How My Family Is Training For Distance and Elevation Hiking

We have started our training plan for our upcoming hiking vacation which will include carrying day packs, photo equipment, high heat, and elevation.

First, let me remind you that my husband and I did part of this same hike a few years back for our 20th anniversary. That was the first trip ever we took of that type and thankfully we opted for a guided trip on that occasion. We learned so much in three days with the guides we had that I could never thank them enough. We also had about 6 weeks to train for that trip and I believe it made all the difference in the world when we arrived. We had no issues keeping up, dealing with the elevation, or making the mileage asked of us. I returned from that trip with so much knowledge and a HUGE desire to return as soon as possible.

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Which brings us to today. We are going back, adding a few more destinations, and staying a lot longer this time around. However, this time we have two big changes among many little differences. This time we are doing it on our own (no guides) and bringing our 20 year old son with us. As you can imagine I am over the moon excited. It will be a dream come true for me to go back since mountains are my favorite adult playground. Plus, our son, being an up and coming photographer, will be completely in his element.

My first priority was to come up with a training plan so this trip can be enjoyable and not leave us in pain every single night after a big day on the trails. I knew what we did last time was very beneficial although, because of the last minute booking it also only gave us 6 weeks to train which was super difficult. This time I wanted to make sure we had a few more weeks so we would not be pressured to hit the goals we knew we needed to hit. Plus, we are all at different fitness levels and some of us need a more work than others in certain areas. And don’t forget, I am still trying to recover from 6 long weeks in a boot for my torn ankle tendon.

This is what I came up with to start our training:

Monday: 5 mile walk and stretching (gradually increasing and eventually reaching 10 miles total)

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Tuesday: 3 mile walk and stretching

Wednesday: 60 minutes yoga, hill climb=10 times up and down , steps= 10 times up and down

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Thursday: 5 mile walk and stretching (gradually increasing and eventually reaching 10 miles total)

Friday: weights/squats/ankle bands/stool step ups

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Saturday: off (it’s summer time so we’ll either be kayaking or standup paddling anyhow)

Sunday: 60 minutes yoga, hill climb=10 times up and down , steps= 10 times up and down

Of course we may need to change this up a bit here and there but this is the plan. When we get closer to leaving we will be adding our loaded packs for our walks. This time we are adding steps and hill climbs to our training plan since elevation is a major part of every trail we plan to hike. Last time we did not do this and I think it would have been very helpful. We concentrated more on mileage last time and I don’t think we needed to as much as we did. We will top out at 10 miles total by the end of our training.

I also found that yoga was extremely helpful for keeping me stretched out well. I even did it in them mornings while we were there before meeting up with the rest of the group. So I added that into our plan here at home too.

Since our training is taking place during the summer months, the heat should help prepare us for what’s ahead. Our destination tops out at about 85-105 degrees at this time of year. And if it would rain, our walks can be taken to the gym on another aerobic machine or even in our home gym.

All in all, my hope is to leave home feeling ready to conquer what lies ahead.

Would you ever train to go on a vacation?

 

 

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