This year I signed up for the Walk The Walk Moonwalk in London on the 16th May, I had the option of doing a marathon or half marathon in support of breast cancer awareness and to raise as much money as possible for the charity.
My motivation for doing the walk, is that my late sister in law Clair had breast cancer and sadly died 10 years ago from the awful disease, and I wanted to walk in her memory and keep her memory alive.
The Moonwalk (half marathon) is a 15 mile walk in London which takes place at night, lots of fun to be had by the look of the previous walks and a great way to raise awareness and funds for a wonderfully supportive charity.
Clothing, Footwear & Gadgets
I have started to get all the things I may need to take with me for the walk and began with the clothing and as it’s at night I wanted to make sure that I stayed nice and warm (and visible being at night!) so essential base layers and warm socks are a must.
Starting with a warm base layer this 100% Merino Wool Layer Top from EDZ is great because as well as keeping me really snug and warm, it is not scratchy at all but soft and comfortable and ideal for a chilly nights walk. I was looking for layers to take with me, as I expect I will be pretty cold to start with but get much warmer as the night goes on, and I want to make sure I have the right clothes that aren’t too heavy to carry. The beauty of the EDZ merino wool top is that it is so light yet totally practical as it is really insulating.
I don’t want to be uncomfortable on my walk, and as I am catching the train to London on the day I want to travel with this in mind, these Helly Hansen Black & Pink Capri Trousers are so breathable and have the quick drying fabric that will keep any moisture away on my long walk. The Capri trousers are brilliant to wear and when I saw them in their bold pink and white colours I was thrilled that they were in the colours of the event. They also have a reflective Helly Hansen motif on the leg which will be useful as it is a night walk.
Also from Helly Hanson is this short sleeved Aspire Lifa Flow in Pink Shake again I was so happy that it was in the pretty pink shade (pink shake) for the Moonwalk and ultra practical as it also benefits from being quick drying and wicking away any moisture. The top is very lightweight and has a mesh webbing strip down the back of the top to allow plenty of airflow, and one of the best features is that no matter how hot I get the top will stay totally dry with the Lifa Stay Dry Technology.
One of my considerations on the Walk was where will I put my phone, keys and any money I take? I don’t want to have to take a large backpack but want something that is light and portable, and some way to keep my valuables close by. The FlipBelt stepped in to solve my worries and I managed to get in in a bright and bold hot pink colour too. It’s a great invention for walkers and runners alike as it eliminates the need for pockets in your trousers with it’s nifty design. You wear as you would a belt, and put your phone, keys, headphones and money in the integral pockets within the FlipBelt. Once you have added your items to the pockets just flip the belt around to show the seamless front on the belt. The great thing about the FlipBelt is that once on it doesn’t ride up or down when you are running or walking, it stays in place keeping your valuables close to you.
Footwear is important as I will be taking so many steps on my 15 mile walk! These W Wicked Race Helly Hansen Black & Pink breathable trainers are very comfortable and the mesh lining will help my feet to breathe. The Helly Hansen reflective motif on the outside of the trainers is great as I was looking to find a training shoe that can be seen well on the night. Helly Hansen have made these trainers provide support and stability to the foot as well as giving cushioning and excellent grip in all weather. I hope it’s not raining on the night, but having the comfort of knowing the shoes will support me in any terrain is very reassuring.
Keeping in line with the colours of the event (pink!) these Nike Downshifter 6 Running Trainers from Brantano not only look the part but are so comfortable. Cushioned and designed to support your feet upon impact, the Nike Downshifter trainers also let your feet breathe with the mesh lining and the deeper grooves on the underside of the trainer help to keep the range of motion as natural as possible. The reflective motif on both of the trainers is perfect for the walk as it’s at night I want as many reflective items as possible. I am going take both pairs with me as back up just in case I get the dreaded blisters!
If you haven’t heard of the Fitbit Flex it is a fantastic activity and sleep tracker which is wireless and you simply wear it on your wrist to monitor your activity and sleep. It’s a slim and colourful gadget which comes in 10 colour choices, and the beauty of the Fitbit is that you can effortlessly track your activity and sleep wirelessly via bluetooth straight onto your smart phone or computer. You can set your goal and check your progress on your phone or by looking at the LED lights on the Fitbit Flex, as each light goes on another step of your goal has been reached giving you a useful visual indicator. It can make you a lot more motivated and I have found each day I am aiming to beat the results of the last day, and I am trying to increase my steps on the run up to the Walk The Walk.
The Superfeet Berry Insole is designed for the female foot (with a slimmer heel and arch length) with superior support for the feet. Available in many colours the insole makes for a really comfortable walk or run, taking the impact of the foot pounding on the ground so you get a much more enjoyable walk. I really have taken to the Superfeet insoles and they will help make the Moonwalk much more bearable if I have sore feet during the walk!
Socks – such a simple item, but get them wrong and potentially my poor feet could end up with blisters! When I tried the Teko Evapor8 Ultralight I noticed that they claimed to be ‘The Best Socks On The Planet’ a big claim so I have put them to the test during the training I have been doing. These Teko socks have been specifically designed for women, with added cushioning on the toe and heel and moisture wicking fabric to keep the feet dry. These socks have been quite a revelation to me as they are great for comfort, and so far no blisters on the long walks I have been doing. The test will be the 15 miles!
Nutrition, Supplements & Skincare
Having the right nutritional balance is really important to me as I don’t want anything to get in my way of finishing the walk, and I certainly don’t want to flake out half way through! Higher Nature have a supplement that is packed with anti-oxidants to help support the body during and after sport, so I have added Superphyte to my training regime. This supplement from Higher nature is not only vegetarian but full of a rainbow of plant based fruits and vegetables to boost my anti-oxidants for the walk.
Replacing electrolytes on the walk (and after) is essential and I intend to stay fully hydrated before, during and after to make sure that I can give it my all as the walk means so much to me. Higher Nature have a box of 14 handy sachets (easy to pop in my backpack) of isotonic electrolytes (Performax hydrate) in powder form so all I need to do is add them to water to replenish and rehydrate.
A sugar free tube of electrolyte tablets with a very low calorie count is another fast rehydration solution which I have been trying out from Nuun. I like the fact they are in a portable and handy tube and come in 11 different flavours and each tube will be enough to make 12 500ml drinks – more than enough for the whole walk I think!
ORS also have rehydration tablets in three fruit flavours, lemon (my favourite) strawberry and blackcurrant, again in a handy tube to take with me and perfect to rehydrate me during and after the walk. In fact my OH and I have both been using the ORS tablets as he is training for a Triathlon and is always in need of effective hydration while training.
Walking 15 miles will no doubt make me a little hungry and although there is a delicious vegetarian hot meal to look forward to when I finish the walk, I will be packing some nutritious snacks to keep me going before and during the walk. Both the Mule Bars and the Clif bars are ideal as both offer the sustained energy I will need on the night. The Clif bar is made of rolled oats and is a good source of protein and fibre and comes in 6 great flavours including chocolate chip. The Mule bars come in 8 flavours and are all natural and even come with a compostable wrapper (a brilliant idea) and if you like it a little spicy you can try the very different flavour combination of the Eastern Express bar which combines garam masala, nigella seeds, salt and cayenne pepper with the nutty flavours of pistachios, almonds, cashews and pumpkin seeds.
Not that I’m anticipating feeling the aches and pains of muscle and joint soreness (but just in case I do!) I am packing some Flexiseq Sport in my bag to ease the pain after my walk – I know my legs will thank me for it! It’s cooling, targets joint pain and is used widely by many sports people to help performance.
Higher Nature have Performax Recover-Ease to apply on any aching muscles or cramps to alleviate any pain within 30 minutes of using. The muscle rub helps to support the body’s natural inflammatory process and although I don’t want to think about getting aching muscles it’s good to know I will have all my bases covered.
Polar Frost have taken the idea of treating muscle cramps or aches with a topical gel enhanced with menthol and aloe vera. Not only has Polar Frost been tried and tested by sports people but also by the Finnish Olympic Team who have found the benefits of the naturally active ingredients of the cooling menthol and restorative aloe vera.
Once the walk is over and I am at home celebrating my achievement with my family (and after a soak in the bath!) I have ActivBod Cooling Finish Lotion to help me recover and feel refreshed and moisturised. With the natural ingredients of eucalyptus, lemon and pepper to invigorate and refresh, and also a natural deodoriser. The lotion dries really quickly to a non-sticky finish and smells fresh and clean, and has a really cooling and stimulating feeling after exercise and I’m sure it will be needed after 15 miles!
Another stimulating product from ActivBod is the Mind Over Matter Balm which will help to motivate me to carry on if my resolve is low at 4am! With mood boosting essential oils (100% natural) os spearmint, galbanum, peppermint, patchouli, armoise, clary sage, thyme, absolute, thyme oil, bergamot, and cedarwood (phew!) the aim of the balm is to clear the mind, as well as the senses whenever you need to. Not only will this balm be ideal for a little extra motivation on the Walk I have found it a real pick me up at work when I am having an afternoon slump.
An essential vitamin booster I will also pack is the 6Vitaminshot a small but powerful super-dose of 6 vitamins and amino acids to help support and improve sports performance. What I like about the 6Vitaminshot products is that they are individual single handy shots that are portable and can be taken whenever you need them.
Something I don’t want to catch is a cold before the walk and the Coldzyme spray will help to ward off any infection before it may take hold. Fish is packed full of essential vitamins and minerals and the Coldzyme is the first clinically proven product to develop trypsin enzyme (found in fish) to help trap the virus within the mouth and throat before it has the opportunity to get any worse.
Once I am home I will certainly be soaking my feet as after 15 miles and the train home they will be feeling in need of some TLC, Flexitol have some great products to care for your feet and in particular address any hard skin that you need to get rid of. The Flexitol Heel Balm has 25% Urea (highly concentrated) to help restore and nourish the dry skin on your feet, I have found this Heel Balm has worked wonders on my dry heels and paired with the Flextiol Moisturising Foot Cream has made my feet smooth and soft and I’m happy to say free of any unsightly dry flaky skin. Not only will I be using the range up until the walk, but on the day I get back, after a foot soak I will be using the foot cream to moisturise my sore feet!
I have set up my fundraising page with my group I am walking with (The Mama Mias) and all the information about the group and the walk is on my page – See below.
|My Walk The Walk – Moonwalk Page|
If you would like to sponsor me to do the walk I would be very grateful and all the money raised is going to such a good cause, just follow this link to give any amount you can. Thank you so much in advance if you can offer some money to sponsor me, as I am doing the walk with a lot of love in my heart and it means so much to me to know that the money raised will help other breast cancer sufferers.
*The products featured in this post were provided for the purpose of the half marathon (walk the walk) for review however all opinions and views remain my own*