Walking the Camino at 60

I‘ve just completed the Portuguese Camino with my partner, Ric. This trip was to mark 60 years around the sun, to celebrate stepping into eldership and the last trimester of my life.

It was my first ever multi-day hike, but not my last!

We walked 240km’s in 11 days from Porto, Portugal to Santiago de Compostela, Spain. That’s an average of 21-22kms a day carrying a 7kg backpack around four or five hours.

I’d only had about six weeks to wear in my new hiking boots before we left and had done very little training. I was feeling a little under-prepared and unsure if I could complete it, unlike Ric, who’s a seasoned hiker.

We experienced varied weather conditions, from merciless sea winds to 25-degree days with cloudless skies to downpours and floods. On one day, we were up to our knees in water! No two days were alike, but still we plodded on till we reached our destination.

Reflecting on the journey now, I see so many similarities between walking and writing. Enough so that I’ve created some guiding principles to apply to my life as a writer, and now, a regular walker.

Carolyn’s Camino Principles

#1 You will never be as prepared as you could be at first. Start anyway.

#2 The conditions (external and internal) will never be perfect. Do it anyway.

#3 Focus on the destination but be open to taking alternative routes to get there.

#4 Walk and write every day, your way. 10,000 steps. 1000 words. Set daily goals.

#5 Slow and steady wins the race. Better a tortoise than a hare.

#6 Give yourself a small reward for your achievements at the end of each day.

#7 Take a buddy on the journey. It’s more fun walking and writing with others!

Have you been considering the next Brave Women Writer’s Circle which begins next Friday 24 May? It’s a transformative 12-week journey that doesn’t require walking, only lots of writing. No matter how prepared you are for writing or how experienced (a novice or an accomplished writer), this circle is a game-changer. Reach out if you’re keen to know more.

With love

Here’s what past participant Penny Bold had to say about it:

I knew when I signed up to Carolyn Tate’s Brave Women Writers’ Circle it was something I could do just for me. That the writing circle would give me the space and structure  (90 mins a week on a Friday morning) to get onto a page the things that had been swimming around in my head and weighing me down.

What I didn’t know was how healing and precious it would be to hear the stories of six incredible women and to laugh, cry and laugh again as we got to really know one another.

In 12 weeks, I was able to put in place a regular writing practice that has improved my entire outlook on life.

My aim now is to write three chapters of a novel before Christmas. The idea for my book evolved significantly over the 12 weeks and I am now living and breathing the stories of the characters in the book.  

I enjoy writing longhand and then I type up the notes, and even if I only spend an hour a week on my writing project, the 60 mins repays me 10-fold in giving me a sense of accomplishment.

Carolyn Tate is a thoughtful, brave and considered mentor and writer and her book, Brave Women Write, provides a flowing and practical structure for the 12 weeks.

If you are thinking about telling your story, or someone else’s, I could not recommend the circle more highly. It will gift you a new lease on life.

Brave Women Write Book Orders

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Join the next Brave Women Writers’ Circle

Beginning Friday 24 May 2024

Are you a woman who yearns to share your story with the world? Do you often suppress your inner voice and wait for that perfect day to write? Or perhaps you’ve begun writing and are feeling stuck? If so, the Brave Women Writers’ Circle is the right place for you.

Carolyn Tate is an experienced author and educator and is the facilitator of the Brave Women Writers’ Circle. The 12-week course guides you to bring your writing project to life while connecting you to a courageous community of other women writers.