Skip the Gym: Trail Workout

You’ll need…

  1. backpack
  2. water bottles, hand weights, or anything else heavy that fits in a backpack
  3. sun block
  4. cross-trainers

Hiking is a great way to get in a powerful low-cortisol workout, but sometimes it’s not quite enough to really get that blood-pumping.

Here are three ways you can take your hike to the next level-

  1. Try adding in a quick mini-workout. For example-
  • Decide if you want to use a timer, distance, or maybe a certain amount of steps to set when your mini workouts will be throughout your hike. You could set your timer for every 5 minutes, 10 minutes, or however long you want (this would also be determined by how long of a hike you are going for!) You could also set yourself up to do your mini workout each 1/4 or 1/2 mile.
  • Start by walking up the hill for your warm up. Think about extending your legs back to engage your glutes while stretching your hip flexors. Engage your core, set your shoulders back and down, and find your best posture. This will help your body prep for not only the rest of the hike, but also for your mini interval workouts. Focus on this posture the entire hike. It is not just about getting up the hill, but also making sure that all the right muscles are engaged while doing it.
  • At each interval that you set, begin your mini workout. Here is an example of one below-
  • 30 lunges with your backpack on
  • 30 lunges with your backpack off

  • 50 high knees

  • 50 ab tucks (stand straight, engage your core, and use your abs to lift your knees up one at a time, crunching into it each rep)

  • 50 leg lifts (try using a log or stable rock as a step up)

Then continue on with your hike until the next interval!

2. You can also load a backpack up with water bottles, rocks from the trail, weights, or anything heavy you have at home to add a bit of weight.

  • A great way to not only reward yourself, but also get in a good Drop Set is to load yourself up at the bottom of the trail with as much weight as you feel comfortable with. At each mile or so, remove some of that weight from your pack and continue up the hill. (If you choose to do this please load up with rocks or other natural items so you can leave them behind without littering!)
  • You can also do the opposite! Carry a light pack to start and every mile or so add a bit of weight to challenge yourself.

3. Try jogging in intervals. Something we like to do is jog in the sunny areas and take your interval break in the shade. 

  • Jog in the sun, rest in the shade.
  • Set your phone or watch to go off every 5-10 minutes. When it goes off you start to walk/jog.
  • Set a distance for yourself. You could jog for 1/4 mile, 1/2 mile, or even longer if you’d like! Then walk for a bit before picking it back up.

We hope that these hiking tips help you get outside and enjoy a different type of workout than you’re used to. As far as we’re concerned, we might be hanging onto these outdoor workouts until winter!