What’s your workout for backpacking?

Discussion in 'Backpacking' started by vincere, May 11, 2018.

  1. vincere

    vincere Scout

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    What does everyone do to stay in shape for backpacking/hiking?

    On top of regular hiking and trail running I do kettle bell workouts and a lot of pushups and occasional yoga

    I’ve been toying with the idea of getting a pack and adding heavy weight to get a more intense workout

    Whats your workout?

    VP
     
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  2. snapper

    snapper Guide

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    At this point in my life (I'm 65) I know I can't just put on a pack and "go" as easily as I once did. For that reason I try to keep myself in decent shape to begin with by cutting wood, swimming, walking everywhere, etc. All that being said, when planning for a backpacking trip, I begin at least 6 weeks prior to the trip walking around with weight in my pack. Usually I begin with 10-12 pounds and add more weight each week until I'm carrying a bit more than I expect to carry on the actual trip. Regardless of where I go on campus, I carry my pack. I've gotten some weird looks over the last few years but this strategy has allowed me to keep up with college students when out in the Adirondacks or Catskills.

    One other thing, when doing this I always park on the other side of campus from the building where my office is located. This allows me to add numerous stairs along the way. If I'm not into the stairs, I walk the hill itself that the stairs go up. Both give you a little bit of a different work out so I switch it up so I can achieve both.

    That's all for now. Take care, best of luck for getting ready for your trip and until next time....be well.

    snapper
     
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  3. lilblade25

    lilblade25 Tracker

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    This is what I've been doing (I found it on Pinterest):

    The Ultimate Hiker's Workout

    Perform each exercise for one minute with a 30 second rest in between.
    Repeat entire set for a complete 30-minute workout

    1. Switch Lunges
    2. Calf Raises
    3. Mountain Climbers
    4, Roundhouse Lunges
    5. Burpees
    6. Calf Hops
    7. Skater Jumps
    8. Surrenders
    9. Plyo Spiderman Lunges
    10. Squat Walk

    It's a pretty good workout and doesn't require weights which is a plus for me
     
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  4. dirt7

    dirt7 Supporter Supporter

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    My "workout" just comes from always carrying a pack with a load, even for just a short hike. I will often overload it a bit just to feel the burn a little more. Luckily there are some pretty steep climbs within a few miles that I can hike up for exercise. I like to do yoga, specifically focusing on core and hip flexibility. I try to keep my hips healthy since they are transferring all the weight to my legs when hiking with a load.
     
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  5. LFowler

    LFowler Scout

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    I take my normal pack and add large amounts of water to it. I usually try to hit twice the weight I would actually want to carry, or just over 60lbs. Lately I have been using two 6L MSR dromedaries and two 2L platy bags, the soft nature makes them pack much better then hard sided containers. Sometimes I will use my GPS to monitor and limit stopped time as well as keep my pace up, on good trails I try to keep above a 3mph moving average.

    If I wimp out, get sore or hurt myself I can dump the water and hike back out floating on air.
     
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  6. Pointblind

    Pointblind Tracker

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    Morning walks with my pack stuffed with towels and free weights.
     
  7. justinspicher

    justinspicher Scout

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    I just carry my pack around. I am fortunate to live near the mountain and have access to trails and plenty of public land.

    In the summer I carry a pack quite a bit for work, the fall I’m hunting with a pack on and in the winter I’m snowshoeing with a pack on.

    I’ll do a lot of body weight exercises as well, I don’t lift weights, mainly because they are heavy.
     
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  8. mtwarden

    mtwarden roaming the Big Sky Supporter

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    I don't train exclusively for backpacking, but it's one of many outdoor activities I enjoy (add trail running, deer/elk hunting, high country lake fishing, snowshoeing/backcountry skiing, etc to the mix) and to really enjoy it you do need a decent level of fitness.

    I mix trail running and hiking during the week- all of it on rolling/steep single track trails. I try and get out on the trails 3-4 times a week, typically one longish run/hike on the weekend. In addition, strength train twice a week- a mix of large, compound lifts (deadlifts/squats/bench/overhead press) with body weight exercises- lunges, pull/chinups, dips, plyo box, etc

    For most activities (including backpacking), typically the more specificity the better. Thus carrying a backpack on similar terrain, with similar weights and spending time on your feet would trump anything else. But I do feel mixing in some cross training and some strength training is helpful as well.
     
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  9. Leshy_apprentice

    Leshy_apprentice Supporter Supporter

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    My current job, I am on my feet for 12 hour shifts and constantly power walking back and forth to different factory stations. I'll call that my backpacking conditioning. But before, I would usually just try to keep up by loading out my pack even for day hikes and short nature walks. It kept me in good backpacking condition. I didn't have specific "gym" type exercise routines. An active life is good enough workout, for me anyway.
     
  10. Swarvegorilla

    Swarvegorilla Guide

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    I walk to and from work. I did get a weight vest to wear around house the week before I leave on a trip.
     
  11. Seeker

    Seeker Woods Bum Supporter Bushclass I

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    I walk around my neighborhood with my wife most evenings after supper.

    Aside from that, I just try to get out in the woods every weekend. I quit "working out" at about age 45, when my shoulder told me to stop.
     
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  12. chndlr04

    chndlr04 Guide

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    on a average work day, 5 days a week i walk 15 miles with purpose. when I add in cleaning church which I do twice a week for 4 hours each. I wear my loaded pack. no weird looks when i do that because I'm usually alone. been doing this for the past 4 years. so I think I'm pretty well conditioned.
     
  13. Ninety0ne

    Ninety0ne Tracker

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    I alternate hiking the road to my place (1.6 miles, 700 feet of gain) as follows
    M-w-f 45 lb pack target pace 3.5 mph or better (trying to get it to a stable pace where I get there in 30 minutes
    T-th no weight target pace is 4 mph

    Sat 10+ mile hike 2000’ total gain 35 lb pack

    5 days a week
    30 minute walk
    Yoga (30 min)
    3x10 push-up sets targeting form and moving slow
    3x30 sec one armed planks right an left
     
  14. ROCK6

    ROCK6 Scout

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    I'm not in a position to do much, but our perimeter is about 4 miles. I have a pack here with me A'Stan, so that's what I've been using, but I hate pounding on pavement. For working out, it's usually about 20-25 miles a week on the elliptical, and about 5-6 miles of running outside (usually in the form of wind-sprints). Right now I'm just doing regular muscle group weight-lifting, but for backpacking, I will focus more on high-tempo and lower body.

    ROCK6
     
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  15. perrymk

    perrymk Supporter Supporter

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    First is my regular fitness routine, then I add some specialization for backpacking/hiking.

    Currently I do a combination of weights and calisthenics for a workout that lasts 10-20 minutes. I hit each bodypart 1-2 times per week. I am a fan of the 20 rep squat routine (google to see plenty of examples). Afterwards I walk my neighborhood (2.25 miles) with a 20 pound pack. I do this 5 days per week.

    For hiking specific exercises I recently added high repetition squats to the end of my leg workout. This past Monday morning I did 60 pounds for 90 repetitions, working up to 100. My heart was pounding through my chest. I also do 10 miles on local trails with a 25 pound pack every Saturday, working my way up to 12 miles with 35 pounds.

    We'll see soon enough (AT southbound July 2021) if it helps with hiking mountains. I suspect it won't hurt.
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2018
  16. Keithturkjr

    Keithturkjr Scout

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    I do the “ blue collar man “ workout. I maintain some basic weight control. I’m a little overweight but I’m not obese. Sometimes I have to diet for a week or two.
    I do a lot of medium duty manual labor at work and it keeps my muscle tone decent. With the extra fat it’s a little harder to do work, but if I need to get in shape fast,... having a few extra pounds I can drop helps speed up getting in shape.
    If I’m having it easy at work,... I’ll do 50 push-ups and maybe hit the barbell for a few minutes, just to make sure I don’t lose my baseline fitness level.
    If work gets tough and is gonna be tough I go into a crash fitness working lots of overtime at work (this helps me loose weight faster than going to the gym a little and attacks the real problem) and then I do a muscle burnout with calisthenics at the end the easiest work days of the week. Pick at least 3 days lol.

    I don’t like to do cardio if work is crazy, that energy could have been more work getting done, but if cardio becomes necessary elliptical trainer machine at the gym is the best way to go for cardio cause it’s easy on the leg muscles.

    I’ve been an athlete before. I find that if you go pure maniac at the gym consistently that the heart and mind will become numb to the soreness and you can work pretty hard even if you’re sore all over,... but that numbness takes a couple weeks to develop. If you don’t train hard regularly, you don’t wanna show up to ‘go time’ at work with sore legs,...it sucks a lot lol.

    I’m definitely not the fastest backpacker in the woods but I can crank out decent miles.
    I’d train before going mountain hunting or if I knew I was gonna speed hike with someone really fast but it’s usually unnecessary.
     
  17. Timex

    Timex Guide

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    Thanks for your service. I was at LNK (civillian) when the base was closing and it was tough to stretch one's legs. In my spare time, I planned a backpacking trip outside of Silverton, CO (Ice Lakes Basin). My wife and I had a great trip. You will too. View attachment 593281 DSC00375.JPG
     

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  18. vdeal

    vdeal Guide

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    I hike as often as I can with a loaded pack - not to full backpack size but sizable enough. During the summer I bike a lot - usually trying to break my segment times so I get good cardio there. Around home there's always garden and yard work which I walk as much as possible plus walking quite a bit at work if I can squeeze it in. Try to get some swimming in also.
     

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