Pride Goeth Before the Fall

(2nd posting)

If you’re looking at the photo you’re probably thinking, “Oh no, not another one of her damned step reports”

Yes, it is, but before you pull the plug, be advised that this is mainly a thank you note. Seven or eight years ago, when I first started walking and when I couldn’t walk more than a thousand steps without resting, I took a look in the mirror and saw a person who had never in her life managed to keep a New Year’s Resolution.

It wasn’t New Year’s at the time, it was actually the middle of April, so deciding to start walking had nothing at all to do with beginning something on January 1 and petering out by January 10. In an effort to keep myself from giving up, I needed to find a way to make myself accountable. I did that by writing about it in my blog and making my readers aware of what I was doing. That ended turning my blog followers into my Walking Buddies. Thank you all for being that. Your presence and encouragement really is a big part of my walking success.

Nobody is more surprised than I am that I’ve kept at it for years now, and as the steps have added up one day at a time, I’ve given my Walking Buddies continuing reports. And this one is another.

Last week I could see that by the time I’d be writing this week’s blog post I’d be hitting the twenty-five million mark, and I was really looking forward to writing it. I expected to march across the finish line at my usual walking pace which boils down to a hundred steps a minute.

Remember that old adage about pride going before the fall? Yup, that’s exactly what happened. I hit the mark all right, but instead of marching over the finish line in triumph, I limped over it because the fall in question arrived on Thursday afternoon.

I was stepping off the front porch to speak to the head of our tree trimming crew when I took a tumble. With a death grip on the banister, I did a slow, twisty fall, landing on my toes like an aging ballerina doing a misguided pirouette in slow motion.

People my age and size are not built to be ballerinas. My death grip on the banister slowed my momentum enough that my Apple Watch missed the action completely and didn’t give me the standard stern warning. “You seem to have fallen. Do you require medical assistance?”

Naturally, the guy I was talking to was horrified. He hurried over to help me get up. Unfortunately, I outweighed him by probably a good forty pounds, so he helped me get to my feet, all right, but so did the banister.

Fortunately, I landed on my butt, so I didn’t hit my head. At first it didn’t seem as though anything was broken, but by the time I limped back into the house and took some Aleve, pain from my toes was shooting in spasms up both legs. I envisioned having broken some of the small bones in both feet, so my daughter drove me to the ER. While I was waiting in the “triage” aisle, I noticed how much the middle finger on my left hand was hurting, so I had them Xray that right along with my feet.

Turns out my feet were fine and so were my ankles. The finger on my left hand—the one that was not hanging on to the banister—is the only thing that’s broken. It’s currently taped to the next finger over. The tape is low enough that I’m still able to type! Whew!

As for the toes? They may not be broken, but oh my goodness, they’re certainly a colorful mess. The first night I was reduced to using a walker. (Fortunately, the garage walker is a spare!) The next day, when I was still hobbling around, someone reminded me of Arnica. Slathering my toes with that has really helped with both swelling and pain. I’m also still taking Tylenol.

So today, when I literally limped over the 25,000,000 line, I was so preoccupied with watching where I was going that I forgot to take the screen shot until much later. Based on my height, that many steps amount to having walked 10,330 miles. That’s a lot of miles.

So it turns out pride goeth before the fall, but it’s still there afterwards, too. And a sincere thank you to all of you who have helped me stay the course. I wouldn’t have done it without you.

54 thoughts on “Pride Goeth Before the Fall

  1. You are so graceful! The last time I slipped and fell, required days of therapy, then a surgery for rotator cuff tear. Months of therapy.. I’m so glad you’re ok! Here’s to keeping up the walking!

  2. Congratulations on the absolutely AWESOME milestone of 25 MILLION!!!
    So sorry you fell. We are sending complete healing thoughts your way!!!
    Judy… YOU ARE A WARRIOR!!!
    Thank YOU!!!

  3. I for one enjoy reading about your walking exploits. You havd influenced me enough that I am THINKING about starting to walk and count steps. Actually, I do walk but certainly not enough and I don’t count steps.

  4. Oh no, so sorry about your fall, and congratulations on reaching the twenty-five million mark. That is a wonderful accomplishment. Definitely one to brag about. Me, I am worn out just walking from the front door to the back door.

    As for New Years Resolutions. 57 years ago I made one that I have faithfully kept all these years…”make no more New Years Resolutions”.

    Hope you are feeling better soon. Keep on walking and keep on blogging about it.

    • That’s my NYC’s resolution every year too. Don’t make NYC’s resolutions.

  5. Congratulations on your success and may your recovery from the fall be swift and complete. You have such a positive attitude and determination (dare I say, stubbornness…?) that I’m sure you will be picking up the pace soon enough! I’m selfishly thankful that your writing hand wasn’t damaged beyond use…. (wink, wink)

  6. A BIG note of congratulations. As we get older, we need to keep moving. Love all of your books. Get Well and keep on trecking.

  7. The fact that you walk so much probably saved you from more serious injury. I’m glad you didn’t hit your head and are on the mend. Congratulations on your 25 million miles. That’s amazing!

  8. So sorry for your fall and hope you recover quickly. Though you may feel humbled (pride goeth…yada, yada), your walking milestones have inspired me to buy my first pedometer. You inspire us that way, and those that aspire to be writers.
    Rose without a Hat.

  9. Oh my gosh, Judy! I, too, have the middle finger of my left hand taped to the next finger waiting for trigger finger surgery on them both next week! Unfortunately, I also have some own nerve issues in my left arm so it’s a bit complicated. Here’s hoping yours heals very quickly. I know you are a woman who steps right up whenever necessary, and I’m sure you’ll be fine! Best wishes!

  10. I just started reading your blog only to find that you had fallen. OMG…that’s so horrible. But, it could have been so much worse. Glad you “only” had injured toes and the finger broken. I know, as we age, those falls are what we have to avoid. Some say they are avoidable, but the last time I fell I don’t think there was anything I could have done differently; well maybe if I was 30-40 years younger.

    So proud of your walking accomplishment! I NEED to start a program like that. i use my knees for an excuse, but possibly if I could get at least some walking in they would be better. Only doing it will tell.

    Thank you for this blog. And THANK YOU for your books. I love reading your J. P. Beaumont series.

  11. Thanks for your books. And good for you yo keep up the walking! The “adage” you mentioned is actually a proverb from the Bible …Proverbs 16:18. “Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall”. And it’s very true!!

  12. Wow! Congratulations on making it to 25,000,000 despite your injuries! And how gracious of you to acknowledge the part your readers had–at least, the ones who were your walking buddies!–in keeping you going. I decided a few years ago to become one of those walking buddies, even if it meant having to walk around and around the car in the garage during the 40 below weather, but I soon realized that my crooked back won’t let me do that, even with the back brace I wear for getting groceries. So I’m applauding you–AND your walking buddies–from the sidelines. May your stick-to-it-iveness lengthen your years and increase your quality of life!

  13. Thank you for sharing you walking highlights with us. You are an inspiration. I have started walking since you shared your progress. I hope you heal quickly. ? Liz

  14. CONGRATULATIONS!! Get well soon! We need to hear from you! We love you!

  15. congratulations on your amazing accomplishment! AS the say “Keep on Truck’in”
    You inspire many people!

  16. So many things can trip us up in this golden age – when we least expect it. At least it didn’t happen on your walk. Really a bummer when you get hurt trying to keep fit. I go to a HIIT gym 3 times a week & workout at my own pace, knowing I can’t keep up with the 40 year olds, mainly because I want to be able to keep going. Went skiing this week for the 1st time in 2 years. Came home with all my parts intact & not even very sore the day after. Kudos to you for your perseverance & marking your goal, even through the injury???

  17. Oh my gosh Judy! I’m so sorry to hear about your fall and your broken finger and banged up and bruised toes! But I’m glad it wasn’t any worse and that there were people around to help you. At this age, falling is no joke.
    I’m so impressed that in that sore condition you still got out there to walk. Congratulations to you! You are not only keeping yourself healthy, but also inspiring others.
    BTW, thanks for your email checking whether I got last week’s blog. I did get today’s.

  18. You SOOO ROCK, Judy! We all love you so much! Hope you feel much better very soon. With lotsa love from one of your Old Pueblo friends sitting above the Agua Caliente Wash.

  19. Very impressed with you getting to that remarkable milestone. So sorry to hear about your fall, but as I’ve heard said “for something so unlucky, you sure were lucky”, if any satisfaction can be taken in a thought like that. Still, it’s good that you weren’t injured more seriously.
    I’ve been a walker for ages. I first started out jogging, then as parts wore out was reduced to walking, next came walking with a cane and now with a walker… the kind with four wheels and a seat. Don’t know for sure how many steps or miles for me but according to my cell phone step counter, I still get about six miles a week.
    So, everyone, I encourage you to be like Judith, go for a walk. Before long you’ll look forward to it more and more.
    Last thought is that I hope you heal quickly and completely, and that the fall you’ve taken will not make your trip to Tucson and Bisbee any less enjoyable. God bless.

  20. You are such a trooper, JA! Thank goodness you could minimize the fall; full recovery is my wish for you, along with stronger limbs to combat old age which sneaks up on all of us silently, but with some rude awakenings along the way. I know all of us here are happy that your fingers can still write for us, and that your spirit remains strong. <3

  21. SO VERY PLEASED TO WITNESS YOUR AMAZING ACCOMPLISHMENT…love the screenshot. Falls are so sudden and surprising…I’ve had my share, my immediate reaction is “How did that happen??”
    At 87, I am now so very aware of the risk of falling, fearing a hip fracture as that hospitalizes people, with dire consequences. One of my personal rules: ALWAYS use a shopping cart walking through large stores, such as Home Depot, Costco, and grocery stores. My inclination is to walk fast…so, slowing down and staying more aware.

    A few months ago, I was at a very large store, did not see a shopping cart, so zipped in quickly to check on an item. Just as I took a step, a man in front of me dropped several long pcv pipes used for irrigation systems, down I went, square on my backside…
    Scared me…thought “this is it!!”. I was a bit shaken, but, nothing broken.
    That resulted in my shopping cart vow…and to SLOW DOWN.
    Stay safe out there.??

  22. I’m not sure how the blog came out in a single paragraph, but it posted. I’ve really missed seeing the names and comments from my regular comment folks. We’ve been having trouble getting the blog to come through to subscribers. If you miss yours, please remember to go to my website and click on blog.

  23. You have to be tough to old An old saying Wisdom comes with age sometimes we forget to listen to ourselves. I pray your finger heals fast.

  24. Congratulations! I don’t have the willpower to stick with walking. I did pretty welll when United Healthcare gave Visa gift cards for so many miles. They also gave a free fitbit for keeping track. I had to call them about the fitbit and they told me that I was the oldest person they had a record of using the program. (80)Then they quit the gift card incentive. Darn. I’ll doing anything for money.

    Get well before you start the next million miles.

    Millie Fuss

  25. I am so sorry for your fall, but really glad it was not worse! As we get older, the question is not if we will fall, but when. So, I have been recommending the 2 Pack Sumo Bumper Balls – I think it would be a fun way to stay safe!
    My mom just turned 102 and celebrated her birthday in rehab having broken her left femur. After 6+ weeks, she just returned to her independent living apartment (but now with a 16 inch, 1/2 inch wide rod in her leg). I figure that I need to really step up my activity level if I possibly going to be around that long! Thanks for the inspiration – I need it! PS I taught Mathematics at Lake Washington HS

  26. Blessings to you and His complete and total healing with little to no pain. In Jesus’ Name
    Love and Hugs to you.
    Long time reader ?

  27. Congrats albeit a tough route! I was planning to see you in Bisbee on the 11th as we were to hit the road today from Bothell to Green Valley, AZ. However, my husband is experiencing some mysterious health issues, so we are staying near our doctors until the mystery is solved. Hopefully, you will have a signing in our home area sometime after you get back from Arizona, so I can finally get my copy of “Blessing of the Lost Girls” to you. I hope the 3rd try is a charm!!

  28. Sounds like the fall came before the boasting this time. So very glad you were able to mage it a soft fall and that the most damage was no doubt to your ego, not your body. I know from your many stories that your ego has a long record of successful recoveries. None the less here’s wishing you a physical and emotional recovery in short order.
    I also wanted to let you know that your commitment to those thousand steps are an inspiration to others. Due to a stroke I must now use a walker, and I have a set route up and back the hall in my condo building. I can’t yet claim to be as diligent as you are, but when I get too lazy I think of your resolve. It helps bolster mine.

  29. Congratulations! Your steps are impressive, and I am inspired to move more! WOW! Glad you are mostly ok, and are getting around.

  30. So sorry to hear about your fall, and glad someone was there to help you. I’m impressed–you’ve been walking like that for almost seven years. Keep up the good work.

  31. Please be more careful. Takes 10 times longer to do anything with age, I find. Firmly believe glasses and falling go hand in hand. Get well quickly. Hope the typos are kept to a minimum for your sake.

  32. Congrats on the Steps milestone, Judy!!

    And all those steps, for sure, helped your bone density, and helped those toe bones stay intact.

    Hope the pain subsides and finger bone mends rapidly.

    Sure do enjoy your blog each Friday!

  33. Glad you’re ok, those toes can get quite colorful, I broke one last year in a fall going up steps. I want to thank you for sharing your story because I have been walking more and getting 10,000 steps or more most days since new years 2021 when you wrote about it. It really helps to have a monitoring system, I use a fitbit. Hope your finger heals quickly!

  34. Well I had wrote a comment and it has now disappeared before I was finished posting. Congratulations on your 25 million steps. That is so awesome. But am so sorry to read that you had taken a tumble. Definitely not good at our age. Just very happy the injuries were not more serious. Yes arnica is wonderful! Helps with bruising also. I just finished PT to strengthen back and legs and get better balance. Take care and prayers that you heal quickly.

  35. I too have fallen when I was looking at something or someone instead of focusing on where I was going-
    I think you minimized your injuries in this Blog- Yes, only your finger was broken-
    But you had two badly sprained ankles, and needed a walker for support-
    That arnica was like a magic potion that helped your pain and the weakness in your ankles- As I told you in an email, what you have done with with sprained ankles,
    continuing your steps, with a walker, makes me think that you are no ordinary person! I believe that you are the secret daughter of Clark Kent (Superman!)

    I really admire the way you dealt with the broken finger, and especially, the sprained
    ankles- You continued to be you: Steps and all! That doctor sounds like a
    quack=He does not know you- at all, yet feels he can make statements about you
    based on one meeting with you!

  36. Falls are so frightening before, during and after! Plus the tree guy probably was shaken for quite a while. That context makes your walking accomplishment even more fabulous – congratulations!

    Beyond the walking goal, I bet your enhanced strength and stamina helped minimize injuries from your fall.

    Warmest regards,


  37. Yikes, Judy! I am still feeling the pain of your fall. The moral of this story is, of course, Never have your trees trimmed on Thursdays. That would be my way of thinking because I am one to always find a reason for a disaster being someone else’s fault. This way of thinking goes way back to my childhood days when it seems like my sister Judy & I were always blaming each other for some mishap at home that kept my mom forever scolding us for arguing. So now I’m not laughing at your fall, but it has caused me to laugh as I remember so many days of long, long ago.

    I wish you quick healing and pain-free times as you get ready to meet hoards of fans during the Tucson Festival of Books and everyone will want to shake your hand, me included.

  38. Isn’t it just so annoying to disrupt your life with something like falling? We have to be so very careful in our senior years! I hope your healing process is quick.

  39. Congratulations on such an impressive milestone. Hope you are mending quickly, too.

    I’m sure you have mentioned it before, but I didn’t make a note of it. What kind of shoe do you wear for walking?

  40. Hugs from NY. As a walking buddy, I worry so about falls. I go up into the fields behind our farm buildings and call myself foolish until I get back down, but I can’t seem to stop. Congratulations on your wonderful milestone, and hope you heal quickly and well. Glad you can still type!

  41. Great job! I’ve only started reading your blog this past year, I thought I was the only person that walked inside their house trying to get their ten thousand steps every day. So you have help motivate me to get those steps no matter where I am.
    Thank you
    I love all your books and waiting for the next one.

  42. Congratulations on making the 25,000,000 mark. So sorry about the fall but you ‘got back on the horse’! I walk also and hope to continue for many years.

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