as you go along. One thing I always feel when walking a Camino is that you have nothing else to do - so just put one foot in front of the other and enjoy yourself.
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF(2012) Le Puy/CF (2015) Portugues (2017) Norte (2018) CF (2019) VDLP?
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
You have obviously gotten alot of reassuring advice.
Let me tell you some more. I have walked 5 caminos and have trained alot for some and alot less for others. But I have learned HOW to walk. That to me is the key.
You are going to meet lots of pilgrims who walked all different speeds and distances. As I am sure others have said walk your own camino. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. It will take a little while but you will find your own pace. When you wake up and start your day, eat something, hydrate, care for your feet and go. Do not rush get into it. Your body will begin to take you at the speed it wants to. Remember if you join (I never have) a "camino family" you may be induced to walk faster or slower than you need to walk. This can tire you out. Even walking to slowly can. It can also induce you to walk farther than your body wants to. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. If you don't blisters, bone spurs, tendinitis or something more serious may occur. You can always meet your new lifetime friends at the end of the day or another day. If not there is always another fantastic person coming up behind you.
I trained like a madman for my first camino and was helped by a triathlete in my training. I was 58 when I first walked. Even still I was ready to die when I got to Orison and again ready to be buried when I got to Roncesvalles at the end of that first memorable day. I was sore and exhausted for the first week and then somehow I got past it and got stronger and stronger.
My second Camino I walked from Le Puy to Santiago. That is about 1400k. When I got to St. Jean and attacked the mountain it was a piece of cake. When I got to Orison I was shocked when I saw it because I thought I was still about an hour away. See what walking for a month does for you;).
My fourth Camino I was living in the tropics of Mexico and I could only walk in a gym for an hour or so a day as it was brutally hot out. Even walking at 6:00AM was killing me. I walked the Camino Norte (I was 63 at this point). The Norte, in my opinion is much more difficult to walk than the Frances. The route from Le Puy, France is also. The first week from Irun to Bilbao knocked me out for two reasons. Every morning there were steep hills that seemed to go up and up and a few more that went up and up and down and down during the day. At the end of alot of days it is a steep zig zag down to the villages that are on the coast of Northern Spain. They downhills can really do a number on your hips and knees. But it also knocked me out by the sheer beauty of the coast every single day.
So you can do it. Walk when you want to walk. Stop when you are starting to feel a little tired. Wherever you are just stop. Take off your pack and rest for 10-15 minutes. Have some high energy fruit like kiwis or bananas or some nuts and drink water and stay hydrated. Then walk again. Believe me before you know it you will see 20-25 kilometers in front of you for the day and say that it is an easy day. You will constantly be meeting pilgrims if you choose. Like others have said, if you can walk 8 miles you can walk 800K. It is one step at a time.
 

alexwalker

Forever Pilgrim
Camino(s) past & future
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
Thanks for advice and the complement as I am 53!!
I can’t wait to go... it’sa dream on my bucket list
I wish that more young people like you would walk the Camino, not only oldtimers like me. For many, it is a lifechanger, and I am convinced that many young people would recreate their lives to a better experience/existence, based on what the Camino will teach them.

Many of us oldtimers realize, with some grief, that we started our Caminos too late in life.

Walking the Camino will be completely another world compared to your current local walks.
 

Lyndale

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances Aug(2013), Portuguese (2018) Le Puy (2019)
Hello Florida from the other side of the States (WA)
I wish we would have known about the Camino at 53! We watched "The Way" in 2012 at 65 years old and the next August we did the Camino Frances. We have a nice park with towering trees, occasional views of Puget Sound and lush vegetation. It's beautiful but I found my training walks of 5 miles to be tiring and repetitive. I have some back issues but we figured what ever we could do in a day was better than not experiencing the Camino at all. It was hard at first but soon doing 12 miles+ a day. It took us 40 days. Absolutely the best thing we have ever done in our lives. Two years ago we did the Portuguese and are planning 🤞 a 2021 portion of the LePuy, the Camino Frances, and a week or two scouting retirement towns in Portugal. All this after I just had a hip replacement last month. Healing fast and looking forward to next fall. If I can do it so can you. If you can do 8 miles of boring you can do 12 or 15 of absolutely spectacular! The food, people you meet, the experiences are all memories you will never forget! I do remember being a week into the journey and thinking " I'm accomplishing something that none of my friends back home in the rat race would ever do. Most rewarding experience ever!!. Just do it (when the time comes).
Lynda
 

VintageElsa1967

PeacefulWarrior
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2021 or 2022
You have obviously gotten alot of reassuring advice.
Let me tell you some more. I have walked 5 caminos and have trained alot for some and alot less for others. But I have learned HOW to walk. That to me is the key.
You are going to meet lots of pilgrims who walked all different speeds and distances. As I am sure others have said walk your own camino. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. It will take a little while but you will find your own pace. When you wake up and start your day, eat something, hydrate, care for your feet and go. Do not rush get into it. Your body will begin to take you at the speed it wants to. Remember if you join (I never have) a "camino family" you may be induced to walk faster or slower than you need to walk. This can tire you out. Even walking to slowly can. It can also induce you to walk farther than your body wants to. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. If you don't blisters, bone spurs, tendinitis or something more serious may occur. You can always meet your new lifetime friends at the end of the day or another day. If not there is always another fantastic person coming up behind you.
I trained like a madman for my first camino and was helped by a triathlete in my training. I was 58 when I first walked. Even still I was ready to die when I got to Orison and again ready to be buried when I got to Roncesvalles at the end of that first memorable day. I was sore and exhausted for the first week and then somehow I got past it and got stronger and stronger.
My second Camino I walked from Le Puy to Santiago. That is about 1400k. When I got to St. Jean and attacked the mountain it was a piece of cake. When I got to Orison I was shocked when I saw it because I thought I was still about an hour away. See what walking for a month does for you;).
My fourth Camino I was living in the tropics of Mexico and I could only walk in a gym for an hour or so a day as it was brutally hot out. Even walking at 6:00AM was killing me. I walked the Camino Norte (I was 63 at this point). The Norte, in my opinion is much more difficult to walk than the Frances. The route from Le Puy, France is also. The first week from Irun to Bilbao knocked me out for two reasons. Every morning there were steep hills that seemed to go up and up and a few more that went up and up and down and down during the day. At the end of alot of days it is a steep zig zag down to the villages that are on the coast of Northern Spain. They downhills can really do a number on your hips and knees. But it also knocked me out by the sheer beauty of the coast every single day.
So you can do it. Walk when you want to walk. Stop when you are starting to feel a little tired. Wherever you are just stop. Take off your pack and rest for 10-15 minutes. Have some high energy fruit like kiwis or bananas or some nuts and drink water and stay hydrated. Then walk again. Believe me before you know it you will see 20-25 kilometers in front of you for the day and say that it is an easy day. You will constantly be meeting pilgrims if you choose. Like others have said, if you can walk 8 miles you can walk 800K. It is one step at a time.

I have realized that I don't have to have an expectation. I want to go for 30 days and hope and pray that I can do it in 30 days, but if I can't, WELL I can stop and come back and finish right? It does not have to be stamped consecutively? It can be done in separate trips?
 

VintageElsa1967

PeacefulWarrior
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2021 or 2022
And after a day's walk and a communal dinner, with fellow pilgrims (new friends), it's time for a glass (plastic) in the afternoon sun... Life is good on the Camino...
View attachment 83146
Looking very relaxed, I can't wait to take the time and just be off for weeks. As an American I have never taken more than a week or two off unless I was hospitalized. I love the idea of just having nothing to worry about other than to get up and walk and contemplate life.
 

VintageElsa1967

PeacefulWarrior
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2021 or 2022
When I started my first Camino, I wasn’t used to walking, let alone with a backpack. I didn’t have much time to train, I was still working full-time then. I did a bit of training, I think the longest walks I did then were 8km. And not that many.

it isn’t a race and if you start with the Camino francés, there are many stops on the way where you can find food and accommodation. You do not have to be a long distance walker when you start, by any means. You will become one, as you go along🙂

Of course, I speak of pre-Covid times! I hear it is a bit more difficult now as some albergues are closed etc. But if you are flexible, I hear that it is still very feasible - as long as you go with no expectations 😉

As for walking at home.... Yes, I am ashamed to say that I found it quite boring at times, especially during the Covid times when all we could do was walking very close to home... And I did, over and over again 🙄 I couldn’t complain as my Spanish friends weren’t even allowed to do that.

Even a few years ago, when I trained for a longer Camino, I just got used to walking
one way and back again, just to practise walking long distances. I was bored out of my head but still enjoyed every bit of it, as it was for a purpose.
Just go for it 😉
Great Advice , thank you
 

VintageElsa1967

PeacefulWarrior
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2021 or 2022
You have obviously gotten alot of reassuring advice.
Let me tell you some more. I have walked 5 caminos and have trained alot for some and alot less for others. But I have learned HOW to walk. That to me is the key.
You are going to meet lots of pilgrims who walked all different speeds and distances. As I am sure others have said walk your own camino. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. It will take a little while but you will find your own pace. When you wake up and start your day, eat something, hydrate, care for your feet and go. Do not rush get into it. Your body will begin to take you at the speed it wants to. Remember if you join (I never have) a "camino family" you may be induced to walk faster or slower than you need to walk. This can tire you out. Even walking to slowly can. It can also induce you to walk farther than your body wants to. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. If you don't blisters, bone spurs, tendinitis or something more serious may occur. You can always meet your new lifetime friends at the end of the day or another day. If not there is always another fantastic person coming up behind you.
I trained like a madman for my first camino and was helped by a triathlete in my training. I was 58 when I first walked. Even still I was ready to die when I got to Orison and again ready to be buried when I got to Roncesvalles at the end of that first memorable day. I was sore and exhausted for the first week and then somehow I got past it and got stronger and stronger.
My second Camino I walked from Le Puy to Santiago. That is about 1400k. When I got to St. Jean and attacked the mountain it was a piece of cake. When I got to Orison I was shocked when I saw it because I thought I was still about an hour away. See what walking for a month does for you;).
My fourth Camino I was living in the tropics of Mexico and I could only walk in a gym for an hour or so a day as it was brutally hot out. Even walking at 6:00AM was killing me. I walked the Camino Norte (I was 63 at this point). The Norte, in my opinion is much more difficult to walk than the Frances. The route from Le Puy, France is also. The first week from Irun to Bilbao knocked me out for two reasons. Every morning there were steep hills that seemed to go up and up and a few more that went up and up and down and down during the day. At the end of alot of days it is a steep zig zag down to the villages that are on the coast of Northern Spain. They downhills can really do a number on your hips and knees. But it also knocked me out by the sheer beauty of the coast every single day.
So you can do it. Walk when you want to walk. Stop when you are starting to feel a little tired. Wherever you are just stop. Take off your pack and rest for 10-15 minutes. Have some high energy fruit like kiwis or bananas or some nuts and drink water and stay hydrated. Then walk again. Believe me before you know it you will see 20-25 kilometers in front of you for the day and say that it is an easy day. You will constantly be meeting pilgrims if you choose. Like others have said, if you can walk 8 miles you can walk 800K. It is one step at a time.

Wow you are inspiring ! I cannot imagine 1400K. Well I will get myself practicing more and not thinking of speed and more of just comfortably getting in quantity of miles in. I like the idea of taking the 10-15 min rest, cause while I won't make record time at least I won't kill myself trying to race. I am so looking forward to going. I have been dreaming for years to go. It was never a possibility until now. I have saved up. I was a single mother for years and unhealthy and it was only a dream...now God willing, it will be my reality.
 

martin1ws

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Somport to Finisterre Jul-Aug 2018; Munich to Lindau (Germany) Sep 2020
... I want to go for 30 days and hope and pray that I can do it in 30 days, but if I can't, WELL I can stop and come back and finish right? It does not have to be stamped consecutively? It can be done in separate trips?
Yes, it can be done in separate trips.

If you do not want to get a Compostela, there are no rules at all.

If you want to get one, there are only these rules on the last 100 km:
[To get the "Compostela" you must... collect two stamps a day on the last 100km ... details here: ]
 

AlwynWellington

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
please see signature
I'm newly considering doing a little pedal work at the gym.

@VintageElsa1967, this is good advice as it does the legs and lungs a work out. A neighbour in my retirement village does Masters Games: he recommends the bike and especially the row boat.

I imagined lots of open spaces and nothing for miles

Thinking about taking the first step can be daunting. I had come to my start point from the uttermost ends of the earth and I was worried. For some time I had trained using many of the techniques mentioned above. But if something, anything, got in the way and I could not continue for any reason I would have let myself, my late wife and all my family, friends and neighbours down.

I started and within an hour a young man got into step as he caught me up: we talked for several minutes and he resumed his faster pace. I kept encountering him across France and deep into Spain. Then a hour or so later a woman I had encountered the day before while I was sightseeing caught up with me. We began talking, stopped to have lunch together and walked on to the next town. My ice was broken and I was now looking forward to the adventures each day would bring.

For equipment (pack, sleeping bag etc) I commend Zpacks of Florida to you. While their costs are on the high side their specialty is very light weight and very durable stuff, the pack, tent and bag I purchased in 2015 are still in use and about one third the weight of nearly all other comparable gear. And, of course, my only connection with this team is as a customer.

Kia kaha, kia māia, kia manawanui (be strong, brave and patient) and get going when you can.
 

AlwynWellington

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
please see signature
I can stop and come back and finish right?

Kia ora (greetings)

Absolutely. In France in particular I encountered many that were taking a week or two of their annual holidays. The next year they would return to where the stopped last year and continue.

Kia kaha (take care, be strong)
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
I have realized that I don't have to have an expectation. I want to go for 30 days and hope and pray that I can do it in 30 days, but if I can't, WELL I can stop and come back and finish right? It does not have to be stamped consecutively? It can be done in separate trips?
If you can, try to allow at least 5 weeks for walking. 30 days could be challenging.

Of course you can walk as far as you can in 30 days and return to finish, but that wouldn't be my choice.

If I could only walk for 30 days, my choice would be to start closer to Santiago, I can't imagine getting that close and having to leave everyone that I've met along the way and go home. Actually, I can imagine it somewhat - I had to abandon my second Camino (the Norte) when I was just about 100 km from Santiago because of severe shin splints (and severe stupidity - the shin splits got worse because I refused to stop walking and rest when I first felt them) It was depressing to watch everyone that I had met over the previous weeks go on without me. 😢 You can always go back and do the Pyrenees section later.

Others will recommend starting in St Jean Pied de Port and then busing ahead to make up time on the Meseta. I also wouldn't do this, as I really value the continuity of not skipping sections. You also lose touch with your walking cohort that you start with, and may have to spend a few days walking somewhat alone until you meet and gel with your new cohort.
 

alexwalker

Forever Pilgrim
Camino(s) past & future
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
If you can, try to allow at least 5 weeks for walking. 30 days could be challenging.

Of course you can walk as far as you can in 30 days and return to finish, but that wouldn't be my choice.

If I could only walk for 30 days, my choice would be to start closer to Santiago, I can't imagine getting that close and having to leave everyone that I've met along the way and go home. Actually, I can imagine it somewhat - I had to abandon my second Camino (the Norte) when I was just about 100 km from Santiago because of severe shin splints (and severe stupidity - the shin splits got worse because I refused to stop walking and rest when I first felt them) It was depressing to watch everyone that I had met over the previous weeks go on without me. 😢 You can always go back and do the Pyrenees section later.

Others will recommend starting in St Jean Pied de Port and then busing ahead to make up time on the Meseta. I also wouldn't do this, as I really value the continuity of not skipping sections. You also lose touch with your walking cohort that you start with, and may have to spend a few days walking somewhat alone until you meet and gel with your new cohort.
The smart way: Flight to Madrid or Barcelona, train to Pamplona, and start walking from there the next day. My favourite.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Norte (2017-18)
Portugues (2015)
Frances (2014)
I’m just afraid that I won’t be able to make it to the next place where I can stay. Or nightfall comes and I’m still walking. I’ve heard about the race for beds. I have thought maybe if I walk 8 miles rest 30 min and then set out again. I guess I should mention that I am anemic and have low iron so I get tired quickly. I want start in SJPP but the Pyrenees mountains scare me. Funny enough that’s the part I really would love to do.
The Frances is loaded with places to stay. Not only are there the famous albergues, there are also pensiones, casas rurales, hotels....
About the anemia, I hope you're working on that. Being tired to start out with is discouraging. You could carry some nuts-n-raisins type snacks and see if that helps?
 

JohnLloyd

Author of "Go Your Own Way"
Camino(s) past & future
Francés - SJPDP to SdC - Autumn 2018
Portugués - Porto to SdC - Spring 2019
Francés again - ASAP
I agree with the earlier suggestions - if you have 30 days, then you should consider starting somewhere other than St-Jean.

To walk 30 days and run out of time to reach Santiago and enjoy at least a full day and night there to celebrate with your walking companions could deprive you of the symbolic completion of the Way.

To begin in St-Jean and then skip a section or two in the middle will take you out of sync with your walking companions too.

Pamplona to Santiago can be managed within 30 days, but I'd recommend starting in Burgos, remembering your "8 miles a day" comment earlier in the thread.

Starting in Burgos should enable you to make it to Santiago in good time, and perhaps even a bus trip to Finisterre too.

Just a thought.
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking..
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
Lots of good suggestions for you to ponder. Each and every post has merit (even the few that say you may not like the experience)...I give them all a "like".☺️
Good luck sorting it all out!
 

Garry Collins

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
2014 Frances to Santiago de Compostella
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
Hello , go on your adventure at 53 you are Young . I walked in 2014 at 70 all of October . The walk is not difficult and you will love the experience . Last year at 75 i walked 360 ks Le Puy to Cahors which was tough but still wonderful . Dont be so negative , wait till Covid is over and embrace the challenge .
 

SMBHNL

Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF: 2016, 2017. CP: April 2018
I find the first half of a Camino to be physical and the second half to be mental. You'll be fine!
Oh, and listen to some good podcasts and books on tape.
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
CF SJPDP-SdC
(Apr/May 2018)
VdlP (2022)
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

Excuse me smiling.........but this feeling is very common before your first Camino :)
Most people get the 'jitters'.

I'll just say one thing........

Walking at home (for me) is boring. I don't do it.

Walking on the Camino........is amazing in every way you can imagine :)

Just go...........don't worry......
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2019)
Wow you are inspiring ! I cannot imagine 1400K. Well I will get myself practicing more and not thinking of speed and more of just comfortably getting in quantity of miles in. I like the idea of taking the 10-15 min rest, cause while I won't make record time at least I won't kill myself trying to race. I am so looking forward to going. I have been dreaming for years to go. It was never a possibility until now. I have saved up. I was a single mother for years and unhealthy and it was only a dream...now God willing, it will be my reality.
Do your training walks with the pack that you will use. Load it up to about 23 pounds.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
This would make a good backpack for a girl who weighs 230 pounds... 🙄
In case Elsa weighs a little bit less than that, the 10 per cent rule of the body weight is advisable (I think)
I agree. My backpack usually weighs about 14 pounds without water and food. I rarely carry much food - usually an orange and a chocolate bar.
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF(2012) Le Puy/CF (2015) Portugues (2017) Norte (2018) CF (2019) VDLP?
Wow you are inspiring ! I cannot imagine 1400K. Well I will get myself practicing more and not thinking of speed and more of just comfortably getting in quantity of miles in. I like the idea of taking the 10-15 min rest, cause while I won't make record time at least I won't kill myself trying to race. I am so looking forward to going. I have been dreaming for years to go. It was never a possibility until now. I have saved up. I was a single mother for years and unhealthy and it was only a dream...now God willing, it will be my reality.
God willing will help but your willing will help you make your dream a reality. We all know you can do it.
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF(2012) Le Puy/CF (2015) Portugues (2017) Norte (2018) CF (2019) VDLP?
Excuse me smiling.........but this feeling is very common before your first Camino :)
Most people get the 'jitters'.

I'll just say one thing........

Walking at home is boring. I don't do it.

Walking on the Camino........is amazing in every way you can imagine :)

Just go...........don't worry......
As soon as I can I will start in Sevilla for Camino 6 on the VDLP. I am sure I will have the jitters before I go. I always do. Now they just end a whole lot sooner!
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF(2012) Le Puy/CF (2015) Portugues (2017) Norte (2018) CF (2019) VDLP?
I have realized that I don't have to have an expectation. I want to go for 30 days and hope and pray that I can do it in 30 days, but if I can't, WELL I can stop and come back and finish right? It does not have to be stamped consecutively? It can be done in separate trips?
Yes it can be done in separate trips. Just make sure you keep your Pilgrim passport. The only requirement is that you walk the last 100K which everyone counts as starting is Sarria and getting two stamps each day. I will give you a little more advice. No one can predict how they will feel emotionally, mentally or physically when they walk. Let each day unfold as no two days feel the same or you have the same experiences. Even on the Meseta where some see monotony others feel awakenings. If you can plan to go for more than 30 days, You may find that you do not want to walk more but you need to walk more which is a far more powerful feeling. I assume we have one thing in common and that is you are probably walking on a budget as you said you have been saving for the camino. I too walk on a budget. There can be really great hidden treasure in not having as much money as you think you would like to have. You can stay in Donativos. I Donativo is an albergue that does not have a fixed price for sleeping. You pay what you can afford. But remember if you can afford to pay something please do. It does not mean it is free. Many donativos have communal meals that again you would contribute a few euros, as much as your budget allows. You can also help by getting involved in the preparation or clean up of the dinner. You will share great experiences sitting at a table with wonderful people from around the world. And the way things are going today meeting wonderful people is a great natural vaccine against the craziness around us. Often times they will have a simple breakfast too. You can shop at grocery stores for your lunch and dinner. There will always be people preparing dinner in the albergue and if you ask believe me you will not be refused but be welcomed to join them. If you want to have dinner out with new friends you always have a pilgrims menu for about 10-12 Euros. Or you can meet people after you eat. On your smartphone you should bookmark Gronze.com which gives you lists of albergues, and tells you which are donativos and have kitchen facilities. Maps with distances of stages and distances between towns. There is also an elevation guide too. Download the Buen Camino and Wise Pilgrim apps they have the same information but will give you a wider range of places to stay. They are both free apps. Also do not be stuck on following the stages. Stay where you want and where your body tells you to sleep. If you are traveling during months with alot of pilgrims it will probably elevate your stress to find a bed.
 

jgiesbrecht

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances Sept-Oct 2020
I am 37, but obese and though I trained a bit before I was going to come in march, I ended up w0rkong a sitting job this summer only doing a out 5000 steps a day (so like 2 miles) before coming and starting a few days ago. 8 miles is more than many do before coming, but you still have to besmart. On a few of my longer days I plan to send my bag ahead. It's been tough so far but I have made it each place I've planned. Walking is a bit tough, walking with a bag is tougher, but my goal is too finish....if.i have to use bagtransport or something once in a while I'm ok with that. You haveto figure out what you are comfortable with, but I'd say you are not out of your head or league thinking about it
 

David Tallan

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (1989 and 2016), Portugues - from Porto (2018)
I have realized that I don't have to have an expectation. I want to go for 30 days and hope and pray that I can do it in 30 days, but if I can't, WELL I can stop and come back and finish right? It does not have to be stamped consecutively? It can be done in separate trips?
It can absolutely be done in separate trips. And if you only have 30 days for your first camino, it is great that you are coming without expectations and prepared to do it in multiple trips. Not to say that it can't be done in 30. Many people do. But when my teenage son and I walked it in 2016 (the year I turned 53) we took 37 days from Roncesvalles to Santiago.

If you are going to stop and come back and finish, be sure and keep your credencial (the pilgrim passport you get stamped). Get it stamped in the last place you walk to on this trip and when you return, get the same credencial stamped in the same place to start your next trip. That will help with getting the Compostela at the end. You may want to finish at a place that is handy to transportation.

Of course, you certainly may finish it in 30 days. Many people do. But it is great that you aren't too attached to that. It will help you to walk at the pace that is best for you.

I also like the idea of starting in Burgos. (Yes, you can probably do it from Pamplona, but I am a big believer in giving yourself cushion days in case you need to stop for a few days for some reason. You don't want to find yourself racing to Santiago at a pace that will hurt you.) You will have a complete Camino. And you can always come back on a future trip and walk from Saint Jean Pied de Port or Roncesvalles or Le Puy or somewhere else to Burgos. Any starting point other than your front door is arbitrary. or come back and walk from somewhere to Burgos and on to Santiago again. :)
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2019)
This would make a good backpack for a girl who weighs 230 pounds... 🙄
In case Elsa weighs a little bit less than that, the 10 per cent rule of the body weight is advisable (I think)
When I train, like @VintageElsa1967, I walk less distance during training, for various reasons, than I would whilst on pilgrimage and so I like to compensate by increasing my training pack weight. This also has the advantage of over preparing my body for weight bearing and means that carrying a pack on Camino is almost unnoticeable.

Others, of course, may have different training strategies.
 

David

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Moissac to Santiago Spring 2005 was the first foray.
Hi Elsa - I understand your "disappointment" in your home walking. Walking to prep for Camino surely is one of the dullest activities on the planet - being on Camino is utterly different, a different world - no comparison - so when you can go, go, and don't worry about getting fit if you are an average person, just time your pilgrimage so that your first week is easy stages and build up along the way.

As far as I am concerned I think that you would get better prep by watching The Way once a week in a darkened room, drinking Rioja!!
 

Roger McMahon

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Spring(2015)
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
Hey Elsa just had a friend in Texas do the virtual Camino and she loved it. May be worth a look for you.https://www.theconqueror.events/camino/?gclid=CjwKCAjw2Jb7BRBHEiwAXTR4jV0Xyq_5QiRmGbijcAkZ8xPq2EpfJ0U_h6XJ3VU2Zv-JvVelJG5s6xoCJxcQAvD_BwE. She and her husband did it and she enlisted other suppoerting folks to accompany her and she said it was quite rewarding in these times
 

Roger McMahon

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Spring(2015)
Hey Elsa just had a friend in Texas do the virtual Camino and she loved it. May be worth a look for you.https://www.theconqueror.events/camino/?gclid=CjwKCAjw2Jb7BRBHEiwAXTR4jV0Xyq_5QiRmGbijcAkZ8xPq2EpfJ0U_h6XJ3VU2Zv-JvVelJG5s6xoCJxcQAvD_BwE. She and her husband did it and she enlisted other suppoerting folks to accompany her and she said it was quite rewarding in these times


I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
 
Camino(s) past & future
May 18,2015 - June 23,2015 El Camino Frances
May 25, 2017 - June 30th, 2017 Le Puy to Moissac
OMG 8 miles is more than plenty! Just give your self time with a few days off here and there - you have to rest. So if you want to do the whole thing (500 miles/8miles a day) that's about 62 days. So take 2 months at that pace without days off! Or take the bus for a few stages. You might find that as you go your mileage increases (especially after 3 weeks) and also the adrenaline of the journey will push you further than you think yourself capable of, you might also find that the distance between lodging might be longer than the 8 miles (13k) but that's unusual. Anyway, there are busses and cabs available in every stage so don't fear. Your pace ( just as everyone else's ) is perfect. Buen Camino. In FL you may want to explore the Florida trails system for some variety!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Ponferrada to Santiago (2019)
Seville to Zafra (2020)
Porto to Santiago (2020)
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
At 53 you are YOUNG! I appreciate that 8 miles in flat Florida may not be the ideal preparation but your body will adjust. I did my first 'partial' Camino Frances last year and loved every second of it and was surprised at how I was able to walk 15 - 22 miles per day without a problem. My preparation was similar to yours, just around 8 miles or so locally on flat terrain. This year I did the Camino Portugues fro Porto and was fortunate to complete it before Coronavirus made it too risky. In answer to your question about motivation there would normally plenty of people around to help if needed but generally motivation comes from within in my view. Be positive and tell yourself you are doing it when it is reasonable and safe. Good luck.

PS I am 20 years older than you
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
OMG 8 miles is more than plenty! Just give your self time with a few days off here and there - you have to rest. So if you want to do the whole thing (500 miles/8miles a day) that's about 62 days.
@VintageElsa1967 said that so far, while training she has gotten up to walking 8 miles in a day and is concerned because she finds it boring. I don't believe she means that she plans to walk only 8 miles each day on the Camino.
I remember when I first started training to walk the Camino. The first day that I walked ten miles I was utterly exhausted! Now, four years later I regularly go on 6 mile walks before breakfast.
But, as others have said, it's different on the Camino, where your only job each day is to walk.
 

swweyman

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Completed First Saint Jean Pied de Port to Santiago Camino in May 2018
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
I agree with the other posts in reply to your message. I did my camino (full frances route from SJPP to Santiago) a couple of years ago when I was 60. I live in Miami and found the training to be hard due to the humidity and lack of topography. Our local camino group suggested I go up and down bleachers or up parking garage ramps to simulate the hills. I did find the hills a bit of a challenge on the camino and keeping my footing on rocky/pebble terrain and in muddy conditions but so does everyone. I even got weird stares in my neighborhood when they saw me practicing with pack and poles but I persevered. The good thing was due to my practice training I resolved a lot of issues ahead of time with how to stretch to avoid shin splints, the right socks to avoid/reduce blisters and was able to break in my shoes so don't give up. The other things I didn't like practice walking alongside roads and almost got hit by a few cyclists who didn't warn me they were coming but funnily enough both happened a lot along the camino so I was better prepared. Hang in there and Good luck!!!
 

stinmd

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances - May 2015; Camino del Norte/Primitivo - July/August 2016; Camino Portugues - Sept 2017
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
I have walked the Camino five times and I have never trained for it. Instead, I 'train' as I walk - each day prepares me for the next day. I find that much more enjoyable than going to a gym to prepare for my walk. But, of course, that's just me; everyone is different. The key is to stay flexible distance-wise. You stop whenever you feel the need to stop. As many have said, it's not a race. Enjoy the experience - and the scenery of course!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portugues (June 2013)
Camino Frances- in stages beginning 2019
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
Hello! Walking is time for me to relax and not be pulled by things. Why do you walk? Maybe your motivation needs a revamp... do you love nature? Then the camino will nurture that. Do you love meeting people, then that will be nurtured. Foof motivates you??? Then that may be an incentive. I think that you need to set an intention each time you walk at home- to help motivate you. I took walking as a challenge(54 and very overweight!) and a time for me. Wishing you all the best.
 
Camino(s) past & future
(2017) Started in Sarria.
(2019) Considering a longer walk.
As has been said make sure you have good equipment, shoes that fit your feet and don't cause blisters, a backpack that fits your body and walk with your backpack filled with what you expect to take. Actually, the center of Florida does have hills. You don't have to go to Georgia to find hills. If you are anywhere near Lake Wales/Haines City area try hiking Cat Fish Creek Preserve. I hike in the Rocky Mountains and Cat Fish Creek in Florida almost did me in, because in addition to the hills you're hiking on sand. Make sure you take plenty of water and look for/check out the Florida Scrub Jays.
 

MarkN

Mark
Camino(s) past & future
Leon to Santiago Oct 2016
Porto to Santiago Oct 2017
Porto to Santiago May 2019
Most pilgrims can't prep by walking for 8 hours or 20 km for consecutive days due to work and life.
However think about how many do finish.
Read and learn and ask and practice and prep as I think that's a part of it all.
At some point its a bit of leap of faith.
 

Nocheechako

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances in 2015 & 2016. Portuguese, Muxia next.
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
The best training in my view is being on your feet all day. The Camino is about the head and the heart over the body. I saw many young fit people leave the way because they tried to conquer it and found themselves counquered. The friends you make along the way will also carry you on those difficult days.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Caminos Francais: 2002, 2012, 2019. (Future Ingles, Primitivo, Portuguese in 2021)
I lived in Central Florida for ten years: Orlando, Maitland, Altamonte Springs and Hyde Park area in Tampa. Oh, did I walk Bayshore! I walked an hour a day, in thunder storms, on golf courses, on sidewalks, in all weathers. . I lived in and hiked alone in England, Scotland and Colorado without worry but the Ocala National Forest plain gives me the creeps!

Do your Forum homework for a backpack (it is remarkable how little you will actually need) and gradually add weight to your pack (liter bottles of water). I love TEVA sandals and Zappos is a great online option.

You do not need walking poles in Florida. You may choose to purchase-and-pack-as-luggage (again, use the Forum), or, take a day once in Madrid and UBER to sports store DECATHALON or similar for poles to use on hills and stony trails.

If it is the Camino Francais, I suggest beginning in Roncesvalles or Pamplona. That first day out from St Jean Pied la Port can definitely challenge the newbie peregrina. I know thousands do begin there and feel immense personal satisfaction in that accomplishment. And well done them: truly! However, that starting point is an option, not a necessity! If you fly into Madrid, there is ample Forum information on trains (my choice) or buses to Pamplona and buses or group rides to Roncesvalles.

Keep seeking information on the Forum and as cooler weather arrives in Florida, keep walking. And walking. And walking! Ultreya!
 

Felicia V

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portuguese 2017 Porto to SdC
Return to Camino Portuguese 2018 Tui To SdC
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
I walked the Camino Portuguese from Porto when I was 65. The only thing that made walking difficult was in my training, I didn’t have inclines. Once on the Camino ( I assume any path) you will get hills and inclines, and BIG ones. But isn’t that life? There are times when we are faced with seemingly impossible mountains of challenges; we think: omg, I can’t. Yet.... we do.
you will be surprised at the push and pull your spirit goes through, yet, you will.
Whenever it happens for you, Buen Camino!
 

Liana

Member
Camino(s) past & future
CP Central July 25, 2015
CP Coastal July, 5, 2016
Burgos to Santiago, Sept 2018
CP Central 6/2020
Have a read of this - it may help explain my point a little more.


Great explanation, I totally agree, it is your own camino and don't let others tell you any less! Know that you can start and if your not feeling it, you are in a most beautiful place to explore and still meet amazing people
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Do your Forum homework for a backpack (it is remarkable how little you will actually need) and gradually add weight to your pack (liter bottles of water). I love TEVA sandals and Zappos is a great online option.
A good tip is to pack full water bottles in your pack when you are training. If you decide that the weight is too much, you can simply empty some of them.
You do not need walking poles in Florida.
You may not need walking poles in Florida, but if you are going to use them on the Camino it's best to practice with them. Except when I am in towns and cities I use my poles all the time on the Camino, regardless of incline or terrain.
They help in numerous ways:
They help with my posture while wearing my pack, which changes my center of gravity
They have saved me from falls
They help propel me up hills
They keep my hands from swelling
They help keep my arms toned - why should my legs get all the exercise?!
 

David61

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2019
Frances (2020)
Walk the last 100k from Sarria and get your Compostela, its not too challenging. Then if you choose and have time, jump a train to Tui or Ferrol and walk some more or backtrack the Frances to say Astorga. All doable in your time frame at your pace. Astorga is lovely so have a rest day there
 

Bagman7540

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances April/May 2018
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
I too am from Florida, and did my first Camino Frances when I was in my mid-50's. It is absolutely doable for us. I will warn you, that first stretch from SJPdP is best done in in 2 stages ( I did Orisson then Espinal). I tried to average about 25Km/day, but I let my feet make the final decision. You will find folks to walk with and I absolutely got motivation from them. I hope you decide to do it, you won't be sorry, Buen Camino.
 

DonnaS18

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Sept (2018)
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
The distance seems great at home but is nothing on the Camino. I only trained max 3 hrs at home. Once on the Camino I used to get up early and Just walk for an hr or so then stop for breakfast, then walk for a couple of hours n stop for coffee or cool drink then walk for a couple of hrs n light lunch then walk for an hour or 2 and that was approx 30 k At approx 5k per hr. After a few days your speed increases. Some days are shorter some longer. It’s your choice.
My friend walked at 3k per hr but after about 4 days with poles and bigger stride she increased to 4-4.5 k per hr.
Don’t worry. You will do it easily. Some people used to race through and I kinda felt sorry for them. I always stopped to admire places, animals, nature, people, as for me it was all about the journey.
I met a young lady going really slow near Santiago because she didn’t want to reach the end.
Your limitations are only because you are home. Injury can slow you down but that’s also part of the experience. It’s not a race n solely your journey. Don’t let fear of the unknown scare you from one of the best adventures of your life.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Norte and Frances Sept 6 - Oct 11, 2016
I have been wanting to do the Frances Way. I have been walking and trying get myself used to walking long distances. I am mostly able to do about 8 miles in a day. It is boring and uneventful to just walk here. I have tried walking the beaches and it is better. Still I feel like maybe I should not try to embark on a Camino. Is it different on the Camino? Will I get the motivation from others to continue and move on. I don't want to be a pre-quitter LOL but, I am afraid of getting there and not being able to walk the distance needed daily. I am 53 and in relatively good health. I imagine that walking on the Camino and not worrying about having to be somewhere or do something will make it easier, and also having company at times. Do most people think about not being able to walk the distance? any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated.
You have nothing to worry about. You are doing just fine. I was 70 when I did my first Camino in 2016 and although I was doing a lot of hiking I wasn't doing many 8 mile days. My hikes averaged 8-16 km 2 times a week and that was it. I did work out at the gym and with a personal trainer twice a week. I had no problems at all and I did the Norte and part of the Frances. You would be surprised what you can do once you start out. I have major back problems, feet problems and a knee replacement. It will be a piece of cake for you. You will get lots of motivation. Go for it!!!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Norte and Frances Sept 6 - Oct 11, 2016
The distance seems great at home but is nothing on the Camino. I only trained max 3 hrs at home. Once on the Camino I used to get up early and Just walk for an hr or so then stop for breakfast, then walk for a couple of hours n stop for coffee or cool drink then walk for a couple of hrs n light lunch then walk for an hour or 2 and that was approx 30 k At approx 5k per hr. After a few days your speed increases. Some days are shorter some longer. It’s your choice.
My friend walked at 3k per hr but after about 4 days with poles and bigger stride she increased to 4-4.5 k per hr.
Don’t worry. You will do it easily. Some people used to race through and I kinda felt sorry for them. I always stopped to admire places, animals, nature, people, as for me it was all about the journey.
I met a young lady going really slow near Santiago because she didn’t want to reach the end.
Your limitations are only because you are home. Injury can slow you down but that’s also part of the experience. It’s not a race n solely your journey. Don’t let fear of the unknown scare you from one of the best adventures of your life.
Exactly right. Loved those stops for coffee and later in the day for beer, and you do work up to it.
 

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