Darth Vader married my sister

Dunno if that got your attention or not? I’m trying to work out if there is any correlation between what I put in the title of my posts and the number of hits I get.

For those of you who don’t know (and I certainly didn’t before I stared this), when you do a blog you get a ‘dashboard’ to show you how many hits you get each day. Now I haven’t really started publicising my blog much yet (I did put a link to it on my Facebook page, but I’ve only got about 40 friends in total :(, and most of them are probably very infrequent facebookers like I am (it’s my age you see:). So I don’t really know whether anyone googling certain words might get to my site my accident? (If anyone is reading this who knows a bit about blog optimisation, then let me know what the tricks are please?).

Anyway, the point of the above is that I did a post the other day about new boots, called something like “New Boots” (not very exciting of course:)), and I got two views that day. The next day my post is also about boots and stuff (and certainly no more exciting than the one before), but it is called “Mileage”. For some reason it got 56 hits, my most yet, and I don’t know where the traffic came from! It also tells you if people linked from certain pages (like Facebook for example), and there was no real clue, so I just have to speculate that the title has something to do with it. Hence today’s title. I don’t even know if Darth Vader is popular any more though, but I saw a TV commercial earlier with him on and so that prompted me. And no, I don’t even have a sister, so it wasn’t true ever.

Anyways, I’ll get round to what I came here for – it is a Saturday today, and I (at long last) got my gym programme mapped out for me at last this morning! I went there at 9am, which was way too early for me on a weekend, but was ready for whatever they threw at me, I just wanted to get started for real, and on with the show.

The programme they started me on is basically as follows, me having told them what I want to achieve (ie basically to be able to be fit enough to satisfactorily climb Kili):

1. Five minutes stationary bike, upping tension each minute.

2. Seven minutes Nordic Climber, 20% incline.

3. Ten minutes treadmill, alternate jogging, fast run.

4. Two reps on leg weights machine with 60kg, until “fatigued”.

5. Various left and right oblique raises.

6. Dorsal raises until “fatigued”.

7. The “Plank”, which is like a pushup held until you can’t hold it any more.

8. Various hamstring and other leg and back tortures.

I was told that this was to ‘get me used to the machines etc’, and that when I have done this three times they will up the intensity next week and every week so that I get progressively ‘fitter”. So I did the above under supervision, and I was smiling all the way until I finished the first piece of equipment. Then the Nordic Climber is a bastard! I hate it! It gets your calves after about 30 seconds, and then you feel yourself alternating your thoughts between “this must be really good for me”, and “switch it off I am going to collapse and die”. I do manage to finish the rest of the programme, and when ‘Zak’ (my new personal trainer, I think Mark has decided I am not worthy enough to be in his gang) asks me if that is all OK for me, I stammer out “it’s fine”, when I am actually thinking that I didn’t want to join the SAS, I just wanted to go for a bit of a walk.

But it is not a walk is it? It is a 100km walk in one go, with a 20,000ft mountain in the middle of it, where the atmospheric pressure means that the oxygen level is at 40% of what you and I are used to. And not just any 20,000ft mountain either. It is the roof of Africa. The highest free-standing mountain in the world. The one which is an enigma, a legend, that captivates, and dominates, and ultimately defeats at least a third of people who try to get to its snowy peaks.

I respect it, and I wonder if Darth Vader has been up there before me?

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