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Boundary Waters Quetico Forum
   Group Forum: Solo Tripping
      Get Stronger or Weaker as Trip Progresses?     

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08/31/2016 06:45AM   (Thread Older Than 3 Years)
I can feel very worn out around days 3-4 and then seem to crash a bit and desperately need a layover. If I take it easy for a couple of days I seem to feel stonger and finish the trip having lost weight but packs are lighter and feel I could go another 10 days.

But, there have been trips in the past where I'm just dragging the last 2 days and swear I'll never solo again. Any thoughts?

 
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08/31/2016 08:08AM  
I can hit it hard for 4 days then I need the layover day, I get stronger as the trip goes on and always wish the trip was a little longer.
 
08/31/2016 12:36PM  
The adrenaline rush of preparing and driving up peaks on the first day then crashes and my extra expended calories tends to drain me. It is the second day that is toughest, then I ease back into it and get stronger. The recovery and overall getting stronger is reducing as I age. Just go slow and steady is my motto now.
 
NotSoFast
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08/31/2016 05:58PM  
quote bhouse46: " The recovery and overall getting stronger is reducing as I age. Just go slow and steady is my motto now. "

Agreed. I think most middle-aged paddlers would wear down with day after day of continuous paddling and portaging. Even young, fit athletes follow training programs that rotate hard days, easy days, and rest days.
 
08/31/2016 09:30PM  
I did a solo 6 Mile paddle today in a slow boat., I can't figure out why my legs feel more tired than my arms at the end of a day. I lowered my seat and do not have a foot rest. Maybe thats the reason.

 
mastertangler
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09/01/2016 06:37AM  
Not that unusual. First few days with full packs can be tough on you.

I find pre trip training is the difference between a trip feeling like torture and having a good time. My motto is "do something every day"..........wether that something is biking, rowing machine or a workout video is effected by how much time I have. But even 20 minutes will add up over time.

I have always gotten stronger as a trip goes on but last trip I noticed some tanking going on after 3 big days. ......on that 3rd big day at 5 p.m. I was like "wow, I'm smoked".

Here's the deal.......you need to stay hydrated, period. And that means lots of water. And that can mean a bit of hassle if you don't have the right stuff. Stopping to pump water is a pain in the posterior and it's easy to put it off. I have a UV light water purifier that gives me 750 ml of water in 60 seconds, anytime I want it.

Secondly, you need protein. That means fish or beans etc. stuff you have to cook. No good because it's to easy to blow off. I like the protein powder approach......vanilla flavored. Yummy and your muscles like it.

And lastly is a really good nights sleep. I put a big emphasis on this and am sure that I am very comfortable. I depend on this to bounce back.
 
09/01/2016 06:59AM  
quote mastertangler: "
Here's the deal.......you need to stay hydrated, period. And that means lots of water. And that can mean a bit of hassle if you don't have the right stuff. Stopping to pump water is a pain in the posterior and it's easy to put it off. I have a UV light water purifier that gives me 750 ml of water in 60 seconds, anytime I want it.
"


I'm doing something different for this trip. I bungee dealied a lexan sierra coffee mug to a thwart with a carabiner for a quick release. On travel days I will carry 1 liter of water for the portages but on the lakes I'll just dip and drink out in the middle and do it often. I use a steripen so can purify the 1 liter as I go.

I get bad cramps and headaches if I don't drink enough. Also bringing the electrolyte replacement called "Nunn". Tastes like crap though.

I'm usually way too gung ho on the first day. Gonna see if I can't turn the throttle down a little this time. I need a governor.

 
OBX2Kayak
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09/01/2016 10:26PM  
I seem to get stronger as the trip progresses. But then, especially on a solo, I never push too hard and always take time to smell the roses.
 
09/02/2016 06:45AM  
Smelling the roses is something I need to work on. I always plan out a trip itinerary and usually it's aggressive. Just so much to see and I only do 1 trip a year at most.

One of these years I want to do a trip with no trip planning, just an entry point. And then just do what I want to do for each day. This is a damn good idea. But tonight, I leave for Ely and have a kick butt itinerary to conquer. :) Here's to little wind, no bears, and lots of fish. Cheers.

 
09/17/2016 09:18AM  
I've done a couple solo's where I had a sort of plan, but I did what I wanted. It was great! Make route decisions on the fly. It couldn't get any better. I tend to get stronger as I go. When I get tired or sore I take a day or even a half a day. Best part about a solo.
 
MacCamper
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09/17/2016 01:06PM  
Definitely stronger as I go..after the first night's crash/adrenaline hangover. From them on it is steady as I go and I end the trip ready to do it over again, fit mentally and physically. Although I canoe and workout regularly when not camping (practically rote), my body requires a day or two to acclimate to moving packs, portaging, etc. Then I set into a groove and the days and nights become much easier even if I go longer and stronger on the trail.
 
09/17/2016 03:54PM  
There are a lot of variables that go into it - general health and stress level starting out, amount of quality training, sleep, hydration, refueling, age. On this last trip I made a conscious effort to rehydrate and refuel, but was not always consistent every day and that had an effect. I did pretty well on my last trip, but I traveled solidly for the first 5 days, trying to make hay while the sun was shining, and by then I really needed that recovery day. My paddling, which I really only do then, gets stronger as the trip goes on. This year I did pretty well, last year not well (I was sick starting out), two years ago quite well, so I've had a variety of experience.
 
Alan Gage
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09/17/2016 09:24PM  
I feel stronger the longer I go. Last year I did my first really long solo (30 days) and it was a very ambitious trip with a lot of work (down the length of the entire length of the Bloodvein river and then back upstream to the put-in). I thought I'd be exhausted by the end of the trip but I felt better than I had in years. Couldn't believe how strong I felt, like I could take on the world.

Just got back a couple days ago from a 42 day solo and while the trip wasn't as physically tough I still felt stronger as time went on. A lot stronger than when I started. I could paddle harder for longer and my cardio was greatly improved, was was leg strength.

I generally don't take rest days unless forced to by the weather, which happened way too often on this last trip. But if the weather is good I'll paddle hard for 2 weeks and love it. To give myself a little break I might knock off early (4:00) or start late (10:00) but days off generally have me feeling antsy.

I don't work out but I do enjoy paddling so I'm usually on the water a couple times/week as soon as the ice is gone and I like to walk too so it's not like I'm jumping from a sedentary life into hard physical activity. I'm in decent shape to start with so it's not a shock to the system.

Alan
 
gkimball
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09/27/2016 12:03PM  
I always feel stronger and more fit at the end of a trip, lose a little weight and feel more energetic than when I started.

In recent years I have been doing 2-3 solo trips per year that are typically 5 nights/ 6 days using the following "model:" travel hard the first day followed by a base camp with day trips of variable challenge and one quiet day, work hard the last day coming out or if the route allows I may break the trip back out into 2 days. Even though I have been working at lightening packs I usually triple portage which adds significantly to the work.

At age 65 I must be much more diligent than I used to about about hydration and eating energy-rich food adequate for the energy I expend based on the day's activity level. The quiet day in somewhere in the middle of the trip always renews energy and increases the feeling of relaxation and closeness to the environment. On warm days with significant exertion I mix some Gatorade and eat a good lunch with a big snack to avoid fatigue.
 
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