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Re: [pct-l] training methods

Andrew Yip wrote:

> I was wondering what sort of training programs people have found useful in
> preparing for thru-hikes. I'm already in fairly good shape, but I'd like to
> get in better shape before my hike. I think Jardine recommends something
> like twelve miles a day a couple times a week, which isn't really something
> I can fit into my schedule. I go hiking just about every weekend, but during
> the week I don't have a lot of time. Does jogging work the same muscles as
> hiking? I would expect so, but maybe the speed makes a difference.

Yip - I hiked the TYT and JMT this ummer.  Granted, it is not a thru-hike, we
still did about 20 miles per day.  My training consisted of hiking about 9-12
miles a few days per week and jogging.  I found that jogging does NOT work the
same muscles as hiking with a pack.  I'm sure it works some of the same ones,
but when I put on the pack and trained, I was sore in really different places
than when I ran.  You sound like you are about the same fitness level I was when
I started training.  I ran about 5 times per week, ranging in distance from
about 3-9 miles and ran at around a 8 minute pace.  I was sore after my first
training day of hiking.  Another often over-looked benefit of training with the
pack is that you get the blisters before you hit the trail and have the luxury
of taking a day off when they get too painful.

I did this regimen for only about three weeks prior to hitting the trail.  When
I arrived in the sierras, I had no trouble hiking about 15 miles the first day.
It took a few days to get used to the altituda and we continued to hike anywhere
from 12-16 miles for the first few days.  After that, I was ready to go and was
able to march out 20 mpd with a comfortable level of exertion.

Another thing that I did while training was to wear a much heavier pack than I
would be hiking with.  This seemed to help mentally, as I knew that since I had
hiked 12 miles with an 80 lb pack, I should have no problem hiking farther with
a 40 lb pack.

good luck.

Dude in TX

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