Video testimonial by Jane Fitzgerald about how Nordic walking has helped Jane with her weight, fitness, and knees. Jane has made new friends and has been inspired to enter various 10k Nordic walking challenge events
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If you prefer to read Jane’s testimonial please read on below.
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VIDEO TESTIMONIAL – JANE FITZGERALD (23rd June 2017)
Matt: Hello, it’s Matt from Nordic Walking Preston, and I’m here today with Jane. Jane’s one of our Nordic walkers and we’re doing another one of these video testimonials. You’ll see that there are filing cabinets behind us. We’re sat in a small office in UCLan University, and we’re just going to have a chat with Jane about who Jane is, how she’s got involved with Nordic walking and what her experiences are, what she’s gained from it, and yeah. Jane, thank you for joining me.
Jane: You’re welcome.
Matt: And just, let us know a little bit about yourself.
Jane: Okay. I am 50 something, that’s about as far as I’m prepared to go.
Jane: I work in the clinical trials unit as an administrator, so I’m very desk bound. Frantic, but desk bound so I don’t get any exercise except running to and from the photo copier every day. For the last two or three years, I’ve had a number of problems with my knees, long standing knee injury with problems with my feet, and I saw an advert in UCLan for free Nordic walking tasting sessions and I thought I’ll give it a go. So went up, had a taster session and loved it. Loved it. Went to bed that night, no problems with my knees, no problems with my feet.
The next week, went and had another walk and it was rubbish. I was rubbish at it.
Jane: I couldn’t- I know. I know.
Jane: I couldn’t, I was overthinking it. And see, that’s what I was doing.
Matt: Yeah, there we go.
Jane: So I’m walking, and I thought the poles are going the wrong way and people are looking at me going, hmm.
Matt: Who on earth’s this Jane?
Jane: Exactly. Third session, much better at it, and I’m now so good that three weeks ago, is it three weeks ago?
Jane: I did my first ever 10K. I did the Grasmere Gallop, which is all up hill. Don’t let anybody tell you any different, it’s all uphill. But I did it, and I loved it so much that I’m doing another 10K in two weeks time.
Matt: Which one?
Jane: I’m doing the Blackpool 10K.
Matt: Blackpool Lights, yeah.
Jane: No, it’s not the Blackpool Lights-
Matt: Oh, no..
Jane: -the Blackpool Lights is in August.
Matt: That’s in August, yeah.
Jane: So this is the Blackpool 10K, and I’m also about to do the Preston 10K in September. And I have no problems with my knees, no problems with my feet, and I’m like a new person.
Matt: Lovely to hear. You threw me there with you didn’t like it on the second session, but I like that. You know, it’s-
Jane: Well you know, people just, it doesn’t just happen. It’s something that you actually have to work at and practise and, because it’s a bit like driving a car, if you think about it loads, there are lots of things that you have to do right. And if you think about it too much, it all goes horribly wrong.
Matt: Yeah, I mean we have a lot of people who say, “Why do we need to learn how to walk? Walk, Nordic walk.” And that’s what you find out when we do the course, is-
Matt: -that there are lots of different things to learn. So I’m really glad you said that, and I’m really pleased that since your having started, you’ve noticed those improvements and benefits because-
Jane: Oh, I have.
Matt: -that’s the main reason that I do it.
Jane: Oh the main thing of course is that I’ve lost half a stone in weight since January as well, which is even better.
Matt: Nice. So since January, you’ve not really changed anything specifically other than doing the Nordic walking?
Matt: All right.
Jane: Nothing at all. In fact, I’m possibly eating more chocolate. But I still lost half a stone, so that’s a good thing.
Matt: So it’s better for your joint health.
Matt: You’re feeling better.
Matt: Less pain.
Matt: And you’ve lost weight.
Jane: Absolutely, and I’ve met some great people.
Jane: So it’s, sometimes I’m meandering at the back just chatting and sometimes I’m striding out with a couple of the really seriously fit people. I don’t do that for the whole hour that we’re out.
Matt: Those seriously fit people, they were once at the back-
Matt: -walking slowly and just getting used to it and-
Jane: They’re the inspiration, precisely. Yeah. But the nice thing is that you can do, you know if you don’t want to do that level of exercise that night, you can just go and actually just enjoy the walk.
Matt: Yeah, good. The social group there-
Jane: So you can get as much exercise or as little exercise as you really want it to be.
Matt: I’m happy with that.
Matt: Now I’m really really impressed, I’m glad you started when you saw the advert.
Matt: And I’m glad you persevered through that second session, because it can be that break point. People say, “Well I’ve given it a go twice and I don’t think it’s for me.” And it is about the fact that everyone’s different abilities, and that just the extra little bit of practise intuition-
Jane: Oh, absolutely. Absolutely. I would honestly recommend it to anybody, I just love it. I’ve got my own poles, I’m out there.
Matt: So you’re better. How many times you’re walking a week now?
Jane: I’m going three times a week now. So I do your monthly …
Jane: Package, so you can basically, I can go on any walk I want to go on, so I’m three times a week, don’t always make it because obviously we all have lives-
Matt: Busy lives, yeah.
Jane: -and a lot of things to do. But that’s my aim, three times a week.
Matt: I’m really really impressed with the whole knees thing, yeah?
Matt: You have an injury?
Jane: I had a very, very serious riding accident when I was 18. So for a long time-
Matt: Horse riding?
Jane: Horse riding accident when I was 18. And it’s impacted everything I’ve done ever since. I can’t run, I can’t even run on a treadmill. I can do bicycles in a gym, but oh they’re so boring. The gym is so boring. Whereas Nordic walking right, they’re talking to people, you’re in the fresh air. And even if you get a bit of rain, and he’s right, he’ll tell you it doesn’t often rain when you’re Nordic walking, and amazingly he’s right. I don’t know how that works, but there we are.
Matt: We set off in the rain this morning, got wet for 20 minutes and the sun came out, we dried up.
Jane: Yeah, I know. There you are.
Matt: It was great. So you had the injury when you were how old?
Matt: 18. And you said you are 50 something.
Jane: I’m 50 something now, yeah.
Matt: So that’s at least 20, 30 years.
Jane: Oh yeah.
Matt: Of having experienced pain, limitations in doing things.
Jane: I find it, if I’ve done exercise during the day, well I used to, it used to keep me up at night. The pain in my knees would be so bad it would keep me awake at night. And now, I say, I’ve just done a 10K Grasmere Gallop, no pain whatsoever because the poles support you in a way that means you’re not putting the pressure on the joints like you are if you’re running or even if you’re fast walking. I love to walk, I walk a lot, but I have to be careful of how I walk what with the poles.
Matt: That’s just awesome Jane, yeah. I love this.
Jane: It’s a huge change. Huge change.
Matt: High five.
Jane: Thank you.
Matt: Yeah? Really proud of you.
Jane: Well thank you for introducing me to Nordic walking-
Matt: My pleasure.
Jane: -because it has literally, literally changed my life. The last six months have been amazing. To be able to exercise and not have any pain is just great.
Matt: Fabulous. That’s why we do what we do.
Matt: So if you’ve been inspired by this video, then please get in touch and come and join us Nordic walking. Thank you. Thanks Jane.
Jane: You’re welcome.
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