Today's hike was shorter than yesterday's but in many ways more strenuous. Yet I feel way better. I'm convinced now that yesterday's struggles were in large part due to the lack of activity between weekends.
I can feel today's hike for sure but I feel used but not abused. My legs and feet are buzzing not sore. Here's why -
This was a section of trail rocks/boulders we had to climb down. Now take that photo rotate it 90 degrees away so that the boulders are in a horizontal line. That's what the trail was like for almost all of miles 2-7. Every now and then there was a smoother part that look liked this
and a few real teasers that looked like this
but for most of that five mile stretch it was all boulder hopping all the time. I fell only once. I had several arm flailing saves but I only fell once. :)
After the boulder fields we had four miles to go and it was more or less boulder free but rocky. However, after the boulders the rocky stretch felt like sponges to our feet. This is evident in miles 8,9,10 and 11 where our pace got progressively quicker. (Garmin info here)
Take a look at the elevation chart for this hike. Go ahead I'll wait. :) Yeah, see that? About 1000 feet in 2.5 miles and we pretty much kept moving the whole way. A brief stop at 2 miles to make sure everyone was still with us (there were 9 of us) but really only enough for the hike leader to count heads. No one wanted to lose momentum.
A couple of the people on this hike have done the Super Hike and they say it's steeper and more repetitive ups and downs. But that's ok. I'm gonna be ready. I was sweating on that climb today and my heart was going harder than it does on climbs around here but my legs did great and I recovered pretty quick at the top. I've got a lot of work to do, I know, but I'm feeling good about my progress.
Those boulders though.... I suck at boulder hopping.....but I did great everywhere else - and I climbed better than most in our group. Not bad for an old lady dork! :)
In two days I've gone 27+ miles in 10+ hours. I'm really surprised at how good I feel. I expected to be sore and exhausted. I did a lot of stretching yesterday. It really does help. My plan is to get out Tuesday and Wednesday for some hiking locally but then I'm off for 14 days while we take our 11 year old, soon to be 12 year old, grandson** Dawson all around the area and then-some. I'll be on my feet a fair amount but it won't be the same. In fact, in some ways stand around, move some and wait is harder.
Keep smiling and keep moving.
** Just to be clear, while I am old enough to be a grandmother I'm not really old enough to be Dawson's. I was 15 when his mother was born. Second marriages do strange things to the family tree. That being said, I'm looking forward to his visit.