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#36126 - 04/28/14 10:48 AM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: ponzy]
John Sims Offline


Registered: 04/20/12
Posts: 542
Loc: Sunnyvale, California
Hi Ponzy,

I have never seen it recommended that interval training be conducted at maximum heart rate. I think your target heart rate should be ~75% to 85% of your max. I suggest doing the interval at whatever your heart rate is such that you can sustain the interval. Try not to target a certain rate until you have a better idea as to your level of training.

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#36127 - 04/28/14 11:02 AM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: ponzy]
Harvey Lankford Offline


Registered: 11/10/09
Posts: 1015
Loc: Richmond, Virginia
Originally Posted By: ponzy

prolonged, sub-maximal exercise

this is exactly the issue. Everyone operates at altitude with submaximal exercise ( compared to sea level). Anything that uses air suffers the same loss of performance, in parallel with the "thinning" of the air. For example, gasoline engines (unless they are super/turbocharged).

Anyone with a reasonable degree of fitness should be able to do Whitney. You do not need to be a champ. The last two times I was there, I was with a 30 yo once, the other time a 73 yo (I am 63). There is no race. The only competition is AMS (that can stop anyone no matter what degree of fitness) and your own self. Pace, pace, pace works better than race, race, race.

and now a word from a famous British climber/explorer

One must shut out from one’s mind all but the immediate task of making the next step. To start fretting about the slowness of one’s progress or about the time it is going to reach the goal would render the whole business unbearable.
Eric Shipton, Nanda Devi , page 145

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#36134 - 04/28/14 05:14 PM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: Harvey Lankford]
Abhijit Offline


Registered: 03/19/14
Posts: 27
Loc: Chattanooga, TN
Ponzy,
I'll be your friend on 23rd July. I also will be doing the day hike then. Furthermore, I'm also from the area where I don't have access to higher altitude practice hike.
My plan is to go to Lone Pine on 20th and spend the couple of days before the "big one" in the area.
Currently, my training is three fold - every day I run 4 to 5 miles in our neighborhood (which is quite up and down), every other weekend I spend 2 to 3 hours on treadmill at 15 degree incline at around 2.5 to 3 mph, and every other weekend I do an endurance hike in Appalachian mountains in TN area. This hike could be up to 20/26 miles and so far I found out that I can finish it in 10-12 hours.
This is the training that I self-prescribed and I'd welcome some suggestions from experts if I should change anything.

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#36136 - 04/28/14 06:02 PM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: Abhijit]
SierraNevada Offline


Registered: 09/05/11
Posts: 1137
Loc: NorCal
Your training regiment seems very good by my standards. You may also want to do more acclimation planning for your days before you hike. Lots of advice on this forum about where to camp and hike in the mountains instead of Lone Pine, which is in the valley.

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#36137 - 04/28/14 07:40 PM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: SierraNevada]
Whitney Fan Offline


Registered: 12/02/09
Posts: 213
Loc: Las Vegas
I may have posted this previously, but at any rate, here's my approach, which has worked successfully for the Whitney Main Trail day hike (2004, age 59), a Mt. Charleston (Nevada) day hike (2009, age 64), and Grand Canyon rim to rim day hike (2012, age 67).

I start the training about half a year before the big event.

My usual exercise regimen is to walk 2 miles a day except for Saturdays and Sundays. I also add a one mile jog on Tuesday and Thursday and do a 2 mile jog on Sundays. I keep this schedule while I'm doing my event training, except that the 2 mile Sunday jog is replaced with the following.

The training is a 3 way approach, vacillating from one week to the next. One week is a 22 mile hike -- nothing necessarily out in the country, pre-planned (and measured) hikes on city streets. (When I START the training I first do an 8 mile hike, then a 15 mile hike, then its 22 mile hikes from there on out.) Week two is stair climbing -- I use the 17 steps in my 2 story condo stairwell. The drill is to go up and down them 150 times. (When I START the training the first time is only 100 times but from there on out it's always 150 times.) The third exercise is to run 3 miles, except for about mid-way through the training I do a 5 mile run and do another one in one of the last weeks.

All the above is "kicked up a notch" with about 3 months left in the training by doing everything wearing a 22 pound backpack. And I wear it for my normal daily walks and jogs too.)

I find that the 3 exercises are a good mix and that the training is absolutely necessary. If not to actually be able to do whatever event your planning then to at least make it much more pleasurable.

For a Whitney event you have to add in your acclimatization approach as well. When I did my Whitney day hike I flew from home in lowland Florida and spent a little time in LA before driving up to the Sierra. I actually traveled from sea level (cruise to Anacapa Island) to Mammoth Lakes, where I stayed for three nights. After the third night I drove south to Lone Pine. I walked up to Lone Pine Lake that day. I stayed at the Dow Villa in Lone Pine. The next day I drove up to the portal and just hung around there all day, staying at the Dow Villa again that night. The next day was my hike. I found that drinking lots -- and often -- helped with the altitude.

Hope this approach gives some good ideas . . .

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#36139 - 04/28/14 07:48 PM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: Steve C]
nyker Offline


Registered: 07/26/12
Posts: 202
Loc: New York
Ponzy, your interval training sounds like it could be a good idea but make sure you have a good aerobic base first to build on.

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#36140 - 04/28/14 08:27 PM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: ponzy]
63ChevyII.com Offline


Registered: 08/07/12
Posts: 670
Loc: Colton, California
Originally Posted By: ponzy

A friend of mine is a physical therapist and advised me do some "interval training" 2 x a week then do an "endurance hike" once a week on my usual hiking route.


That's similar to what I've done in the past. Interval training 3x per week (Tu, Thu, Sun) and a hike on Saturday, as well as weight/resistance training M, W, F.

I do my interval training on a recumbent bike b/c that's what I have at home. If it were more convenient, I'd go to the gym to use a stair climber or do tire flips. I used a modified version of this program:
http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/ultimate-8-week-hiit-for-fat-burning-program.html
I do more 'phases' with smaller jumps between each phase. After 3 workouts, I progress to the next phase, with smaller jumps between each phase. For example:
phase/week 1 - 15 sec @100%, 45 sec rest/low intensity
Phase/week 2 - 20 sec @100%, 40 sec rest/low
phase/week 3 - 25/35
phase/week 4 - 30/30
phase 5/6/7/8, etc

Each set is 60 seconds long (for simplicity sake) and I complete 15 sets per workout, for a total time of 15 minutes per workout. An app such as 'Interval Timer' can help you time the intervals.

I also use a HRM on most of my hikes. On most hikes (10-15 miles), my heart rate is 145-155 on the ascent. That is a comfortable pace for me - I feel like I'm accomplishing something, but not working too hard. On the steeps or during HITT, it gets into the 180s.

On Whitney (or really long hikes...20+ for me), I change things a bit. I use my HRM to make sure I'm not going too fast/working too hard. Up until Trail Camp (12000 ft), I keep it below the 155 range as much as possible. Above Trail Camp, I try to make sure I don't get above 135 mark, which in theory, is about 70% of my max. While I have no scientific reasoning for picking these heart rates as limits, I've found that this is what works for me.

On a side note, one of training 'problems' I have is balancing hiking, HIIT, and weight training. Heavy squats + heavy deads = a rough day on the trail.




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#36147 - 04/29/14 09:11 AM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: ponzy]
Snacking Bear Offline


Registered: 08/09/11
Posts: 498
Loc: Saugus, CA
I like interval training.

It's great when I feel like I've hit a wall. I may not be able to do a 4MPH pace in the mountains over an 8 hr day, but I can do 4 MPH for at least a few minutes. As long as your looking to improve overall.
_________________________
@jjoshuagregory (Twitter & Instagram) for landscape and mountain photo spamming...

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#36150 - 04/29/14 12:21 PM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: Snacking Bear]
SierraNevada Offline


Registered: 09/05/11
Posts: 1137
Loc: NorCal
It's also very important to train for the 16 ounce mug curls after the hike. It's best to train with the actual fluid you will be drinking, but not every day.


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#36157 - 04/29/14 04:08 PM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: SierraNevada]
ponzy Offline


Registered: 04/05/14
Posts: 10
Loc: nj
Originally Posted By: SierraNevada
It's also very important to train for the 16 ounce mug curls after the hike. It's best to train with the actual fluid you will be drinking, but not every day.






^^^^I think this is the sole training regimen i can achieve. LOL.


Thanks all for the replies and suggestions. John is right.

*Never go over 85% or at target heart rate for training purposes unless otherwise advised/ required by medical proffesional for diagnostic/medical purposes.

The ideal rate is between 75% - 85% of your total heart rate.*

Abhijit, im glad theres one here from the forum i will be hiking with on that date. But with your training regimen, ill be seeing you going down from the summit while im still trying to reach the summit, lol. I hope it wont be that bad though. Ill be camping monday in horseshoe meadows and at portal the night before d-day. See you there :-)

Since theres no pm/interest on my "offer", I just paid for the "single permit" for july 23.

I wish everyone good luck and have a safe/healthy training and hike. Thank you all for the great tips and suggestions esp on training regimen. I hope someone will find this thread helpful.

Again thank you all so much and see you out there smile

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#36187 - 05/01/14 03:33 PM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: SierraNevada]
Snacking Bear Offline


Registered: 08/09/11
Posts: 498
Loc: Saugus, CA
I also include intervals of the following:

Fork lifts: I like to get three "square" sets in a day. Tones the bicep and brachialis muscle groups.

Scarf downs: This strengthens the esophagus and soft palate.

Burpees: Not the jumping/push-up/pull-up variety, the kind that ensues after the previous exercise. Diaphragm training for altitude.

Lie Downs: This is endurance training for the eyelid muscles.
_________________________
@jjoshuagregory (Twitter & Instagram) for landscape and mountain photo spamming...

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#36192 - 05/01/14 08:55 PM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: Snacking Bear]
63ChevyII.com Offline


Registered: 08/07/12
Posts: 670
Loc: Colton, California
lol Snacking Bear smile
What about the 12oz and/or 16 oz curls?


Here's a visual comparison of the hikes:



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#36201 - 05/02/14 08:32 AM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: 63ChevyII.com]
Abhijit Offline


Registered: 03/19/14
Posts: 27
Loc: Chattanooga, TN
This is a good representation. When I first learned about Whitney hike last year I did calculate the incline angle the old fashioned way (remembering my high school trigonometry classes, etc.). Afterward I was quite embarrassed to find out all the new gadgets and technology I could have used. smile

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#36213 - 05/02/14 07:47 PM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: 63ChevyII.com]
Harvey Lankford Offline


Registered: 11/10/09
Posts: 1015
Loc: Richmond, Virginia
Originally Posted By: 63ChevyII.com



Here's a visual comparison of the hikes:




That graph is superb. It is FAR more useful than all the other well-meaning recommendations of training.

Once you are up high, things change. AMS occurs, to at least some degree, to roughly 40-50% of Whitney hikers, and will be their limiting factor. Importantly, AMS is at least an independent factor unrelated to their degree of fitness and many studies have actually shown that more fit persons have a higher risk of AMS (from going too fast). What happens? They get Mountaineer's Foot - can't put one in front of the other.

Mountain sickness…is as bad or worse than sea sickness, perhaps worse, for in sea sickness the victim can lie down, whereas in mountaineering he has to keep on his legs.
Frank Smythe, Mountaineering Holiday, in
Frank Smythe. The Six Alpine/Himalayan Climbing Books, page 874

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#36217 - 05/02/14 09:43 PM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: Abhijit]
63ChevyII.com Offline


Registered: 08/07/12
Posts: 670
Loc: Colton, California
Originally Posted By: Abhijit
Afterward I was quite embarrassed to find out all the new gadgets and technology I could have used. smile

lol. Well, this isn't the first time I've done something like this. The graph below was created through a long process involving multiple conversions. Each line probably took me 30-45 mins to add. The graph above with just Whitney & Half Dome probably only took me 20 mins. If I had not created the bottom image, it would've taken me less than 5 mins once I had the GPX files.


Originally Posted By: Harvey Lankford

That graph is superb.

Thanks Dr. Lankford!

Last year I made a graph showing my most difficult hikes over an 18 month period. I've added Half Dome to the graph (eyeballed it, so its approximate). It's been quite some time since I've done Half Dome and I am much more prepared for my hikes these days, but I'd say that Half Dome was easier than all of the hikes listed, except for Mt. Washington. Mt. Washington and Half Dome are also the only hikes that AMS isn't a factor (for me anyway). Another telling fact is that I find Whitney to be much a harder hike than Cactus to Clouds, even though C2C involves a much longer climb with more overall elevation gain (look at the graph on the right).

The graph is cluttered, but you should be able to figure out which line represents Half Dome. I only added the line for the elevation profile. The text refers only to the other hikes listed.
_________________________
HikingGeek.com

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#36230 - 05/04/14 11:37 AM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: 63ChevyII.com]
ponzy Offline


Registered: 04/05/14
Posts: 10
Loc: nj
63chev, thanks for posting the graph. And thanks for reminding me that the once-i've-known as the most difficult hike is just a typical easy hike (based on the graph). It is a concrete visual representation of both hikes. Steve and nyker is right. A 12 hour hike @ half dome would put me in about 17+ hours hike on whitney (without even considering AMS symptoms yet) and that would affect everything. With Dr. Lankford emphasis on AMS i ordered my prescription @ walmart and will pick it up this week
and probably take some just to see if it has any weird effects on me. Or.... ill just focus on snacking bear's "special training regimen". Lol.

I showed the graph to my wife and she anxiously asked me if i could do it. I honestly told her i have a 60% chance that i could do it and joked that we might have to increase our policy coverage in our insurance. Based on my physical assessment as of the moment I may have to start earlier on what i had anticipated (around 3 am initially --thinking of 1:30-2 am--and hoping i would be back around 7-8). I originally planning to bring with me my digital slr plus lens and a speedlite (roughly about 6# total). I guess im just gonna rely on my camera phone for the pics) to shave off my pack weight.
I did the test hike again last friday on my usual hiking destination and it took me 9.5 hours total for the same 20# load on my pack, 3 loops plus 4 round trips on the .3 mile 520 ft ascent. It is a 1 hour slower from last week. I was tired. My quads and gastroc muscles are aching but i didnt have any bad cramping compared from last week on the last trip (4th time on the 520ft ascent). I dont know if it has something to do with improperly managing my electrolytes replenishment or its my absolute physical capacity for long distance hike.
I had a breakfast of 4 eggs with spinach and mushroom and 1 pc of banana. 32 0z powerade 0 calories. Snacks 2 2" cubes of brownies and another 32 oz of same Powerade and for lunch a "philly cheeasteak" @ stateline lookout cafe -- located right on the parking lot close to the trail--(btw, they make outstandingly delicious sandwhiches). And almost emptied 100 oz of water during the hike. Now, i might have to look into those electrolyte tablets sold in REI. I just hope its only mismamagement of electrolytes.

Here's a website that helped me compute some "average grade" as well as calories burned during a hike: hikingscience.blogspot.com

And computing hiking speed: hikenewengland.com

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#36231 - 05/04/14 12:17 PM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: ponzy]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7577
Loc: Fresno, CA
ponzy, I think you are getting your mindset on the right track.

Is there any way you can lighten your pack? 20 lbs is an awful lot for a day hike.

Leaving the camera behind is good. Now if you can understand that you don't need to carry water until you reach trail camp, that will make your pack a lot lighter, too. Some people carry a filter or steri-pen. Others (like me) just dip and drink. The water has never been found to have enough bacteria or impurities to hurt anyone.

My method:

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#36236 - 05/04/14 05:40 PM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: ponzy]
Bulldog34 Offline


Registered: 11/12/09
Posts: 1254
Loc: Atlanta
Ponzy, the number of calories burned on a Whitney dayhike is generally considered to be around 6000. That's a lot of energy burned, and for most first-time Whitney dayhikers is probably the most energy they've ever expended in a day in their life. As this will be your first attempt at a hike this strenuous, bear in mind that your best bet for meals the day or two prior would consist of complex carbs in order to build a store of long-term sugar energy to draw on during the day. As has been mentioned, your appetite may decrease drastically once you're above 10K', and even foods you love may be completely unpalatable. Assume there's at least a 50-50 chance you won't be eating enough on hike day to do the trick and that you'll likely need to depend on stored energy to get you through the trek.

Those complex carbs come in the form of breads, pasta, cereals, potatoes and rice. Load up in the 36 hours or so prior. This is NOT the time to be watching your diet and eating tofu and spinach. Trust me - you will lose more weight in your hours on Whitney than you ever thought possible in a single day. And be sure to take some simple carbs along for quick, short energy bursts when you need it (basically, sugar - I keep GU chomps in my packs for this purpose). And, of course, the obligatory Summit Snickers . . .

Clinical AMS stops a number of people attempting Whitney, but simple fatigue and exhaustion is also prevalent and can be just as dangerous. Your best way to prevent this is to have your body - especially your legs - in the best shape possible, and have a store of energy in your body to draw on if/when your appetite flags. And, of course, stay hydrated - but be careful to not obsess and over-hydrate, which can flush those critical salts and electrolytes from your body. Using an electrolyte water additive can help here (I typically drop a tab of Camelbak Elixir in every other bottle of water when I fill up). If you're peeing regularly (but not overly so), and it's clear, you're good.

One other point - do you use trekking poles? If so, great - they'll be a huge help. If not, consider them. The impact on your body, legs and knees of eleven miles and 6300 feet of descent is often overlooked - it can actually be worse than the ascent for many. You're also experiencing the highest level of fatigue on the descent, and most in danger of taking a tumble, twisting an ankle or tweaking a knee. Trekking poles are great stabilizers when you're tired and going down, especially with some of the bigger steps Whitney demands of you above timberline.

Again, best of luck! Don't over-think it, but be prepared. My mantra for the bigger mountains revolves around five points: training, acclimation, fuel, pace and hydration. You hit those properly, and your chances are much better than average. Pace, BTW, to me means walking at a speed that requires fairly deep, steady breathing that you can maintain and still reasonably carry on a conversation. You want to breathe deeply (remember what causes AMS), but not because you're in oxygen debt. If your pace is too aggressive and you're panting, you're probably in trouble above 12K'.

Gary


PS - FWIW, I submitted a couple of posts here after my first Whitney summit in 2010, following a failed attempt the year before. As many on this board can attest, I can be wordy at times so they're rather lengthy, but they flesh out detail and personal experience in my points above.


Edited by Bulldog34 (05/04/14 07:37 PM)
Edit Reason: Added PS link

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#38059 - 06/27/14 11:44 AM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: Bulldog34]
ponzy Offline


Registered: 04/05/14
Posts: 10
Loc: nj
Hi everyone, just to give some update. After completing 2x 5 mile loop each on my usual hiking trail, I joined a meetup group and gladly joined Hudson Valley Hikers to help me get some experience to a long distance hike. So far I did the whole escarpment trail (catskills - 23.9 miles with 5100 ft gain) for about 11 hours, but my legs were shot after that. Then joined the presedential traverse New Hampshire couple weeks ago(June 14). Unfortunately due to weather, we can't complete the whole traverse but was able to finish the northern traverse covering the mt Madison, mt Adams, mt Jefferson and mt Washington with an estimated gain of 6500 ft of gain in 11 miles for less than 8 hours. And that's about it. I just realized I couldn't do faster than 2 mph pace,without risking injury especially on my hamstring. I did use kinesio tape* ( I forgot the brand name of the tape but it is a lot better than kinesio tape) on my hams and it helped me a lot during northern traverse hike.

I will still be hiking alone so hopefully i could get still ahold of abhijiit so at least knowing hiking with someone else's (although might be miles ahead of me) is a relief knowing there's someone I know in front of me smile

Again, thanks everyone. And abhijiit you have a pm.

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#38062 - 06/27/14 12:46 PM Re: how would you compare half dome hike to whitney dayhike? [Re: ponzy]
Abhijit Offline


Registered: 03/19/14
Posts: 27
Loc: Chattanooga, TN
Ponzy,
saw that. Now that you provided an update, I'm compelled to tell what I've been doing for the 23rd July (apart from mug curls, et al).

I've completed a couple of 25 mile hikes since last 2 months. My office is a 3 floors building and my cube is on the 3rd - so everyday I use stairs (56 stairs/trip) 6 to 7 times (get a drink of water, use of restroom, etc.). Park my car farthest in the parking lot (so walking an extra 1.2 miles everyday in addition to all the activities).

Tomorrow (6/28) I'm going on 26 mile hike and plan to do the same again on 7/12 before leaving for Vegas on 20th.

Also, plan to do a small hikes in the dark to make sure the headlamp works. smile
Hope this will help.

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