Stone Mountain is one of the best attractions in Atlanta. Regarded by the locals as the 8th wonder of the world, the granite-based massive chunk of rock has so much to offer tourists. According to Stone Mountain Research memorial, the park hosts over 4 million tourists every year. The figure decreased during COVID, but now with people getting vaccinated, you can see the old charm of this stunning mountain park coming back.
Hiking in Stone Mountain
One of the main highlights of the park is its picturesque hiking trails. They have a 15-mile hiking trail open from dusk till dawn. Different pathways vary in difficulty, so you can choose a passage that matches your stamina. The parking fee for entry is $20, but there are no additional charges for doing your thing once you get in the park.
Tiredness and Fatigue After Hiking
Hiking is a great way to exercise your entire body. It covers all aspects of great cardio, from flexibility and muscle toning. From your legs to your lungs, everything will be in motion. Other than this, you need body-to-mind coordination that ensures a safe hike without any falls. This can be hard for some people, especially those who do not hike a lot or have issues like obesity and anemia.
Maintaining Energy Levels During Hike
Getting tired doesn’t mean you shouldn’t even experience hiking in the first place. It is a great way to oxygenate your body and get some blood flowing, whether you are out with your family or seeking an adventure at Stone Mountain all by yourself. Following are really useful tips to help you keep your energy up:
Eat The Right Foods
What you eat is going to impact the hike because the choice of food can seriously affect the energy levels. Instead of opting for a heavy breakfast with carbs and sugary cereals, focus on eating light. Now, light food does not mean starving yourself. Just focus on healthy carbs and proteins from food sources such as fruits, eggs, nuts, or dairy.
You also would want to pack something for during the hike. Obviously, carrying an egg salad for a hike on a hot Atlanta morning is not the way to go. Hiking burns a lot of calories, so be prepared to hear your stomach grumble on your way to the top. Pack things like granola bars, nut mix, nut butter, fruits, meat bars, and healthy crackers. These things will give you the desired energy. Stop when you feel hungry, sit down and have a snack. If you are hiking with kids, make sure to ask them how they are feeling.
The best hiker is not someone who can climb the whole thing in one go. In fact, many professional hikers recommend resting during the activity. We understand that you want to test your level of strength and endurance, but allowing the body to rest will help you last longer and better.
For instance, some people hike for hours and hours but end up with swollen feet and legs. It also affects their blood sugar significantly. In comparison, people who take adequate rest between the hikes last longer and build more endurance. To maintain a rest chart, we recommend taking a 15-minute break after every 45 minutes of hiking will refresh you for more.
Let’s get one thing clear that during your hike at Stone Mountain Park, you will sweat – a lot! Especially during the summers, hiking can become hard for novice and young hikers. Keeping yourself hydrated is the only way to beat the heat of Atlanta.
If you want to feel good throughout while maintaining energy levels, drink enough water. Dehydration during activities like hiking can be dangerous. As you burn calories, your body will feel weaker. Other than this, a dehydrated person becomes susceptible to sunstroke and hypothermia.
Carry a couple of water bottles in your backpack to keep hydrated during the trip. Water will hydrate your body and provide the red blood cells enough energy to continue moving. Depending on your preference, you can pack plain water, flavored water, vitamin-rich water, water infused with some salt, lemonade, etc.
Another thing to note here is that take small sips instead of gulping large quantities no matter how thirsty you are. This prevents your bladder from filling up instantly and causing discomfort. Hikers recommend that half a liter of water is enough to hydrate someone who has been continuously hiking for an hour.
Stretch Your Body
Before you head out for the best hike of your life, give yourself time to stretch that body. Stretching is an important part of any hike as it increases muscle flexibility as well as the range of motion. Makes it easier for you to skip those rocks!
Feeling sore after a hike is quite normal, especially for people who do not do this a lot because, let’s face it, even the strongest of bodybuilders have a tough time walking on an elevated plane that continuously increases their heart rate.
Stretching effectively reduces your chances of getting injured. For a safe and happy hike, include different stretches like calf raises, shoulder rolls, hamstring stretch, arm circles, etc. Just like warm-up stretches, you also need to cool your body down after a rigorous hike. It will bring your muscles back in shape and reduce the chances of soreness the next morning. Cool-down stretches include runners lunge, standing saddle stretch, ankle stretches, etc.
This may sound new to people because we don’t normally understand that there is a proper method of breathing during any kind of exercise. Hiking is a tough exercise, and it can become really uncomfortable if you are constantly out of breath and don’t know how to control it.
Going on an uphill track means that your body needs more oxygen to process. This is why you end up feeling winded and out of breath. Fast-twitch muscles and the parts of your body that are not prone to movement daily are included in the activity. This makes a person even more tired and lethargic.
Since you are out in one of the greenest and luscious Atlanta attractions of all time, take advantage of the fresh air and practice various breathing techniques to help you feel better. To ensure a proper breathing pattern and open up your lungs, you need to practice it every day. Meditation and yoga are great ways to exercise your lungs.
Lie down on your yoga mat with your spine and legs straight with hands on your abdomen. Take a deep breath through your nose and expand the abdomen, so your lungs are filled with air. Hold your breath for a couple of seconds. Release the air through your mouth until the lungs are completely empty.
Hiking at Stone Mountain is one of the most popular destinations in America. There is a long hiking trail that goes up to 15 km. You can have a successful hike by eating the right food, staying hydrated and pre-workout stretches. Breathing plays a major role in your comfort level during hiking. Practice strengthening your lungs and do exercises to expand your lungs.