Preheat your oven to 500 degrees (F). Open the door and let the wave of heat envelope you. Stand there and feel the heat everywhere...there's no escape...no shade...just the heat. This is what I will experience when I get down to the Inner Gorge of the Grand Canyon...a desert.
And just to give you a bit more perspective, I will be hitting the trail head on the South Rim very early in the morning. And in the month of May, the temperatures could easily be in the 30s (F). And I will be at 7000 feet above sea level, almost a mile and a half higher than I am right now typing this blog. In less than five hours (I hope) I will descend 5000 feet, almost a mile, to the Inner Gorge and will experience a 50, 60, or 70+ degree change in temperature! And then I get to hike back up...and need to get back up in about eight hours...a 13-14 hour hiking day! You bet this is endurance training.
Park Rangers recommend two (2) gallons of water per person for a full day of hiking. I know I will carry at least one gallon, that's an extra 8-9 pounds! I will need to sip water every 15 minutes to stay hydrated. The hiker's mantra is "A happy mountainEER voids CLEAR!" And this is just important in every day life, your urine should be clear to light yellow. In a recent article on hydration in The Journal of Nutrition (Medscape), "Even mild dehydration may affect our moods and ability to concentrate".
The solution, drink adequate amounts of water. You are often dehydrated once you are thirsty. Subtle clues like headache or fatique may be your body telling you to drink more water. And you are in deep trouble if your urine is dark! Six to eight glasses of water is what is normally recommended. Your body is the best indicator of how much you need. Listen to your body...its usually right.
So Cheers! And I hope you will continue to follow my journey to the Grand Canyon...as we train and fund-raise for The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. Our goal is to "Beat Cancer"!
PS And thanks to the Team in Training Hike Coach for providing much of the information on hydration.