Jenni, Dave and Eileen are joining us on the Camino for a Cure Parkinson’s Trek. Jenni was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2014 and has witnessed the physical challenges people with Parkinson’s face and the impact it has on their loved ones. Jenni has always been fascinated with the century old pilgrimage of El Camino de Compostela Santiago so she jumped at the opportunity, and is delighted that her husband and sister are also joining her for this amazing adventure.
What drives your commitment to find a cure for Parkinson’s?
Since my diagnosis in February 2014 I have been actively involved in our local PD Support Group. I’ve witnessed first hand some of the physical struggles of people with Pd, but I think I’m more empathic to the Carers’ who over the journey have given so much of themselves to try and maintain some normality to their lifestyles that they themselves become depleted of energy, friendships and often hope. To find a cure would have wide ranging positive effects on everyone’s health and mental wellbeing.
What inspired you to walk the El Camino?
I am not a gambling person, but I felt I had hit the Trifecta when I first read about The Camino for a cure 2018.
The centuries old pilgrimage of El Camino de Compostela Santiago has long fascinated me, and while it was a distant maybe on my bucket list the motivation wasn’t there to pursue it UNTIL supporting Shake It Up Australia gave me cause to become motivated AND Inspired Adventures provided the opportunity to go for it!
I’m delighted that my husband David and sister Eileen have also been motivated & inspired.
What are you most looking forward to on the Trek?
The privilege to be part of this amazing journey and accepting myself as I am regardless of whether I make the whole journey shanks’ pony! To experience the Magic of el Camino and carry the names of those who have supported us on this journey of a lifetime to its end, and subsequent beginning.
Tell us about your fundraising and what you have been doing.
In reality, I have done very little, except perhaps to provide the vehicle for people to come on board to work toward a common goal, to find a cure for Parkinson’s, and that comes through Teamwork = Together Everyone Achieves More.
To date, our fundraising has been simply through emailing Family and Friends, including of course my local Pd Exercise Cohorts and Support Group Members, requesting them to check out the Shake It Up Australia website for the authenticity of the organisation and consider the ultimate goal that it is targeting and how they can be a part. The response has been phenomenal and downright humbling. We are part of a very generous community to say the least.
We expect to hold a few events in June and July to include Family & Friends of more practical persuasions to be included in social activities like a Trivia evening, a morning tea, a mock high tea, an exercise morning class & morning tea, and, a sausage sizzle (et cetera maybe)
How are you preparing physically for the trip?
Inspired Adventures have provided us with a 16 week Trek Training Plan, but as we don’t have that amount of time, we are following it as close as we’re able.
- Daily walks between 35 minutes and/or 90 minutes on hilly terrain around our home with a variance of between 40m and 70m elevations over 3.5km and 6km distances.
- Weekly Parkinson’s specific exercises for strength, balance and cardio workouts (continuing with our home program for the remainder of the week)
- Weekly Qigong Class (Chinese healing practice of movement and breathing techniques)