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This is my second attempt at sending this. If you see duplicates, sorry for
the inconvenience.


Ben wrote
[snip of calories/mile]

>In general, about 300-400
>calories per hour hiking.  As your muscles developed, you'll also need
>more calories to feed them to maintain the rigors that you'll be putting
>them through.

I agree with much of the above, but thought I'd add in my 2 cents.

I found that to keep my strength up I don't need to eat more calories
overall, but more calories from protein.  Rather than a 60%-20%-20% split
of carbos, fat, and protein, I found a 60%-10%-30% split keeps me from
losing muscle tone. (I still lose weight, but its from fat, not muscle.

There's more calories per gram of fat than carbos or protein, so on the one
hand technically you could carry less by using high-fat foodas and lighten
the pack.  But fats also take a lot more water to digest, and I found I
can't tolerate them in either the heat of the desert or the high country.

The problem is its hard to get enough protein in backpackable food even if
you dehydrate your own. Freeze-dried meats are expensive and not too tasty,
although the Alpineaire brand isn't bad. My solution is to use a protein
powder from GNC. The protein powder is tasteless, so a few dollops can be
added to just about any food. It can even be added to Gatorade, in a pinch.
While its not ideal because its really bland, it is a useful substitute
while I  wait for the perfect freeze-dried steak to come along.

I also hate taking the time for breakfast in the morning, but found I am a
lot stronger over the course of the day if I eat a breakfast high in
carbohydrates and low in sugar. (This rules out easy foods like pop-tarts
and breakfast bars. Sigh.)

Anyway, I discovered all the above on my training hikes. The trick is to
experiment with food while on training hikes that are a bit above what you
can comfortably handle. I found this mimics the physical stress pretty
well, even if the hike itself is only 7-8 miles with a thousand feet of
climbing (say, early in the training regimen when you're not really in
shape to do a 15-miler.)


Lew and Catherine Middaugh   middaugh@best.SPAM.BLOCKER.com
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