When it comes to low impact, outdoor workouts, hiking could be the best option for you.
Not only is hiking a great form of cardio, it can also help to boost mood, improve mental and physical health and to lower the levels of stress causing cortisol in your body.
Hiking can certainly be exciting, with a variety of different trails and routes to follow, making it much more invigorating than a treadmill walk.
Due to the variables however, there a few tips and tricks which are needed to enjoy hiking to your best potential, take a look below to discover more.
When starting out on your hiking journey, it’s important to start on small routes and to pace yourself correctly.
Opt for routes which are mainly on flat or slightly raised ground, with clear, easy to follow routes.
Choosing walks such as these allow you to ease yourself into the experience of outdoor hiking, and can make for an enjoyable and relaxing day out. Once you’ve completed a few trails, work on upwards from there, increasing the distance and steepness of the routes.
Take a look here at the main, most beautiful walking routes and trails in the UK.
Always Check the Weather
A staple of any hiking routine is to check the weather before heading out on your adventure.
Whilst only extreme weather conditions should cancel a hike completely, it is important to know the forecast beforehand in order to know exactly what to pack and how to prepare.
BBC weather can be brilliant for giving an hour by hour guide to the day ahead.
Bring Along Some Friends
Hiking can be a great experience to do alone as it can be wonderful for mindfulness, make sure to tell people exactly where you are and where you’re going for safety reasons however!
On the other hand, hiking and countryside walking with friends and loved ones can be a wonderful experience, boosting your mood, improving your communication and co-operation skills and making for a fun day out with exercise thrown into the mix too!
Pack thoroughly and sensibly for a fun day out in the countryside, this includes warm clothing, sun screen, food, water, first aid, navigation tools and a map, emergency shelter and a form of communication.
Ensuring you’re prepared for all circumstances can be the best option for when you’re out and about on the trails.
Wear Correct Gear
Opt for the correct gear when walking and hiking.
Leather or breathable, fabric walking boots can be the best place to start, as well as lightweight water proof clothing and a backpack which moulds to and fits comfortably against your body.
It could also be a good idea to get an insulating bottle which can keep liquids both warm or cold, depending on what you pack.
Leave No Trace
A staple of any hiking trip is to leave no trace of your presence, this includes all forms of litter. When out and about in the countryside, it’s important to recognise nature for its beauty and respect that.
Take a look at our article on eco therapy by heading here.