One way to tap into your adventurous side is to get outside and explore what the outdoors has to offer. Hiking is a great way to get away from the city and take in some breathtaking views and fresh air.
If you are new to hiking, you may be wondering how even to begin. Here, local fitness expert Christopher Lee of Buffalo, New York, shares six tips on how to get you ready to hit the trails.
Start with an easy hike.
Even if you are a fitness fanatic, hiking can introduce variables that you may not be accustomed to in the gym or indoor setting. Because of this, it’s unwise to start with a strenuous hike, and you should instead look for something short and relatively easy. Do your research ahead of time to know how long it is, ideal times to hike, elevation, and the trail’s overall condition. Also, bear in mind that hiking requires a certain fitness level, so don’t stress if you find that your first few hikes are taking you longer than anticipated. Just enjoy the view and fresh air, and take your time getting to the destination.
Always check the weather.
Weather can make or break a hiking experience. Always check the forecast before you leave to make sure you have what you need for inclement weather. Some trails may start at a lower elevation where it’s warm, but then carry you into cooler temperatures as you make your way to the summit. Knowing what to expect will help you stay comfortable and will make your hike more enjoyable.
Inform a friend.
Even if you have a friend or family member embarking on the hike with you, it is still important to let someone else know where you will be and what time you are expected to be back. While most hikes are completed without any complications, the last thing you want is to get injured on a trail with no cell reception and nobody in your life knowing where you are. Keeping someone informed acts as a security measure and will allow you to have more peace of mind during your hike.
Hiking is about functionality.
While there are brands out there that promote fashionable outdoor wear, your hiking experience can quickly turn sour if you have the wrong clothing or equipment. It is more important to be comfortable than cute, so make sure everything you use is functional and usable. Hiking shoes, for example, are a great resource to prevent sprained ankles and reduce the likelihood of getting blisters but can also be brutal to hike in if you choose the wrong pair. Another common complaint is buying itchy or lower quality hiking gear that doesn’t keep you warm and dry during unexpected weather.
Pack plenty of water and snacks.
It is crucial to stay hydrated. Make sure you drink plenty of water the day before and bring at least a few Nalgene’s worth of water with you on the hike. Healthy snacks are also essential to keep you fueled during your adventures. Simple snacks like nuts, protein bars, beef jerky, or a sandwich can give you the energy you need.
It’s always good to carry more layers than what you think you need on your hike so you will be prepared in the event of unwanted weather. It’s also a good idea to bring extra water, multiple snacks, a first aid kit, sunscreen, flashlight or headlamp, and a knife. Being well prepared will set you up for success and make for a more enjoyable trip should something unanticipated happen.
About Christopher Lee
Christopher Lee is a certified fitness trainer from Buffalo, New York. Christopher specializes in
designing workouts plans for clients that help them improve upon their fitness and agility. Mr. Lee also helps his clients with meal plans and nutritional guidance because he believes that a healthy diet is extremely important in overall wellness. When he is not working, Christopher Lee can be found at a hot yoga class, practicing martial arts, or spending time with his friends and family in Buffalo, NY.