Good to be home but I would also be happy to still be travelling… I’m not yet in the timezone and haven’t had a full night’s sleep since I returned. Sleep deprivation is severe to the point that I shouldn’t be driving. Luckily I only had 2 days at work this week and they were long!
Regarding weight, I returned home exactly the same weight as I left which I think given the following is miraculous:
- For 3 weeks before I left I was on an elimination diet for food sensitivities (ie no bread, grains, dairy or alcohol etc – just meat and veggies). So I lost a couple of kilos before I left.
- In Europe I let all of that lapse and ate and drank whatever I wanted. My average day went like this:
*shared pre-breakfast – just had to try a pastry from whatever Boulangerie or Patisserie we were passing on our way to find breakfast…
*breakfast – un ou deux cafés et un jambon et fromage omelette (one or two coffees and an omelette with ham and cheese) – although I have learnt that the Google Translate can be a bit broken…
*shared 6 pack of macarons – yummmm
*lunch of cheese/cold meat and salad and a wine/champagne or two (especially in Brussels)
*dinner of steak/chicken and salad/veggies and a couple of wines/champagnes
*bread, bread and more bread – completely unavoidable in Europe. Some days I am sure that we were served a side of bread with a bread based dish.
*usually some frites (hot chips) somewhere throughout the day
*I averaged about 5 glasses of alcohol a day which is probably my weekly consumption at home…
Now if that was my regular diet at home I would soon end up bulging at the seams. The best thing about travelling is that you can be constantly active rather than desk bound. Our days of walking ranged from 5km (flying days) to 32km (a big day in Paris) and averaged around 16km.
I have roughly estimated that we walked 220km (which would nearly get you from Canberra to Sydney) with about 145 of those kilometres being in Paris. Once we got to Brussels the walking tended to be around the beautiful, medieval canal cities where we were just wandering and gazing in awe at the sights. In Paris we had to walk a long way to get to the various destinations. We did take the Metro sometimes but most days we had nothing better to do than wander along and appreciate the sights along the way.
I say roughly estimated the kilometres because the pedometer did not work out at all. I think that the layers of winter clothing were too restrictive and held the pedometer in place too firmly. Unfortunately they don’t work on the outside of jackets etc either.
At home I would use an iPhone app to measure and map my walks but of course that requires internet access and we all know what happened there!! Also these types of apps tend to chew up phone batteries very quickly. The one day that I did have internet access, my phone battery only lasted half the day.
So the only way that I can think of that I could accurately map and measure my distances would be with a GPS watch or other handheld device. I might think about that next time as I could then also keep a map of where I walked.
Within a few days of returning home and getting back to normal eating patterns (although the alcohol consumption hasn’t quite settled down yet) I had lost a further kilo. So, while I think you need to do more than the recommended 10 000 steps per day, walking can get the weight off you despite my best efforts to thwart it with all that yummy food and wine. I’m happy to keep travelling and confirming that theory…