Proper hydration and nutrition are essential to both enjoyment of the moment and recovery to hike another day. Yesterday was a perfect example of that.
The temperature was in the mid 90s most of the day and the breeze was slight to nonexistent. The heat radiated out of the earth sapping our energy. We lost moisture to perspiration, convection, and respiration. That moisture had to be replaced if we were to make it through the day.
I drank 3L of water in just three to four hours and was severely dehydrated once I got home. Successfully hydrating during and after an outing will make a huge difference come the following morning to how you feel.
I didn't drink enough.
Today I'm sluggish, my legs and joints hurt, and I'm still thirsty. I'll fix that by drinking plenty today and being very choosy about what I eat.
If this had been another day of hiking it could have been disastrous for me. The effort would have seemed much greater and would have actually BEEN much harder for my body.
Riders in the Tour de France endure heat and extreme efforts every day for 21 days and are, perhaps, the ultimate example of proper hydration and nutrition. Watch the television coverage and you'll hear the commentators talk about "the bonk" or a rider "bonking" and you'll understand that the rider's difficulty stems from improper or inadequate hydration and/or nutrition over one or more days.
Keep yourself hydrated and topped off with calories and you'll be much better equipped for multi-day hikes.
Thanks for reading,