I did my very first longest, and steepest hike today to Mt. Wilson with a group of amazing ladies. It was a 14 mile roundtrip hike, in preparation for my quickly approaching Inca Trail trek, where I got to try out my new hiking outfit, and new Camelback daypack.
I was very lucky to have the seasoned hikers around me - one of which is training for a hike to the top of Mt. Kilimanjaro - tirelessly telling me how well I was doing, and filling me in on the very useful tricks to keep me going. The three very important things I learned today, that literally helped me to make it to the peak without any injuries were:
1. Pressure-Breath: This very simple yet energizing breathing technique, gets rid of the stale air in your body, making room for a big volume of fresh Oxygen. You breathe out very strongly, and quickly a couple of times, when you start feeling your heartbeat start to go up.
2. Rest-Step: Around mile 6 going upwards, I started getting cramps in my thighs right above my knees. In this technique, you step heel first, and take shorter steps to make more use of the bigger muscles at the back of your legs.
3. Hiking-Buddies: Who you hike with makes all the difference in how good you feel about the hike, regardless of how long, or steep, or arduous the trail is. After all, like J said "A 14 mile hike seems a lot shorter with great company". And I was in the company of the greatest today!
Thank you, R, J, and M!