The thread on panniers had a comment on weight - primarily with reference to the 'amount of gear' one carries. Many posts talk about gear consolidation / elimination of infrequently used gear, etc.
I haven't toured on a bike in 20 years, but did some long distance hiking 5 years ago. On that trip, I started with way too much gear & gradually consolidated and replaced gear to lighten my load. Of course hikers, like bikers, are kindof gear junkies and a lot are very weight conscious - always comparing gear & seeing what works well for others vs. what works well for oneself.
Then along comes this guy with a big, old-school external frame pack & somewhat heavy tent. Note that this guy caught us (at the time I was hiking with a group, we pretty consistently put in 20 mile days). His attitude was 'the body will adjust.' He and a buddy had reached this conclusion on a bike trip (US coast to coast). They originally started 'competing' for lightness - i.e. who could reduce their load to the bare necessities (like many hikers). Then they started competing for heaviness - stopping to grab that wrench on the side of the road in order to 'out do' the other guy.
Is there a consensus to this opinion (i.e. 'the body will adjust')?
I'm in the middle of the road on this. On the one hand, I like my gear to be light & not carry extraneous junk that I'm not going to use. But on the other hand, I hiked every day with an old metal-bodied SLR camera strapped around my neck, which isn't exactly in the 'ultralight' vein.