Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Walk Thoughts #66: a quick rundown of Day 4, Leg 3

First: if you haven't noticed, I went back and redid all the awkward numbering of the previous Walk Thoughts entries. Everything except for the funky "62.5" entry is now the way it should be. Also: I went back and added text to the photo essays for #57 onward, with only a couple exceptions. The pictures should make more sense now.

Next: today's walk was shorter, at least in theory, but instead of arriving at 1PM, as I'd hoped to do, I ended up arriving at the guest house at close to 5PM. The lady running the place was quite friendly and solicitous, and as you've seen in the previous photos, the guest house has a truly house-y vibe to it. My room is fully equipped with all the features of a studio apartment: I've got a kitchenette, a full bathroom, and even a laundry room.

As I wrote earlier, this walk was "Saejae Lite." There were plenty of hills, none of which were particularly challenging, but many of which caused me to break into a heavier-than-usual sweat. There were also some massively long, quiet stretches where I was the only person on the path. Transitioning from the weekend to any weekday is quite striking: most bikers, as is true in the States as well, are weekend warriors.

There were no tunnels at all during this leg, and very little in the way of biker-friendly stores and rest stops. I walked along at a slow, steady pace, but rarely felt encouraged to just plop down and rest, mainly thanks to a lack of benches and resting platforms. (The sports park was an exception.)

Having walked nearly 57,000 steps two days ago, I couldn't beat that record today. Today's walk was apparently 465 minutes long, according to my pedometer, which also says I walked 44,726 steps. That gives me a step rate of 96 steps per minute—that despite the blistered right foot and the incipient blisters on my left foot. The pedometer also says I walked 21.19 miles, as opposed to the projected 16-some miles offered by Naver Map.

Perhaps my smartest move today was to duck into that cycling store and buy those toshi forearm protectors and that hat, which miraculously fits my overlarge head. I'll be happy not to have to worry about applying lotion all the time.

There's a lot more to say about today, but I've already spent too much time editing previous posts, and not enough time lying back with my feet raised. Tomorrow's walk is projected to be 13.6 miles (21.89 km), which in theory means about 5.4 hours at a rate of 2.5 miles per hour, but I'm beginning to suspect that my actual walking speed is much, much slower than that. Today's walk took almost twelve hours again, breaks included. 16.05 miles in 11.5 hours comes out to 1.4 miles per hour. I don't think that's my actual pace (there's something fishy about all these numbers), but it wouldn't surprise me to learn my pace was right around 2 miles per hour. As long as the walks are projected to be under 15 miles, I think I can maintain my pace and arrive at my destination in a more or less timely manner. Longer distances mean later arrival times, and later arrival times may mean that I'll need to spend extra nights wherever I stop. That's going to add up, so I have to work to minimize delays. My plan, for now, is to try to cleave to my current schedule, then use extra rest days during the latter half of my walk. Once we're past the nightmare of Saejae and on the relatively tranquil Nakdong River path, things ought to smooth out somewhat.

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