March 22nd, 2014 by ironcooker
Hiking Tips To Help Make Your Outdoor Adventure Lots Of Fun
When you are camping, one of the most fun things you can do is go on a hike. It is great exercise; you can enjoy the outdoors, and you can see beautiful scenery. However, there are some dangers to hiking and you should be prepared for all events in order to remain safe and ensure you have a good time. Planning is essential so that you are not caught in a situation where you are not prepared. Use a backpack to store your items that you will take with you on a hike. Put heavier items toward the bottom to help balance your center of gravity. If hiking with a group, distribute items equally amongst the group in case of an accident. If a backpack is lost and it was the only one that held the water or food, you might have a difficult time. Dress appropriately for the weather and bring a spare set of clothing. If it is cold, wear layers and make sure to wear a hat for maximum warmth. Wear two pairs of socks and good hiking boots so you do not slip. Wear sunglasses and use sunscreen. Even if it is cold, the sun can give you a very uncomfortable burn. Also use insect repellant to protect you from pests and bites. Bring emergency supplies in case of an accident. This should include a first aid kit, rope, a utility knife, matches and a flashlight. Always have plenty of food and water. You need to keep hydrated and nourished during a hike. Beef jerky and trail mix are excellent energy boosting foods and will help get you through the day. Water is essential but you may also pack drinks like Gatorade that have electrolytes. Do not overdo it. Take frequent breaks and rest when you feel tired. Pushing yourself to exhaustion is unsafe. Use a walking stick to help keep you from getting tired and help you in climbing and keeping your balance. If you feel weak or light headed, sit down, take your backpack off, and eat and drink a little until you feel rested and ready to go on. Be aware of your surroundings. The picturesque scenery is a great time to take photos or sketch. These can be enjoyable past times but it is also a chance to run into wild animals, snakes and have an accident from not paying attention. Do not venture off trails into brush that may contain snakes or other poisonous creatures. You may want to carry bear repellant and a whistle in case you come across a wild animal. A whistle can also be useful if you fall or are trapped. Research the area where you will be hiking and plan what you will need to take accordingly. Do not be surprised by sudden climate changes. Take pictures and sightsee. Enjoy the outdoors and have a lot of fun, but be safe and prepared for anything. With a little planning, you should be able to make the most of your hiking experience
Posted in Outdoor Hiking | 6 Comments »
July 31st, 2013 by ironcooker
Outdoor hiking is a time that should be filled with amazing views, new adventures and good friends. You may be surprised in a group hike that many hikers walk at different speeds. And though you might feel like you’re in good shape, you might find yourself straggling behind others in your group. Being left in the dust of other hikers is no fun and it slows down the pace for everyone else. Don’t worry, there are ways to ensure you are not left on the trail. You can actually teach yourself to hike faster without training harder.
Find Your Head Space
The first thing to do before improving your time is to put yourself in the right frame of mind. Set aside the worry of the tough terrain and long hike so you focus more on the adventure itself. You can visualize yourself going faster and looking ahead at the finish line. Don’t stare at the steep terrain worrying about your steps. Set goals that you know you can reach. It may seem difficult at first, but visualize yourself hiking at a high speed and reaching your destination with a happy heart.
Don’t Forget Form
Your form when outdoor hiking is an integral part of your speed. If you walk with your back hunched over or your hands at your sides, the hike will take you longer. Shorten your stride and make sure you maintain your posture. Always look ahead and swing your arms to help you move along the trail. Don’t let your arms hang for too long or they will swell. Breathe deeply, find a rhythm in your steps. Singing in your head can even help keep a good pace! Take time to realize how your steps aligns with your breathing. This will help you work at a faster pace without using too much energy.
Lighten Your Load
Lighten your load to speed up. You don’t have to put everything at the camp in your pack. Even a few ounces can hold you back during your hike. Bring only the necessities with you in your pack. Make sure to include an adequate amount of food and water. Ensure the duration of your hike works in coordination with the weight of your pack.
Test Endurance Levels
Getting to your preferred speed isn’t done in a day. You don’t need to approach the 25 mile hike on one of your first adventures. Choose a shorter route (below 10 miles) and map out your hike. Try to climb more than 1000 feet when you have the chance to teach your body endurance when climbing. Remember, hiking is all about the adventure, and you really only need to build your endurance so you can see all the sights of nature and to stay with your group.
Find a Familiar Track
Choose a familiar trail and try to beat your personal best time. Use a stopwatch to measure how long each trip takes. Some hikers use a heart monitor as well. Keep a journal so you can note what is working for you every time you’re out on the trail. You can test different weights in your pack or different breathing techniques that may let you travel faster. Listen to music, stay conscious of your breathing patterns, and figure out what works best for you every time you’re on the same trail.
By using all of these techniques you can increase your speed without training harder. Are you ready to increase your outdoor hiking time yet? Do you have any other great ways to improve your hiking time? Tell us about it in the comments below!
Posted in Outdoor Hiking | 1 Comment »