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BumpJumper
01-07-2007, 00:51
Ok, I am new to this hiking thing. Trailtalker got me into it. I want to know how hard this is going to be for an overweight woman to do.
No fat jokes ok.....
I aint morbidly obese but I carry alot of extra weight.

Jim Adams
01-07-2007, 01:10
just don't push it too hard and injure yourself. i am always over weight when i start but in the best shape of my life when i'm done. the weight will come off, just walk and enjoy where you are and what you see.
geek

Spirit Walker
01-07-2007, 02:16
Are you planning a thruhike, or just learning to enjoy hiking and backpacking?

In either case, being overweight means that you will want to start slowly. Don't get talked into doing big miles. If you push too hard you won't enjoy it and you'll give up. But if you take it slowly, you may find the pleasure in climbing mountains, looking at beautiful views, and visiting places that most people never see.

Your first few trips are going to be difficult - but then, they were difficult for most of us. You have to strengthen your muscles and knees and get your lungs used to breathing hard. Don't worry too much if it feels really hard at first - it will get easier as you gain conditioning. Midway through my first trip I almost turned back - and if I had I never would have continued to do the adventures that I have been lucky enough to experience. I was stopping every 50 yards. I hurt in every muscle in my body - and several I didn't know I had. Fortunately my stubbornness said, "One more day." I did and it was great. Still hurt - but I was able to see the beauty around me. The third day I spent several hours beside a running stream - and I got hooked. Still hurt - but I decided it was worth it.

One issue you may have because of your weight is finding gear to fit - there are some threads on that here and on backpacker.com. Another issue is chaffing - especially on the AT in midsummer. Thighs rubbing together mean friction - which can be painful. The right clothes help.

Lilred
01-07-2007, 02:34
You'd be surprised how many overweight people are out there hiking. Like others said, take it slow, sit and rest often. I buy men's clothes, they fit better. THey don't make a lot of extra large hiking clothes for women. Vaseline does wonders for chaffing.

bfitz
01-07-2007, 03:46
It's just one step at a time. The mind is more the issue than the body in this case.

hammock engineer
01-07-2007, 04:05
Welcome to WB.

I echo everyone else's thoughts. Take it easy and start slow. Try some day hikes, hammocks are cool, and short trips.

Just remember hiking is fun. If it stops being fun, you're trying to hard. Go with it and you'll figure things out along the way. Plenty of great advice here on WB.

Frolicking Dinosaurs
01-07-2007, 08:24
I'm a chubby dino (size 18-20) with ortho problems... and I can hike. So can you. I'm s l o w but I get there. I've been a hiker all my life, but had to start over after a bad car accident broke a hip & leg. I'll tell you how I started out and advanced. You probably won't have to start this slowly, but if you need to - do it.

I started out walking on a level, paved walking path that follows a roadway. The reason was so the he-dino could go get the car if I was not able to finish. My first walk after getting out of a wheelchair was with a walker and I made it 1/8 of a mile. The next day a made it about 100 yards further. That continued and I soon graduated to using a cane instead of a walker (I still use a cane much of the time).

I kept walking until I got to where I could walk up hills, down hills and could go for about 5 miles on the paved path. Then I started walking on a dirt bike path near my home. I was only able to handle about 1/2 mile at first on the uneven terrain. Slowly I worked up to being able to walk 5 miles there. I also gained enough confidence to start hiking on real trails again.

Over time I've been able to get back to being able to hike about 8 miles in a day and have changed the kinds of things I carry in my backpack to be lighter and meet new needs I now have.

If I can do this, you can do this. Start out slow. Carry some two-liter coke bottle full of water in your daypack to build your ability to carry weight - if they get too heavy, its easy to lighten up - just pour out some of the water.

gsingjane
01-07-2007, 09:16
Hiking is definitely more challenging when you are carrying extra weight. I found myself getting demoralized trying to climb a hill (it's harder to haul yourself up) and it also makes squeezing through rock falls or narrow passages or going through rocky terrain more difficult. On a technical level, when you are heavier the sleeping pads don't seem to support your weight very well, I found myself sinking down so that I touched the floor of the tent and it was harder to get a good night's sleep.

Eventually the difficulties of hiking heavier motivated me to stop doing that. I realized that I was freaking out about an extra pound in tent weight, when I could lose that amount and more out of my "overall pack" and greatly enhance the quality of the entire experience. BUT this is no way intended to say, you shouldn't get out there until you're lower. Try it now, enjoy it, and maybe one of these days you'll say, let's see if we can make this even MORE enjoyable and MORE fun.

Good luck!

Jane in CT

BumpJumper
01-07-2007, 10:26
Thanks. I dont plan on doing a trek of miles at first. Is a matter of fact Trailtalker is going to take me on a KIDS hike for my first time!!! Stop the laughing...I hear you!!!
Ok, so I may have to stop behind the kids and rest...SO!!!!!!!!!!:jump

StarLyte
01-07-2007, 10:34
Hey there - welcome.

You will find lots of friends here.

Take your time, and have fun. It is important to absorb your surroundings while hiking. If you're doing it just to lose weight, you probably will.

My 8 year old granddaughter hiked 11 miles her first full day on the A.T., so you can't always go by a "kid's hike" :D

Good luck - see you out there - and come to a hiker event !

BumpJumper
01-07-2007, 10:37
OMG Star, that was encouraging!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:jump
I thought she meant like they were only going a mile or so....Geeze....
Ok, so I can do two miles...
I will go slow and make them wait on me....they do wait for you dont they???:eek:

4eyedbuzzard
01-07-2007, 10:49
The kid's hike is a good idea, go short and flat leading up to some day hikes with gourmet(but nutritionally sound lunches - how's that for PC). Start throwing in some elevation changes (well do what ya can in FL). Then go for an overnight or weekender. By summer you'll be ready for some longer hiking on some easier parts of the AT. The weight isn't as much as an issue as otherwise being fit. I have a friend who is 40 lbs overweight who can do 8 to 10 miles a day on the trails here in NH (doesn't sound like much 'till you've hiked the mountains here). He's got a gut, but he's also got strong legs and BIG wind and hikes every other weekend. Whatever you do, enjoy yourself.:)

4eyedbuzzard
01-07-2007, 10:56
My 8 year old granddaughter hiked 11 miles her first full day on the A.T., so you can't always go by a "kid's hike" :D

40 years ago I waited for them(those OLD people) at the top of every hill. Life has a way of coming full circle. I always make sure that I'm carrying dinner or the stove - that way they CAN'T leave me behind!;)

Hana_Hanger
01-07-2007, 11:51
Of course they would wait...but you may find it is easier and less stressful to do your own walking pace and not feel pushed to go faster because you can see them waiting for you! Meet for breaks...lunch etc...and enjoy your hike.

I find it easier to moan and groan and sweat and rest when not being pressed to keep up with the rest of the family. Unless of course the hike is an easy one...its nice to have company on and off :)

I did lose a lot of weight in the beginning....but be prepared for the muscle gain you will get. But hey the inches stayed off and I went down in dress sizes even if I gained muscle weight. Just go s l o w find your own comfortable pace...this can take a few trys. Sadly everytime I stop hiking for any length of time...I have to go through the process of starting all over again to gain back my strength and ease of hiking.

I did finally get my pack weight down very light...but more important is my own weight...still working on that one. :)

Frolicking Dinosaurs
01-07-2007, 11:53
There are some advantages to being so slow - the kids have time to stop and examine all the bugs, frogs, and animal track & poop along the way. Their naturally curious nature (and all the stopping and starting it causes) drives younger, faster adult hikers up the wall. :D

Frosty
01-07-2007, 11:57
Thanks. I dont plan on doing a trek of miles at first. Is a matter of fact Trailtalker is going to take me on a KIDS hike for my first time!!! Stop the laughing...I hear you!!!You don't hear me laughing. If you are hiking with youngsters, you'll find it a special treat. They feast on the freedom of walking in the woods, zipping back and forth, and their excitement is contagious. I loved hiking with young Cub Scouts (Boy Scouts I had a rule they had to wait for me at every trail juction. I didn't so much hike with them as behind them).

Every hike needn't be a thruhike or up a big peak. I walk in my tiny town forest and love it.

Enjoy your hike and start slowly. Part of it is mind over matter as someone said, but overweight people have to be aware of their tendons and ligaments. As you get into shape, your leg muscles will strengthen faster than your tendons, so going fast and doing high mileage ought to wait a while. Hiking with kids is just the thing.

Gsingjane has an excellent point. While I ponder the relative weights of different gear, and my schedule has kept me from hiking long, my weight is up to 265 again. If I can get it back to 230-240 where it belongs, it would be like hiking without a pack!

Good luck and give us progress reports.

Hana_Hanger
01-07-2007, 11:59
So true...Dino hee hee I think my granddaughter is the only one I truly can hike with...but even she has to wait on me from time to time. I watch her run up the slopes or passes....at 6 you have endless energy.

I think this hike in August with my two sons is going to drive them batty.
So we are taking 2 way radios (5 mile radius) they can hike ahead of me and I will putt putt along and YES I will carry the only STOVE!!! For I fear they would eat me out of (pack and tent ) before I met up with them again!!!

SURVIVOR
01-07-2007, 12:08
You guys, I can't tell you how much it means to me to find this thread!!! I am starting my journey in early March. Unfortunately, my brother, whom I love and whom I know meant well, told me I was too heavy to do this. I was devastated. This is a new adventure , something different,and I am going . I know it's going to be difficult at times. I know I am overweight. But Iam going. I hope to see you all out there !!!!!

Mags
01-07-2007, 12:18
Ultra runners have a saying:

Start slow, then taper off!

Applies to this situation, too. Take it easy, enjoy the time spent in nature. Do it more and more, and before you know it you will be in better shape. The huffing and puffing will be a little less, the aches and pains will gradually dissapear.

The important thing is to get out there and enjoy yourself.

Wether you are overweight or some person out to set a "speed record", everyone takes it one step at a time.

(Off to do more skiing..woo hoo!)

VictoriaM
01-07-2007, 14:02
Unless you have some underlying health problem that is keeping you heavy, you might not find yourself overweight for long. I've lost 35 pounds in the last year, largely due to all the hiking I've been doing. Take it slow, take a break to catch your breath if you find you can't talk while you hike. Bring plenty of water, and always have a little snack with you, even on short hikes. You'll do fine.

Survivor - are you thru hiking this year? Do you have a journal?

Mammoth
01-07-2007, 14:30
I think that hiking and backpacking is a great activity for people who have a little extra weight, since you can hike really slow and take a lot of breaks if you need to. I'm a size 16-18 and can cover over ten miles on a good day. I do a lot of exercises to strengthen my legs, like squats and stairs, and those help to support the rest of my weight. The best advice I can give is that you should not compare yourself to anyother hiker, even ones who are the same weight as you. Hike at your own pace and have a great time.

hammock engineer
01-07-2007, 14:37
You guys, I can't tell you how much it means to me to find this thread!!! I am starting my journey in early March. Unfortunately, my brother, whom I love and whom I know meant well, told me I was too heavy to do this. I was devastated. This is a new adventure , something different,and I am going . I know it's going to be difficult at times. I know I am overweight. But Iam going. I hope to see you all out there !!!!!


Go for it. I leave in mid March and will see you out there somewhere.

Funny thing is, I think everyone that is doing a thru that tells people who do not hike that are are doing it get told some sort of reason why they shouldn't do it or will fail. I have been told I will get bored, get hurt, be to cold, be to hot, miss everything back home, and generally not smart for taking time to do what I really want to do.

In the end do what you want to do and don't listen to anyone else.

sarbar
01-07-2007, 15:13
Best thing you can do is start excersing :) Just start walking a couple times a week, and the hiking will seem like second nature. The weight itself is less of an issue than being out of shape. Lots of us out there carry a bit too much weight ;) But don't let that keep you at home! Hiking is great for you! Start slow and small, and it gets easier.

BumpJumper
01-07-2007, 19:45
Physically I am healthy. I quit smoking Sept 9 due to getting pneumonia and being put in the hospital for three days. I then got bronchitis two more times since.
So, my lungs arent in the greatest shape right now but they will be. I am going to take it real easy....God knows I dont want a helicopter on stand by while I go for my hikes....:)

Jan LiteShoe
01-07-2007, 19:56
Physically I am healthy. I quit smoking Sept 9 due to getting pneumonia and being put in the hospital for three days. I then got bronchitis two more times since.
So, my lungs arent in the greatest shape right now but they will be. I am going to take it real easy....God knows I dont want a helicopter on stand by while I go for my hikes....:)

Trailtalker is an excellent hike mentor.
Get her to go walking with you!
:)
I have different "walking buddies" for different days, that way we can yak and I get some quality time with friends at a foot-traveling pace.
Total win-win.

Hammock Hanger
01-07-2007, 20:16
Ok, I am new to this hiking thing. Trailtalker got me into it. I want to know how hard this is going to be for an overweight woman to do.
No fat jokes ok.....
I aint morbidly obese but I carry alot of extra weight.

When I started out on the trail in 2001 I was as the doctor's would say 50 pounds over weight!! Now of course I believe that those figures are nuts because if I was that weight I would look anorexic. However, I will say that I felt I was 30+ pounds overweight. I did just fine. It may take yo a little longer to get up to the top and a little longer to get to the bottom but after a while on the trail you slim down, you buff up and you get strong where you need to be strong.

By Hot Springs I had dropped 20 pounds per the scale. I had actually lost about 3 dress sizes and I was in fit condition. Remember you build muscle and that weighs in more then fat.

Don't compare your self to some youngin' or some slim and trim hiker, just hike your own hike and eventually you will be where you want o be.

At the mid-way point sign just north of Pine Grove I was looking and feeling great.

SURVIVOR
01-07-2007, 21:09
I plan on starting on MARCH 6, my 43rd bday!!! I thought that as good a date as any. I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2003 and am ready to go on an adventure of my choosing. ;) I don't have a journal. Should I start one?
P.S.
If anyone would like a nice slow chubby partner, let's talk! My start date is slightly flexible. I live in Georgia so getting to Springer won't be an issue.

VictoriaM
01-07-2007, 21:22
Hey, start on the 4th with me! I need someone who will be moving as slow as I will (I have bad knees, so I'll be starting sloooww).

I already love my journal, but I'm not shy about broadcasting my private thoughts over the internet. It's mostly for me, but I opted for an online journal so that friends and family could read it, and keep track of exactly where I am.

Spirit Walker
01-07-2007, 21:32
Survivor - do you enjoy keeping a journal? If you don't normally keep one, you might just want to try keeping one, just for yourself. It helps a lot to remember a lot of the details that get lost over time. But if you aren't sure about keeping one, don't do a public one -- that puts pressure on you to keep it up, whether you want to or not. I've seen people try to recapture weeks of their hike, long after the fact, because they hated keeping a daily journal. I've also seen a lot of online journals that degenerated into, "I ate x, I walked x miles, I'm tired," over and over again. That doesn't do anybody any good.

OTOH - if you enjoy writing down your thoughts and feelings, keeping a journal can be fun.

I don't like the pressure of keeping a real time public journal. I don't like feeling like I have to get to a computer every time I get to town or writing for anybody but myself. Besides, my writing isn't that great - I like to have time to edit my daily journal a bit before I let the world read it. Yet I love to keep a journal because it keeps the journey alive for me. So I write every night, but don't make it public until after the fact. We have a website with several of my trail journals. The latest went up three months after we got back. It may not get the readership of a more contemporary journal - but I'm writing it more for me than for others. And a few people have enjoyed reading them - so it was worth the time and effort of putting it up. But I am glad that I never tried to do a 'live' journal. Too much pressure.

Dancer
01-07-2007, 21:45
Ok, I am new to this hiking thing. Trailtalker got me into it. I want to know how hard this is going to be for an overweight woman to do.
No fat jokes ok.....
I aint morbidly obese but I carry alot of extra weight.

Hey BumpJumper,

I'm a 'fluffy chick' myself and just getting back out there. I've been hiking weekends at the state park near my house. The elevation isn't that demanding but because I'm out of shape it's a challenge for me. I'm starting out slow like everyone says and working my way up. I'm also going to start going to the gym during the week to work on my cardio endurance.

Success isn't number of miles or elevation gain; it's how much fun you have. Don't let your size discourage you; I don't.

Amazonwoman (Julie)

Frolicking Dinosaurs
01-07-2007, 21:50
Survivior and Victoria, I may have to come wobble down the trail a ways with you two when you get to the Smokies or just north of it.

VictoriaM
01-07-2007, 22:05
Survivior and Victoria, I may have to come wobble down the trail a ways with you two when you get to the Smokies or just north of it.

That would be fun. :D

SURVIVOR
01-09-2007, 16:32
I dont see my first reply so I will do it again!
I am planning on a March 6,2007 start date which is my 43rd bday! I have already turned my notice in at work. EEK.
I am scared and excited and determined and overwhelmed.
If anyone would like to join me or hook up as partners, let me know. I am a novice. Expect to go nice and slow.

SURVIVOR
01-09-2007, 16:35
DOH! There it is! Sorry ya'll. Novice at this threads thing too!

jesse
01-09-2007, 16:56
I lost about 30lbs over the last 3 years. I still want to lose another 10. What I discovered is when we reach our 40's our metabalisim changes. What we did to lose weight in our youth doesn't work as well now.
I am now one of these fitness fanatics. I eat lots of fresh fruits and vegatables, very little red meat. For breakfast I have a protien milk shake, and I walk 3 to 5 miles every day. Never, never, never eat fast food anymore.
You have already done the hard part. Quiting smoking. Don't get discouraged, and whatever you do, do not try and starve yourself skinny. You might lose lbs, but your body will start burning muscle and storing fat Also do not overdo exersise. Be consistant do a little each day. Listen to your body. Good luck.

waterboy99
01-09-2007, 16:58
When you start your hike you are going to meet a lot of really great folks.
People that you will want to stay with as you hike. But, if you can not keep up with them eaisly then do not force yourself to hike harder than you should. There will be just as many really great hikers to meet as you go.

I have talked with a good number of hikers that pushed too hard to keep up with stronger hikers during the start of their hike and wound up getting injured or worn out. And later on you will probably meet up with those hikers from the start anyway. My goal at the start (55 lbs overweight when I started) was to end each day feeling as if I could have gone further.

Singe03
01-09-2007, 17:33
You guys, I can't tell you how much it means to me to find this thread!!! I am starting my journey in early March. Unfortunately, my brother, whom I love and whom I know meant well, told me I was too heavy to do this. I was devastated. This is a new adventure , something different,and I am going . I know it's going to be difficult at times. I know I am overweight. But Iam going. I hope to see you all out there !!!!!

Meh don't listen to your brother, he's probabily jealous :-) I'd say dont listen to anyone talking about your physical abilities except yourself and your doctor.

Keep in mind that your liable to dump alot of weight pretty quick (good reason to hike eh?) but this can be unhealthy, make you weak (both physically and your immune system) and ultimately put you off the trail early. Pay really good attention to your diet, eat healthy and keep your energy up.

SURVIVOR
01-09-2007, 19:13
Victoria I am open to moving my start date up. If you'd like a hiking partner who is slow then I'm your woman. Let's talk. Anyone else ?

shuffle
01-11-2007, 22:49
WHen I started in 2004 I was overweight. I hiked to about Shenandoah and had a scale brought so I could see if I lost any because clothes were getting very loose. I had lost 60 pounds. That wasn't the normal I guess but it sure did give me a boost. I was feeling fit and the hills that I had to stop every 20 steps to catch a breath were ones I could actually go up fast. I even got irritated one day when I couldn't figure out where we were and ran up a hill. So you really do get into great shape. I am planning to hike in 2008 and I tell people I will be on the AT diet, eat what you want and still lose weight. So start slow and keep at it. Most people will encourage you along the way.

Blissful
01-11-2007, 22:58
I am planning to hike in 2008 and I tell people I will be on the AT diet, eat what you want and still lose weight.

It's after the hike that I worry about, when the weight goes back on like crazy. I hope to get on a running program then to keep it off. And I've heard it said you should go on a diet too when you get back and not pig out.

Bugbite
01-13-2007, 12:58
Ya know, I'm sorry to be the one voice to go against the grain here, but it was reading posts like this one before my 2005 thru hike attempt, that left me with a lot of regrets.......

Before I started I was a good 30lbs overweight but listened to everyone saying if I started out slow, listened to my body, went at my own pace, etc etc, then the weight would come pouring off. I would justify this too with logic like :hey you spend day after day doing nothing but hiking up and down hills and burning all those calories, it's simple mathematics, WEIGHT LOSS MUST HAPPEN! And I didn't give a second thought to what I ate while on the trail because I had read you burn something like a bizzillion calories a day hiking so GREAT! I'll eat what ever I want! Heck, to listen to people talk I almost had visions of me starting up one side of the mountain as a sack of potatoes and climbing down the other side as a super skinny weif like model!!

WRONG! WRONG! WRONG! WRONG!!!

I made it approx. 700 miles to Pearisburg, VA and the day I stopped I weighted exactly the same as the day I started. And I was in horrible shape. I had absolutely no energy, I was cronically exhausted, sleeping an average of 12 hours a night and still feeling like I hadn't gotten enough sleep. Most of all, the entire trip was one long memory of pain filled days that began almost immediately and no amount of Advil could touch. Later on I learned that I had collapsed the arches of both of my feet. Since I hadn't gotten into shape and lost the extra weight before the trip, my combined body and pack weight tipped the scale over 200lbs! My knees, ankles and feet just couldn't handle that load, especially over the rugged AT terrain. As for my energy level, I hadn't paid attention to what I ate, which resulted in eating the standard hiking fare of empty calories and "fake" food that slowly but steadily drained my body of life day by day. By the time I limped into Pearisburg, I was whipped both physically and mentally, and my having to the leave the trail was a foregone conclusion.

Since that ill-fated trip I have learned alot. I have spent two years learning from my mistakes and educating myself on ultralite hiking concepts. I will be attempting to thru hike again this summer and I have started training NOW. I also plan on eating REAL food while out there and eating sensibly. I have no doubt that the out come of this trip will be very different from the first.

Now this is just my own personal experience and maybe it's not the normal one. But my advise is, if you are planning to thru hike and are overweight, loss as much weight as you can before you go or at least be in the best possible shape that you can be in before you start. You will only be giving yourself a wonderful advantage and healthy head start right from the get go so why wouldn't you? Learn from my mistakes and save yourself the pain not to mention the medical bills.

Mags
01-13-2007, 14:06
http://www.whiteblaze.net/forum/showthread.php?p=184425#post184425

Blissful
01-13-2007, 14:12
I made it approx. 700 miles to Pearisburg, VA and the day I stopped I weighted exactly the same as the day I started. And I was in horrible shape. I had absolutely no energy, I was cronically exhausted, sleeping an average of 12 hours a night and still feeling like I hadn't gotten enough sleep. Most of all, the entire trip was one long memory of pain filled days that began almost immediately and no amount of Advil could touch. Later on I learned that I had collapsed the arches of both of my feet. Since I hadn't gotten into shape and lost the extra weight before the trip, my combined body and pack weight tipped the scale over 200lbs! My knees, ankles and feet just couldn't handle that load, especially over the rugged AT terrain. As for my energy level, I hadn't paid attention to what I ate, which resulted in eating the standard hiking fare of empty calories and "fake" food that slowly but steadily drained my body of life day by day. By the time I limped into Pearisburg, I was whipped both physically and mentally, and my having to the leave the trail was a foregone conclusion.

Since that ill-fated trip I have learned alot. I have spent two years learning from my mistakes and educating myself on ultralite hiking concepts. I will be attempting to thru hike again this summer and I have started training NOW. I also plan on eating REAL food while out there and eating sensibly. I have no doubt that the out come of this trip will be very different from the first.

Now this is just my own personal experience and maybe it's not the normal one. But my advise is, if you are planning to thru hike and are overweight, loss as much weight as you can before you go or at least be in the best possible shape that you can be in before you start. You will only be giving yourself a wonderful advantage and healthy head start right from the get go so why wouldn't you? Learn from my mistakes and save yourself the pain not to mention the medical bills.

I agree. My hubby has been reading how people do not eat right on the trail and their body ends up eating itself for nutrients. He just got this book about healthy meal planning for the AT and plans to help us out by supplying the food we need and not eating empty calories without nutrients. And the idea of getting in shape now, keeping the weight down, taking a multi vitamin with iron on the trail, etc.
But I think in your case there may have possibly been other health factors coming into play as well - not sure, such as hypothyroidism, etc (?) Don't know that, of course. That's why getting a check-up before you start cannot be overemphasized.

gsingjane
01-13-2007, 18:14
WLDLFR (does that stand for Wyldlyfer?), thanks for sharing your story. I think it injects a good note of realism into the discussion here. It's sort of what I was trying to say in my earlier post, in a roundabout way... I also hiked heavier (25 lbs. over where I am now) and the difficulties and challenges of doing that eventually motivated me to stop doing that, and specifically to lose weight so backpacking would be easier and more fun. And it IS easier and more fun not to hike heavy, it just is! If for no other reason, I would go into gear shops and the store person would say, "YOU are planning to go on a 4-night trip?!?" And we would meet folks at shelters whom you could tell had pretty much the same reaction. Now you might call that reaction "size-ist" and it probably is, but I have to say, often when I meet folks on the trail who are hiking heavy, I also think, gosh, you could make things SO much easier on yourself. I give folks who hike heavy credit for getting out there at all, since it's got to be awfully hard (and in fact I know it's hard first-hand) but it still seems like, being heavy isn't really an immutable condition. It's something I think most people should, or at least really could, take a shot at changing before they get out there.

Jane in CT

Programbo
01-14-2007, 18:16
Hello and welcome to WB!...I will echo everyones advice and say start slow and you will build yourself up well...While I am not overweight (Most people tell me I`m under weight) I can somewhat relate to what you ask because I started hiking again after suffering a very bad heart attack..The day I got out of the hospital I only had like 40-50% of normal heart function..Talk about getting tired easy ..Oy...As part of my therapy to build myself back up I started walking and at first would only do 1/4 of a mile once around the track at the local high school and slowly at that!...Then 1/2 mile..Then I got faster..and so on...Once I could walk at normal speed the track became boring and getting the correct amount of exercise was a chore so I started making a goal for myself.."I will go up the Appalachian Trail and walk from the parking area to that one shelter I used to stay at a mile up the hill"...I could do a mile on the track ok but now we had rocks and a gradual uphill thrown in and I quit the first attempt out :( ...But I kept exercising and finally one day I arrived at the shelter!...Now it is 2 years later and I can take longer day hikes wearing a small pack although I have to stop and rest more than others and hills still wear me out (I got back up to like 70-75% of normal heart function and that`s all I can hope to get because of a lot of scar tissue right in the area of the chamber that pumps the oxygen rich blood thru my body)..So by all means get out there and have FUN and do whatever you feel comfortable with doing at first and don`t get discouraged because in time you WILL go farther and faster :)

WandererKMK
01-15-2007, 00:21
When I first starting planning for this hike, I knew I was heavy and out of shape. For a while, I twisted my head up real good about that and almost convinced myself I shouldn't try. I think it is important to be realistic - but equally important is to have faith. I know that this hike is what I need to do right now. I wish I was in better shape - I have been working on it - but I know I won't be the most fit person to hit the trail. I won't be the least fit either. That is the way the world works - you are never the most or the least of any thing.

I read a lot of journals in prep - one in particular was Big Red's from Trailjournals.com - much more out of shape, much heavier than me but he made it. That is all I really need to know. Will it be hard? Hard enough that I might not make it - yes - is there a possibility I can - heck ya - and I am walking towards that possibility. I will accept all cautions - but I straight out reject any one else's doubt. It is too tied up in the doubter to be a real statement about me.

SURVIVOR
01-15-2007, 12:11
I concur. Like I told my brother, I know you mean well and I understand what you are saying. But if I fail, I fail on my terms, not because someone told me I couldn't do it. I am not going to quit before I even begin.

Lilred
01-15-2007, 12:37
You will get a lot of encouragement from really fit 20 somethings as you huff and puff up a small incline. As odd as it may sound, it really started to p*** me off after just a few times. I'm sure they meant well, but it just sounded so condescending to me. It took everything in me not to tell the 50th person to shut up and go to he!!. The only person I could keep up with had had two knee surgeries, a hip surgery and a bad back. It can be very discouraging. What kept me going was being able to track my progress. As the days went on, I could go further each day before having to stop to catch my breath. Within a few weeks, my stopping grew more infrequent, and although I was still hiking really slowly, I was improving, and that is most encouraging.

Hovey1127
01-15-2007, 12:51
6'1" 255 on a good week, stay active and stretch everyday.

VictoriaM
01-15-2007, 12:53
Well, this fit* 20-something doesn't mean to be condescending. If I encourage a less-fit hiker, it's because I've been there myself, and recently. I know how you feel, though.

*Fit is in the eye of the beholer, I suppose. I wouldn't consider myself fit now, because I lose my breath very easily, and my knees are in rough shape. To someone who doesn't know me, though, my little size 4 body must look like the picture of fitness. Size is deceiving.

jewelweed
01-15-2007, 20:14
I am a size 16-18. My friend is about a size or two larger. We both enjoy hiking. We did have a hard time finding "official" gear however, it is not impossible!

Ex Officio's 17day6countries panties medium fit me...large my friend.
Ex Officio's size ratings on thier site are accurate. The runamuck pants were great. I wear pants because of poison ivy reasons. My friend used basketball shorts.
LL Bean has a nice selection. Look for correct fabrics even if they aren't labled "hiking."
For shirts, silk scoop neck undershirts are nice.


As far as pace goes, you'll find yours. We averaged 2 miles per hour. I hike faster and break alot. She hikes slow and steady and breaks less.

Before we started our hike (SNP-section last summer) we trained. Every weekend we walked. First packs with only water and towels for bulk and 2 miles, then each week we added 5 pounds and 2 miles.

By the last part of our 105 miles we did 45 miles in three days!

Do not cut calories etc..trying to lose weight doing this. You will lose weight anyway. Eat and drink appropriately. We did and still lost about 15 pounds each. Remember you need energy to burn calories.

Send me a message if you have any questions, I'll be happy to help.

Dancer
01-15-2007, 22:49
I did my first 2 miles on the AT this weekend at the SORUCK. It was the 'easy' nature walk up to the Rufus Morgan shelter. Up until now I have hiked alone because I was ashamed that I was so out of shape. I really tried to hide this weekend that I got a little winded just going up to my bunkhouse. I decided to do the hike if it took me all day. I just told everybody that was concerned that I was going to be ok but I was also going to go very slow and take lots of breaks. I realized that I cannot thru in the shape I am now. Even going slow it would be miserable and physically dangerous. Getting in the best shape you can before you leave, even if it isn't to your ideal weight or ultimate fitness level, is important. Build as much cardiovascular strength as you can. I couldn't have done it with a full pack. If you want it bad enough you can make it but pain and exhaustion will not make it fun. Don't let any of these posts discourage you. Any hiking, thru or section or just down a path at the local park is better than nothing. Keep moving and never give up on your dreams.

Frosty
01-15-2007, 23:57
Before we started our hike (SNP-section last summer) we trained. Every weekend we walked. First packs with only water and towels for bulk and 2 miles, then each week we added 5 pounds and 2 miles. I have a history of weak knee ligaments/tendons, and for a while was training them by carrying a pack filled with milk jugs and 2-liter soda bottles with water. Never thought of using towels to keep them form rolling around. Thaks for the idea!

The beauty of carrying jugs of water instead of gear is that if you get tired, you can dump out the water and walk home easier :D

MrSparex
01-16-2007, 00:52
Be sure to wear hiking boots with proper ankle support. Shoes will not be appropriate if your overweight. If you turn your foot and weigh 100 pounds it's bad enough...but putting added weight on that turned foot can do very serious damage. God bless you and enjoy hiking!!

Lilred
01-16-2007, 10:23
Be sure to wear hiking boots with proper ankle support. Shoes will not be appropriate if your overweight. If you turn your foot and weigh 100 pounds it's bad enough...but putting added weight on that turned foot can do very serious damage. God bless you and enjoy hiking!!

This is true. Dec. 14th I turned my foot and broke my fifth metatarcel. I don't think I would have broken it if I didn't weigh so much. I'm hoping it heals well and won't be a problem during my section hikes.

Angryduck
01-17-2007, 15:16
Wow, reading this has been great. I am most likely the largest person hiking here...at 29 years old and 340lbs (down from 400) and believe it or not, per every doctor, am amazingly fit. I have always enjoyed hiking and currently play paintball, rugby and have hiked most of the blue blazes in CT.

I am hiking the Ct section of the AT the first week in September this year and will start training once it warms up a bit (currently training for rugby in a gym anyway).

Anyway, I am looking for recommendations for good ankly support boots from other large hikers if possible! Also, if there are any large hikers up in the CT, MASS, RI, NY areas, drop me a line, I would love to get out sometime with some other people. :)

Kelly

Programbo
01-18-2007, 19:49
Before I started I was a good 30lbs overweight but listened to everyone saying if I started out slow, listened to my body, went at my own pace, etc etc, then the weight would come pouring off. I would justify this too with logic like :hey you spend day after day doing nothing but hiking up and down hills and burning all those calories, it's simple mathematics, WEIGHT LOSS MUST HAPPEN!

Aww..I`m sorry you didn`t have a good experience in this particular area but it actually is simple mathmatics...Unfortunately the simple math says you probably won`t burn up any weight :) ....You only burn like 8-9 calories a minute backpacking..That`s about 500 per hour so if you hiked 7 hours non-stop (Which of course you won`t) you`d only burn up 3,500 calories...Now as we all know you need to burn up 3,500 calories more than you take in to lose 1 pound..SO..If you hiked those 7 hours non-stop and consumed 3,500 calories during the day you will break even and lose 0 pounds!.....And if you consume foods that are high in calories but low in nutrition (As it sounds like you did) then you are indeed heading for trouble....But the most important thing is that you learned from this and it didn`t kill your interest in backpacking which is wonderful :) ...Plus you have shared your experience with others which will help someone avoid the same mistake!

bfitz
01-19-2007, 12:10
Aww..I`m sorry you didn`t have a good experience in this particular area but it actually is simple mathmatics...Unfortunately the simple math says you probably won`t burn up any weight :) ....You only burn like 8-9 calories a minute backpacking..That`s about 500 per hour so if you hiked 7 hours non-stop (Which of course you won`t) you`d only burn up 3,500 calories...Now as we all know you need to burn up 3,500 calories more than you take in to lose 1 pound..SO..If you hiked those 7 hours non-stop and consumed 3,500 calories during the day you will break even and lose 0 pounds!.....And if you consume foods that are high in calories but low in nutrition (As it sounds like you did) then you are indeed heading for trouble....But the most important thing is that you learned from this and it didn`t kill your interest in backpacking which is wonderful :) ...Plus you have shared your experience with others which will help someone avoid the same mistake!Even so, the conditioning from such activity is beneficial. Learn about nutrition, metabolism, sugar, insulin etc. and apply that knowledge. It's not just about calories.

WONDERWOMAN
03-16-2007, 02:10
I am attempting a thru hike this year starting the last week in March at Springer. I am a good 90 lbs overweight. I WILL NOT be hiking th approach trail. That's not part of the AT right? I initially planned on hiking to the first shelter which is between 8-9 miles away. The more I talk to hikers, the more they recommed 5 miles to start. I may do more or less depending on how, I feel. However, I know that if I don't average 15 miles per day, I won't make Katahdin before OCT 15. I also know that there was a huge blizzard in the North East last September. I may have to flip flop, what a bummer. I will take all the advice I can take. I only have about a week to go. I put it off to check with all my doctors. Podiatrist-check, Cardiologist --check, Family Practitioner- coming right up. My podiatrist wants me to stretch, stretch stretch. The advice above about tendons is right on the money. I stretched the heck out of my achilles when I hiked one spring break back in college.

Sly
03-16-2007, 04:41
I am attempting a thru hike this year starting the last week in March at Springer. I am a good 90 lbs overweight. I WILL NOT be hiking th approach trail. That's not part of the AT right?

No, the AT is not part of the AT, but it' all the same. If you can only hike 4-6 miles day, do it. But keep doing it. It'll get easier. I always thought my 2nd day from Hawk Mountain shelter to Gooch Gap was one of the hardest on the entire trail. It's an eye opener early in the walk.

Have a great hike.

sarbar
03-16-2007, 17:38
Being heavy doesn't always equal being out of shape. I have fought being heavy the majority of my life. The only time I have been skinny was in college and I starved myself thru a combo of walking everywhere (no car), poverty and smoking a pack a day.
I still weigh too much. I know it. But, always, the Drs and nurses underestimate my weight by 20-30 lbs. Why? I have a lot of muscles in my legs, and I am not "sloppy" fat (yeah, like the fat ladies at Walmart wearing stretch leggings and Minnie Mouse T-shirts). My fat is well distributed (not sure if that is a good thing? Lol!) and I am lucky I suppose that I don't have a pear or apple shape.
But, anyways, my drift here is don't let it stop you from getting out. So your fat? Well, over half of the US is! At least you are trying to change it!
Spend your money on good boots, as noted. Your feet will thank you. Use trekking poles, save your knees. Excersice at home, even if all you do is walk. Walking trains hiking muscles.
Buy clothes that flatter you and get out!

I am amazed out here how many other larger ladies I see now on the trail :) It makes me very happy!
Sure, you might walk slower, but you'll still get there..eventually. So the mile mongers blast by you? Eh, no loss, you can enjoy the quiet time, listening to nature. And the mile mongers can save you a spot at camp!

This tubby can hike 19 miles in a day ;) So no excuses! And I take high blood pressure meds that lower my heart rate even! Every step you take is one step to being fit (and I didn't say skinny!)

shoe
03-16-2007, 18:49
I am attempting a thru hike this year starting the last week in March at Springer. I am a good 90 lbs overweight.

I don't feel so alone now :) I am heading out April 2nd and am a good 70 pounds overweight.

I WILL NOT be hiking th approach trail. That's not part of the AT right? I initially planned on hiking to the first shelter which is between 8-9 miles away. The more I talk to hikers, the more they recommed 5 miles to start. I may do more or less depending on how, I feel.

I did the GA section last year and the hike to Hawk Mountain Shelter I thought was fairly easy, this coming from a fat smoker (I quit smoking)

I agree with Sly the 2nd day was the hardest. I was in tears and wanted to cry but I did that section very stupidly. I hiked from Stover Creek Shelter to Jusus Creek before I quit. Way too many miles, especially with Sassafras and Justus Mountain right after eachother and at the end of the day.

However, I know that if I don't average 15 miles per day, I won't make Katahdin before OCT 15. I also know that there was a huge blizzard in the North East last September. I may have to flip flop, what a bummer.

This worries me too.

But you know what...WE CAN DO IT!

Hoep to run into you on the trail but you will prolly be a little ahead of me. What day are you leaving?

I will take all the advice I can take. I only have about a week to go. I put it off to check with all my doctors. Podiatrist-check, Cardiologist --check, Family Practitioner- coming right up. My podiatrist wants me to stretch, stretch stretch. The advice above about tendons is right on the money. I stretched the heck out of my achilles when I hiked one spring break back in college.[/QUOTE]

stewill
03-20-2007, 18:20
Over weight 46 years old and I have hike the bottom of the grand canyon 3 times... just did Rim to Rim last october... now I can't wait to knock some miles off the AT... yesp I was slow.. 1 mile and hour

mapgirl
03-25-2007, 10:27
As someone somewhat overweight and pretty tall, the clothing is the hardest part. I want to be comfortable and look good. I don't know why hiking pants are so high waisted. Lower waist bands are more comfortable and less constricting. Use the internet and catalogs to find pants. I have a great admiration for anyone out their hiking. Not everyone is young and skinny. Have fun. God bless

Lumberjack
03-25-2007, 12:36
sweats and suspenders work too....

its 12 miles per day, but dont sweat it right now, stay at a pace you can do. Most of the big milers end up taking extra 0 days to recover from the stress. That old tortoise and hare thang very much applies. Ignore Katahdin and just get to the next town.

Programbo
03-25-2007, 19:20
I`ve always thought a Harper's Ferry-Maine then a Harper`s Ferry-GA flip was the best plan for those in not the best of shape..That way you aren`t immediately hitting some big climbs for 100`s of miles...From Harper's Ferry all the way up to what? MA? The trail barely gets above 2,000 feet..That`s a good 500 miles of conditioning...I think this might cut down on that 50% dropout rate the AT produces in the first 160 miles each year...But if you do go the GA-ME route just remember what everyone here is saying and take it slow at first and don`t get discouraged if you "fall behind" the pack..You will get strong and go farther each day as you move along

Lillianp
03-27-2007, 17:54
its 12 miles per day, but dont sweat it right now, stay at a pace you can do. Most of the big milers end up taking extra 0 days to recover from the stress. That old tortoise and hare thang very much applies. Ignore Katahdin and just get to the next town.
I agree. I've gone on a short backpacking trip with a few friends who are skinnier and in better shape than I and I fell behind, but I always made it! And it wasn't that much of a big deal that I was farther behind. If they reached a fork in the path or something or wanted a break, they waited for me to catch up. I did not mind. Funny how that works, because with my family, I always feel left behind, even when they did that (and they waited every time). I guess its just who you walk with.
Lillian

atbeatle
03-28-2007, 20:33
one of the best wieght loss programs in the world. If you don't push too much and build the muscles, you CAN'T eat enough to keep wieght on. My partner lost over 35 lbs on trail

HapKiDo
04-04-2007, 21:27
If you haven't met Mud Butt . . . go to http://www.traildames.com

She hiked 800 miles on the AT and is rightly proud of it. She's a slow hiker and when she realized she couldn't complete the entire AT in the six months off from her job, she yellow blazed and hiked the sections that meant the most to her.

And now . . . her dream . . . Trail Dames . . . "real women" . . . check it out.

HapKiDo:)

BigCat
04-04-2007, 22:26
I just want to wish everyone else trying to lose weight the best of luck My situation is a bit different than most: two years ago I was an elite-level athlete who weighed 200 lbs with 5% body fat. After a serious of injuries and one major surgery I was out of action for 18 months -- by the time it was all over I had gained 100 pounds and was so depressed that my family had me on suicide watch. Until I hatched this crazy idea to walk the AT :-) It's basically a 2175 mile life line...

A couple of things I think y'all may be interested in:
1) http://caloriesperhour.com/ is a great site that allows you calculate how many calories you burn and intake. It's really cool.

2) When I was in the military I was surprised to see that the SEALs actually recommend people in their six week level-1 preparation program completely avoid running in week three. Reason being, no matter how big and strong you are, there's a high risk stress fractures and other foot injuries in the first month. Same goes for long distance hiking -- being a little conservative at the beginning can actually get you the final destination more quickly.

soaks77
04-06-2007, 08:36
Unfortunately the simple math says you probably won`t burn up any weight :) ....You only burn like 8-9 calories a minute backpacking..That`s about 500 per hour so if you hiked 7 hours non-stop (Which of course you won`t) you`d only burn up 3,500 calories...Now as we all know you need to burn up 3,500 calories more than you take in to lose 1 pound..SO..If you hiked those 7 hours non-stop and consumed 3,500 calories during the day you will break even and lose 0 pounds!.....
Programbo you can't forget about the resting metabolic rate. You burn a certain amount of calories just to stay alive each day. Usually somewhere between 1500-2500 calories.

Captn
04-06-2007, 14:16
Overweight ... hummm. I keep seeing statistics that state that 80% of people in the US are overweight. If that's so, I can't help but believe that there are a lot of overweight people in most sports!

Several pieces of extra advice .... socks and shoes are VERY important ... get a good personal fitting and don't skimp, although Adidas gym shoes seem to work best for me, in terms of fewer blisters and better arch support, after years of trying all different types and brands. Your mileage WILL differ.

Take it slow ... think of it as you're just taking a walk with a pack on. Enjoy the journey. There is no shame to doing 2 miles, or 4, or 6, or whatever .... There are different trailheads at my favorite backcountry spot ... some weekends I feel lazy and take the 1 mile trip in instead of the 7 mile trip ... and I enjoy myself just as much. Some people make everything a competition ... so avoid that trap ... it's your hike and no one else's.

Adjust your pack weight based on your miles ... on short trips (less than 3 miles) for a weekend or more, I'll even haul a cast iron skillet on occasion, along with a frozen steak wrapped in newspaper and baked potatoes.

For a longer hike, I trim my weight down considerably .... for trips of a week or more, with a resupply every 4 to 5 days, I haul a base weight of less than 8 lbs, and am very careful with my food weight .... multiple days and your feet and knees will thank you for the difference between 25 and 35 lbs.

Next ... don't wait to experience monkey butt and/or leg chaffing ... by the time you feel it it's too late ... pay attention to bathing daily ... the more overweight you are, the more important it will be to get the salt that is left when your sweat evaporates off your more sensitive areas, and any areas that rub together. Also invest in some body glide and use it DAILY ... it does wonders.

Invest in strong hiking poles ... they'll save you while the muscles around your knees get stronger over the next several YEARS.

The more out of shape you are the more you'll sweat, and the more water you'll use ... gatorade is good at replenishing salt and electolytes. My water consumption per mile has dropped in half over the past four years ... of course, my pace has improved as well as my weight and my pack weight have dropped.

Take a journal along, or practice glass or stone knife knapping, or basket weaving out of local vines, or something else that interests YOU. I've run accross people who were into photography, whittling, glass knife knapping, journaling, fishing, and even bird watching by the side of the trail while they're out hiking .... choose things to do that are low impact on the trail but give you greater enjoyment while outdoors. Enjoying the natural world is what it's all about and the rush, rush, rush of daily life is what you're trying to get away from.

Get a copy of an old boy scout manual (not the new ones) and practice a new backcountry skill each time you go out .... bow drill fire making, or foil reflector oven baking, or navigation by the sun and stars .... there's all kinds of stuff to do and make your entry into this sport both personal and so very enjoyable, and something you can do your whole life long.

Best regards,

Mark

Frolicking Dinosaurs
04-06-2007, 14:51
There is a fluffy old dino (http://www.whiteblaze.net/forum/vbg/showimage.php?i=15900) is still wobbling down pieces of the trail (with only one cane these days :D). If a dino can do it, anyone can.

tekiechick
04-30-2007, 12:59
I'm overweight, but active and planning for an '08 thru. At about 250#, I'm not going to beat my trail-ready hubby, but I'll get there. I find that the biggest difficulty is finding women's hiking clothes that fit (OK, the ups are difficult too). Although, I did come across a rare find at Cabela's just this past weekend: Gore-tex Paclite in XL, 2XL, and (I think), 3XL.

max patch
04-30-2007, 13:14
For those of you in GA, I ran into Anna Mudbutts group on the trail recently:

http://www.traildames.com/home

sarbar
04-30-2007, 22:16
I'm overweight, but active and planning for an '08 thru. At about 250#, I'm not going to beat my trail-ready hubby, but I'll get there. I find that the biggest difficulty is finding women's hiking clothes that fit (OK, the ups are difficult too). Although, I did come across a rare find at Cabela's just this past weekend: Gore-tex Paclite in XL, 2XL, and (I think), 3XL.

If you haven't done it, check out LLBean's selection of 1-3X :)

ms doolittle
05-01-2007, 13:27
I'll add my two cents.

I started backpacking a mere 2 years ago (it now feels like I've been doing it forever, and it's such a good thing!). When I started, I was really overweight. About 70lbs overweight. My first trip was a mere 15 mile end to end spread over 3 days and thankfully, I was with some very patient people.

Today, I'm down 40 lbs from when I started. I feel the healthiest I've felt in a long time. I'll always be bigger just because of the way I'm built, but as long as I continue toning muscle and feeling healthy, I'm okay with it. I think I nearly brought my apartment down when I was able to fit into a pair of XL The North Face pants. lol

As others mentioned, I started out slowly and gradually started adding miles to my days. I did my first 15 mile day this past weekend and was ecstatic. :D I couldn't even think about going that far 2 years ago with pack weight and hills.

You'll love it out there. As long as you have a love for the wilderness, it doesn't matter how big or small you are. All that matters is getting out. :)

Good luck to you!

Red Hat
05-04-2007, 16:44
I was overweight in 2003 when I started my AT journey. (I did about 100 miles) I was overweight in 2004 when I barely did 40 miles over spring break. I was overweight in 2005 when I attempted my thru (got to Harper's Ferry). I got even more overweight in 2006 when I only hiked 50 miles before Traildays. But in 2007 I resolved to take it off! I lost 30 lbs and I weigh less than on any of my hikes. I am now a lifetime member of Weightwatchers. Unfortunately, there is no hike in my near future due to my husband's poor health. But I will be back out there, and it will be easier.

Smile
05-04-2007, 17:37
It seems that a great hike for those who may be needing to shed a few lbs. would be http://henhike.com they are doing a documentary and leaving next spring.

Last year I dropped about 23 lbs in 100 miles or so, but ate only raw foods. Had lots of energy, but don't think I'd do that again, very labor intensive with getting prepared. Slept like a baby though on those cold nights!

There are so many gals out there who i would classify as 'chunky' and they hike along at a pretty good clip after the first week :)

serenityrich
05-04-2007, 17:58
I started out at 374 lbs. in January. I'm down to 340 lbs and have walked up to 11 miles of ups and downs now. Mostly I walk 6 miles a day on a flat trail by the San Francisco Bay. I'm committing more each day toward a 2008 thur-attempt.

BumpJumper
07-10-2007, 20:54
WOW you guys......I just jumped back on here after forgetting my screen name and password.

THANKS for all the replies.
UPDATE:
I am still fat.:D
I have hiked with TT and Bluegill. LOVE it. I keep up along with them. I think that I am about 60 lbs overweight. Not sure what I weigh anymore.
Not only have I hiked, we all took up kayaking. To me, that is more grueling than hiking.
I dont huff and puff that much hiking now. I still dont smoke thank my dear God Almighty.
I look forward to meeting some of you one day on hikes. I dont hike in the summer. Too hot for a middle aged woman going thru the change.:sun
I will this fall so look out. I will advise how it goes.
Anyone in Florida that kayaks, go to our site at www.clubkayak.com/lcp (http://www.clubkayak.com/lcp) and register with us. We stay cool doing this until we can hike in the fall.
Love you guys!:banana

CoyoteWhips
07-10-2007, 22:32
Oh, well, while the thread is alive again...

Last year about this time I weighed 320 pounds. I currently weigh 245 pounds -- still about 60 pounds overweight. I don't exercise, but this Summer I've been exploring the local trails when I have the time. My weight loss has been a side effect of transitioning to a raw vegan diet.

Even if I weren't losing weight, I'd keep eating like this. I'm healthier than I've ever been in my whole life and I like to think I've reduced my negative impact on the environment.

I can't say what the secret to happiness is, but I'll bet it involves comfortable shoes and plenty of fiber.

soulshine26
07-10-2007, 22:33
Wow, bumpjumper, good for you!

I feel your pain on the weight thing. I have been on a 3 year hiatus since I got pregnant with my son. When I was hiking before, I was a skinny little thing who actually smoked cigarettes on the trail and didn't miss a step. Now, after gaining 72lbs with my pregnancy (I have lost all but about 25lbs of it) I am not the fit little thing I used to be. I don't smoke anymore (quit when I found out I was pregnant), though, so maybe that will compensate somehow. My hubby and I mountain bike to keep in shape but we are ready to hit the trail again.

We will have to keep each other posted on progress! I bet you will get skinny as can be with all that paddling and hiking! My hubby and I are taking our first long hiking trip in about a month, (28 miles in 3 days) so I'll let you know how I hold up as compared to how I used to! We are going to Santee this weekend to try our hand at kayaking, so you'll have to give me some pointers!

Grumpy Ol' Pops
07-10-2007, 23:07
It's a great thing to get yourself out on the trail in any condition. As you spend more time hiking, climbing, descending, breathing hard, etc., you'll begin to lose many of those extra pounds. As someone who has his share of that "extra" and needs to get rid of too much of it, I can sympathise with you. At home, walk EVERYDAY for at least an hour. Get yourself up to about 4 MPH and you'll begin to lean out. Your heart will begin to pump that extra oxygen you'll need on the trail and your muscles will become toned to the point where they won't hurt TOO MUCH when you finally take a long one. Conditioning is important. At least once a week get out and spend at least two to three hours walking at a brisk pace.
Regarding gear: pack as light as you possibly can! I recently purchased a Marmot Atom sleeping bag for myself. I tried it put after I arrived back home only to find that it is a bit snug in the middle section (way too much of that GORP stuff!). I can fit into it, but I can't roll around in the bag unless I take the bag all the way around with me! Try the gear at the store, no matter how silly it may look! Be sure you get a backpack at a reputable outfitter who will be able to help you fit it to your body. Nothing worse than having all that weight bouncing around on your back and irritating places you didn't realize you had! Use knee supports if you're really heavy! That's where you'll feel it first and it takes a long time for them to heal!!! Been there, done that!

birdygal
07-11-2007, 10:48
I just started hiking . I smoked for almost 40 yrs until a month ago. I am 40 lbs overweight and did not do any kind of exercise in over 10 yrs. The only thing I had going for me was I just moved onto the side of a mountain which I had strengthend my legs just to get around my yard. It is only up hill and downhill for me even to the car plus I have to go up and down stairs many times a day in my house. I guess I built up the strenght in my legs for hiking from where I live, my feet and ankles were the only thing that has been hurting. My first hike was 8 miles mostly very slow incline. My 2nd hike was really hard and we only went 5 miles but 1 mile of it was straight up and down Instead of taking the trailhead with a slow incline which is 2 miles long before even getting to the trail. I left thru my backyard which gettting to the trail required a straight climb uphill of 1000 ft I was totally out of breath but did it stopping many many times. Of course we got lost on the way back leaving the trail. We ended up in one of neighbors back yards instead. It also started pouring while we were lost so we ended up soaked.

I suggest you just stop and rest as often as you find you need to and if you are climbing in the mountains to take really slow inclines I found those area's are hard. I feel great just by quitting smoking and ability to hike is what is going to keep me from ever smoking again. I look back just one month and realize. If I was lighting up I would not make it 1 mile and not uphil at all.

Captn
07-11-2007, 14:58
Perhaps some advice on what fits and what doesn't may be of use to you.

The Montbell Super Stretch bags fit up to a 70 and 1/2 inch girth. Light weight, good price, and it fits well.

Golite has just come out with a XXL windshirt.

Patagonia has XXL Micropuff vests and XXL Micropuff jackets. Otherwise, XXL stuff is harder to find.

Columbia carries up to a XXXL Fleece jacket (My Nephew is 6ft 6in.)

ULA-Equipment will add several inches to your pack straps, lenghten your hip belt, or lengthen your chest strap for no or little extra charge if you request it when you order a new pack.

Other thoughts?

serenityrich
07-11-2007, 16:11
Ah! This is the thread I've been looking for.

I've been walking for over six months now, mostly on flat ground without any pack. So far by watching my diet along with that exercise alone I've been able to lose 50 lbs. Starting with one mile circuits that left me hurting and somewhat winded, I've pushed my daily walks out to six miles, where I'm still comfortable. Oh yea, I started out at 374 lbs. and 6'-03"

I'm doing a few weeks of zeros right now, while the plantar fasciitis flare in my right foot quiets down, then I'm going to push my comfort zone up to eight miles a day.

I need to take it easy each day and listen to my body to see how much I can do. So far I can walk out three miles and then back with a few five minute breaks. I've only been obese for about twelve years, but in that time I've done a little damage to various joints forced to carry the overload. Now, as I release the grease, I'm trying to strengthen and heal that damage as gently as I can, without doing additional damage.

I'm truly blessed to be able to do my daily exercise along the eastshore of the San Francisco Bay. On the way back from my turning point I can watch the sun set behind the S.F. city skyline - very beautiful.
_________________________________
Just trekking toward serenity.

Tennessee Viking
07-11-2007, 23:42
A am a bit overweight myself. I started out hiking close to 300lbs, but I lost about 20-25 lbs within the last year.

The main thing to do is to know your limits, but also push yourself a little harder.

Start out slowly. I won't recommend hiking the whole AT. Start day hiking any chance you get. I have been day hiking every chance I get; my days off, and even before and after work. Then incorporate a some small overnight section hikes once or twice a month.

Hike flatlands, rolling hills, or gradual ridgelines at first. Don't try hiking up and down entire mountains. Then mix in some small ridge climbs then slowly work more elevataion change in. Whenever you feel winded, try not to stop immediately. Push yourself another 10-20 feet.

Another good tip I been learning is what to eat/drink on and off trail. Obviously nothing really heavy. Learn to drink water through out the day. The more water you drink, the better hydrated your body is. Eat more small meals throughout the day instead of 3 big meals.

And when you do hike, eat lots of protein, calcium, and potassium. Keep a banana, Snickers, or PBJ on hand. Helps keep bones and skin in check.

Equipment wise. Look at a frame pack. They are more suited for larger waistlines. Also they take more pressure off the back and shoulders. When day hiking, weigh down your pack a bit with extra water or clothing. This gets your body used to carrying a real heavy pack.

DBT fan
07-12-2007, 00:10
I'm doing a few weeks of zeros right now, while the plantar fasciitis flare in my right foot quiets down, then I'm going to push my comfort zone up to eight miles a day.



I can relate to the plantar fasciitis which is very hard to overcome esp. if you are a big'un such as myself. If you can't walk, you sure can't hike. Daily foot exercises helped tons, also adding Birkenstock insoles for arch support in my everyday shoes. I still wear Birkenstock sandals in the house but losing 50 lbs. helped most of all.

At 6'4" usually 290-310 lbs. finding functional hiking clothes that fit are next to impossible. Campmor's largest size is 2X. REI has recently some added Big/Tall sizes to their name brand clothing line. This is on-line only and apparently for a limited time since some of the 3X & 4X sizes are not being restocked. Cabela and Bass Pro Shop has some larger clothes to 5X but is geared mostly to the hunting crowd. I'm highly satisfied with REI quality and return policy and have bought some things lately I never thought I would see in Big/Tall sizes.

I guess the world in general thinks a fat man is not supposed to hike but I ain't listening.

Nightwalker
07-13-2007, 04:15
Ok, I am new to this hiking thing. Trailtalker got me into it. I want to know how hard this is going to be for an overweight woman to do.
No fat jokes ok.....
I ain't morbidly obese but I carry a lot of extra weight.

I'm pretty fat, and I hike a LOT. Just take it easy and work yourself into it.

serenityrich
07-13-2007, 10:54
L.L.Bean has a good section of XXL / TALL hiking clothing. It's the only retalier selling clothing in tall and fat sizes, Even in smaller sizes its hard to find good clothing in TALL sizes.
_______________________
Just trekking toward serenity

SawnieRobertson
07-13-2007, 16:40
Go for it. I leave in mid March and will see you out there somewhere.

Funny thing is, I think everyone that is doing a thru that tells people who do not hike that are are doing it get told some sort of reason why they shouldn't do it or will fail. I have been told I will get bored, get hurt, be to cold, be to hot, miss everything back home, and generally not smart for taking time to do what I really want to do.

In the end do what you want to do and don't listen to anyone else.

This is an oldie thread but a goodie too. My daughters began asking about my druthers about my body when I died. That one was enough, but one evening at Weight Watchers at Marion, Virginia, a woman told me that I would be murdered. I tried to argue with her (you know, using facts, for instance). She would have none of it. I would be murdered.

Yeah, right.

It IS important to lighten every possible bit of weight that your feet must carry in advance. One pound = 16 oz. = 1 pound = 16 0z., etc. No pounds lost, whether from pack or body, will be missed. All pounds of muscle gained in advance will be appreciated. And, besides, preparation is a large bit of the fun. Good luck.--Kinnickinic

Kiyu
07-14-2007, 19:48
I'm doing a few weeks of zeros right now, while the plantar fasciitis flare in my right foot quiets down, then I'm going to push my comfort zone up to eight miles a day.

Aw Geez! You were my inspiration to double my morning walk to 4 mi a day and now youíre going to 8?????<G>
Iíve been at 5 mi for a few days now and will increase that but Iím being cautious, much as you are, trying to learn as much as I can about what is happening with my body, what the new aches mean & how to deal with them.
The Walking Site is most helpful and by following their recommendations I have fewer problems. Lots of stuff to learn and it seems a lot more training is in order before I tackle the mountains.

Keep at it and Iíd like to hear how youíre doing with your program.
Kiyu

(Sorry for posting here ladies but this is where the tread was and there is no forum for overweight or older hikers here.)

onicoe
07-17-2007, 08:11
i can add my opinion here? i currently weigh around 230, when for my height (5'7") i should weigh somewhere between 140-150.

for having what amounts to almost zero physical training/prep. the first day was wicked hard. i couldn't walk a few steps without stopping to catch my breath and my heart was pounding so hard from the effort, it felt like my whole upper body was throbbing. about midway through the day, i noticed that my heart had stopped pounding so bad and, while i still had to catch breath it didn't take so long to catch it. i think my body was getting into the swing of things.

the second day was even easier. i still had to take many quick breaks, but there was more distance in between these breaks. i was able to walk much farther. also, these breaks were more due to being physically sore and my muscles tiring out.

the conditioning is surprisingly quick. the advice of not pushing yourself too hard is a good one that i think must be followed.. i really need to pay attention to that when i get back on the trail.

Frolicking Dinosaurs
07-17-2007, 08:32
Female dino is working out again after having tons of company for weeks on end (living near the GSMNP is both a blessing and a curse). Weight is up 3# from tha workout hiatus and pigging out with my grandkids.

serenityrich
07-17-2007, 11:17
I've been struggling with my weight for almost ten years now. I was able to lose weight once by walking but it came back later on. But, when I decided that it was time to hike the AT. Well.... it just seems easier now.

BumpJumper
08-02-2007, 10:37
I know most Americans are overweight but that doesnt excuse us.

Trailtalker just got back from a three week hike in AT VA.
I was so jealous. I cant wait to get to that point.
Thanks to all of you who have been a BIG encouragement. Yall are great.
I live in Fla so I have only flatlands to walk. Occassionally, we will find an incline:D

Yes this is an older thread but had it not been so long, I would not have gotten everything out of it.

I will have to try LLBeans. I cannot find anything my size (18)
I have even been looking for kayaking clothing and cant find any of that as well.
I leave for GA mountains tomorrow morning and will be kayaking the Nantahala on Thursday so I was looking for some splash clothing.
So far my feet are ok, but I did have knees aches and pains. Like needles in them. What is that about.
:eek:

gold bond
08-02-2007, 12:13
I walk 3.5 miles three times a week as I am over weight as well. I try and walk around 5:30 AM as I feel better during the day.

I try and drink about 90 oz of water a day and I eat 1/2 cup raisan bran w/skim milk every morning. For lunch turkey sandwich with mustard and an apple and some baked lays chips. For supper Chicken either grilled or baked or a facsimilee there of! On the weekends I splurge a little!

I found that doing 100 calf raisers every morning helps with my legs. This helps me with those hills alot. Usually when I get to a hill I go into "granny" gear! The way I figure it is that hill has been there longer than me and I ain't gonna beat it.It also helps me not having to stop as much. Slower consistant pace. Then when I get to a straight away or a downhill I kick it up a notch. Sorry to be so long winded!

Frolicking Dinosaurs
08-02-2007, 12:14
BumperJumper - this is where I got many of my clothes before I dropped down into the sizes outfitters typically carry: Junonia (http://www.junonia.com/departments.htm?tl=2&ldid=18)

Grinder
08-02-2007, 12:42
Bump Jumper,

I too live in Florida. While not overweight by any stretch of imagination, I found the actual trail to be beyond hard, in spite of walking five miles a day in preparation.

After returning from the week hike, I began to go to the local high school and climbing the football field stands. Doing this with a 30 pound pack approximated the actual trail.

Mine arena is 50 feet high. You can get a feel for what the real deal is like.

It WILL be very hard at first, but a time or two each week, and adding a pack after you get more fit will have you reaching the trail ready to hike and without suprises.

Miles of Smiles
Tom

gold bond
08-02-2007, 12:46
Bump Jumper,


After returning from the week hike, I began to go to the local high school and climbing the football field stands. Doing this with a 30 pound pack approximated the actual trail.

Wonderfull idea! I'm going to get started today.

gold bond
08-02-2007, 12:47
Bump Jumper,

I too live in Florida. While not overweight by any stretch of imagination, I found the actual trail to be beyond hard, in spite of walking five miles a day in preparation.

After returning from the week hike, I began to go to the local high school and climbing the football field stands. Doing this with a 30 pound pack approximated the actual trail.

Mine arena is 50 feet high. You can get a feel for what the real deal is like.

It WILL be very hard at first, but a time or two each week, and adding a pack after you get more fit will have you reaching the trail ready to hike and without suprises.

Miles of Smiles
Tom



Thanks for a great idea!

ErinB
08-04-2007, 21:51
i lost 50 pounds over the past year, partly due to a lifestyle change regarding what i eat, but mostly due to activity. hiking is totally friendly to extra pounds...at first-- then the extra pounds start disappearing!

Pennsylvania Rose
08-08-2007, 14:28
Just decided to add to this thread now because I've been so embarrased about my weight. On Monday I start a new, low stress, less time consuming job (although I'll be sitting on my butt). So now is the time to stop dying going up hills and worrying about how slow and how few miles I can walk. Some days the kids and I are going to ride bikes to drop them off at school - the teens on their own and the little ones pulled in a bike trailer. Other days I'll drive them and use the walking trail next to the school, as well as the football stadium steps. I've already stopped buying junk food (much to my husband's chagrin), and don't eat anything less than two hours before bed. Hopefully by the time we can take another section hike I'll be in much better shape. I've also promised myself a cute little feminine hiking outfit from LL Bean when I've dropped the 70 pounds I need to lose.

BumpJumper
08-13-2007, 20:48
I just got back today. Had a blast.
I dont know that I could jog up and down bleechers but a 2 mile walk in the evening will have to do for now.
I am excited about hiking. I bought my first hiking sticks while up at Neels Gap. They are supposed to be the lightest and the best. Whatever that is..they sure were expensive.....:eek:
Tom, where in Fla do you live? I am in CF.
I am going to check out those other sites for clothing. I just may find something.

BumpJumper
08-15-2007, 13:06
Can someone please post websites for clothing. And if you know they are for the larger gals...that would be even greater. Thanks.

dixicritter
08-16-2007, 07:48
There are several threads in this forum that have links in them specifically for plus sized women, here's a few...

http://www.whiteblaze.net/forum/showthread.php?t=17625

http://www.whiteblaze.net/forum/showthread.php?t=15629

http://www.whiteblaze.net/forum/showthread.php?t=10615

Hope that helps a little bit. Maybe some other folks will have some other links for you too. :)

Gray Blazer
08-16-2007, 07:59
I just got back today. Had a blast.
I dont know that I could jog up and down bleechers but a 2 mile walk in the evening will have to do for now.
I am excited about hiking. I bought my first hiking sticks while up at Neels Gap. They are supposed to be the lightest and the best. Whatever that is..they sure were expensive.....:eek:
Tom, where in Fla do you live? I am in CF.
I am going to check out those other sites for clothing. I just may find something.

Bumpjumper, you can just hike up and down Mt Dora. LOL Haven't you seen the sign for the Highlands of Mt Dora. On the sign there is a picture of a mountain range (the FL Appalachians I guess). In Gainesville, we have FL field aka The Swamp" and if you walk from the bottom to the top (it's great because it has ramps and stairs and bleacher seats) it's about 6 stories. (Didn't mean to depress you TN fans so early in the morn. So sorry Ms Dino.):banana

BumpJumper
08-16-2007, 10:08
Oh Geez Gary. I never new we had a MT. DORA. I have climbed it. What about Sugarloaf Mountain...now that is a big one for Florida.....

Gray Blazer
08-16-2007, 11:50
Oh Geez Gary. I never new we had a MT. DORA. I have climbed it. What about Sugarloaf Mountain...now that is a big one for Florida.....
There is Alachua mountain just west of Gainesville at the end of Millhopper Road.

neo
08-16-2007, 12:11
Ok, I am new to this hiking thing. Trailtalker got me into it. I want to know how hard this is going to be for an overweight woman to do.
No fat jokes ok.....
I aint morbidly obese but I carry alot of extra weight.


:D i need to drop a few lbs myself:cool: neo

taildragger
08-16-2007, 12:16
you could always switch to lite beer :-?

BumpJumper
08-20-2007, 17:21
Taildragger check your messages:D

Roots
09-24-2007, 18:00
Listen up ladies! Don't let anyone or anything stop the love of the hike! With that said I highly suggest looking at REI for the "big boned" women of the world, like myself. They have convertible pants, wicking shirts, shorts, and more for larger women. I, fortunately, am loosing weight, but got a lot of clothes from them in the past. Not all women in the world are 5'6 and 110lbs like these certain companies make us out to be-example: size XL is really S! Keep up the hiking! Keep on hiking on!

Hammock Hanger
09-24-2007, 20:28
Oh Geez Gary. I never new we had a MT. DORA. I have climbed it. What about Sugarloaf Mountain...now that is a big one for Florida.....

As you know I too am a BIG BONED lady... it don't stop me!! :banana

shelterbuilder
09-24-2007, 20:45
I know most Americans are overweight but that doesnt excuse us.

Trailtalker just got back from a three week hike in AT VA.
I was so jealous. I cant wait to get to that point.
Thanks to all of you who have been a BIG encouragement. Yall are great.
I live in Fla so I have only flatlands to walk. Occassionally, we will find an incline:D

Yes this is an older thread but had it not been so long, I would not have gotten everything out of it.

I will have to try LLBeans. I cannot find anything my size (18)
I have even been looking for kayaking clothing and cant find any of that as well.
I leave for GA mountains tomorrow morning and will be kayaking the Nantahala on Thursday so I was looking for some splash clothing.
So far my feet are ok, but I did have knees aches and pains. Like needles in them. What is that about.
:eek:

BumpJumper, my wife is also heavy and has always had trouble finding clothes for the outdoors. Try Cabela's - she was able to go into the "new" store in Hamburg, Pa. and buy stuff right off the rack!:D

Dakota Dan
12-04-2007, 09:47
Ok, I am new to this hiking thing. Trailtalker got me into it. I want to know how hard this is going to be for an overweight woman to do.
No fat jokes ok.....
I aint morbidly obese but I carry alot of extra weight.

Ladies please remember some in-shape hikers may not wish to hike with anyone they deem a health risk to themselves. They also may feel slowed down. If asked about your "size" if/when you attempt to locate a hiking partner by "Private Messaging" It's not always meant as "hitting" on you.
I just got reported to attrol by an unknown person who first contacted me about hiking. I was accused of this very thing for asking this person's (not so sure it was female) dress size (I would ask pants size if a male wanting to hike). I explained I do discriminate (even if they are currently a one-ton gold metal Olympic marathon runner, I'm not taking the chance). And I realize other health issues could be happening with a skinny hiker. I've already had a very bad experience with an overweight hiking partner and refuse to let it happen again.:) PS: I don't blindly PM others about "getting together". If I don't know you, it's not happening.

Jan LiteShoe
12-04-2007, 14:12
Hi all,

I don't know if it's been mentioned on here yet, but for any woman within striking distance of the Georgia mountains, you might want to check out the Atlanta-based Trail Dames

I just spent a most excellent weekend at the Len Foote Hike Inn with these awesome women as their guest speaker, and I believe I got the better end of the deal. We laughed all weekend, and ate very well!

Founded by my '03 buddy "MudButt," Anna Huthmaker of Atlanta, this group originated as a safe springboard to assist curvy, nature-loving women in getting into the woods and hiking, camping, even backpacking. They do educational, low-mileage days with an emphasis on having a good time.

But due to Anna's ebullient and positive ways - truly, she is a force of nature, and anyone in a rotten mood around Anna has only themselves to blame - other women asked to join in the excursions. So now it's open to any woman who wants to get into the woods and hike with friends. And at various times, they invite their "Trail Dudes" along for activities.

In any case, for any woman who wants to learn to get along comfortably and safely hiking in the mountains, on day hikes and overnights, check out their schedule and email Anna. I don't know that she has posted past December, but whatever she comes up with, I know it will be a good time. You can be a rank novice, and will be embraced.

Though they are Atlanta-based, I came from mid-NC to hang with them.

http://www.traildames.com/ is the website. Anna does this for love, not money. It's not commercial, just a gal with a big sense of fun and a mission to get more women out into the woods. I know I'll be joining them again, perhaps for a sectioning "thru-hike" of the Foothills Trail.

From the website:
"It is a group of women that know that all of the
sweat and shortness of breath is meaningless when
you are surrounded by the laughter of friends.
This group hikes slowly, enjoying
every second because we know that the
journey is 99% of the fun. When it comes
to that final destination though,...you will
find us doing a rousing chorus of the
"Dance of the Real Woman" as we
celebrate the life that is in us all."

earlyriser26
12-04-2007, 14:26
You can hike at pretty much any weight. You just can't keep up with people doing 20+ miles. You can go slow and take beaks and 8 to 12 miles are within most peoples reach. I'm soaked climbing a flight of stairs, but I can do a hike with 3,000 ft climbs if i take my time. Think 1.5 MPH vs. 3MPH and you will be fine.

take-a-knee
12-04-2007, 14:35
Very few people are at their ideal bodyweight, most Americans are over, many are underweight. I would think a woman 20# overweight would be better able to hike than a scrawny underweight person, 'cause she's used to carrying a little weight around. The heavier you are however, the more likely you are to damage connective tissue in your knees, ankles, and feet (esp the plantar facia in your arch).

So, don't overdo the mileage, maybe start with day hikes and make sure you have well fitted footgear, socks, insoles. Get on a healthy diet on and off trail for the rest of your life and realize that daily exercise is essential for health and prioritize it.

Marta
12-04-2007, 15:18
It doesn't seem at all unreasonable to ask a prospective hiking partner about their physical condition. The rub is that often the least able hikers are so ignorant about hiking that they can't even give a reliable assessment of their ability. This is not a criticism, it's simply a fact.

Of course, gender and weight issues are only part of whether a person will be a suitable hiking partner. I've had some unfortunate experiences with hiking partners "met" online...and I've had some good ones, too. My best advice is to plan something very short and simple, with good bail-out options. Don't share gear, and make sure your partner understands that, if he/she quits, you are planning to go on, and you expect the same from them.

Dakota Dan
12-04-2007, 21:06
...It doesn't seem at all unreasonable to ask a prospective hiking partner about their physical condition. ......

..........Of course, gender and weight issues are only part of whether a person will be a suitable hiking partner........

I agree, If you can't see the person, it's tough to determine. I use dress, pant size, or recent hiking experience (not their weight). if they lie they're on their own, if they can walk off and leave me in the dust, well I guess that was the one-ton marathon runner I spoke of. My philosophy is: "It's easier to carry a 150# hiker, instead of anybody larger, out of the mountains.

Another peeve of mine is to never hike with someone I know that can or will go into anaphylactic shock if stung. Unless they carry Epinephrine.

Bearpaw
12-04-2007, 23:39
I've always had to watch my weight. In the Marine Corps, I typically had to starve my self to stay within weight standards, up to the point of being bulimic in the weeks preceding weigh-ins and the twice-a-year physical fitness test.

When I hiked the AT, I had just gotten out. I was 207 and about 15% body fat. I finished at 168 and about 9% body fat. It was scary.

In the last few years, I have taught full time, worked part time for an outfitter, and worked on my master's degree. It has taken a toll. My school-year weight will push up to 260, maybe even 275, but I have my summers off when I put in 400-500 miles. I drop as low as 220 or 230, only to gain lots back over the year. This isn't due to sloth. I work out 3-5 days a week, usually hiking with a pack for some of the time, managing 3-10 miles a week.

The result is that my "trail muscles" are conditioned I can comfortably step out and hike 12-15 mountain miles (meaning decent elevation gain and loss) at the start of a long break. By summer's end, I usually do 20-milers again.

Some who see me wonder how I do bigger miles. It's simple. I keep my "hiking muscles" in reasonable shape during the year, even if my body fat builds up. Get out there and walk with some light pack weight a couple or three times each week. You'll quickly see how much your endurance builds up. And remember, it's just walking. Any one blessed with good health does it every day.

Nightwalker
12-05-2007, 00:26
Ladies please remember some in-shape hikers may not wish to hike with anyone they deem a health risk to themselves. They also may feel slowed down. If asked about your "size" if/when you attempt to locate a hiking partner by "Private Messaging" It's not always meant as "hitting" on you.
I just got reported to attrol by an unknown person who first contacted me about hiking. I was accused of this very thing for asking this person's (not so sure it was female) dress size (I would ask pants size if a male wanting to hike). I explained I do discriminate (even if they are currently a one-ton gold metal Olympic marathon runner, I'm not taking the chance). And I realize other health issues could be happening with a skinny hiker. I've already had a very bad experience with an overweight hiking partner and refuse to let it happen again.:) PS: I don't blindly PM others about "getting together". If I don't know you, it's not happening.

I've got the feeling that a lot of folks won't hike with you now, even the thinner ones. I can't say that that bothers me.

Edit: It'd be a lot less jerky to ask how many miles they're used to hiking per day.

Blissful
12-05-2007, 00:48
Another peeve of mine is to never hike with someone I know that can or will go into anaphylactic shock if stung. Unless they carry Epinephrine.

oh my word...you're kidding, right? :eek:

Nightwalker
12-05-2007, 01:42
oh my word...you're kidding, right? :eek:

From reading his last few posts, I doubt that he is.

ScottP
12-05-2007, 02:10
If he feels that he is unable to help in the event of a medical crisis the above makes sense. It's sort of like moving out of the emergency exit row on the airplane. Asking a hiking partner to carry the medicine that they would need to not die in front of you is pretty reasonable.

In the hiking community we should be able to tolerate different ways of socially interacting, lots of us (especially me) are oddballs. So he attempted to assess someone's fitness level by asking her dress size? Acceptable in normal society? No. Acceptable in hiker society? Why not?

warraghiyagey
12-05-2007, 02:20
From reading his last few posts, I doubt that he is.
Sounds like said poster is fo very locked up that he can't conceive of how other might feel about is words or actions. A tough affliction when trying to communicate in this world successfully. Probably thinks pink blazing is a very innocent and endearing term.

EWS
12-05-2007, 02:25
Perfectly acceptable worries and questions. I'd rather hike with someone who was concerned about how to handle or prevent an emergency than someone blindly stumbling along.

warraghiyagey
12-05-2007, 02:26
Perfectly acceptable worries and questions. I'd rather hike with someone who was concerned about how to handle or prevent an emergency than someone blindly stumbling along.
If that's all there was to it then yes, definitively. But there's another energy present in this particular case when you read the above posts on the page.

EWS
12-05-2007, 02:40
If that's all there was to it then yes, definitively. But there's another energy present in this particular case when you read the above posts on the page.

Dan posted twice that I saw. I think his words are blunt and that offended some sensitive sensibilities.

In the only three semi-real jobs I've had as an adult (military, scuba instructor, sailing skipper). Knowing peoples medical conditions, medications, and level of fitness were issues that were directly addressed before activity began. I've had people get pissed (later two occupations), and not just little, when I've told them I wasn't going to take their money.

I'm a skinny bastard now, due to a few bouts with exploding arse and mouth this year, but know that is a potential liability only in extreme circumstances.

Nevertheless, I find his concern genuine. Toe-me-toe Tah-ma-toe

warraghiyagey
12-05-2007, 02:45
I here ya dude. You used the word sensibilities and I learned about those from the most beautiful woman I'll ever know. They are the first thing I consider when speaking with others. The pertinent info can be achieved without stepping on anothers sensibilities.

Nightwalker
12-05-2007, 04:34
I here ya dude. You used the word sensibilities and I learned about those from the most beautiful woman I'll ever know. They are the first thing I consider when speaking with others. The pertinent info can be achieved without stepping on another's sensibilities.

Then there's those that just don't care!

Me, I get pissed off too easily. :o

warraghiyagey
12-05-2007, 04:37
Then there's those that just don't care!

Me, I get pissed off too easily. :o
I care when others act the bull in people's china shops. I didn't used to but I do now. I have more than I used to.

Frolicking Dinosaurs
12-05-2007, 08:48
IMO assuming that a person's weight automatically means a certain level of fitness is wrong. Some people are just bigger than others no matter how much they work out or how physically fit they are for intense aerobic activities like hiking up Katahdin. I know plenty of size 6 people that can't keep up with me and I'm not a great athlete by anyone's standards.

So anybody want to wobble down the trail with a fluffy, slow-moving dino :D?

I have a grandson (age 19) with celiac disease and I am ever mindful of his medical needs when I take him hiking. If he were hiking with a total stranger he met on the Internet, I would hope he would have the sense to tell the other person about his medical condition before they embarked.

JAK
12-05-2007, 08:58
Hiking ability is a function of lung power divided by total weight on feet.
Some hiking broads have just as much lung power as a lot of hiking dudes.
They have a right to weigh just as much as I do. :)

Dakota Dan
12-05-2007, 09:19
Some people believe that being overweight is "natural or hormonal" no way will they ever be thin.

--well--

I've seen many pictures taken in concentration camps, I've yet to see anyone obese.

EWS
12-05-2007, 09:33
Hiking ability is a function of lung power divided by total weight on feet.
Some hiking broads have just as much lung power as a lot of hiking dudes.
They have a right to weigh just as much as I do. :)

What about muscle, joints, tendons, cartilage, cardio, and all that other stuff:confused:

Marta
12-05-2007, 10:15
Some people believe that being overweight is "natural or hormonal" no way will they ever be thin.

--well--

I've seen many pictures taken in concentration camps, I've yet to see anyone obese.

This is true, but I have to say that two of the hiking partners who dropped out very early were not overweight.

Blissful
12-05-2007, 10:17
As a mother of a son whom we didn't know was allergic to bee stings until it happened, I found the words "pet peeve" if someone has an allergy a weird way of characterizing this type of illness. It makes me wonder if the hiker would help in a crisis or if the crisis would put him (or her) out. All hikers should know first aid anyway. It's part of getting ready for the outdoors. If you don't then you don't belong out there.

I just hope that people will be there to help others in crisis and not find that a hiker's vulnerability cramps their 20 plus mile style. It isn't all about me me, me out there. I thank God for hikers that came to our rescue when our food quota and other things didn't work out because of circumstances beyond our control.

Frolicking Dinosaurs
12-05-2007, 10:22
Fear not, Bliss. For every hiker that would be put out there are hundreds that would be glad to help. It takes all kinds to make up a community.

EWS
12-05-2007, 10:25
Another peeve of mine is to never hike with someone I know that can or will go into anaphylactic shock if stung. Unless they carry Epinephrine.


What is unreasonable about that? Seems like common sense to me.

Blissful
12-05-2007, 10:28
Fear not, Bliss. For every hiker that would be put out there are hundreds that would be glad to help. It takes all kinds to make up a community.

Thank goodness. :)

Frosty
12-05-2007, 10:56
What is unreasonable about that? Seems like common sense to me.Yeah, I agree. For instance, I make it a point never to hike with a veteran. One thing goes wrong with their hike and they can go Rambo on you.

T-Dubs
12-05-2007, 11:15
Some people believe that being overweight is "natural or hormonal" no way will they ever be thin. <snip>

This is an interesting, if not particularly easy, read on that very subject:
http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/story?id=3654291&page=1

From looking around, he may be on the right track (or 'here we go again')

TWS

EWS
12-05-2007, 11:21
It is responsible to go outdoors without medication needed to save one's own life in the event they are stung by a bee?

From now on leave your blood pressure, heart, arthritis, diabetes, etc. medication at home based on this logic.:rolleyes:

Roots
12-05-2007, 12:06
I am a FIRM believer in 'your hike is your own'. If overweight people want to hike, then they can hike. If Dakota Dan wants to hike without overweight people, then let him. It sounds like that might be better for him anyway. Everyone is entitled to go for a hike, no matter the conditions of their body. As a human being I can't imagine not helping those in need and hope others would do the same for me. :)

Ewker
12-05-2007, 12:10
I went bping when I was over weight. True I didn't go as fast as others but I did my own pace and enjoyed it. I have lost 50 lbs and I still don't go as fast as others. I am out there to enjoy it all not make a mad dash to finish it.

EWS
12-05-2007, 12:18
How do you help someone in anaphlyactic shock without an epi-pen?

I'm going to run 5 miles into town. Don't die. I'll be back in a few hours. :rolleyes:

Everyone has a right to hike and the responsibility to take necessary precautions.

Frolicking Dinosaurs
12-05-2007, 12:21
I went bping when I was over weight. True I didn't go as fast as others but I did my own pace and enjoyed it. I have lost 50 lbs and I still don't go as fast as others. I am out there to enjoy it all not make a mad dash to finish it.::: Dino gives Ewker a high five for weight loss :::

I'm not quite sure what to make of the idea that chubby people can't hke... I was skinny once and loved to hike. I have put on some pounds and I still love to hike. What? Am I supposed to stop hiking? I'm the same person regardless of my weight.

dixicritter
12-05-2007, 12:28
How do you help someone in anaphlyactic shock without an epi-pen?

I'm going to run 5 miles into town. Don't die. I'll be back in a few hours. :rolleyes:

Everyone has a right to hike and the responsibility to take necessary precautions.

Look it is very rare for anaphlyactic shock to happen immediately. Let's all settle down here. Besides this thread is not about that, it is about weight.

Critterman
12-05-2007, 12:42
Another peeve of mine is to never hike with someone I know that can or will go into anaphylactic shock if stung. Unless they carry Epinephrine.

How inconsiderate of them to ruin your whole day like that by almost dying. Probably lied to you about their dress size too.

Hooch
12-05-2007, 12:48
I'm a heavier hiker, or overweight, if you will. I still get out and hike and I take my time doing it. I know my physical limitations and keep them in mind to remind myself not to try to do more than I reasonably think I am capable of. My hiking partner is heavy also, but we hike as a team each and every time we're out. We've known each other since our service in the military, so we both know what the other can and can't do. I guess what I'm trying to say is that I agree that each person has a right to hike, no matter what their physical condtions is, as long as they know what they are capable of and what their limitations are. No one has to hike with someone they don't wish to, whether that be based on physical size, gender, or whatever else.

I know that this is somewhat off subject for this thread, but as a medical professional, I felt compelled to comment on it, so please bear with me if only for a moment. Going into the backcountry without having a working knowledge of first aid is nothing short of irresponsible. Don't get me wrong, you don't need to have a certification, per se, but at least be able to perform basic first aid and CPR. If you endeavor to take the risks associated with backpacking/hiking, you must, as a responsible hiker, be able to not only help yourself, if able, but help other hikers around you as well. If a person knows they have a medical condition, such as allengies to bee stings, asthma, etc, then not taking an Epi-Pen, inhaler, or other medication to help the problem, should it occur, is simply a recipe for disaster. Again refering to my hiking partner, Doc, who is asthmatic, he carries both a rapid acting inhaler and an inhaled steroid to treat his asthma, should an attack occur. I even carry a spare rapid acting inhaler as well, just in case. Both of us are nurses and Doc is also a paramedic, so we are able to take care of most backcountry emergencies. We both carry very well stocked first aid kits as I'm sure most hikers do. But bear in mind that a first aid kit is only as useful as the person putting it to use.

Marta
12-05-2007, 12:48
I'm not quite sure what to make of the idea that chubby people can't hke... I was skinny once and loved to hike. I have put on some pounds and I still love to hike. What? Am I supposed to stop hiking? I'm the same person regardless of my weight.

No one said chubby people can't hike. It is, however, true that thinner often equals faster/further. (Amby Burfoot says a runner's speed will usually improve by a couple of seconds per mile for every pound of body fat lost.)

If this were not true, I would have stayed a jolly 200-pounder, eating everything in sight, instead of being eternally on a diet. But, alas, in my own personal experience, thinner=faster and easier hiking, fatter=slower and more painful hiking.

(Dieting also makes me mean, as this post will very plainly show.)

I will also say that, as a person who does make the effort to exercise every day and watch my weight, I will not readily go on a long hike (something that I expect will strain my own abilities) with someone who has not put forth a similar effort to get ready for the trip.

It's all about knowing your limits. I try to know mine, so I can do what I like to do without depending on or having to be rescued by other hikers. I expect others to do the same. Might I have to be rescued some day? Possibly. But I do everything in my power to take keep that from happening.

Frolicking Dinosaurs
12-05-2007, 12:54
::: Dino seen with quivering lip and tear because Marta won't hike with her :::

Seriously, I would never attempt to hike with someone for whom my pace would be a problem. As He-Dino can attest, I was a fast hiker even with some exceses weight before my leg was injured. Now I wobble down trails - but I wobble happily. The joy is still in the journey regardless of the speed at which I travel. YMMV

SawnieRobertson
12-05-2007, 13:35
::: Dino seen with quivering lip and tear because Marta won't hike with her :::

Seriously, I would never attempt to hike with someone for whom my pace would be a problem. As He-Dino can attest, I was a fast hiker even with some exceses weight before my leg was injured. Now I wobble down trails - but I wobble happily. The joy is still in the journey regardless of the speed at which I travel. YMMV

That was a beautiful post, She-D. I feel much the same except that my feet get very crabby after five hours. If I were "fast," then that would be okay enough, but, regardless of weight, I've always been "slow," so I have just learned to enjoy the woods without the so-called partners. Being oout there is what it's all about anyhow.--Kinnickinic

Ewker
12-05-2007, 13:40
[quote=Frolicking Dinosaurs;464100
Seriously, I would never attempt to hike with someone for whom my pace would be a problem. As He-Dino can attest, I was a fast hiker even with some exceses weight before my leg was injured. Now I wobble down trails - but I wobble happily. The joy is still in the journey regardless of the speed at which I travel. YMMV[/quote]


Personally it wouldn't bother me to hike with someone faster than me. If we are on a trip together and we have an agreed upon spot to stop and that person beats me there..so what. I enjoyed my hike, they enjoyed theirs.
If they want to fly down the trail and leave me behind more power to them someone else will be along shorty to hike or pass me :D

Marta
12-05-2007, 13:59
::: Dino seen with quivering lip and tear because Marta won't hike with her :::

Seriously, I would never attempt to hike with someone for whom my pace would be a problem. As He-Dino can attest, I was a fast hiker even with some exceses weight before my leg was injured. Now I wobble down trails - but I wobble happily. The joy is still in the journey regardless of the speed at which I travel. YMMV

I will hike with you any time, anywhere.

I also think you're smart and experienced enough not to get bit off more you can chew. (And we all know what big teeth Dinos have!)

And you can count on me to be honest with you if I think you're about to get yourself in trouble.:D

I try not to insult people by underestimating them...since people do it to me all the time. I guess I just look too gormless for words.

Frolicking Dinosaurs
12-05-2007, 14:10
::: Dino doing cartwheels with Marta ::::

Marta
12-05-2007, 14:11
::: Dino doing cartwheels with Marta ::::

LOL. You're a better woman than I am. I haven't done a cartwheel since I was in the single-digit ages.

shuffle
12-05-2007, 14:31
I started my hike overweight and with a partner who was not only in shape, but very tall with long legs and I am very short. So I had to do twice the work to keep up with him. We usually hiked alone during the day which was ok most of the time and then met at night at the stopping place. As I got in better shape I still couldn't keep with his pace because of my stride being shorter. But he stuck with me until I got injured because we made a cimmittment to each other to do so before we started. I tried to let him "off the hook" a few times but he was faithful. In 2008 when I hike I will start out of shape again and I also have allergies and asthma and carry an epi pen, and I have knee replacements and high blood pressure but I will hike alone so I do not hold anyone back and so I can go my own pace. I know that as the hike goes on I will lose weight and the BP will come down becasue I won't be stressed at my job.I also want to enjoy the hike and take my time. It wore me out all the time trying to go faster and I just couldn't no matter what I did. I think if the person does not want to hike with overweight people, so be it, but don't condemn us overweights until you have hiked a few miles in our shoes. Losing the weight is NOT easy and being motivated to do so can be up and down. But with support it is a lot easier. I get irritated when people make fun of overweight people when they have no clue as to how hard it is to keep it off for lots of reasons. SOme of which can be medical. It sounds like our resident Dakota Dan feels that no one should be overweight. Not sure what world he is thinking we are in, but some people are just overweight and can't help it. Most can, but choose not to. So I guess with that I would say, everyone has a right to hike no matter what. And No one has the right to discourage them.

dixicritter
12-05-2007, 14:39
Honestly, I've gone through several stages of hiking abilities and weight ranges. 20 years ago I was skinny and could hike OK as long as my knee held up (had knee surgery in high school). 10 years ago I was roughly 70 pounds heavier than I am today and could hike OK, just got out of breath fairly easy.

Today I have Rheumatoid Arthritis, but hey at least I'm not heavy anymore, right? So you see... weight really doesn't matter a hill of beans in my book, other than it is extra the person doing the hiking has to carry when they go out.

But hey let's just keep on discouraging folks from getting out and getting exercise why don't we... that's productive. :rolleyes:

I had kept my mouth shut on this subject as long as I can, I feel better now. This has been eating at me all day. Just want to add that Marta and FD are big heroes to me. It was posts by these ladies that got me out on the trail seriously not too long ago. :)

Roots
12-05-2007, 15:31
You go, Dixicritter! I couldn't bite the lip any longer either-posted earlier. I have to give a little history to those of you who don't know me. In May of this year, my husband and I weighed close to 300 lbs, each. Yes.. 300lbs. He has lost down to a size 34 from a 40, and I have gone from a women's 24/26 to a size 12. Am I proud, *ell yes!! The choice in foods, lifestyle, everything was killing us. All this weight happened for us in the past 3 yrs. Up until then we hiked all the time and were somewhat healthy. We got in a rut, and then suddenly woke up one day. We dug down to our souls and literally changed our lives. We eat all organic and natural foods, workout 6 days a week-1 1/2 to 2 hrs a day, and hike at least 1 day week, with full packs. Thank God for our healthy lifestyle change otherwise we'd be one foot in the grave. I could go on all day about it, but I'll spare you.

The point I am trying to make is I COMPLETELY UNDERSTAND BEING OVERWEIGHT! It is hard to live in this world as an overweight person. Sometimes it can be helped, sometimes not. NO ONE can truly know what someone elses body goes through so it can be hard to relate. During my 'off' years, I did hike some. It took me longer, but I still enjoyed it. The world didn't stop when I had to take breaks, and the trail was still there when I was ready to go on. I have a feeling the AT will not disappear when anyone takes a break. If someone is out of shape and wants to hike, GO FOR IT!! It can change your life. Overweight people, IMO, know that they can stand to lose weight-I did. They don't need to be discouraged when they try to take charge, whether it be on the trail or in other ways. To each his own!!

Marta
12-05-2007, 15:41
Honestly, I've gone through several stages of hiking abilities and weight ranges. 20 years ago I was skinny and could hike OK as long as my knee held up (had knee surgery in high school). 10 years ago I was roughly 70 pounds heavier than I am today and could hike OK, just got out of breath fairly easy.

Today I have Rheumatoid Arthritis, but hey at least I'm not heavy anymore, right? So you see... weight really doesn't matter a hill of beans in my book, other than it is extra the person doing the hiking has to carry when they go out.

But hey let's just keep on discouraging folks from getting out and getting exercise why don't we... that's productive. :rolleyes:

I had kept my mouth shut on this subject as long as I can, I feel better now. This has been eating at me all day. Just want to add that Marta and FD are big heroes to me. It was posts by these ladies that got me out on the trail seriously not too long ago. :)

You're making me blush!:o

Don't get me wrong, I'm the last one who is telling people not to get out there and hike. But I think people should know and respect their physical limits, whatever they are at the time.

I'm not going to pretend I'm 20 years old anymore...but I sure will try to raise my 53-year-old game!

That's an amazing achievement, Roots. Congratulations!

Nightwalker
12-05-2007, 15:42
Some people believe that being overweight is "natural or hormonal" no way will they ever be thin.

--well--

I've seen many pictures taken in concentration camps, I've yet to see anyone obese.

More and more, you just become the guy to dodge. I'm a chunk, but I wouldn't hike with you anyway. Don't worry about having to keep up!

This past Summer, I got up to 18 mile days on a regular basis with a few 20s. I was leaving skinny young dudes behind every day. It was funny watching their egos try to write checks that their legs couldn't cash!

Well, it's Winter and I've gotten back down to 12-13 mile days, but that's easy to fix. I've put off a hike from Fontana to Neel's Gap for a few days so as to wish my wife a happy 18th anniversary of our first date. I got her a Citizen mother-of-pearl watch, and she's gonna faint! I'm going to wake her up at 12:05 and give it to her before I leave on my hike tonight*. Gonna put a drop at Franklin and NOC on my way to Fontana (See you tomorrow, Ron!).

Anyway, my wife's a supersize. She's also the most beautiful, wonderful person that I've ever known. She's got qualities that Dakota Dan or EWS could never appreciate, nor would they get the chance to. Guys that look at a woman's weight first get exactly what they deserve: Some vapid Barbie that looks good but has no brain. That's not to say that all the skinnies are Barbies, just the type that'd date the shallow Hals of the world. You get what you play for!
-------------------------------------------------------------
*The guys might think that I'm overly sappy, but the girls will get the 1st date anniversary thing. Guess whose opinion matters more? I'm the King of Uxor, yes I am, and women are God's greates creation. (He saved the best for last!)

Roots
12-05-2007, 15:55
Thanks, Marta!!!

dixicritter
12-05-2007, 16:48
You're making me blush!:o

Don't get me wrong, I'm the last one who is telling people not to get out there and hike. But I think people should know and respect their physical limits, whatever they are at the time.

I'm not going to pretend I'm 20 years old anymore...but I sure will try to raise my 53-year-old game!

That's an amazing achievement, Roots. Congratulations!

I know you aren't telling folks not to hike, that's what encouraged me! ;) Blush away if you must, but I speak the truth you are one of my inspirations here. :)

And Roots... Atta girl to you too! :D

Frolicking Dinosaurs
12-05-2007, 16:49
Just want to add that Marta and FD are big heroes to me. It was posts by these ladies that got me out on the trail seriously not too long ago. :)::: Dino seen blinking back tears and blushing :::

Dixi, you have inspired me as well. I've had a front row seat as you've dwindled down to your current size and I watched as you took you first baby steps with a backpack. You are one determined lady.

Roots, kudos to you and your husband. What a wonderful success story. Gives me hope :D


I agree, If you can't see the person, it's tough to determine. I use dress, pant size, or recent hiking experience (not their weight). if they lie they're on their own, if they can walk off and leave me in the dust, well I guess that was the one-ton marathon runner I spoke of. My philosophy is: "It's easier to carry a 150# hiker, instead of anybody larger, out of the mountains.

::: Dino whacks Dakota Dan up side of the head with the Dino tail :::

What are you thinking? While everyone needs to try to stay as fit as possible, life happens. Pregnancy, hormone stuff, menopause, metabolic slowdown of aging like a fine wine :D, injuries and events that disrupt your lifestyle, working long hours with little time to exercise or cook... all can add pounds that are hard to shed. I was probably 40 to 50 lbs overweight when my leg got injured - and poor He-Dino used to tell people he could barely keep up with me though he was at his ideal weight and worked out 3 times a week for an hour. and walked 2 to 5 miles a day. Guess you wouldn't have hiked with me because I was too chubby -- good thing because I have a feeling this chubby old lady would have run your skinny little arse into the ground.

dixicritter
12-05-2007, 16:59
::: Dino seen blinking back tears and blushing :::

Dixi, you have inspired me as well. I've had a front row seat as you've dwindled down to your current size and I watched as you took you first baby steps with a backpack. You are one determined lady.



Not exactly sure how I did that, but thank ya. :o

Group hug everyone... ;)

Marta
12-05-2007, 17:01
Age and guile are often excellent substitutes for youth and strength.;)

Dancer
12-05-2007, 17:14
I'm fat, really fat and I've never tried to fool anybody into hiking with me. I always say I'm slow and planning low miles. It's wrong to lie and deceive anyone about your abilities.

It's good though to read whiteblaze so you can weed out the personalities that you would and would not want to hike with. Reading peoples veiws on things can be just as enlightening as dress/pants size.

Dakota Dan, we didn't catch your dress size.:rolleyes:

Roots
12-05-2007, 17:22
You Gals Are Awesome!!!!! :)

Smile
12-05-2007, 17:54
................................wrong thread.

Lilred
12-05-2007, 18:27
I am also a very overweight hiker. 1.5mph is very good mileage for me, with 1mph the norm. I also have a very small stride with my very short legs. Needless to say, I can keep up with just about no one. I would never consider keeping that information from anyone I would hike with. I know I can't keep up with most people. Which leaves me with a small problem on my hands. I plan on going to the Southern Ruck this year and there will be an 8 mile hike on Saturday. I would love to go, but will slow everyone up. So I may have to pass on that hike. Unless I take my own car to the trailhead, then it wouldn't matter how much longer it would take me. An eight mile hike will take me at least 7 hours to hike.

Frosty
12-05-2007, 19:03
Dakota Dan, we didn't catch your dress size.:rolleyes:You just made me snort Pepsi out of my nose!

Frolicking Dinosaurs
12-05-2007, 19:08
Several of us will be at the RUCK - maybe we can find a suitable trail for us slow-pokes :D

Ewker
12-05-2007, 19:36
FD, don't some of you normally do a short hike up to one of the shelters

Hooch
12-05-2007, 19:39
Y'all are way cool. I need one of you here for my next wife. :eek: Just kiddin, not doin' that again. :datz

Blissful
12-05-2007, 19:41
You ladies are great!!!

It was tough out there on the trail when everyone was cruising by us at 20 plus days only a few weeks into the hike and we were still trying to manage 14 miles a day. But we took it at our pace, and glad we did. Though I tried not to be competitive, it was still a little rough on me to have people zoom by. But it's the end after all, not the means. And it was great reaching the end. :)

Frolicking Dinosaurs
12-05-2007, 19:55
FD, don't some of you normally do a short hike up to one of the sheltersI know there is a shorter hike, but we may need to plan something with less elevation change.

Marta
12-05-2007, 20:40
Lilred--the Saturday morning hike is usually FROM Tellico Gap back TO the NOC. If you stay on the white-blazed trail, you can take all day to hike the distance if you want.

There's also normally a Lone Wolf-led blue-blaze hike that ends up a little ways up the road from the NOC.

The schedule also says there's a hike up to Rufus Morgan Shelter and back, a total of two miles. And since it's an out-and-back, you can definitely do it at your own pace.

The Saturday morning walkers are a smallish subset of the Ruckers. There's plenty of other stuff going on at the same time.

dixicritter
12-05-2007, 20:47
I'm loving the current direction this thread has gone. It is great to see the encouragement being given. :)

Smile
12-05-2007, 20:59
I second that, it was headed to that place that makes me hesitant to post on this particular "women's" forum. :)

Hooch
12-05-2007, 21:03
This is a women's forum?? Oh crap.....sorry.

Skidsteer
12-05-2007, 21:04
This is a women's forum?? Oh crap.....sorry.

Let me guess.

Color blind? :D

dixicritter
12-05-2007, 21:08
This is a women's forum?? Oh crap.....sorry.

LOL... Relax. We allow you guys to visit as long as y'all keep it civilized. ;)

Dakota Dan
12-05-2007, 21:41
I'm loving the current direction this thread has gone. It is great to see the encouragement being given. :)

Happy to have helped.

I never discouraged anyone from hiking.

I never said I thought everyone should be thin, I do think its ones choice to be obese or thin. Take the concentration camp example.

I do think one should be healthy enough to hike. Health Clubs and even Exercise tape/commercials and shows recommend seeing a doctor before starting an exercise program.

I take from experience that a larger(obese) person has more issues. Can twist an ankle easy, etc, etc, etc, and a lot harder to evacuate from the mountains.

As I said I DO discriminate on size if I going to hike into a wilderness area and possibly end up in an emergency situation. I am medically trained, maybe this is why I so particular. I know people push themselves into a Heart Attack when they shouldn't. I mentioned the Epinephrine earlier because you are much more likely to die from a bee sting than a bear attack or a snake bite any day.

I started this rant because someone contacted me about hiking, next thing I'm being put on the WB sexual offenders list for asking the supposed females dress size. If it was about sex, I sure wouldn't be asking dress size. I respect the opposite sex and never would act out of place.

And, I always like seeing hikers fly by me, enjoying themselves, if they are obese, thats great, I just think they could hike more efficiently if they weren't.

I was with a group about ten years ago where an obese individual had a heart attack and died, I think they pushed themselves too hard in order to keep up and they paid with their life. I just don't won't this to happen to any of you all. My intentions are to encourage good health and happy, safe hiking.

My dress size is 32 long. :)

SGT Rock
12-05-2007, 21:46
I started this rant because someone contacted me about hiking, next thing I'm being put on the WB sexual offenders list for asking the supposed females dress size. If it was about sex, I sure wouldn't be asking dress size. I respect the opposite sex and never would act out of place.

Actually Dan you were not put on any list. It was all handled in PMs where no one but the interested parties knew about it. As far as we (the site) were concerned it was over and done. But you are going on about it in a very public manner on multiple threads and in multiple topics. You are making this an issue, not anyone else.

I highly suggest you get over it. I am about to remove you from being able to post in the women's forum if I see one more of these sorts of posts.

Lilred
12-05-2007, 22:31
Thanks Marta, I didn't know it ended back at NOC. For some reason, when I read it was a blue-blaze, I assumed a loop. OOPS! So, if anyone wants to do the Sat. hike really slow, you'll have some company :)

Nightwalker
12-06-2007, 00:29
I am also a very overweight hiker. 1.5mph is very good mileage for me, with 1mph the norm. I also have a very small stride with my very short legs. Needless to say, I can keep up with just about no one. I would never consider keeping that information from anyone I would hike with. I know I can't keep up with most people. Which leaves me with a small problem on my hands. I plan on going to the Southern Ruck this year and there will be an 8 mile hike on Saturday. I would love to go, but will slow everyone up. So I may have to pass on that hike. Unless I take my own car to the trailhead, then it wouldn't matter how much longer it would take me. An eight mile hike will take me at least 7 hours to hike.

I'll hang out with ya, kiddo--if you'll have me. In the next few days I'll be doing that one UP hill. One push like that, for now, will be enough!

Nightwalker
12-06-2007, 00:31
Finding the Fit in Fat
New Study Shows It's Fitness, Not Fat, That Matters Most

By JOHN McKENZIE
Dec. 4, 2007

It's better to have a bit more pudge and get your exercise rather than be thin but lazy, according to a new University of South Carolina report published in the Journal of the American Medicine Association.

The report is the first study to investigate the relationships between fitness, body fat and death in older Americans.

In a 12-year study, researchers found that among American adults over 60 years old, those who engaged in cardiovascular activity were living longer than those who exercised less, even when they had the same amount of body fat.

More Here (http://www.abcnews.go.com/WN/BeautySecrets/story?id=3953356&page=1)

Frolicking Dinosaurs
12-06-2007, 06:32
......among American adults over 60 years old, those who engaged in cardiovascular activity were living longer than those who exercised less, even when they had the same amount of body fat.This is what my doctor says - she told me that as long as my lipids remain good and I'm exercising for an hour at least three to five days per week that she doesn't give darn what I weigh. However, we both agree that less Dino would be a good thing for my joints.

Frau
12-06-2007, 07:31
Two thoughts:

1.) I agree with the article about physical condition being an important factor regardless of size: I weighed 267 pounds 2 years ago, but took short hikes and played tennis. I never had high blood pressure or any co-morbidities.

2.) Everyone has to start hiking somewhere, regardless of size. I had gastric bypass surgery 2 years ago next month. Hiking became and still remains my exercise and for the most part my reason for living. Surgery is not the simple answer--one MUST become fit. I recall being SO proud of walking 2 miles and then graduating to 3.

I participated in a research project at the university hospital medical center and had numerous stress treadmills, DEXA scans and tests of strength and agility. The final test summary was simple. I function physically like a 22 year old woman. I don't feel like I have had exercise unless I have hiked at least 8 miles (unless the trail is very steep), and I am now proud to do 12. Oftentimes I forget I am not 20 years younger, I feel so good.

I started a hiking club where I teach and encourage ALL who show up, which is often obese teens who have never been in the woods. I plan short flat hikes for them and also more vigorous hikes for the fit. We are fortunate to be surrounded by so many national forest trails.

Know your limitations, but HIKE!

Frau

Roots
12-06-2007, 08:16
Two thoughts:

1.) I agree with the article about physical condition being an important factor regardless of size: I weighed 267 pounds 2 years ago, but took short hikes and played tennis. I never had high blood pressure or any co-morbidities.

2.) Everyone has to start hiking somewhere, regardless of size. I had gastric bypass surgery 2 years ago next month. Hiking became and still remains my exercise and for the most part my reason for living. Surgery is not the simple answer--one MUST become fit. I recall being SO proud of walking 2 miles and then graduating to 3.

I participated in a research project at the university hospital medical center and had numerous stress treadmills, DEXA scans and tests of strength and agility. The final test summary was simple. I function physically like a 22 year old woman. I don't feel like I have had exercise unless I have hiked at least 8 miles (unless the trail is very steep), and I am now proud to do 12. Oftentimes I forget I am not 20 years younger, I feel so good.

I started a hiking club where I teach and encourage ALL who show up, which is often obese teens who have never been in the woods. I plan short flat hikes for them and also more vigorous hikes for the fit. We are fortunate to be surrounded by so many national forest trails.

Know your limitations, but HIKE!

Frau

I couldn't agree more!!! What an encouraging story you have!! Thanks for sharing. Keep up the great work!!:sun

Dancer
12-06-2007, 09:13
I never said I thought everyone should be thin, I do think its ones choice to be obese or thin. Take the concentration camp example.


My dress size is 32 long. :)

Hi Dan,

Obesity is a choice to some degree but being thin doesn't come naturally, I would have to live like I was in a concentration camp to ever be less than 175. I'm 5'11 and wear a size 11 shoe. I was born 9 lbs 13 oz and 21 inches long. I've never been small.

Let's think about it though, people in concentration camps weren't trying on their clothes and thinking how sexy they looked in their new bodies. The horrors that they endured every day and the malnutrition left those fortunate enough to survive with lasting health issues. Anyone starved and tortured is going to be skinny, not healthy and fit.

I refuse to starve myself to be thin because that is just as unhealthy as being obese. While I can get out and exercise because I have been blessed with good health everyone is not that lucky. Limited mobility, disease, handicaps, and even medication can make exercise and weight loss difficult.

Dan, I respect your right to your opinion and hope that you never have to face weight problems. Thanks for letting us know your dress size, your a good sport, if you have nice legs though you could go 32 short;) .

Frolicking Dinosaurs
12-06-2007, 09:56
Well said, Amazonwoman. Not everyone was meant to be skinny.
Thanks for letting us know your dress size, your a good sport, if you have nice legs though you could go 32 short;) .This is photoshop just waiting to happen.... anyone got a good pic of Danny boy :D

Ashman
12-06-2007, 12:29
I too am among the ranks of those who the BMI scales deem as obese. Did my first packing trip in over a decade last month. I have been struggling with my weight since the 3rd grade. This summer I was 250 I am now down to 224. The trip last month was fun, my hiking companions were gracious and let me set the pace. It was hard and I was huffing and puffing. One of the thoughts that ran through my mind was "I am glad I am doing this with 26 less pounds on my frame!". Another thought was I was glad I didn't wait until I was "fit". I would have missed out on the memories and the experince had I waited until my body was "thin". I haven't gotten this vibe from the thread but wanted to add another voice (esp to those who may be lurking) to say, if you feel called to this, do it, have fun, hike with those who will go at a pace that is good for you. I look forward to having less of me to love but I am going to enjoy the trail while I am on the road to getting there.

Cuffs
12-06-2007, 12:37
I have a problem with all the gear clothing companies making posters of all the skinny people in them, in the outdoors. As I go thru all the pics from last years Ruck... no offense cuz Im part of the crowd, but I dont think anyone there fit the outfitters image of hikers! when I look at the SAC deals, they always seem to be overrun with S, XS and even XXS!! Who the F^&* whears that size???

Marta
12-06-2007, 12:44
... they always seem to be overrun with S, XS and even XXS!! Who the F^&* whears that size???


They sure end up with lots of XS and S on the sale racks at Jesse Brown's in Charlotte. If they even order L and XL in women's clothes, they've been sold before I get there.

Frolicking Dinosaurs
12-06-2007, 12:55
....... look at the SAC deals, they always seem to be overrun with S, XS and even XXS!! Who the F^&* whears that size???Very few wear those sizes - that is why they are nearly always found in close-out bins, sites and such. It does seem that manufactures haven't gotten the memo about us fluffier types who are active and need clothing. Thank goodness I can sew.

Hooch
12-06-2007, 12:59
They sure end up with lots of XS and S on the sale racks at Jesse Brown's in Charlotte. I love Jesse Brown's! Remember when you used to be out of 49 by the old Service Merchandise? I still stop by there once in a while while I'm in Charlotte, but have to honestly say as far as local outfitters go there, I'm partial to Great Outdoor Provision Company. Sorry to hijack the thread. :datz

Marta
12-06-2007, 14:08
I love Jesse Brown's! Remember when you used to be out of 49 by the old Service Merchandise? I still stop by there once in a while while I'm in Charlotte, but have to honestly say as far as local outfitters go there, I'm partial to Great Outdoor Provision Company. Sorry to hijack the thread. :datz

It's pretty cool, as is GOPC. JB seems to really go for the tiny women's clothing...but that's not much of an issue for me at this point because I have declared a moratorium on buying clothing until I wear out some of what I've already got. Synthetic stuff does last a while.

Sorry I can't go any further down memory lane--by the time I moved to Charlotte, JB was already across from South Park Mall.

Blissful
12-06-2007, 14:26
Speaking of weight, what happened with you long distance hikers and weight gain after your hikes? I've had to buy some new jeans, etc because of my size change after my hike - but I don't want to spend a lot of money on a new wardrobe, yet I really don't want to go back to what I used to be either. Already I'm starting to put back on pounds, and the holidays doesn't help (I made Mexican Wedding cakes yesterday - sigh)

Marta
12-06-2007, 15:09
Finishing a hike is like cutting the bands on a bale of cotton...

You must be getting your strength back, Blissful.

I didn't lose any weight while hiking, though I did get thinner. I sure did put it on after I stopped. About half a pound a week. I'm fighting the good fight now, and have taken 10 pounds back off. I've got a few more to go to get back to my end-of-hike weight.

Mexican wedding cookies do not help. I love them!!!! I am planning to limit holiday baking and eating to the 24th and 25th. Hopefully that will minimize the damage.

Lellers
12-06-2007, 15:29
Christmas cookies could kill me! I remember one year, when I was young and in shape, I came home from college and gained 12 pounds over the winter break. I know that a large part of that was due to the obession my Italian family has with cookies. (That would be an obsession I've inherited, too.)

Fast forward many years since college, through pregnancies, slower metabolism, and just life in general, and I've got 50 pounds of flubber troweled over me. But I have to say that I'm pretty darn fit. I may not be a speed demon, but I'm at the Y about four times a week doing circuits, swimming and fighting with the vicious elliptical machine. This year, though, I've vowed to lose some weight, because I'm going back to doing 10-day hiking trips. I've been doing weekend trips for years, but now that my kids are grown, I have more time for ME.:banana
I'm also a backpacking merit badge counselor and assistant scoutmaster with a boy scout troop. I had a bunch of them up on the AT for a two-night trip back in November. Let me just say this... being a middle-aged, arthritic, pudgy woman supervising a bunch of strong teenage boys on a trail is sheer hell. If I take my time and hike without huffing and puffing, they tease me for being a slow-poke, and I worry about them getting too far ahead and in trouble. If I struggle and keep up with them, they tease me (all out of love, mind you) for breathing so hard. One of those wise guys is my 6'4" son with the 38" inseam and size 14 boots. Even when he strolls, he steps over three rocks at a time, while I have to balance on just about every rock in my way. (Oh, did I mention that I live in PA?)
We're now prepping for a 100-mile hike next summer, and I've vowed to lose the 50 pounds of packed weight on my body. I stupidly made this vow within hearing of the aforementioned boy scouts. (I must have been hypoglycemic and out of my mind.) Now the little darlings are "helping" me lose weight, bless their souls. They stop by my house and offer to go to the Y with me, or do extra hikes on weekends. And then there was the Eagle Scout who, when he saw my Hubba set up for the first time, said to me, "Is that thing wide enough for you, Mrs. S?" (Notice I mentioned him in the past tense.)
Actually, the boys are really great kids. I'm very excited about teaching them how to manage a good hike, about sparking their love of hiking and being outdoors. They want me to succeed as much as I want them to succeed. Since just before Thanksgiving, when I joined Weight Watchers, I've lost 10 pounds. This is THE worst time of the year to start something like that, but the boys have been great motivators for me, and here I am losing weight during the dangerous season of gluttony! What little dears they are! I hope to be able to report a 50-pound weight loss by May 2008!:o

Marta
12-06-2007, 15:38
Good luck! You can do it!

Lilred
12-06-2007, 16:19
Christmas cookies could kill me! I remember one year, when I was young and in shape, I came home from college and gained 12 pounds over the winter break. I know that a large part of that was due to the obession my Italian family has with cookies. (That would be an obsession I've inherited, too.)




Lellers,
My husband is Italian. What is it with the cookie thing?? At the holidays, they have dozens upon dozens upon dozens of different kinds of cookies. It IS an obsession.


Nightwalker,
All right then. We'll bring up the rear at the SoRuck hike!!:banana :banana

Lellers
12-06-2007, 16:30
Nightwalker,

I don't know why the cookies are so important to Italians, but they are! In a way, they are a status symbol. The variety and poundage of cookies serves directly correlates to your place in society.

I'm second generation American, grew up in the same house with my immigrant grandparents. My aunts, uncles and cousins all lived next door and on the same street. Every three or four houses on our street (and in our entire small town, for that matter) was a cluster of family homes. The women would make cookies for every big event and holiday. And forget about weddings! Whether or not you had a really good wedding depended on how high the cookies, cannoli and other pastries were stacked at the reception. I was the maid of honor in one wedding where the bride's family spend $2000 on cannoli alone -- in 1984. LOL! I still laugh when I remember all the old ladies stuffing cannoli into their pocketbooks to take home!

Lellers
12-06-2007, 16:31
Sorry. My cookie explanation was meant for LilRed, not nightwalker. I'm so focused on those darn cookies that I can't think straight!

Marta
12-06-2007, 16:44
When I got back from my hike, my co-workers gave me a stone engraved with the words:

"Perseverance and a positive view have the strength to wash all obstacles away."

That applies to a long hike, but it applies even more to the really hard tasks...like losing weight and keeping in shape!!!

Let's go, ladies! Step after step!

take-a-knee
12-06-2007, 16:55
Anyone, male or female, who's fifty pounds overweight is, in all likelyhood, setting themselves up for hypertension and type II diabetes 10 or 20 years earlier than they would have otherwise had a problem with it. Both of these problems predispose you to a plethora of other health problems, IE heart and vascular disease. Once all these things jump on you with both feet, your hiking (and a lot of other activities) will be extremely difficult to do.

Lellers
12-06-2007, 17:05
"Perseverance and a positive view have the strength to wash all obstacles away."



Marta,

I've just written that down on a sticky note and put it up by my computer. I'm lucky to be able to work from home on a pretty flexible schedule. I'm unlucky to have my office right next to my kitchen! I hope that note reminds me to take my breaks in another part of the house and to stay on my weight watchers program.

Thanks!

jesse
12-06-2007, 17:23
Take a knee

Anyone, male or female, who's fifty pounds overweight is, in all likelyhood, setting themselves up for hypertension and type II diabetes 10 or 20 years earlier than they would have otherwise had a problem with it. Both of these problems predispose you to a plethora of other health problems, IE heart and vascular disease. Once all these things jump on you with both feet, your hiking (and a lot of other activities) will be extremely difficult to do.

words of wisdom. recently on another thread someone posted, and I am paraphrasing, that its crazy to spend more time studying the right kind of gear, than on the right nutrition.

A stat that blew me away recently. The four risk factors for heart disease are; smoking, obesity, hypertension, and high cholestrol. If you have any two, you have a 60% chance of having heart disease in the next 20 years. If you have none, the chances drop to 5%.

Bottom line: If you want to hike late in life, Get healthy, lose the pounds.

Mountain Gal
12-06-2007, 18:46
Anyone, male or female, who's fifty pounds overweight is, in all likelyhood, setting themselves up for hypertension and type II diabetes 10 or 20 years earlier than they would have otherwise had a problem with it. Both of these problems predispose you to a plethora of other health problems, IE heart and vascular disease. Once all these things jump on you with both feet, your hiking (and a lot of other activities) will be extremely difficult to do.

Here's a report regarding this fit vs fat subject. I've been overweight most of my life - yet I managed to through-hike the AT, and I still do a lot of backpacking. I often outhike my "thin" companions. I don't have hypertension or high cholesterol. My doctor says I'm fit and to keep up the good work. Please don't judge a person's fitness by how "fat" they are!

Katy


http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=16890505

Even Minimal Fitness Can Stave Off Death
by Allison Aubrey

Listen Now [3 min 52 sec] add to playlist

All Things Considered, December 4, 2007 &#183; If you favor the spectator's seat over the playing field, take note: Research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association finds even a minimal level of fitness cuts the risk of premature death.

Treadmill and Wii Video Games

Esther McGuire, 84, a resident of Riderwood, a senior living community in Silver Spring, Md., says she's not surprised to hear that exercise and longevity are linked.

As she swings her arm and bends her knees in a game of bowling on the Nintendo Wii, she lets out a whoop in anticipation of a strike.

"It feels good," says McGuire, who's now helping organize Wii tournaments. "It keeps us moving instead of watching television."

McGuire also works out three times a week at the gym, so experts say she's almost certain to escape being categorized as one of the least fit in her age group.

"It's only really the least fit 20 percent of an age group that seem to have much higher mortality rates," says researcher Glenn Gaesser of the University of Virginia.

Long-Term Study of Exercise and Mortality

A long-term study has tracked the exercise and death rates of a few thousand Americans beginning at age 60. The new findings break those older Americans down into five groups, from the most fit to the least. Researchers documented 32 deaths per 1,000 people over the course of a year in the least fit group. This compares with 16 deaths in the group that was just slightly more fit, and eight deaths in the most-fit category.

"So you can cut your risk of dying in half by just getting out of that low-fit category," says researcher Steven Blair of the University of South Carolina.

The individuals in the most-fit category had the lowest risk of death. So, researchers say, the more exercise the better.

How Much Exercise Is Necessary

Thirty minutes of moderate exercise five days per week is what's needed to achieve the minimal fitness. Moderate exercise entails walking at a 2-3 mph pace. Blair says 100 minutes a week of aerobic-style class is equivalent.

"I think a lot of people are happy to hear it," says Blair. They're often surprised they don't have to do heavy-duty training.

Fit and Fat

The men and women in Blair's study may be a little more fit than older Americans in general. But among the group there were a fair number of overweight and obese participants, including individuals with a body-mass index, or BMI, of 35 and above.

"There's a sizable number, nearly half, who are fit and proved it on the treadmill test." says Blair. "So you can't tell by looking at someone whether they're physically fit."

Lots of research has shown that obesity alone is a risk factor for many diseases. This new research suggests that if overweight and obese people are fit, they lower their risk of premature death.

Exercise and Camaraderie

Walter Fowler, 81, is one of Riderwood's Wii enthusiasts. He says he's drawn in by the camaraderie.

"I don't get to the gym, of course, as often as I should," says Fowler, but he walks everyday and wouldn't miss the game tournaments.

It's not clear how much physical activity the video games provide, compared to say walking on treadmill. But, experts say, if people choose games over exercise equipment, it's important to take note.

"We can tell you what you should do," says I-Min Lee, M.D., of the Harvard School of Public Health. "But if you don't like it, you're not going to do it."

So, if you want to be more active than your sedentary peers, start with something you like.

Dakota Dan
12-06-2007, 19:40
Hi Dan,

..... but being thin doesn't come naturally........

Dan, I respect your right to your opinion and hope that you never have to face weight problems. Thanks for letting us know your dress size, your a good sport, if you have nice legs though you could go 32 short;) .


Neither being thin or obese comes naturally. Obese people tell me they think they are starving most of the time when in fact its all in their head. Its mostly about calorie control.

Blissful
12-06-2007, 19:58
Lellers,
My husband is Italian. What is it with the cookie thing?? At the holidays, they have dozens upon dozens upon dozens of different kinds of cookies. It IS an obsession.

My family isn't even Italian and I grew up with a dozen different kinds of cookies, all put out on three silver trays. We ate them for seven days straight. Mexican Wedding cakes, peanut butter kisses, coconut macaroons, pinwheel thingies, date pinwheel thingies, rice Krispy treats, spritz, cut out cookies, date balls in coconut, chocolate rice thingies, fudge, oh man, the memories are coming back and so is the stomach ache (and stomach protrusion).

Blissful
12-06-2007, 20:00
Neither being thin or obese comes naturally. Obese people tell me they think they are starving most of the time when in fact its all in their head. Its mostly about calorie control.

And not being a couch potato. Exercise!

But there are also medical conditions that predispose you to thinness and obesity. Like hyper and hypo thyroidism.

dixicritter
12-06-2007, 20:02
Neither being thin or obese comes naturally. Obese people tell me they think they are starving most of the time when in fact its all in their head. Its mostly about calorie control.

Not always. Sometimes medications that people are put on causes them to gain weight which is beyond their control. It isn't always about food intake.

Skidsteer
12-06-2007, 20:06
My family isn't even Italian and I grew up with a dozen different kinds of cookies, all put out on three silver trays. We ate them for seven days straight. Mexican Wedding cakes, peanut butter kisses, coconut macaroons, pinwheel thingies, date pinwheel thingies, rice Krispy treats, spritz, cut out cookies, date balls in coconut, chocolate rice thingies, fudge, oh man, the memories are coming back and so is the stomach ache (and stomach protrusion).

Ahhhhhhhhh!

Stop it! I'm gaining weight from reading.

With my family it's pies. We only like two kinds of pies:

Hot and cold.

Spirit Walker
12-06-2007, 20:37
[QUOTE=Blissful;465309]Speaking of weight, what happened with you long distance hikers and weight gain after your hikes? QUOTE]

Seems like every time I do something good for myself, the net result is a five lb weight gain. Started hiking, gained weight. Started running, gained weight. Hiked the AT, gained weight. Hiked the CDT - more weight. PCT - here we go again. Another CDT hike, 5 more lbs. Every time I've thruhiked I've lost a few pounds, but a year later, my weight ends up higher. I look at photos of myself during my first thruhike and really wish I could go back there but then I wouldn't be the person I am now. Part of it is age. Part of it is thryoid. Part of it is that I simply don't care enough to starve myself so I can temporarily be thin again. (I've dieted and lost weight, but it didn't stay off.) I am able to climb mountains. I walk 10-20 miles a week easily and happily. I can do long distance hikes without too much trouble, so I don't worry too much that my body at 50 isn't what it was at 30.

Dakota Dan
12-06-2007, 20:51
And not being a couch potato. Exercise!

But there are also medical conditions that predispose you to thinness and obesity. Like hyper and hypo thyroidism.


Regardless of size; everybody needs to exercise. A program that keeps one from exercising too little or too much is required. Note: Walking the dog doesn't get it. Get medical advise if you're not sure or are afraid. Got to get the heart rate up to do any good. Just don't want to over do.

Lots of medications to regulate the same ailments, but also may cause different side effects in one person versus another. Just takes trial and error on brand, dosage, etc, with MD's help. I have a friend with High BP, his first brand/type caused legs to swell, after trial and error he now has one that seems to have no side effects. :)

dixicritter
12-06-2007, 21:27
Note: Walking the dog doesn't get it.

Your ignorance is still showing Dan. According to my Physical Therapist, all that matters is that I walk.

I didn't lose 73 pounds last year doing vigorous exercise... I walked on a treadmill mostly at approximately 1.5 to 1.7 mph. Lots of times for only 1/4 of a mile a day was all I could do.

So you see, you don't know what you're talking about really do you? Why don't you step out of the Women's forum now?

Dakota Dan
12-06-2007, 21:33
Walking the dog constantly involves starting/stopping. Threadmill doesn't. Treadmills are constant and raises heart rate, at least thats my take on an MD giving one a stress test.

Cuffs
12-06-2007, 21:34
Werent you asked to leave?

Lellers
12-06-2007, 23:25
My family isn't even Italian and I grew up with a dozen different kinds of cookies, all put out on three silver trays. We ate them for seven days straight. Mexican Wedding cakes, peanut butter kisses, coconut macaroons, pinwheel thingies, date pinwheel thingies, rice Krispy treats, spritz, cut out cookies, date balls in coconut, chocolate rice thingies, fudge, oh man, the memories are coming back and so is the stomach ache (and stomach protrusion).

Oh, dear! I feel my thighs thundering while reading this! Soooo yummy! And that's a lot of cookies, to be sure... but three trays doesn't come close to the amount you'd see on Christmas Eve at our house. Around 6:00 p.m. we'd do the big "seven fishes" thing. That meal would take hours, but there was no meat because we were "fasting". LOL By the time everything was cleaned up, it was time for Midnight Mass. We'd come home, and there'd be presents, and we'd open those, and then the big meal happened. Yeah, at 2:00 in the morning we had all the tables together running from the dining room out into the living room. Meatballs, bracciole, lasagna, sausages . . . after Mass, we were done the fast, LOL, we could eat meat. (I haven't even mentioned the bread and pasta!) Around 4:00 a.m. the ricotta pies came out, along with the cannoli, and the big cookie table was unveiled. That was the old kitchen table that we kept in the basement all year. My dad and uncles brought that upstairs a few days before Christmas Eve, and as all the women in the family baked, they'd heap, and I do mean, heap cookies on that table. The table was about 6' long, and they kept a sheet over everything until after the meat dinner on Christmas. When the sheet came off at around 4:00 a.m., Wow! The table was set up in front of a big picture window, and the cookies came up halfway to the top of the window. And all up and down our street, the house lights were on, because everyone was up all night, eating and visiting. And every house had a table heaped with cookies just like ours. I have a very dear memory in my head of all the men in the neighborhood standing in the street in a circle in the wee hours of the morning, cigars in one hand, a glasses of anisette in the other, singing Italian songs.
The kids, even the littlest ones were up all night, and we pretty much slept all day on Christmas. Even today, Christmas Eve is more of a big deal for me than Christmas Day.

Oh, and to make the season last just a little longer, one of my cousins had a birthday on Christmas Eve, so we partied for him during the day. My birthday is the day after Christmas, so another big meal was prepared for that, and then another cousin had a New Year's Eve birthday. Another huge family party! You might think there were 100 of us living there, but actually, adults and kids only numbered 13 people. But we were a lively bunch!

Is it any wonder I'm fat with that kind of food tradition?

take-a-knee
12-06-2007, 23:41
Oh, dear! I feel my thighs thundering while reading this! Soooo yummy! And that's a lot of cookies, to be sure... but three trays doesn't come close to the amount you'd see on Christmas Eve at our house. Around 6:00 p.m. we'd do the big "seven fishes" thing. That meal would take hours, but there was no meat because we were "fasting". LOL By the time everything was cleaned up, it was time for Midnight Mass. We'd come home, and there'd be presents, and we'd open those, and then the big meal happened. Yeah, at 2:00 in the morning we had all the tables together running from the dining room out into the living room. Meatballs, bracciole, lasagna, sausages . . . after Mass, we were done the fast, LOL, we could eat meat. (I haven't even mentioned the bread and pasta!) Around 4:00 a.m. the ricotta pies came out, along with the cannoli, and the big cookie table was unveiled. That was the old kitchen table that we kept in the basement all year. My dad and uncles brought that upstairs a few days before Christmas Eve, and as all the women in the family baked, they'd heap, and I do mean, heap cookies on that table. The table was about 6' long, and they kept a sheet over everything until after the meat dinner on Christmas. When the sheet came off at around 4:00 a.m., Wow! The table was set up in front of a big picture window, and the cookies came up halfway to the top of the window. And all up and down our street, the house lights were on, because everyone was up all night, eating and visiting. And every house had a table heaped with cookies just like ours. I have a very dear memory in my head of all the men in the neighborhood standing in the street in a circle in the wee hours of the morning, cigars in one hand, a glasses of anisette in the other, singing Italian songs.
The kids, even the littlest ones were up all night, and we pretty much slept all day on Christmas. Even today, Christmas Eve is more of a big deal for me than Christmas Day.

Oh, and to make the season last just a little longer, one of my cousins had a birthday on Christmas Eve, so we partied for him during the day. My birthday is the day after Christmas, so another big meal was prepared for that, and then another cousin had a New Year's Eve birthday. Another huge family party! You might think there were 100 of us living there, but actually, adults and kids only numbered 13 people. But we were a lively bunch!

Is it any wonder I'm fat with that kind of food tradition?

"I feel like I'm playin' cards with my brother's kids", the card dealer in Tombstone.

I'm going to nursing school next year so y'all eat hearty, it'll be good for "business". I'll leave you with another movie quote, "Life is hard, it's a lot harder when you are stupid." The Duke.

Marta
12-07-2007, 08:31
I'm a Grinch, I admit it. This three-month holiday/Christmas thing just seems wrong to me. It's definitely bad for my health. Halloween candy appears in the store around Labor Day. I have to step around displays of the stuff to get to the fruits and vegetables aisles at the store. Then we move right on to Thanksgiving, with Christmas stuff sprinkled heavily around the stores even before Thanksgiving has happened.

It's tooooo much. Who's in charge here? I will NOT be told what to do and buy by the marketing/advertising brains of retail establishments.

Halloween was one day for me. I bought candy that afternoon. I put it in a bowl and gave it to kids that came to the house. Then I gave the rest to my husband to take to work. (He has a bunch of co-workers who keep candy bowls on their desks. They are all fat, of course.)

Thanksgiving was ONE DAY for me. I had a festive breakfast, a normal lunch, and a luscious dinner. Then I went hiking for three days. I lost 3.5 pounds over Thanksgiving week.

Christmas will be TWO DAYS for me--since I'm including Christmas Eve. All holiday baking and feasting will be limited to those two days.

Moral of the story--I can have some holiday fun with food, but I need to limit the number of festive meals and treats.

You ladies are very inspiring--Dixie, Madame Dino, Lellers... To use a trite word, it's "empowering" to succeed, and that makes it easier to stay on the path to further success.

Now I'd better go pack up...I'm leaving directly from work to go hiking this weekend.

Frolicking Dinosaurs
12-07-2007, 08:40
I'm all for vigorous, heart pumping exercise for those that can -- but what about those that can't? Some people have medical maladies and / or injuries that prevent lengthy periods of aerobic activity. For these people, periods of less intense activity are what doctors and physical therapists recommend. My doc and PT would throw a screaming fit if I attempted to run or jog for any distance at all - or if I even considered getting on a treadmill set at over about 2.8 miles per hour because my injured leg can't take that kind of stress. Dixi talked earlier in this thread about using a treadmill at below 2 MPH and doing what she could. Some of us have darn good reasons not to get out there and run full till - doing so could (and likely would) do more long-term harm than good.

Some of the heavier people and people who have not exercised in a really long time need to begin exercising at a far less intense level and take frequent breaks. Doctors and physical therapists agree this is not only healthy, but prudent. There is a reason that virtually all exercise programs say "Check with your Doc before starting this program".

Ladies (and gents following allow on this thread), get out and do what you can and don't beat yourself up if you can't do what others think you should be able to do. Do your best... the only person you have to please is the one in the mirror - pleasing anyone else is just (fat-free :D) gravy.

dixicritter
12-07-2007, 08:58
LOL... I hadn't intended on posting any actual numbers on here. See what happens when you post without thinking it through. :o

Oh well. I can say that when my doc told me I had to lose the weight I laughed out loud for real in his face. I think my exact words were "Yeah right, you mind telling me how I'm supposed to do that?" He looked rather shocked. LOL.

Imagine my surprise when I actually did make some minor changes and did start losing weight. In the long run this will be much easier on my joints. So I'm not going to complain.

Well maybe I'll complain a little, since I get to go be tortured today again. ;) Yipppeee it's PT day again. :banana

Pennsylvania Rose
12-07-2007, 09:26
Oh, dear! I feel my thighs thundering while reading this! Soooo yummy! And that's a lot of cookies, to be sure... but three trays doesn't come close to the amount you'd see on Christmas Eve at our house. Around 6:00 p.m. we'd do the big "seven fishes" thing. That meal would take hours, but there was no meat because we were "fasting". LOL By the time everything was cleaned up, it was time for Midnight Mass. We'd come home, and there'd be presents, and we'd open those, and then the big meal happened. Yeah, at 2:00 in the morning we had all the tables together running from the dining room out into the living room. Meatballs, bracciole, lasagna, sausages . . . after Mass, we were done the fast, LOL, we could eat meat. (I haven't even mentioned the bread and pasta!) Around 4:00 a.m. the ricotta pies came out, along with the cannoli, and the big cookie table was unveiled. That was the old kitchen table that we kept in the basement all year. My dad and uncles brought that upstairs a few days before Christmas Eve, and as all the women in the family baked, they'd heap, and I do mean, heap cookies on that table. The table was about 6' long, and they kept a sheet over everything until after the meat dinner on Christmas. When the sheet came off at around 4:00 a.m., Wow! The table was set up in front of a big picture window, and the cookies came up halfway to the top of the window. And all up and down our street, the house lights were on, because everyone was up all night, eating and visiting. And every house had a table heaped with cookies just like ours. I have a very dear memory in my head of all the men in the neighborhood standing in the street in a circle in the wee hours of the morning, cigars in one hand, a glasses of anisette in the other, singing Italian songs.
The kids, even the littlest ones were up all night, and we pretty much slept all day on Christmas. Even today, Christmas Eve is more of a big deal for me than Christmas Day.

Oh, and to make the season last just a little longer, one of my cousins had a birthday on Christmas Eve, so we partied for him during the day. My birthday is the day after Christmas, so another big meal was prepared for that, and then another cousin had a New Year's Eve birthday. Another huge family party! You might think there were 100 of us living there, but actually, adults and kids only numbered 13 people. But we were a lively bunch!

Is it any wonder I'm fat with that kind of food tradition?

What a beautiful story - togetherness and celebration like that is what the holidays are all about.

Ewker
12-07-2007, 11:58
I can highly recommend Weight Watchers if you want to lose weight. yes I realize it isn't for everyone but it worked for me. I used their program by counting points not the core program. I weighed 230 lbs in Jan. I hit my goal weight of 180 lbs and have maintained it now for the last 10-12 weeks :banana :banana

Frolicking Dinosaurs
12-07-2007, 12:11
And I can say that Ewker is looking great....
::: Dino does cartwheels for Ewker's success :::

Cuffs
12-07-2007, 12:18
From what I hear, Ewkerr even converted Eman to WW. I say Eman last month. He is NOT the same person I saw same time last year, in fact, hes literally 1/2 the man I saw!

Way to go guys!

Marta
12-07-2007, 12:19
That is wonderful, Ewker and Eman! Congratulations!

Ewker
12-07-2007, 13:05
thanks ladies, it was hard work esp. when I found out a rack of ribs wasn't a serving but was 4 servings :eek:

take-a-knee
12-07-2007, 13:24
I'm all for vigorous, heart pumping exercise for those that can -- but what about those that can't? Some people have medical maladies and / or injuries that prevent lengthy periods of aerobic activity. For these people, periods of less intense activity are what doctors and physical therapists recommend. My doc and PT would throw a screaming fit if I attempted to run or jog for any distance at all - or if I even considered getting on a treadmill set at over about 2.8 miles per hour because my injured leg can't take that kind of stress. Dixi talked earlier in this thread about using a treadmill at below 2 MPH and doing what she could. Some of us have darn good reasons not to get out there and run full till - doing so could (and likely would) do more long-term harm than good.

Some of the heavier people and people who have not exercised in a really long time need to begin exercising at a far less intense level and take frequent breaks. Doctors and physical therapists agree this is not only healthy, but prudent. There is a reason that virtually all exercise programs say "Check with your Doc before starting this program".

Ladies (and gents following allow on this thread), get out and do what you can and don't beat yourself up if you can't do what others think you should be able to do. Do your best... the only person you have to please is the one in the mirror - pleasing anyone else is just (fat-free :D) gravy.

My heart goes out to you Dino and others like you, I've read your posts that said you were in a serious accident sometime ago and my only advice to you is to do what you can exercise wise. It takes about the same number of calories to walk a mile as it does to run a mile, it just takes longer to do it, the aerobic benefit is slightly less but there is still substantial benefit from just walking. Don't get trapped in the mindset that says, "Well, I can't run 6 min miles and I'll never be a size 6 again so I might as well do nothing". Most of the long term health benefits of exercise appear at modest levels, IE normal blood pressure and heart muscle strengthening. At the extreme fitness level, like ultramarathoners, the incidence of cancer is much higher than normal, their bodies stay in a state of disrepair and are much more susceptible to free radical formation and damage.

So, if you have a weight problem and you are limited in your abililty to burn calories, you must consume fewer calories to burn fat and lose the pounds. I understand some people have a lower metabolism than others, it is still and intake-output equation. You can be overweight and be reasonably fit, if you are carrying too many pounds you are likely wearing out your pancreas (remember, it was made for the size you should be) and setting yourself up for diabetes.

I try for five cardio workouts weekly, 3 three-mile runs at an easy pace and 2 "smoke" sessions on a PT 7000 step mill at the gym. I wear a heart rate monitor when I do this and I suggest everyone over 40 should use one for any intense exercise. You max heart rate shouldn't go over 220 minus your age. I'm 48 so that means my theoretical max HR should be 172, and that is about where my HR stays for the last 10 min of a 30 min workout. You could start out at 60% and gradually increase from there. I always cross train, I never do the same workout two days in a row, IE, I NEVER run two days straight. I haven't had a running injury in many years since I've done that. For all couch potatoes an EKG and possibly a stress-test is in order before you begin a program like this.

I strongly advise everyone to consider a gym membership, I'm a retired guardsman and I live near an airforce base so mine is free but it is worth what is costs, it is cheaper than medicine and doctors. Don't join a "muscle" gym, there are a lot of ladies only gyms these days. A good gym will have cardio machines to allow cardio cross training, an excellent machine that most anyone can utilize is an elliptical trainer, my favorite is the Precor 546, this is zero impact and knee-friendly. Everyone should be on a weight lifting program, this burns a lot of calories, every pound of muscle you gain adds 50 calories to your daily burn, IE, if you gain five pounds of muscle which is easily done in 1-2 year you can eat 250 cal MORE per day. There are a lot of elderly success stories at the gym I use, I've been training there for seven years and I've seen several overweight retired people who have shown up for years and lost a LOT of weight. Another benefit of weight lifting for the elderly is you are much less apt to loose your mobility as you age, cardio keeps your heart healthy but it doesn't keep your muscles strong. A man over 40 or a post menopausal woman loses a pound or so of muscle (more as a result of statins) every year, if you aren't doing something to prevent it, you are fitting yourself for a walker one day.

There is an elderly woman at my gym that has a one-sided facial droop and walks with a quad-cane, she is still exercising. There is a morbidly obese elderly man who shows up just about every morning to lift and ride a stationary bike, he's lost a LOT of weight.

As for diet, if you burn an extra 250 cal/day through exercise and eat 250 cal/day less you'll lose a pound a week. Don't eat out, don't drink anything but water, avoid processed foods (shop around the outside of the market, friuts and veges, dairy, lean meat), eat only whole grains (this aids insulin control). This path has already been blazed, all this is nothing new, we all just have to commit to the first step and stay on the trail.

Ewker
12-07-2007, 13:37
I don't think you have to join a gym to lose weight. I have seen lots of over weight people in the gym who are dang near dying because of their workouts. Start out by walking then as you walk more and lose weight then you can decide if you want to join a gym or not.

In order to lose weight you have to recognize what a serving size is. That is the biggest thing IMO. Most folks have no clue as to what a serving size is. I lost all of my weight without going to the gym. It can be done.

Lellers
12-07-2007, 15:53
In order to lose weight you have to recognize what a serving size is. That is the biggest thing IMO. Most folks have no clue as to what a serving size is.

This is a big problem for me, and I, too, have found Weight Watchers to be a huge help. Many, many years ago I lost 40 pounds on WW and kept it off. Unfortunately, at the time I was trying to lose 90 pounds. I got off the lose-weight track, but at least part of what I learned about making good food choices stuck with me. What didn't stay with me, and what I'm working hard on right now, is the portion size thing. I am back following the WW program to a T, and the weight is coming off. I'm not eating different foods, but I'm eating less food. Instead of heaping plates, I'm measuring and weighing my portions. I'm also learning to eat slowly, which is also a problem I've had. You know, when you are the youngest of 7 children, you learn to grab and swallow! It sounds a little gross, but I'm learning to chew my food thoroughly and enjoy the taste of it as it stays in my mouth, rather than trying to catch the flavor as it slides down my gullet. Taking a longer time eating my food, means that I get the signal that I'm satisfied at the end of my meal, and not after I've been gorging for 30 minutes. And I'm also learning that it's painful to overeat and feel bloated!

Sounds simple, but when you've had bad habits for many years, it takes a lot of work to break them. I remind myself that 12 years ago, I learned to choose good foods over processed, high-fat, high-sugar foods. That stayed with me. Now I have to set my mind to learn portion control and have that stay with me, as well.

Today was my weekly weigh-in, BTW, and I lost another 1.5 pounds this week. High-five for me!:D

Ewker
12-07-2007, 16:21
Today was my weekly weigh-in, BTW, and I lost another 1.5 pounds this week. High-five for me!:D

congrats, that deserves a :banana :banana :banana :banana

Frolicking Dinosaurs
12-07-2007, 17:28
The Dino has been secretly dieting a bit and has lost about 13 pounds since September 29th... Part of that was on the 'lost my mother' diet which I recommend to absolutely no one, but about half has come from simply watching what I eat. I need to get back to exercising regularly. I did an hour of cardio 3x a week plus walked from 1 to 3 miles a day before my mother passed on. I just haven't been able to get back to my routine.
Wanted: Someone to hold gun on Dino while she works out.

Smile
12-07-2007, 17:38
Way to go Ewker! :)

Roots
12-07-2007, 18:41
This is an inspiring thread!! Way to go everyone on their weight loss, workouts, walks, and h*ll, just living good. Lets face it, we all have one great love in common-the AT. Good luck to all-:banana

Lellers
12-07-2007, 19:02
:banana:banana All these dancing bananas are making me hungry! :banana:banana

How 'bout some dancing rice cakes?

Ewker
12-07-2007, 19:03
a banana is only 1 or 2 points ;)

Jan LiteShoe
12-07-2007, 19:18
a banana is only 1 or 2 points ;)

How many points are homemeade chocolate chip cookies with walnuts?
:)
I should have read this thread before I began baking, to strengthen my resolve.
I confess, I ate raw dough. :D

Ah, but my brother the cookie monster is coming here for Christmas.


Congrats on your successful surgery too, Ewker. Glad it came out ok.

Cuffs
12-07-2007, 19:23
I confess, I ate raw dough. :D


that right there is my worst weakness.... the tube of Nestle Toll House frozen cookie dough! Yes, right out of the package, still frozen!!

Jan LiteShoe
12-07-2007, 20:30
that right there is my worst weakness.... the tube of Nestle Toll House frozen cookie dough! Yes, right out of the package, still frozen!!

Yeah, more confession - about mid-way thrugh my thruhike I bought a tube of that stuff and ate it all over a 2-day period! Hiker crack!
It really helped my energy levels, aqnd satisfied some deep craving.
I was thoroughly ashamed.
:)

However, then I read the label and all the transfatty "stuff" put me off. Back to homemade for me.
:D

Cuffs
12-07-2007, 20:42
Hiker crack!

However, then I read the label and all the transfatty "stuff" put me off. Back to homemade for me.
:D

Hiker Crack? I dont need to be on the trail to eat that stuff!!!

Dammit! I wish you hadnt told me about the transfatty crud! Aw, who cares, its all good eating!

I'll bring one to Ruck if you'll 1/2 it with me?!?!:eek:

sarbar
12-07-2007, 22:48
I can say this: Have I been skinny? Yes. Did I do it unhealthy? Yes. When I was in my teens and early 20's I was skinny as a rail. And I smoked like a chimney in winter. I starved myself and had no energy. I couldn't hike or walk much.

As life went on I had a kid. And yep, gained weight. Am I still too heavy? Yes. Does it impede my life? Somewhat. But for hiking? Not really. I hike like an addict. I hike with slow people, normal people and fast people. I can hike 1/4 mile or 100 miles and be happy. I can hike 19 miles in a day. I can hike 6K of gain in a day.

Would it be easier if I weighed 20-40 lbs less? Maybe. Do I wait for that "magical" day to hike when I am skinny? Yeah, I don't think so. If I did that I wouldn't be section hiking the PCT every summer! I wouldn't be backpacking at Rainier a couple times a year. I wouldn't be exploring the Olympics. Snowshoeing, snow camping.

I try to excercise daily, be it my indoor bike or walking outside. It keeps my BP in check and helps with its control.

Thing is, I WILL be heavier the rest of my life unless I either work out for hours a day or starve myself. Every female on both sides was fat for generations back after having kids!

I get out there and do my thing.

Btw, one of my hiking partners who is thin? I wait for her often. She is slower than me.

Frolicking Dinosaurs
12-12-2007, 20:00
Dino is walking again.... just had to tell y'all. Not far, but she's out there. Baby steps.