In 2021, Paul started a 1,000-mile virtual walk from Ruskington in Lincolnshire to Pisa in Italy. He did this by walking five miles a day to reach a virtual destination, while raising vital funds for APF.
People who were supporting him were able to follow his virtual journey. Paul walked over 1500 miles on a virtual walk and he's continued walking every day since then. Paul is passionate about the benefits walking has for PF patients.
Why do you think research is important? Pulmonary Fibrosis has for many years has lagged behind other research projects. Personally, I hope dearly that the research will find a cure for me, however I recognise the hard facts that any of the benefits of this research may well not help me but future generations of suffers to come. So they do not suffer this debilitating illness that causes so many of those with Pulmonary Fibrosis and their families distress. The Walk for Hope will help APF fund research, it's so important that more is done so one day a cure will be found.
What has walking done for you? Walking has certainly helped me in two ways, the first being to build up my strength and secondly to help my mental health during this covid 19 outbreak. Walking is not a miracle cure and still have to take easy. Especially with the aid ambulatory Oxygen. My weight has dropped from 16.5st to just under 14.75st.
What advice would I give to other Pulmonary Fibrosis patients that want to take part in the Walk for Hope?
1. Start slowly. I started just walking indoors, achieving 0.5 miles until walking 3.5 miles a day.
2. Wear comfortable walking shoes with good ankle support if crossing fields.
3. Be prepared for the British weather, wear appropriate clothing.
4. Take a drink and snack.
5. Download what3words, this enables you to contact emergency services if you need to with your exact location. If alone let someone known where you are doing your walk and the time you should be back.
6. If using Oxygen, make sure you have enough oxygen or battery life to cover the time out. Take a spare nasal cannular.
7. Remember to listen to your body, this is important.
You can follow Paul’s walking journey daily on Twitter Paul Osborne (@Walkingonair22) /Twitter