5 More Resources for Getting Into Shape for the Trail

Many hikers haven’t conquered the summits on their bucket list. Their reason? They’re not able to hack it, physically.

That’s a shame. With hiking being one of the most accessible ways to get outdoors — since it requires little upfront cost (a good pair of hiking shoes) — more folks should be using it to their advantage in reaching the vistas they dream of. In the last segment of this two-part series, we covered working out at home and at the gym. But if you’re looking for ways to get on the trail and mindfully increase your abilities, this post is for you.

*Note: all photos and graphics are credited to the original article source unless otherwise noted.

1. How to Use Hiking to Improve Your Fitness

Fitness for Hiking
Found on Pinterest; a link to the corresponding Active.com article is below.

If you need to lay a foundation for fitness before even thinking about getting serious about hiking, this post is for you. You’ll find tips on the basics for a good workout, but instead of enduring the boredom of a treadmill, you’ll be hitting the trail. Find ideas for stepping it up a notch on the trail when you’re ready, as well as hydration, stretching, and identifying the right kind of terrain for a hike that will pay off. http://www.active.com/fitness/articles/how-to-use-hiking-to-improve-your-fitness

2. The Health-Conscious Camper: Improve Your Hiking Workout

Once you’ve laid the foundation of fitness using the above ideas (or you’re already there), check out this post about upping your game by varying the way you handle trail time. For example, have you considered adding weight to your backpack? What about doing some scrambling to utilize different muscles? Check out these and more ideas in this post: http://www.active.com/outdoors/articles/the-health-conscious-camper-improve-your-hiking-workout

3. Get in Shape For Your Next Backpacking Trip

fitness for hiking
Found on Pinterest; a link to the corresponding Active.com article is below.

This post, again from Active.com, not only tells you what you can do to increase your hiking stamina, but also goes into how to do it, giving you basic plans to start with and telling you how to increase over time. It also lists what you need to pay attention to in order to develop your overall abilities, including core strength, cardio, and what to do on rest days (which are important!). This post does include information you can do at home as well, but it mostly concentrates on getting you outdoors — something we could all use more of. http://www.active.com/outdoors/articles/Get-in-Shape-For-Your-Next-Backpacking-Trip.htm

4. Thru-hiking: Training Tips and Exercises

hiking
Found on Pinterest; a link to the corresponding REI page is below.

While this infographic pretty much sums it up without need for a commentary, but REI goes into even more depth on a secondary link found on this page http://blog.rei.com/hike/thru-hiking-training-tips-and-exercises. Here, they reach out to those who are looking to really go the distance with thru-hiking. If you’ve ever contemplated completing the Appalachian Trail, the Pacific Crest Trail, the Continental Divide or others, REI has fantastic advice for getting prepped.

(P.S. If you’re looking for long-distance trails outside of the norm, check out this list of 9 North American trailshttp://www.tetonsports.com/adventureblog/9-of-north-americas-most-fascinating-long-distance-trails/).

5. How to Get Fit on the Trail

Fitness for Hiking

This post from Seattle Backpackers Magazine is a little different than the rest. If you’re already on the trail and looking to do gym-like exercises outdoors, this is the post for you. The article goes through eight different exercises you can do anywhere using just the weight in your backpack (of course, you can add a few rocks if needed). This would work especially well for those who are backpacking for several days and would like to do some weighted exercises to make sure they are keeping up with the workouts they would normally do back home. http://seattlebackpackersmagazine.com/get-fit-trail/

Have any tips to add for hikers who are looking to step up their game to the next level? Let everyone know in the comments or by reaching out on Twitter and Facebook. Don’t forget to check out “6 Resources for Getting Into Shape for the Trail!”

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Although she’s a Florida girl, exploration called her away after the final bell of her high school career. Leaving home to journey westward alone, she chased the sun to Utah. Over the years, she was consumed with skiing, climbing, kayaking, mountain biking and getting lost on back roads. But exploration continued to call. After closing her bakery — which funded college courses and adventure — she stored her possessions and hit the road again, on a quest to reach the distant places of North America. For three years she lived in her little Mazda 3 and skied the backcountry of Alaska, slept under the northern lights in the Yukon Territory, ice climbed Colorado's frozen canyons and rock climbed across the continent, photographed Nova Scotia’s coves, backpacked in southern US wildernesses and munched on sugared tamarindo in the jungles of Mexico. But living in a car started to feel limiting, so after seeing the many glories this continent had to offer, she chose the only place fitting for an explorer to spend a lifetime of wild wonder: British Columbia. Dual citizenship in hand, she settled along the Powder Highway in the Selkirks and is now making her home between four walls and deeply wooded mountains. When she's not playing the part of a photojournalist, Gina can be found collaborating with women worldwide through her nonprofit, Outdoor Women's Alliance, and working to improve her outdoor skills and wilderness safety certifications.