Saturday, July 14, 2012

Being a Mule

Today my Dad, Angela, and I had a nice run up to Springer from Amicolola Falls. I tried something I have never tried before: Running with twice as much water.

Last week I did a tough run at 2:30 PM. It was around 95 degrees and sunny. At mile 6 on the trail I felt myself getting low on water. We still had 4 miles left and I was wanting to drink it all right then an there.

Fortunately we found a water pump and were able to refill/dunk our faces. From that I learned a valuable lesson: Run with enough water.

So this weekend I took my mom's CamelBak Women's Day Star 70 oz. Hydration Pack(Amazon Affiliate Link) and put 2 70oz bladders in it. I tested it with a quarter mile run, decided it would work, and set out to run 15 miles with it the next day.

Springer was an excellent run/hike. It is the approach trail for the Appalachian Trail. In my bag I had 1 70oz bladder of water, 1 70oz bladder of Gatorade mixed with Cytomax, a PB&J, 5 Banana Nut Cookies, and toilet paper - weighing in at 13 pounds. This was 8 or 9 pounds more than what I am used to running with.

It ended up being cool and rainy. I figured I wouldn't drink all my water, but it would help me as far as training goes to carry more weight and get stronger.

The first few miles were tough. I didn't drink much water and didn't really need to. It felt hard to move forward and I was tempted to dump out my bladder.

Around mile 3 I got used to it and felt like I was just carrying my Camelbak. Now you may be saying, "Well that's probably because you drank all of your water!" No, I still had at least 4/5 of both bladders left.

We made it to the top of Springer. Susan(she likes it when I mention her) had made some amazing Banana Nut Cookies. They were so delicious and moist. Well, most everything was moist at that point, but these were made that way. They really helped me not have a low point on this run. I also ate a PB&J. Another thing I like about this bag is the extra space. I can carry 4 times as much food as with my Camelbak XCT. Different tools, different tools... Of course, with this extra space, everyone handed me their trash, which I didn't mind.

On the way down I was able to handle my downhills as usual. During the times that I wanted to go slow on the downhills I had to work a little harder. Other than that it was all the same.

Around mile 14 of 15 my Dad ran out of water. I shared mine with him. He drank a 100ml of water during his run. This is great, but would have left him uncomfortable/stressed for a mile.

So, in a fast-packing and ultra-lite world where people are claiming to be minimalist, I am finding the good in carrying a little more. I was able to eat more and not worry about running out of water. Nor did I have to carry a water pump and worry about my water source. I had more food and I was able to share my extra space with others.

1 comment:

  1. Your experiments crack me up. I can see you inventing the next running gadget out there. I didn't realize your pack was so heavy. Oh, and if I would have known those were Sue's cookies I would have so eaten