Festival season is upon us, and last week 4 of us Wiivvers took to the mountains and camped among the stars with 180,000 of our closest friends for the Pemberton Music Festival. After getting home, and syncing our FitBits, we were shocked to see the results. From Wednesday to Monday, we took:
- 145,546 steps
- Burned 34,466 calories
- Walked 70 miles (111.5 km)
From walking, to camping, to weather, to food, there was a few things we learned along the way. This is your ultimate guide to surviving festival season.
The Walking & Dancing
Let's start by pointing out the fact that we took 145,546 steps in 6 days. That equals out to 70 miles, or 111.5 kms. That nets out to 2.6 marathons. That's a lot of walking and dancing, and it doesn't take very long for you to start feeling your feet.
The walk in can be long, boring, and a shock to your system. Carrying all of your camping gear – pulling a cooler, being weighed down from a case of beer at your side – can really weigh down your body, and all of that stress comes straight down onto your feet. After a few miles, your feet will definitely start feeling the burn.
When you wake up the next morning, it begins. 4 days straight of rock, hip hop, dance music, and everything in between. Now, for a normal person, a half marathon a day for 4 days straight is a lot to handle. However, add in the jumping, dancing, pounding, and all day standing, and that stress will do a number on your feet. By day 3, foot fatigue would have set in. Your arches start to collapse, the balls of your feet start to ache, causing knee and back pain. After the day, stumbling back to your tent and collapsing onto a thin air mattress on the ground, doesn't give your back the break it deserves. The compounding affect can be really hard on your body.
This is when a good pair of custom insoles could really help. The added arch support and heel pad cushion in a pair of Wiivvs gives your foot the support it needs to keep its shape throughout the day, slowing down the negative effects on your body.
Festival food is expensive (that's the understatement of the century), and all that dancing will make you hungry... Especially if your burning 34,466 calories like we did... Now there are a few tricks to eating without blowing the bank account. First of all, plan out how many meals you will need. We hiked in on Wednesday afternoon, so we only needed dinner, and for Monday morning all we needed was breakfast. So with that in mind, we only needed to plan meals for 4 full days. That means we needed:
- 5 Breakfasts
- 4 Lunches
- 5 Dinners
- Snacks for 4 days
There are many easy ways to stay healthy and replenish your body with the much needed nutrients you've lost during the days. Just remember, everything you bring will eventually go, so plan accordingly. That means ICE and lots of it! Protein like meats and cheeses are great for the first couple days, but they will go quickly. Quinoa salad loaded with high protein veggies like legumes, or yams is a great alternative. Same with veggies and hummus, mandarin oranges, or even pre-cooked tortellini. Anything that's going to keep you going! See: How to Eat for Exercise and Recovery
Packing for the Weather
Whether you're camping in the desert, or the mountains, the weather can chance on a dime. Check the weather 7 day forecast in advance, and plan for that. Then understand that the weather can still change without warning, and pack for rain.
- Rain jacket
- 2 pairs of shoes (one of those being gum boots)
- Tarp big enough for your tent
- Awning big enough for you and your friends
Just like the desert, the temperature in the mountains drops rapidly when the sun goes behind the hills. Personally, we experienced a 29 F or 18 C temperature swing from day to night. So not only do you need to bring proper foot wear, but proper outerwear. From tank tops to fleece layers, come prepared!
Festivals are fun, they're exhausting, they're energetic, and one hell of a good time... So come prepared! Bring everything you need, and don't rely on your friends (unless previously negotiated). Eat, and drink a ton of water, cover up when it's rainy or hot, and most importantly, PACK OUT YOUR GARBAGE! Follow these rules, and you'll be set.