The Honeymoon Period

My skin tingled.

My heart beat a little faster.  

This one got my immediate attention.

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An Iceland Adventure

I would visit Iceland again, in a heart beat.

We had camped there for one month in June, 2017. A life-changing experience.

Our plan was to return this year to explore some of the sites we missed on our first visit, such as the Latrabjarg cliffs on the westernmost point in Iceland. These cliffs are home to millions of birds, including puffins, northern gannets, guillemots and razorbills. 

We want to revisit and spend more time hiking the breathtaking countryside; soaking in the hidden hot springs; taking photos of the stunning scenery.  

Travelling to Iceland is not in the cards at the moment.

The News Feed says: Conqueror Virtual Challenge, Ring Road, Iceland

I immediately sign up!

Why Virtual Travel?

My body and spirit are craving something new.

An adventure. A goal. 

I am recalling fond memories and returning to photos from a happy, carefree, period in my life.

Something to get excited about!

10 Things I Learned This First Week On The Challenge

1.  I have to start somewhere.

2.  I need to focus on something besides world news and all of the concerns on our planet.

3.  A new route in the daytime, a garden of rocks, crocuses peaking out.

            A new perspective.

Fifty Yeas

4.  A walk in the evening, the stars and the heavens above me. A new feeling of peace settles upon me.

           I am part of something bigger, greater.  

5.  Pouring rain cleanses and nurtures the Earth and my Soul.  Pouring rain washes away my tears. I am reminded how ‘this, too, shall pass.’

6.  Cold air against my face is exhilarating and life-affirming.

7.  I have a new sense of clarity.

8.  Am I devoting my time to my highest priorities? My deepest values?

9.  Where am I investing my most precious resource, my energy?

10.  I return home, renewed, refreshed, my spirit restored.

The Honeymoon Period 

Virtual walking challenges have been showing up in my news feed the past few months.  

Iceland caught my immediate attention.  

I jump out of bed each morning to log in yesterday’s kilometres. I want to see my little icon on Google Earth. Where am I today? Do I recall this scenery from our trip in 2017?

I realize I am still in the honeymoon period.

If I am lucky, my honeymoon will continue for the next five months.

                    Something to get excited about!

Have you started something new this January, 2021?

What do you look forward to doing every day?

Fifty Yeas-2

Behind the Scenery

You can choose from many walking challenges. 

I have signed onto: The Conqueror Events Challenges, Ring Road, Iceland

Their app is reasonable in price and user friendly. I have received prompt responses to questions from their team members.

It is fun to play with the bells and whistles

Google street view is easily accessible – Real trees are planted for every 20% of the challenge you complete – Receive virtual postcards when you reach certain milestones – A conversion chart for other fitness activities – A unique limited edition medal is mailed to you when you cross the finish line – A diverse, inclusive fitness community from around the world – And many more features.

My goal:  1332.5 km. in 168 days. 

“I had to start somewhere.” 

Minimum 8km per day. This goal can be changed at any time.

I have a pace car behind me, nudging me along.

I have the stunning views of Iceland, ahead of me.

              I look forward to the scenery along the way.

Friends have signed onto various walking/fitness challenges

We are supporting each other. I can easily add names to this list.

Joanne   Following A Bold Plan

Sue   Women Living Well After 50 

Deb   Deb’s World

Jo   And Anyways…

Donna   Retirement Reflections

Sue, an inspirational blogger and friend, has written an excellent post “Move it or lose it – don’t let COVID lockdown be your excuse”

Leanne, a friend and blogger has an informative and inspirational blog called “Cresting The Hill.”  As part of her Midlife Symphony Series in 2020, she shared my story “How an Iceland Adventure led to midlife blogging.”

“Iceland Naturally, The Icelander” published my story in their July, 2018 issue.  “How do I choose I favourite photo of Iceland?” 

162 thoughts on “The Honeymoon Period

  1. Hi Erica. You are so thoughtful to write out a description of the virtual walking challenge that you are on for all of us who are interested. I can see that it is appealing because it spices up everyday walks and encourages a person to walk farther and more often. As I mentioned to you, I found my Fitbit very motivating because I liked checking and comparing my data from day to day, and ever since the device broke, my motivation to walk has not been as high. My phone has a “Health” app on it that supposedly tracks distances walked. However, I believe it is very inaccurate because compared to my Fitbit, it always undercounted my steps by at least half. (E.g., if my Fitbit said I’d walked 10,000 steps, by contrast the Health app had only logged around 4,000 to 6,000 steps. Part of that is because I don’t carry my phone everywhere — nor do I want to, but part of it is that the phone app is not properly calibrated to my walking steps.)

    I’ve always wanted to go to Iceland IRL. I can imagine how fun it is to do this challenge when you’ve actually been there.

    Jude

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I mentioned to you, Jude, how you prompted this post. I was typing an email to you and I thought, I should turn this into a blog post. I am finding it is also helping with accountability, when I sometimes drag my body out for an evening walk to add some kilometres to my day. Of course, always glad I did. The phone app does not sound at all accurate for you. Your weeks are already filled with many projects and activities. You lead a healthy lifestyle, Jude. 🙂

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    1. Thank you for visiting here and your thoughtful comment, Debbie. Especially since you have been away with many priorities, your husband and your home. Wow, learning to speak Spanish. Sounds challenging and fun. Good for you! Take care, and we will stay connected.xx ❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  2. How fun! I have not looked into virtual walking challenges, but they sound very intriguing. I pulled out my dusty Fitbit at the beginning of 2021 and have been logging a minimum of 10,000 steps and 15 flights of stairs each day. Adding a virtual element of actual travel would make it more interesting. 🙂 I love those Iceland photos, Erica. Hopefully, it won’t be too much longer before we are able to begin to make our way about the world more. xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Amy, I had not given virtual walking challenges much thought, until Iceland appeared in my news feed. My body immediately said yes, before my head could wrap around it. You are already amazing with over 10,000 steps and the stairs every day. This virtual element has upped the fun factor and accountability. Thank you for your kind words. Yes, Amy, we will be able to travel again one day. Virtually for now. Take care.xx ❤️

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  3. Iceland has long been on my bucket list, but I don’t think I’ll be getting there for some time so thank you Erica, for taking me virtually in your post and through your beautiful pictures.
    I hope you have fun on all your virtual Icelandic adventures. I LOVE all your words and lessons. Enjoy the challenge and all that’s to come. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am still enjoying my virtual adventures in Iceland and all of the IRL hikes on our Island. This morning I was blown away seeing sheep on the side of the road (virtually) Thank you for your kind, supportive comment, Miriam, today and always.❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  4. This sounds like a fabulous idea. Iceland has long been on our wish list and hoping one day we can make it a reality. Your photos stir up my wanderlust that’s for certain. Good luck with the challenge!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ice walking adventures in Iceland, too, Sue. 🙂 We were there in the month of June. We may try for August, September in our next visit. You showcase some of the gorgeous areas we call home. Thank you for the supportive words about the walking challenge.

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  5. Wonderful post Erica and Iceland has always been a place I would love to visit… in the summer.. thanks for the photographs, they are amazing.. I have decided to learn Italian this year as Italy is also on my list including Lake Como and The Isle of Capri, and my husband says that I speak the other languages French and Spanish that I have absorbed over our years of living there, with an Italian accent anyway! xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Funny, Sally, on speaking French and Spanish with an Italian accent. It is great to learn a new language especially if you have a goal in mind to visit the country. You are inspirational with how you challenge yourself and all of your irons in the fire. Thank you for your kind, supportive comment. 🙂 I am finding this virtual walk is beneficial on many levels, and the memories transport me to Iceland.xx

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Hello Erica. I hope you are still enjoying your virtual challenge. It sounds like a lovely way to spice up your walking…to stay motivated and connect with others. I’ve never been to Iceland, but your photos are beautiful. And, as always, your writing touched something in me and reminded me of the importance of connecting with myself and what is important to me. This time of the year is somewhat dreary where I live. The grass is brown; the flowers are not yet out; and this year we’ve had very little snow, so it looks pretty drab. It tends to bring my spirits down a bit, but this year, having a new puppy and a place to escape to in warmer Southern Utah has really helped. Take care. Good luck with your challenge! Enjoy the journey.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Christie, I am still having fun with the virtual challenge and seeing where I end up on Google Earth each day. Using the app helps with accountability and extra walking each day. Thank you for your beautiful comment. I needed to read this today since you are reminding me of the importance of connecting with myself. I am not at all in the mood to go out for my evening walk, tonight, yet this is often when it is most peaceful. I know you usually do a lot of walking, Christie. The new puppy must be such a joy in your home. I look forward to connecting more in 2021. I especially love your Thank You Notes.❤️

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  7. A friend of mine was stationed there years ago. She spent a lot of her time knitting because of the famous Icelandic wool. Great post. Your photo is gorgeous. 🙂 We have goals to walk at least 35,000 steps a day, but we have two feet of snow on the ground which makes it harder!!! Enjoy the walks, and we’ll follow your progress. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Marsha, They still have many sheep, and beautiful wool items. I think 35,000 steps a day is an approximate half marathon. Wow, an amazing goal. Like you say, the snow on the ground adds a significant challenge. Friends of mine are indoor and outdoor biking some of the routes. I needed to fire it up a notch. Thank you for connecting and your kind, supportive words, Marsha. 🙂

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  8. wow lovely shots Erika, I can virtual travel everyday right here on our blogs! Your attitude is highly commendable 🙂

    Last year during the height of our lockdown I had to clear out our family home as siblings were locked out overseas. It sold and I now have my forever home 🙂 upgrading from a tiny off grid home was momentus during lockdown due to factories shut, exports halted but I managed it. So this year is settling into my community even more, nesting and doing magical walks and cycling in this incredible environment whilst still meditating … my real passion. So this has given me time to settle and cement my lifestyle … happy walking!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I cannot imagine how challenging clearing out and moving has been this past year, Kate. Amidst the stress it sounds like you have a healthy lifestyle. I have been working on meditating. A work in progress. Thank you for your thoughtful and supportive words. Yes, walking…..lots!!! And, even more fun with a new challenge.🙂

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