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CuriousLoner's avatar

Any tips for ruck marches?

Asked by CuriousLoner (1809points) March 12th, 2012

I have a 26 mile ruck on the 25th we’ve been training up for it. However is there any advice in general? Particurally on wearing boots 2 socks worn, vaseline, taking a shower with your boots to break em in etc… Any truths or myths to this stuff?

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9 Answers

digitalimpression's avatar

- Do not wear new boots.

- Wear thin nylon socks beneath your regular socks

- Put “moleskin” on in advance in the spots where you think there will friction and bring moleskin with you just in case

- Clip your toenails!

- Obviously drink plenty of water

- Have fun! Ruck marches are great and 26 miles isn’t too bad. Good luck!

CuriousLoner's avatar

The boots I have right now are about 3 months in do you think it would be worth doing the water trick with’em?

Also I’ve been using thing athletic socks under my other thick boot socks, bad choice?

digitalimpression's avatar


“The boots I have right now are about 3 months in do you think it would be worth doing the water trick with’em?”
Getting your boots wet may be a good trick for brand new boots to get them softened up. As yours are 3 months old, it may do more damage than good. It really depends on how comfortable you are in them right now and how much time you have to switch boots out if it doesn’t work right.

“Also I’ve been using thing athletic socks under my other thick boot socks, bad choice?”
Material is important. If both pair of socks are wool it may provide some padding, but surprisingly enough may contribute to foot friction. I just did a ruck march myself and the thin nylon socks (from my dress uniform) worked flawlessly under my regular socks.

noraasnave's avatar

It has been a few years since ‘hiking’ regularly, but I still remember some of the habits I had, because hikes were every Thursday for the longest time:

I bought some very light, high top- like boots to wear. I think the brand name was ‘hi-tech’ or something like that. I never got blisters with them. They were only allowed for field use by the Marine Corps, so I only used them for hikes and boot-n-utes runs.

If you get boots taken care of then you can concentrate on the next problem: Boredom.

Talking to others keeps one’s thoughts elsewhere for a while, but at a certain point no one feels like talking anymore, everyone is, in a way, isolated to their own thoughts. I suggest stashing some beef jerky and Twizzlers for this time period. With all the sweating beef jerky offers something interesting to chew on, while also giving sodium, which the body will lose with all the sweating. Twizzlers offer a sharp contrast to the beef jerky, which is nice, but also gives one sugar.

I would say bring ‘moleskin’ which can be purchased at any store with a pharmacy. If you have a spot that blisters consistently on your foot you can tape if up with moleskin before starting the hike.

For socks I would suggest a fabric with ‘sweat-wicking’ properties for the under socks, then a thicker sock perhaps as the outer sock.

The very best way to make sure everything will go smooth would be to take a test hike, with the gear as you will wear it for the real deal. See how it feels…adjust as required.

CaptainHarley's avatar

Some great advice already given. The only thing I can think to add is “GORP!” If you don’t know what Gorp is, look it up. : )

WhiteWingDove's avatar

Another good tip related to wearing 2 pair of socks is to put on the first pair inside out (so any seam in not touching your foot).
Keep dried fruit or fruit leather where you can get to it while walking, if you feel your energy sag the natural sugars in fruit convert quickly to energy.
Lastly, depending on your terrain and how established your trail is, it can be interesting/advantageous to occasionally turn around and see what the trail looks like going the opposite direction. In a forested area with overgrowth you’d be surprised how different it can look.

CaptainHarley's avatar


I always carry a compass, and a map ( if I can find one ). There’s no need to survey the “back trail.” mainly because there usually isn’t one. : )

CuriousLoner's avatar

Oh hey guys I know question is little old but I finished the Bataan memorial death march, by far one of the hardest thing done in my life hah! My whole body was hurting.

digitalimpression's avatar

Congrats! I bet the vast majority of jellies have no idea what it is like.

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