Using Instagram as a Habit Tracker

Well, I’ve tried. I thought posting pictures of my daily walks on Instagram would keep me more motivated. I even managed to create 83 of my planned #365hikeschallenge posts.

This is post 83/365 – a picture of a beautiful tree in Athens, Greece, taken on my way to the produce market on Saturday.

This picture was taken on the 27th of May. Today is the 3rd of September. What happened?

I was already waiting several months for surgery, trying very hard to stay as fit as possible while waiting.

End of May I got a phone call telling me that there was a 5-week delay. My motivation tanked below zero. I was sick 5 out of 7 days for weeks in a row already, and tired of waiting.

Whenever I did have the energy I walked around the block, but my daily walks weren’t about exploring nature or a new city anymore, just exercise.

Day 83 of using Instagram as habit tracker for my daily walk. Beautiful tree in Athens, Greece.

A Daily Picture of my Street on Instagram didn’t Work.

I kept on scoring my walks on my paper habit tracker and did remarkably well. Seeing all the days that I managed to walk, even though I was feeling tired or sick made me proud.

Habit tracking always works for me, to keep me motivated and improve myself. But the picture on Instagram felt as a burden, a nasty task, during the times that I only walked around the block.

While I was in Athens, I liked taking pictures of my surroundings. But it still didn’t work as a habit tracker.

Instagram is a Photo-Journal for Me, not a Habit Tracker

I am 7 weeks post-surgery now, and once again hiking back to health. My paper journal is full of marked-off daily walks. But my Instagram is still quiet. Partly because I didn’t make the decision to quit using Instagram as a habit tracker.

Now that I decided that it doesn’t work that way for me, I might start to share pictures of my daily walks again. Whenever I feel like it, or if I see a beautiful sky or tree.

Do you use Instagram as a Habit Tracker?

I am curious about your experience, please tell me what works for you!

Conditie Opbouwen na Ziekte

Conditie opbouwen na ziekte

‘Hiking back to Health’ ontstond tijdens de zoektocht hoe ik mijn conditie kon opbouwen na long-Covid, zo’n anderhalf jaar geleden. Ik was uitgeput en buiten adem van 2 minuten lopen, en wist toen nog niet dat conditie opbouwen geen rechte lijn omhoog was, maar keer op keer opnieuw beginnen. Dat is maar goed ook, want anders was ik misschien moedeloos geworden en niet eens gestart.

Hoewel ik in de afgelopen tijd wegens ziekte wel 5x opnieuw moest beginnen met conditie opbouwen, kwam ik dankzij een aangepast opbouw schema en mijn Habit Trackers iedere keer verder dan de keer daarvoor.

Ik heb onderweg het één en ander geleerd over wat wel of niet werkt, en de lessen verzameld in deze blog. Voor mijzelf, als naslag op momenten dat ik het weer even vergeten ben, en voor anderen met hetzelfde doel: weer fit worden.

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Protein Shake After a Workout?

Protein shake after a work out

A protein shake after a workout is increasingly popular among fitness enthusiasts and bodybuilders, as a recovery drink.

But I have to admit, I felt silly and pretentious when I started using a shake after my endurance training and hiking exercises, on my fitness instructor’s and doctor’s recommendation.

A little research made me change my mind. Here are my reasons to use protein powder after walking or exercising;

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Hiking in Thailand? Not possible for me!

Thai foot massage on the food marketMy fitness level improved a lot this summer, and I expected to keep this upward trend going. Then I decided to visit a friend in Thailand with my travel points…

The weather in Thailand is hot and humid

These are far from ideal walking circumstances for me. I have quite severe lymphatic edema and

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Getting back in my walking shoes

Remember my proud post with my results after 3 months training for a real hike? How I recovered from long-covid, got fit and lost some weight? Well, that was great.

But then I got Covid again… Omikron this time. I was quite ill, in bed with high fever for almost two weeks.

But it wasn’t all bad news.

Lesson learned!

Back in 2020, I was stubborn and just couldn’t accept that I was exhausted all the time, I was fighting

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Walking for Health Benefits – my Results after 3 Months

In early October 2021 I was completely fed up with my low energy level combined with numerous health issues, so I decided to create a personal training plan* to get fit. I have been walking daily for health benefits since then. The results of my first 3 months of healthy and helpful habits are way … Read more

Does walking help with depression?

Yes, it does. The good news: you don’t have to go for a run. Walking improves your mood.

To make the best of your walks while battling depression, I share some tips and ideas about your surroundings, your company, your goal setting and overall self care. This way you can optimize the positive effects of your walks.

Location matters, when walking to help with depression

Moving your body supports your brain in many ways.
But there is a big difference in effect between walking indoors, walking in urban surroundings and walking in nature.

Read more: Does walking help with depression?

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Is Walking Good for Weight Loss?

Burning calories while walking sure helps to lose weight.

But for most people, just walking as a work out isn’t enough for sustainable weight loss. Let me tell you why.

Walking is excellent cardiovascular exercise, if done right

walking a stairway in sneakers

Brisk walking for half an hour is effectively burning around 150 calories, depending on your weight, your pace and the duration of the walk. The keyword here is brisk.

If you can still talk, but aren’t able to sing anymore, your pace is in the cardiovascular training zone*. Do this for at least 30 minutes and you start burning some stored fat while walking. During the first half hour you burn sugars, stored in your body, as fuel. If all the stored sugars are used up, your body starts to burn fat that is stored in your fat cells. That fat is what you want to lose, so the sooner you’re able to walk at least 45 minutes, the better 😉

*Of course this is an estimated way of measuring if you’re exercising in the right heart rate. For more accurate results you have to use a smart watch (Apple Watch or Fitbit both give you a great deal of information about your work out ) or a heart rate monitor with a band around your chest. But for most people the estimated guess is good enough.

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How can I use Hiking as Exercise?

Cartoon of me writing down GOALS

This question popped up in my head a few months ago, while feeling desperate with my own exhaustion and my painful legs. The gym was closed due to a Covid-19 lockdown, and I was literally out of breath in 2 minutes. I didn’t even make it to the grocery store, let alone the beach – which is located a 20-minute walk from my house. Hiking beautiful and long nature paths felt way out of reach.

But what if I would use walking as my exercise to become fit again?

I decided to create a Training Plan focused on Hiking.

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About Kadanza

Hi there, it’s Kadanza from The Netherlands!

My whole life, I took a walk when I felt stuck.

When I didn’t know how to shape my future in my early twenties, I flew to Nepal with minimal preparationMe as a cartoon walking in the woods and absolutely no hike training and went trekking in the Himalaya for nearly 3 months. Quite drastic, looking back.  But it worked out that first time, and it did again all the other times that I put my hiking shoes on and just started to walk.

For the last 20 years I live near the beach, so at least 3 times a week you can find me strolling there, right after breakfast or during my lunch break. Walking at least 10.000 steps a day was my normal. During hiking or city trips I walked a lot more steps a day.

Then Covid-19 came and hitted me hard.

Because of Long-Covid I couldn’t hike for months.

Walking the stairs to my appartment got me completely out of breath, grocery shopping was too much effort, I was exhausted all the time, suffered from brain fog and headaches, my muscles felt sore and weak, and to make matters worse I developed serious edema, so walking became very painful.

While my health deteriorated, I gained 22 kilo’s, due to emotial eating combined with being a sudden couch potato…

With fascia therapy, energy management and a healthy and clean food regime, I slowly got over my long-covid symptoms. But my stamina and fitness still were nowhere to be found. Then, one day, I just had enough. At the beginning of october 2021, I made a vow to myself:

I am getting my vitality back, by hiking!

I had to start all over again. A 15 minute walk at the first week drained all my energy. So I decided 2 things:

  1. Every improvement counts, even the smallest step forward is a victory, as long as I keep on going. If I do 100 steps more today than I did yesterday, I will call it a win.
  2. I am not going to do this alone. I am going to create a community of hiking buddies, on my path back to health and happiness. For accountability, sure, I know myself. I am not very disciplined. But mostly, because it is more fun, sharing goals, getting fit, walking together with friends.

I share my hiking pitfalls, victories, tips and stories here.

I know how it feels to start from scratch, not knowing if you ever get your stamina back. The silent desperation. The feeling of giving up, because it seems just too much effort…

I hope you find the information, motivation or inspiration here to hike yourself back to health. This way I am able to expand the hiking- buddy- community online. Feel free to contact me with comments or questions.

You never walk alone! Me as a cartoon pinned on the map

All the best,


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