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What inspires you for the physical aspect of the Way?

60LifeChange

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Time of past OR future Camino
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I have been incredibly inspired by so many stories of loss, pain, diagnosis, or other stories that tug at my heart strings, but one pilgrim, since lost in the threads here, was an 83 year old man who had walked the Camino many times, but his last post was that he wasn't likely to make the next Camino as his cancer was "acting up" and he had "two tin knees". I was gobsmacked that someone with this ailment and physical condition could ever walk a mile, much less 500 miles. and he had done it many times.

For what ever reason, i took that post to heart, and thought if an elderly man with all this on his shoulders could walk it?

I damn well should be able to.

Why this post stuck out so much is unknown, but it gives me the continued inspiration to succeed. While i have many emotional, mental and spiritual reasons to go, this drives me for the physical portion of the Camino. and I have read many similar stories that each, is moving and very inspiring to succeed in the physical aspect of The Way.

Buen Camino
 
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I didn't have any physical inspirations prior to going. I knew I wanted to, that I needed to walk Camino and that was it. I did have physical trepidations as a decade before my friend had started Camino and quit the next day.

I was constantly impressed with the people I saw walking every day. Old, young, fit, not fit. One man I met had had 2 heart attacks and there he was outpacing me up a mountain. I wasn't inspired by any of them, but I did admire them all.
 
It was late July 2016. I was walking with my son in the meseta, who had just turned16 a few days ago. It wasn't an easy walk for either of us, as neither of us had done any training. We arrived in Sahagun mid-day after walking about 20km and were proud of what we had accomplished, taking a nice afternoon rest during the heat of the day. Late in the afternoon, at 4 or 5 (the hottest part of the day) a pilgrim arrived at the albergue. He was definitely over 70 if he was a day. He had walked 40km that day to arrive.
 
The focus is on reducing the risk of failure through being well prepared. 2nd ed.
I didn't know where this was going to go when i started this post but i feel better now 🤣

I don't know if this is appropriate in the context of your post!

For me the Camino or the thought and desire to walk the Camino; became a catalyst that re affirmed in me the fact that i am still alive and game enough for an adventure with purpose!

After doing it my head and heart changed ; i felt more content in myself and my life than i had done for some years. (probably because i knew i wanted that feeling again)

I now have something special to me that no one i know has experienced and i will walk until i can't anymore!
I just wonder if that same feeling exists ;in those of us that are older teenagers 🤣
It gives me the same feeling as i had 50 years ago traveling Europe on my motorcycle; thinking i was John Wayne disappearing into the sunset!!!
I posted before my tattoo says "Don't let your head stop your heart from moving" have memories not dreams and keep walking!!!
 
For me, it’s a bit hard to articulate, but it has to do with testing myself and my ability to deal with hardship. I expect to be tired, hungry, cold, hot, miserable, wet, under all kinds of weather conditions, which for some reason is exactly why I want to do something that an intellectual person like me is not very used to. There is probably an element of ego in all of this, because I want to be able to say “I walked across Spain, all 500 miles, every single damn step”, because to me that would be a monumental feat that was unthinkable for me to even try. But I’m getting older, with some assorted ailments, so I know that at some point, my health will go downhill. While I’ve accomplished many things in my life, like my college degrees, doing the Camino feels more of a raw, grounded, authentic experience, where I’ll have to rely on my resilience, my wits, my stamina, and face risks, danger, and the possibility of failure (it just takes a fracture-producing fall to end my walk). I’ve never attempted anything like this, and it feels like I’m getting in touch with something very primal within me, by getting out of my head and into my body.
I don’t know if I’ll succeed, but something in me is telling me “do it anyway, even if you fail”.
So I’ll go. I’ll walk, hopefully every single step of the way.
 
I think I'm generally 'inspired' to walk a Camino by the Emotional and Spiritual 'freedom' that I know I will enjoy. Being away from day to day pressures and responsibilities.

But the physical?

Yes it's a major part of the attraction.
I'm not really inspired by goals or challenges.
Perhaps the opposite.

But I'm 'uplifted' by the physicality of the Camino.
I feel more relaxed, feel myself getting stronger and fitter.
And just 'healthier, through being outside all day doing something physical.
I feel 'alive'.

Does the physical element 'inspire' me though?

Sure I enjoy the feeling of reaching a hilltop and looking back at the views.
Or of sitting awhile and trying to retrace my steps and see where I started.
Though it never influences me to walk harder or further. Not at all.

No. The physical element is more a feeling of immense gratitude rather than inspiration.
Starting out injured on my first Camino, I never expected to reach Santiago from St Jean.
Every day was a challenge to be overcome.
And I was truly grateful for each extra day I was 'allowed' to keep going.
I felt I was being willed along somehow.
At times that feeling was very powerful.
Though being prepared to have to go home at any stage, I relished every day.

That taught me gratitude.........

9 years later, I still offer thanks at the beginning and end of each Camino day.......
It's my little ritual.
If it all ends on Day 1. I will have still had at least one great day on Camino.
And so I make sure I appreciate every moment.
 
The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
Hi HB560!
Yep I would happily have added these to my post above; but forgot to put them on my shopping list:)



Regarding the ego bit i suppose it's the fact i feel special instead of ordinary; does that make sense?
Buen Camino
Woody
I never felt special instead of ordinary but what did happen was the ordinary became special !

Samarkand.
 
I am inspired to walk another Camino because simply walkng the Camino provides me with, perhaps, one of the best experiences of a lifetime (and I've had many to contemplate). The friendship from strangers (many who have become friends), great food, great sights, and the ability to forget about everything except walk, eat, feet, sleep, feet, repeat.
 
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For me, it’s a bit hard to articulate, but it has to do with testing myself and my ability to deal with hardship. I expect to be tired, hungry, cold, hot, miserable, wet, under all kinds of weather conditions, which for some reason is exactly why I want to do something that an intellectual person like me is not very used to. There is probably an element of ego in all of this, because I want to be able to say “I walked across Spain, all 500 miles, every single damn step”, because to me that would be a monumental feat that was unthinkable for me to even try. But I’m getting older, with some assorted ailments, so I know that at some point, my health will go downhill. While I’ve accomplished many things in my life, like my college degrees, doing the Camino feels more of a raw, grounded, authentic experience, where I’ll have to rely on my resilience, my wits, my stamina, and face risks, danger, and the possibility of failure (it just takes a fracture-producing fall to end my walk). I’ve never attempted anything like this, and it feels like I’m getting in touch with something very primal within me, by getting out of my head and into my body.
I don’t know if I’ll succeed, but something in me is telling me “do it anyway, even if you fail”.
So I’ll go. I’ll walk, hopefully every single step of the way.
Buen Camino. - hope it’s not too warm.
 
I’m not sure I can separate the physical from the emotional and spiritual.
But ….When I was approaching 70 I thought I didn’t have another Camino in me. At that point the body was not in the best of health.
Much to my surprise, factors collaborated, the Camino called, and I walked the whole VDLP and Sanabres.
I think the actual inspiration comes from the Camino itself - in it’s profoundly magical way - and then the example of other pilgrims … I see and read about others who are much older than me - often with injuries I don’t have - still walking.
That is truly inspiring and gives me more confidence that I can again follow the Camino's call. 🚶‍♂️♥️
 
I didn't know where this was going to go when i started this post but i feel better now 🤣

I don't know if this is appropriate in the context of your post!

For me the Camino or the thought and desire to walk the Camino; became a catalyst that re affirmed in me the fact that i am still alive and game enough for an adventure with purpose!

After doing it my head and heart changed ; i felt more content in myself and my life than i had done for some years. (probably because i knew i wanted that feeling again)

I now have something special to me that no one i know has experienced and i will walk until i can't anymore!
I just wonder if that same feeling exists ;in those of us that are older teenagers 🤣
It gives me the same feeling as i had 50 years ago traveling Europe on my motorcycle; thinking i was John Wayne disappearing into the sunset!!!
I posted before my tattoo says "Don't let your head stop your heart from moving" have memories not dreams and keep walking!!!
I particularly Love the last sentence of your post Woody66. Due to extremely bad deterioration in my Spine, I can no longer physically walk without severe pain, but, your lines here have really "hit a cord and Resonate very deeply. :)
 
The one from Galicia (the round) and the one from Castilla & Leon. Individually numbered and made by the same people that make the ones you see on your walk.
I learned that the physical demands of my maiden camino significantly strengthened my mind and filled me with grace. The memory of that connection between mind, body and spirit lingers. The physical aspects ignited a desire to test myself further for the next one in 2026. However I have not stayed active outside of work for over 6 months now and paying for it with a sore back and SI joint issues caused by arthritis. I want to walk and walk and walk again as the simplicity of it makes me feel the most free I have ever felt. But in order to do that I need to be more active at home. Joining a gym next week with my niece. I am hopeful that this will get me out of my funk.
 
September 2016. In Beilari in SJPDP the night before beginning the Camino Frances for the third time. An older English gentleman in his 70s at the dinner table expressed some doubts about his fitness and decided to walk via Valcarlos with the option of stopping there if it all proved too hard. He looked very fit and well to me. I chose that route too and arrived to find him already ahead of me drinking coffee and reading a newspaper at a cafe about 11am. He decided to carry on to Roncesvalles. I would not have caught up with him again that day if he had not stopped on the way to support and encourage a much younger German man who was struggling - overweight and overloaded. Our paths crossed several times until we parted company after the Alto del Perdon.
 
For me, it’s a bit hard to articulate, but it has to do with testing myself and my ability to deal with hardship. I expect to be tired, hungry, cold, hot, miserable, wet, under all kinds of weather conditions, which for some reason is exactly why I want to do something that an intellectual person like me is not very used to. There is probably an element of ego in all of this, because I want to be able to say “I walked across Spain, all 500 miles, every single damn step”, because to me that would be a monumental feat that was unthinkable for me to even try. But I’m getting older, with some assorted ailments, so I know that at some point, my health will go downhill. While I’ve accomplished many things in my life, like my college degrees, doing the Camino feels more of a raw, grounded, authentic experience, where I’ll have to rely on my resilience, my wits, my stamina, and face risks, danger, and the possibility of failure (it just takes a fracture-producing fall to end my walk). I’ve never attempted anything like this, and it feels like I’m getting in touch with something very primal within me, by getting out of my head and into my body.
I don’t know if I’ll succeed, but something in me is telling me “do it anyway, even if you fail”.
So I’ll go. I’ll walk, hopefully every single step of the way.
Well said. I have many of the same thoughts.
Buen Camino.
 
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Walking the Camino Portuguese is more than just a physical journey; it’s a soul-stirring odyssey through history, culture, and personal discovery. As each step connects you to the ancient paths traversed by pilgrims for centuries, I find myself immersed in a tapestry of breathtaking landscapes and diverse communities. Along this pilgrimage, we have encountered not only the beauty of Portugal and Spain but also the beauty within ourselves. The Camino offers a profound opportunity for reflection, growth, and renewal as we shed the burdens of everyday life and embrace the simplicity of the present moment. Whether seeking spiritual enlightenment, cultural enrichment, or simply an adventure of a lifetime, the Camino Portuguese beckons with its promise of transformation and the extraordinary gift of self-discovery. Embark on this sacred journey, and let each footfall be a testament to the resilience of the human spirit and the boundless possibilities that lie ahead.
 
For what ever reason, i took that post to heart, and thought if an elderly man with all this on his shoulders could walk it?
For me it's releasing the burden of my daily life.
Getting grounded and just walking is a good cure for many sorrows brought by the lifestyle in the western world. I have walked the CF and the CP and even that many troubling things happened to me in the last years, I feel relieved on a Camino.
I'm planning to walk the Camino de Madrid or thirds of the CF again.
 
September 2016. In Beilari in SJPDP the night before beginning the Camino Frances for the third time. An older English gentleman in his 70s at the dinner table expressed some doubts about his fitness and decided to walk via Valcarlos with the option of stopping there if it all proved too hard. He looked very fit and well to me. I chose that route too and arrived to find him already ahead of me drinking coffee and reading a newspaper at a cafe about 11am. He decided to carry on to Roncesvalles. I would not have caught up with him again that day if he had not stopped on the way to support and encourage a much younger German man who was struggling - overweight and overloaded. Our paths crossed several times until we parted company after the Alto del Perdon.
Bradypus, have you ever written an uninteresting post? Methinks not.
 
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