Planning an epic hiking adventure is not just about making sure that you have packed the right gear and booked. A large part of the planning, especially if you intend to tackle one of the longer routes, is to make sure that your body and mind is ready for the journey.

For the most part, hiking is an easy hobby. There is no rush and no need to beat anyone to some kind of imaginary finish line. There are no medals to be won and no one to congratulate you on your accomplishments.

Instead, hiking is all about being in the moment. Enjoying the great outdoors, the unbelievable fresh air, and being well away from all of the stresses in your world at home. Hiking has proven to reduce stress and fatigue, and it is a wonderful cure for the tired soul. Those who take up hiking as a hobby enjoy a different, often more peaceful and healthy lifestyle. And if you are keen on becoming a part of the growing group of people who are falling back in love with nature and enjoying their time out on various hiking trails, here are a few tips that you can use to prepare your body for the trip!

hiking in mpumalanga
  1. Don’t skip leg day

Yes, it’s a running joke in the gym, but really, when you are preparing for your first hike, you don’t want to skip leg day.

Your legs are obviously going to be under tremendous strain when you are undertaking a hike for the first time. And you need to make sure that you have enough leg strength to get you through the trip without experiencing too many leg cramps.

To prepare your legs, take on the treadmill in the gym. You don’t have to run on it, just walking for 30 minutes each day is a fantastic starting point. And when you are not at gym, you should dedicate a few minutes each day to leg squats and lunges, to strengthen your muscles.

  1. Strengthen your back

Even if you are taking on one of our shortest hiking trails in Mpumalanga, you are going to need to carry a backpack with some snacks and bottles of water. At first, such a bag might feel light enough, but after a kilometer or so, if your back is not strong enough, you are going to start feeling the weight of it.

Try doing push-ups and planks to build strength, and try to practice walking around with your backpack to get used to the weight.

  1. Cardio

Hiking itself is a great way to do a little cardio but if you are really unfit you need to make sure you work on your heart and lungs before you get going. You can try things like brisk walks, swimming or cycling to get your body ready for the hike although you will need to do these types of activities for at least 45 minutes a day to ensure that you are ready to tackle the hiking trail.

Get yourself ready for an epic adventure when you go hiking in Mpumalanga. At Bermanzi, we have beautiful hiking trails waiting for you to explore!