Normally we walk for about an hour in the mornings, down to our local park then several laps around that. Thismorning I decided it was time to start my conditioning training for my holiday. I was supposed to be training anyway so didn’t mind getting up early but with the weather forecast for 2 degrees and frost I didn’t really feel cycling or rowing. So, up at 5am to go for a very long walk instead!
I had some breakfast, packed my rogaining backpack (Osprey Mira 26, total weight, including what I was wearing, of just under 10kg with a lot of water and bunch of spare clothes) and Merlin and I headed off. It served reasonably well as a mini Scotland hike – I got a bit of a hill (Kings Park), some bogs (South Perth foreshore) and even did some backtracking deciding how to get down from the hill (toss up between Jacob’s ladder and Kokoda steps – chose Kokoda in the end).
We were out for about 3.5hrs, pretty much continuous walking except for photo and dog water stops. The total distance was 16.5km, with the one decent hill being ~70m vertical climb (I did say a MINI Scotland hike – in all respects!!).
My goal is to get some general conditioning and get used to the feeling and routine of long walks (mentally as much as physically). This went pretty well. I was happy to have a break by the end but wasn’t at all sore and didn’t find that time dragged. Pretty sure I could’ve had a bit of a break (e.g. half hour) and done this again.
Merlin was still bouncy and raring to go on the way home. Once we got home he crashed out in his bed fast asleep (Yay! thought I . . . some peace for the day) but then he was up again within half an hour and asking for his normal park walk! He didn’t get it.
Shoes were fine. I wore old thick Explorer socks (trying the shoe stretching theory) and had no problems at all. No squashed toes, no rubbed heels. Also, they kept all the water out from the wet grass and the boggy bits. The socks did get a bit hot and sweaty towards the end though!
GPS Logger: Manufacturer said I should download the latest software then recent the device, then contact distributor if I still have problems. Have done the former and am now testing again!
Food: Happy to say I didn’t eat at all during this walk. My stomach was rumbling on the way home though! When I don’t eat during a long training session my friend, Ben, says “Are you training your body to be stronger or training it to go without food?”. Normally the answer is “to be stronger” so yes, I should’ve eaten. In this case it’s definitely “to keep going without food”!! I don’t want to get in the habit of feeling hungry as soon as I start walking so am happy with this effort. I didn’t even need to eat that much for the rest of the day so hopefully the rogaine food intake was just an abnormal day.
In other news, I just watched a video on someone else’s blog showing the view from the top of one of the hills I plan to go up (http://blogpackinglight.wordpress.com/2014/06/24/new-kid-on-the-block-trekkertent/), and looked through a magical trip report and photos from Lewis (Outer Hebrides), just off the coast of where I’m going with very similar geology (ancient Gneiss) and so similar landscape (http://backpackingbongos.wordpress.com/2014/06/24/the-outer-hebrides-a-bongo-on-harris-and-lewis-pt3/). Getting very excited about this trip!! Now to go and order some maps!