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Meet the Walkers: Jackie

Our Meet the Walkers blog series is back! We asked walkers who have taken part in the Step Count Challenge why they decided to take part and what walking means to them.

Published: 06/08/2020

Jackie works at the University of St Andrews, and took part in this year's spring Step Count Challenge to stay motivated to move more. Jackie told us how she used the opportunity of this year's challenge to explore new walking routes during lockdown.

Where do you like to walk?

I would normally say by the sea, but since lockdown I have turned my attention to the local area. We are blessed with a fantastic range of tracks and paths, and several nearby hills giving spectacular views of Northeast Fife.

What do you enjoy the most about walking?

The best thing is just to be able to move! I have rheumatoid arthritis which can make desk-based working painful and fatiguing. I definitely believe in the healing power of nature, so a stroll outdoors, discovering new routes and paying attention to local wildlife, can be really energizing. At this time of year the skylarks have become my ‘anthem’ for walking. Sharing news of our walks with my team adds to the pleasure – for example discovering some wild garlic in local woods and enjoying foraged soup – and we do enjoy the motivation of Step Count Challenge!

Tell us about your most memorable walk. What made it special?

Two walks come to mind. One was memorable for being the furthest I’ve managed to walk in a very long time, on a glorious sunny day. It included some unscheduled meandering round nettles when we lost the path for a while, but was hugely satisfying to make it up a local hill which I have driven past for years on my daily commute thinking “bet its lovely up there” – it is!! The other was a short evening walk up the hill behind our house, when we spotted a group of roe deer in the woods. We sat down and for once the deer weren’t skittish, and carried on grazing close by.