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View Full Version : survey: EAT or CLEAN?



ruckman1968
11-15-2003, 17:29
when i thru hiked in 03, whenever i went to town, i wanted to eat first, clean/shower later. i asked other hikers what they did first, and it seemed to be gender specific...men wanted to eat first, women wanted to shower/clean first.
whats your experience?

mdionne
11-15-2003, 17:57
beer first, then eat, then shower.

Footslogger
11-15-2003, 18:37
Personally ...I liked to get into the hostel/motel and settled before heading down to the local watering hole for a beer and a burger. Somehow food tastes better to me when I'm a bit rested and clean. Not saying I always followed that approach, but that would be my preference. Besides, I liked dumping off my pack and only carrying what I absolutely needed into town.

Doctari
11-15-2003, 21:58
Never actually paid attention, but I think its: shower, then take the pack off :jump then eat, then sleep, then eat, then shower.

So, I think its Shower first for me who is male.

Doctari.

Youngblood
11-16-2003, 10:35
When possible, I showered first. If not, I tried to sit well away from the other patrons. I think the other folks trying to eat appreciate that approach as well.

Youngblood

chris
11-17-2003, 09:49
I tended to space things out on the PCT. I'd get to town and have a light snack first. Something like a box of Oatmeal Cream pies and a quart of chocolate milk (or a jar of pickles in SoCal). Then, if staying in town, I'd go and get clean. Then, go for an actual meal, like a bacon double cheeseburger, sack of fries, and a liter of soda, followed up with a pint of ice cream. Then I'd tend to do laundry and get my stuff set out to dry, if wet. Then, I'd have a third meal, which usually consisted of a six pack of beer and a box of Swiss Cake Rolls.

icemanat95
11-17-2003, 10:37
I'd generally head to the hostel or motel right away, get clean and then deal with food and chores.

2scoops
11-21-2003, 22:18
i havent done much of the AT, but usually when on trail for a few days, i generally prefer food first, unless im rainsoaked, then alot of times i prefer the shower first.

Dee
11-21-2003, 23:16
Move out of the way, give me food and know one will get hurt. Then it's shower time.

Lone Wolf
01-28-2008, 17:22
when i thru hiked in 03, whenever i went to town, i wanted to eat first, clean/shower later. i asked other hikers what they did first, and it seemed to be gender specific...men wanted to eat first, women wanted to shower/clean first.
whats your experience?

get a motel room, go buy a six-pack, drink beer while showering, then go eat

Jaybird62
01-28-2008, 17:25
get a motel room, go buy a six-pack, drink beer while showering, then go eat
That sounds like the way to go to me.

doggiebag
01-28-2008, 17:32
As soon as I got close to a town ... I had a tendency of not having a sit down type of meal until I got showered. The most painless way to do this was to stop over at the first gas station or convenience store and wolf down something hot like a burrito or one of those cheese burgers they kept under hot lamps. The dog immediately got 2 cans of wet food. I'd also take care of sugar cravings by dispatching a pint of ice-cream. That usually takes care of the immediate sense of depravation to allow me enough time to find a place to stay and take a shower/shave. Then it's off with the hiking clothes and into my rain gear which always looks better in town to do my errands.

Footslogger
01-28-2008, 17:34
Depended on the rooming sitiation for me in 2003. Most times a group of us would share a room and flip a coin in terms of who got the bed/sofa or firsties in the shower.

That said ...if I had my druthers I would generally clean up first and then go have a relaxing dinner.

'Slogger

Two Speed
01-28-2008, 17:38
Of course there's no rule against having a beer IN the shower.

Just gotta watch for getting dirty, nasty rinse water off'n the hiker in yer nice, clean beer.:p

Boudin
01-28-2008, 17:49
Beer, Beer, Shower, Food, Beer.

Unless they had a liquor store. Then substitute bourbon for beer.

Bob S
01-28-2008, 17:54
I have read here that not all town people like trail hikers. Would you want a long haired, dirty stinky person sitting down in your restaurant next to people? NO would be my guess, why should they?

Make a better impression for hikers and town people may be more friendly.

Shower first and show some respect for others.

wrongway_08
01-28-2008, 18:08
I get cleaned up, get the room "set up" , then go eat. feels a lot better to me to be clean and settled before eating, this way when the night is over with, I just have to settle into bed and crash out for the night.

dessertrat
01-28-2008, 18:22
when i thru hiked in 03, whenever i went to town, i wanted to eat first, clean/shower later. i asked other hikers what they did first, and it seemed to be gender specific...men wanted to eat first, women wanted to shower/clean first.
whats your experience?

Depends where you are eating. Stopping at a take out joint or pop stand first might be fine. I would not go into a restaurant smelling like the trail. I feel it is disrespectful to the proprietor of an establishment with real silverware.

ScottP
01-28-2008, 19:01
I shower first when possible.

gungho
01-28-2008, 19:02
Beer,room,beer,shower,beer,go to eat,and relax while drinking more beer:D

fehchet
01-28-2008, 19:10
Sit on a flush toilet and contemplate my navel. (omphaloskipsis) Nothing like saying, "good bye" to it without a cloud of stink pouring back out of the hole.

Lone Wolf
01-28-2008, 19:12
Sit on a flush toilet and contemplate my navel. (omphaloskipsis) Nothing like saying, "good bye" to it without a cloud of stink pouring back out of the hole.

that's just wrong on so many levels

gungho
01-28-2008, 19:19
that's just wrong on so many levels
Just a little too much information for me

Kirby
01-28-2008, 19:20
I plan to, when possible, find the place I am staying for the night in town and shower up, just out of respect for the towns people.

I'll buy my self some root beer instead of actual beer, I never have, nor do I have the intention of, underage drinking.

Kirby

GGS2
01-28-2008, 21:44
...I never have ... underage drinking.

Me neither. Don't know what my age limit is, though. A neat thing about hiking is that all the sugar in soda is good for me. What I can't understand is the people who get diet soda. What is that about?

Beer is a great rehydration drink, but I'm on the wagon. Mostly.

River Runner
01-29-2008, 01:59
A neat thing about hiking is that all the sugar in soda is good for me. What I can't understand is the people who get diet soda. What is that about?

If you drink diet soda all the time, non-diet tastes too sweet. Also, for those who really watch their sugar intake, it can wreak havoc on blood sugar levels (spike/crash).

River Runner
01-29-2008, 02:01
My preference is to shower first and then eat, but if I'm really hungry, it might be eat first and then shower.

swamp dawg
01-29-2008, 02:30
I seem to head for the nearest fresh food then reflect on the other things a town might offer. Life is good once your belly is full.

Slimer
01-29-2008, 02:49
Get cleaned up first.......then eat like a savage.

GGS2
01-29-2008, 03:21
...Also, for those who really watch their sugar intake, it can wreak havoc on blood sugar levels (spike/crash).

Yes, I am diabetic and I know about sugar spikes. However, a) it is worse to have a double helping of pasta or instant oatmeal (eg.) than a soda, and b) as the thread was noting, when mild diabetics (type 2) are in a daily deep exertion mode (ie., multi-day bp) the need for medication decreases radically, as does the incidence of glucose spiking. Most of the standard hiker foods are high in available carbs, which is hiker fuel. If it weren't for the effect of constant, heavy exertion, it would be very bad for diabetics. Fortunately, hiking and hiker fuel go nicely together, and the need for meds is greatly reduced if not eliminated, while the exercise continues.

Off the trail, I do not drink soda or juice. Too sugary. On the trail, because I make sugar from fat (my own), I don't need to eat much, and my blood sugar remains in normal range without medication. I can drink a soda without compensating with meds, and I can eat a big carb meal in a town stop also. I have not tried to hike and eat on the trail without meds, as I need to drop a lot of weight, and it is really good therapy for me to fast and hike. However, since I can down a big meal in town with no ill effects, I surmise that for low body fat diabetics, who should eat on the trail, the effect of hiker meals should be much less than during sedentary life.

Accordingly, while I would not hike without a supply of meds nor would I leave my test kit behind, I would not expect to have to use a lot of meds while hiking at a normal rate. That is why I say that hiking/bp is an ideal therapy for control of diabetes II. Clear?

My wonder at hikers who drink diet soda comes from a personal prejudice against nutrisweet, aspartame and those other chemicals. They taste bad (I get a foul aftertaste; YMMV) and I don't like to ingest chemicals that my body has not evolved to digest or eliminate. But I suspect the worst of the man-made "food" group are the saturated fats. Another story.

It should also be clear to any diabetic that type I diabetics have a much higher sensitivity to the high carb hiker diet, and will probably have to monitor their insulin dosage carefully, especially during varying exertion profiles and varying food intake. They have a much tougher balancing act, with much less naturally produced insulin to compensate with. It's really a different disease.

Type II diabetes is really insulin resistance. We produce the normal amount of insulin, but it doesn't have the proper effect. The fault seems to be with the insulin regulation of sugar portals in the cell walls. What exercise apparently does is rectify this fault temporarily.

Type I diabetes is a lack of insulin production. The resistance phenomenon may also be present, and the amount of insulin deficiency may vary, but insulin needs to be supplemented. Since the automatic regulator is bypassed by insulin injection, there is the danger of over-medication. This must be guarded against. Some type II medications also have this problem, but in general, type II diabetics can rely more on their natural insulin regulation.

Finally, if you are susceptible to sugar spiking, you are probably diabetic or have a developing insulin resistance. You probably know this, but if you don't, and you weren't just tossing off a trendy expression, you should get yourself checked. And go for a hike. But do the insulin stress test while sedentary, so you know what you're up against. Then, if you have the resources, have it repeated a day after coming in from a multi-day hike. Let us know the difference. If you have a blood-sugar test kit, you can do it yourself.

I am not a medical doctor, nor do I play one on tv. Consult your physician in case of doubt.

Crazy Larry #1
01-29-2008, 07:23
when i thru hiked in 03, whenever i went to town, i wanted to eat first, clean/shower later. i asked other hikers what they did first, and it seemed to be gender specific...men wanted to eat first, women wanted to shower/clean first.
whats your experience?
Both. It depended what presented itself first....................food or shower........

JAK
01-29-2008, 07:56
Good post GGS2. Definitely something to keep an eye on.

Myself. If I had a real hunger on for a special meal, like Southern BBQ, I think I would try and clean myself up as best I could before hitting the town and save as much room as I could for the real meal. Probably grab a beer or two though as Lone Wolf suggested. You know, an apéritif. It is a science. :D

Mrs Baggins
01-29-2008, 08:40
when i thru hiked in 03, whenever i went to town, i wanted to eat first, clean/shower later. i asked other hikers what they did first, and it seemed to be gender specific...men wanted to eat first, women wanted to shower/clean first.
whats your experience?

Definitely shower first!!! No one wants your stinking grody body sitting near them in a restaurant. Not to mention what's probably on your hands.........ewwwwww. And yes, I'm female. But my husband would also chose to shower first and always.

JAK
01-29-2008, 08:45
I would prefer to be all spiffed up even before entering the town. It should be possible to clean yourself up on the trail if you do it right, and catch a good rain.

fiddlehead
01-29-2008, 09:05
Depends on many things. each stop is different. Sometimes i'll arrive in town in the morning. did i eat the last of my food on the trail and can wait? usually that's the case. (after all, we do arrive on a good downhill with a very light pack, aye?) (and then usually are near a river)
DO i have a mail drop? Might it have some goodies (cookies) that must be eaten in town? Then go for that first.

Does the hotel have room service. or can you get pizza delivered to your room. (very ideal situation)

Or is the restaurant about to close then i get to town?

I've done it different ways ..................including stealth camping in the town park and taking a swim in the river (Pagosa springs, Co comes to mind as well as some of the towns in the pyrenees), If it's Fontana dam or something similar , definitely a shower then a hitch to the restaurant. Up to you at the time!

River Runner
01-29-2008, 18:20
Good information GGS2. I know exercise does help a lot of diabetics. A friend of mine was able to go off his meds while on his thru-hike.

I am not diabetic, but I don't normally eat sugar & I follow a controlled carbohydrate diet by choice after having adopted it a couple of years ago for weight loss, feeling it levels my energy out better. When I consume sugar now, I don't like the effect, and I don't care for the overly sugary taste of regular soda or desserts whether hiking or not. Just my personal taste, but I imagine some others feel similarly, especially section hikers. Now thru hikers I imagine probably are a totally different story by the time they've spent a month or so one the trail... :D

Terry7
01-30-2008, 12:29
I have read here that not all town people like trail hikers. Would you want a long haired, dirty stinky person sitting down in your restaurant next to people? NO would be my guess, why should they?

Make a better impression for hikers and town people may be more friendly.

Shower first and show some respect for others.
Well said.

GGS2
01-30-2008, 14:00
... I am not diabetic, but I don't normally eat sugar & I follow a controlled carbohydrate diet by choice after having adopted it a couple of years ago for weight loss, feeling it levels my energy out better. When I consume sugar now, I don't like the effect, and I don't care for the overly sugary taste of regular soda or desserts whether hiking or not. ...

Reducing sugars and simple carbs is one thing. Substituting with artificial sweeteners is something else again. It is the latter I question. Why not water, or tea, or diluted juice? Or weak (non-alcoholic) beer. One thing I sometimes use in hot weather is really weak gatorade. Gives hydration with electrolytes without too much of that yuck flavor. But I use sugar in small quantities in preference to artificial stuff. That goes for artificial flavor also. Ick.

As for which first, I find that is entirely a question of how hungry I am vs. how dirty/wet/tired, and which I come to first. Fast food is easy: grab and eat later, or on the run. But I feel bad about going into a restaurant full of civilians all grubby. I've noticed that ordinary people notice when I run around in my underwear, too. So it often works best to grab fast food and do everything in (relative) privacy.

Lanthar Mandragoran
01-30-2008, 19:00
Reducing sugars and simple carbs is one thing. Substituting with artificial sweeteners is something else again. It is the latter I question. Why not water, or tea, or diluted juice? Or weak (non-alcoholic) beer. One thing I sometimes use in hot weather is really weak gatorade. Gives hydration with electrolytes without too much of that yuck flavor. But I use sugar in small quantities in preference to artificial stuff. That goes for artificial flavor also. Ick.

As for which first, I find that is entirely a question of how hungry I am vs. how dirty/wet/tired, and which I come to first. Fast food is easy: grab and eat later, or on the run. But I feel bad about going into a restaurant full of civilians all grubby. I've noticed that ordinary people notice when I run around in my underwear, too. So it often works best to grab fast food and do everything in (relative) privacy.

1) Ditto on the aversion to artificial sweetners.

2) Yeah, running around town in skivvies is bad...