Tips on how to get fit on the trail

Stef Zisovska

Hiking is one of the best ways to get fit in the great outdoors, yet without necessarily wearing yourself out. Stay in shape, get your cardio done, and lose a few inches while you enjoy the beautiful scenery that surrounds your favorite hiking trail. It is way better than any other kind of fitness routine because you get to spend time outside and activate more muscle groups at the same time. Hiking provides you with countless fitness and health benefits which you can feel and see right away. It improves your stamina, tones your leg muscles and develops thinner and sexier legs, lowers blood pressure, burns a lot of calories, relieves stress, fills up your lungs with fresh air, and frees your mind. In short, it makes you feel great.

Eat the right meal one hour before the hike


The most important thing before hiking is to fuel up. Make sure you don’t go hiking on an empty stomach and always eat a healthy meal one hour before you head to the trail. Rye bread, eggs, a glass of milk, and a handful of almonds is a perfect way to start the day and to charge your batteries ready for the day ahead. Avoid bad carbs and sugar products.

Strength training will make you a better hiker

Hiking will definitely help you get fit but it will be even better if you do some prior physical preparation. Movements like squats, lunges, step-ups, and deadlifts are extremely beneficial and will provide your body with more strength. With these simple exercises, your muscles will get used to movements you will need to perform on the trail. If you live in a place with cold winters where you can’t go hiking as often as you want, then it would be a good idea to do some working out in the months when you don’t go hiking.

Breathe through your mouth


There are many times on a trail when people can’t get enough oxygen by breathing only through the nose. Therefore, whenever you start feeling dizzy and lacking oxygen, start breathing through your mouth and provide your organs with extra levels of oxygen.

Drink your way to the top

Hydration is the key to a successful hike. No matter if you don’t feel thirsty, you need to drink all the liquids that your body needs and sweats out. Don’t let your body become dehydrated, and if possible, use a hydration bladder instead of a water bottle.

Catch your own pace

The best way to lose weight on the trail is to find and follow your own tempo. Don’t force yourself too much, but on the other hand, set yourself a challenge and make sure your breaks are no longer than 5 minutes. This way your body will remain active during the whole hike and maintain strength until you reach the top.

Always wear a backpack

Wear a backpack
Wear a backpack

When you go hiking there are various things you need to carry around, and the best way to do it is to carry a backpack. Water, raincoat, extra clothing, snacks, sunscreen, sunglasses, first aid kit, lighter, knife or multi-purpose tool, and toilet paper are some of the basic things that will fit nicely in your backpack. Wearing a pack is good because you will be able to move easily. You will also burn more calories.

Never miss a week

Just like any other activity, hiking needs to be practiced at least once a week in order for you to get meaningful results. Don’t find excuses and reasons to skip a weekend and stay at home eating unhealthy food instead of spending a great time outside. Good luck!

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stef-zisovska is one of the authors writing for Outdoor Revival