This question comes up quite often- can I walk the Camino if I’m overweight or not in the best physical shape? And the answer is- DEFINITELY! I can’t tell you how many people I’ve seen walking the Camino of all shapes, sizes and physical abilities. You won’t be looked at funny, no one will judge your size or pace, and people respect each other and their journeys. Most travelers aren’t in the best shape or aren’t accustomed to walking long distances each day, and that’s ok. Everyone sets their own walking tempo and they arrive when they arrive. If walking with a partner or group, everyone should walk at their own pace. There’s nothing worse than having the feeling of someone waiting for you and trying to rush your walk.
In our group guided Camino walks, everyone walks at their own pace, each walking their own Camino.
Some travelers stop for coffee or chat with others, while others focus on walking and go ahead. It’s not a race and it’s not a destination it is the journey.
A few years ago, my family took a trip to Disneyworld. We were there for 6 days, each day arriving at the park when it opened and not leaving until closing time. I remember looking at my fitbit and seeing I had walked an average of 35,000 steps each day- or over 15 miles a day (less than your average Camino day). My feet were sore and I was super tired at the end of each day, but my whole family was able to walk this every day (including my older parents who definitely weren’t in the best shape). The Camino is no different than any other trip. You wouldn’t postpone going to Disney for some extra weight or not in good enough shape, and the Camino is the same.
If you feel that weight or physical fitness is holding you back, I cannot encourage you enough to drop those ideas and make the walk. If you’re worried that our self-guided Caminos are walking too much per day, let us customize a less intensive itinerary and set a distance you feel is right for you.
“If you want to conquer fear, don’t sit at home and think about it. Go out and get busy.” -Dale Carnegie.