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Outdoors, Hiking

Mt. Woodson Loop – Aug 5, 2017 / 3:15

For various reasons, I had not worked out in a week and wanted to see how this would feel. The loop is really an out-and-back from (in this case) Highway 67 in Ramona to Lake Poway rather than a loop, but loop sounds cooler. It just means summiting Woodson twice. The stats are 10.1 miles and 3,300′ elevation gain and loss. I thought it was closer to 11 miles, but my phone says I’m deluded. I may need a new phone.

Did the loop in about 3:12 w/o running, but with unfortunate bonk-like breakdown about halfway back up from Lake Poway. I suspect this has something to do with salt and/or water loss (I lost net 12 lb+ on the hike, but took in water and electrolytes as I went).  Also took salt pills. Splits:

  • Up / Ramona to Peak in 32 min (fine for moderate walking pace)
  • Down / Peak to Lake Poway in 58 min (fine for moderate walking pace)
  • Up / Lake Poway to Peak in 1:18 (crap walking pace w/rests)
  • Down / Peak to Ramona in 23 min (fine for fast walking pace)

It was in the 80s, so I was sweating plenty and the breakdown came on quickly. I was fine at the picnic tables (cruising, not breathing that hard), then suddenly I was breathing really hard and my legs started to lose steam. Had to rest a few times, which makes no sense.

Hypothesis 1: Too much salt loss, so experiment with direct salt packet intake next time and see if that helps (maybe salt in water too, not just electrolytes. If this is true, I really just need to stay out of the heat; it’s not my thing. I did notice that my hands were unusually swollen at one point, which either means dehydration or too much salt intake, ironically.  Or something else.

Hypothesis 2: Concurrent iron loss. Seems unlikely, but I do sweat a whole bunch.

Hypothesis 3: I’m out of shape in terms of endurance / distance. Maybe, but doesn’t really explain how it came on so quickly or why I felt fine once the hike was over (no fatigue, just thirsty and annoyed). 

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