Today was a bit of a washout. Both of us were suffering from a lack of gumption for some reason. I got up and decided to get on with a slightly different morning workout routine, based on the principles of natural fitness. I’d already been kind of following this, doing 100 standing squats and 20-30 pushups in the morning. The squats were in preparation for last weekends cycling and the current skiing, and they helped enormously. The press-ups were in anticipation of not having access to gym equipment and wanting to keep a degree of upper body strength.
The new routine is based on a book I got before coming away called ‘Natural Fitness’ by David Nordmark. It works on the principle that all you need is your own bodyweight to condition yourself for strength and fitness, no need for fancy and expensive gym memberships or equipment. It uses 3 principle exercises – press ups, squats and back-bending exercises. Many are based on already understood priniciples from Yoga, Tai-Chi and regular gym exercises. For example, its ‘Hindu Pushup’ is a regular Diving Pushup, which is not dissimilar to the Yoga ‘Sun Salutation’. Anyway, these are bloody hard work, and recommends that you work up to 50 of these. The book isn’t all that great of recommending whether this is done in sets or not, but I assume you can take a rest as you get tired and then carry on. Anyway, I can’t do more than about 5 of these at the moment, so will be working on it!
Anyway, I did a number of exercises, 50 Hindu Squats, 50 regular pushups (30, 10, 10), 10 diving pushups, 100 reps with the 2kg dumbbells I brought along with me, some spine twists, and a few others. I was reasonably warm by the time I’d finished and thought I’d done enough. We took a trip out to the supermarket and by the time I came back felt a complete lack of gumption. I actually felt like I’d been outside working hard all day. Now this was either a result of the last few days catching up with me, or this routine is more aggressive than you’d give it credit for!
So by the time we’d put away all the shopping and thought about skiing, we were both of a mind to take it easy today. We called Andrew & Isabelle and they were taking coffee at the time at Cote 2000 in Megeve, so it would have taken at least an hour and a half to make our way over there. They did recommend the snow however, and we agreed to ski together again tomorrow. If they are going to go back there tomorrow, we’ll probably have to get going early and do a full day, which is not necessarily a bad thing.
So instead of the skiing, we decided to go and walk around the town to see what was different, and to take a walk up the roads towards the base station of St Gervais. Its a long old walk so no expectation of getting all the way there from the village, but the sun was shining, it was warm and just a pleasure to take a not too strenuous stroll along the roads between all the apartments and houses. After about and hour and half of walking up we decided that coffee and cake was a good idea, and with no prospect of finding a cafe on the hillside here, or reaching the Bettex station, we decided to head back down into St Gervais. There we enjoyed a nice cup of coffee and creamy French Pastry whilst sitting enjoying the sun as it started to fade.
We then decided we ought to try and sort out some internet access. There is an internet cafe which runs a wireless service around the town but I’m pretty sure it doesn’t extend as far as the apartment. In the end we just decided that beer in the sunshine with free Wifi was going to do it for today, so did that instead. Might have to just do that on other days when work is necessary if they are happy for us to sit there. Anyway, picked up a message from Patrick & Judith that the SFR SIM card for the iPad is on its way which will be sufficient for day to day emails etc. We can then just go to the internet cafe’s on days when we need to use the laptops for more advanced work, but that should be limited.
I’ve also transferred photos from the bike ride and from the first couple of days in France onto the iPad, so will look to upload those when we have established internet access.
I suspect that the sun tan is going to be ridiculous – if the weather keeps this up, even if we are only walking rather than skiing, the face is going to get very nicely tanned. I’m going to need to find somewhere to sunbathe properly though, as the rest of the body is just going to look stupid otherwise!