Get in shape for the trail! Hiking requires strength and stamina. So before hitting the trail, especially a longer hike it is important to make sure that you are physically prepared! Here are some things you can do to prepare for the next time you hit the trail
- Doing cardio on a regular basis can help improve your stamina and lung capacity! This is really important especially if you are planning on doing longer hikes! Here are some great forms of cardio you can do!
- Walking: Try to walk at least 10,000 steps a day, and whenever possible walk instead of driving.
- Cycling: Cycling is a great form of exercise. I use a Pelton bike a few days a week and do different levels of resistance. But it is also great training to bike on a hilly path, this is a great form of cardio but can also help build leg muscles.
- Stair master: The Stair master is great practice for the trail, it uses similar muscles and will help in preparation. Here is a routine I do on the Stairmaster:
- 2 Mins Warm-up intensity 3
- 2 Mins Step: intensity 5-6
- 30 seconds Climb Hard intensity 7-8
- 1 min Step intensity 4
- 30 seconds sidestep to the right intensity 5
- 30 seconds sidestep to the left intensity 5
- 2 mins Skip a step intensity 6
- 30 seconds Climb Hard 9-10
- 1 min Skip step with leg back intensity 4-6
Repeat 2-3 times!
For an added challenge wear your hiking pack so you can get used to walking with a pack!
- Strength training, hiking is more than just walking on the trail it is a full-body workout! It is important to condition your entire body.
- Crunches will help to build your core strength. This will help with balance on the trail and with walking on rough terrain.
- Squats and Lunges are really important to help build leg muscles, which is very important when walking uphill on the trail. Remember to keep your core engages when doing squats this will also help with build core strength.
- Shoulder and back exercises: On the trail, you will be carrying a heavy backpack this will help prepare your body for this.
- Arm strengthing: You never know when you may need to do a rock scramble on the trail. So work out those arms so you can be ready!
Yoga and Stretching
- Yoga and Stretching! Not only will this help with balance but stretching/yoga is really important before and after the hike for your muscles. – I recommend trying to practice yoga 1-2 a week. This will also help to keep your muscles loose and prevent injury or sprain. Check out Yoga With Adriene.
- Practice practice practice, don’t just jump into a big hike. Work your way up to the big hike, each time you hit the trail go on a little bit of a longer hike.
- Mindset! Remember that you are capable then more than you give yourself credit to your body is amazing! So change your mindset and keep putting one foot in front of the other and before you know it you will climb those mountains!
Happy Hiking! Can’t wait to see you on the trail!
If you liked this blog How to Get in Shape for the Trail, don’t forget to check out our Trail Etiquette Post!