Thursday, August 15, 2013

Hill Training

Today we set out to do some specific training on hills.  Although we did some hill work while we were in the Galena territory in northern Illinois - we have not had a chance to do much hill training since. Today we finally found time to visit the Harris Forest Preserve in Yorkville.  It was a very nice day - not very hot - mostly sunny.  Using a ap on my iPhone called Theodolite - I was able to determine the slope of the sledding hill to be anywhere from a 12 to 15 degree elevation.  

Hill training not only involved the basic trekking up and down the hill - but how to do that. It is not just learning how to walk - smaller strides - but also using your trekking poles.  On a small slope such as this we left our poles normal length - but for the downhills we lengthened the poles to help control our descent.  Different people have different ideas which way is best - the truth is - you go with what works best for you.  The most direct way is to walk straight up or down a hill. Others would walk on diagonals - going left and right - more steps involved but easier - especially on the down slope. We did this section - about 1 kilometer - both ways three times before heading out for some trail walking.  


Discovering some wooded trails for trekkers and horses - we decided to walk a lollipop loop - carefully avoiding tree roots - ground branches and road apples.  


 It was a nice walk - no mosquitoes - and finally came back to the sledding hill where we did one more walk up and down the hill to call it a day.  Pleasant surroundings for an afternoon trek - made for a fun and productive afternoon. 


Final distance today we estimate at maybe 8 kilometers or 5 miles.  Time is running short and our training days are coming to an end.  Eleven days to departure and the real thing!

Buen Camino
Dale and Arlene