Saturday, April 30, 2016

On the ground in Fredericksburg

staying at a hotel in Fredericksburg in preparation for the Rumpass in Bumpass sprint triathlon tomorrow.  I arrived around 7:30 last night after driving a couple of hours from the Northern District in Shenandoah National Park.

Judy, Dan, Paula and I spent two pretty big days hiking.  The first day was a large loop around the Big Meadows campground, which is where we pitched our tent and camped.  that first hike was pretty challenging as it entailed 14.8 miles and 3,149 feet of elevation gain.  It took us 7 hours and 39 minutes to complete.  Our mile times ranged from 20:12 to 49:14 and the biggest ascent in one mile was 557 feet (so a bit more than 10% grade on average).  The last two miles had 1000 feet of vertical ascent so we were pretty whipped at the end.  That plus 50 degrees and a couple hours of driving rain added to the difficulty.  The rain eventually stopped, we got our fire going and had a nice evening.

Before I left I weighed in at 181.6 pounds, so 14.8 pounds loss in 17 days.  Despite this rapid weight loss I felt very good and the dropped lbs were definitely noticeable--very satisfying hike.  I estimate that I burned about 2725 calories on the hike (this is most likely on the low side--some sites would estimate over 4000 calories.  In any event, my diet was out the window due to the need to feed the engine while backpacking.  Also, we indulged quite a bit around the campfire!

Yesterday, due to a navigation error on my part, ended up at 14.2 miles (we were shooting for 10 or so) and another 2430 feet of elevation gain.  All of this came on the back end of the hike as after six miles we still had less than 100 feet of climbing.  This climb was in the Northern District and its the one I call the Three Cemeteries hike.  Fastest mile was 21:05 and slowest was 38:13.  The total hike took 6:29 and i estimate I burned about 2500 calories.  I ate quite a bit less than the first day and avoided campfire indulgence so I probably had a sizable energy deficit.

I'll post my Garmin downloads when i get back to terra firma.

Today, I'm just hanging out (didn't make sense to drive back to DE and then turn around and drive back today).  I'll probably take my TT bike out for a bit of a test ride a little later.  Not surprisingly I'm quite stiff and sore from the climbing and my legs are a bit thrashed.  My left knee swelled up quite a bit so it's range of motion is a bit suspect.  Not ideal prep for a sprint triathlon but thats the way I roll in 2016!

I'm going to drive down to Lake Anna around dinner time to pick up my race packet.  I know there are 16 guys in my age group--none of whom I've raced against (as far as I can tell).  We'll see how it goes--should be fun.  the weather forecast at race time is 57 degrees with thunderstorms and rain likely.....

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