20 Week Training Plan

IMG_0442Below is a suggested 20 Week Training Plan if you are going from never hiked long distances before to I am going to walk 100+ km over the course of a week+.

You are welcome to adapt and make the below YOUR OWN. This is MY plan, its what I have created based on years of long distance hiking in a bunch of countries across our great globe and what works for my body, my lifestyle and any excuse I can find to hit the hills in my neighbourhood or the mountains I am blessed to live around.

I am not a health professional in any way, and do not suggest that the below is safe or suggested for everyone or anyone. It is MY training plan. Please consult with your health care provider before making any changes to your physical activity regime.

Principles of the training plan:

  • WALK: If you don’t have your “hiking gear”, don’t fuss – getting any of these walks in using sneakers or other walking appropriate gear is perfect. This is all about getting your feet primarily but also all your walking muscles used to putting the miles on. Any walking is helpful! Yes that includes power-shopping, mowing the lawn, and chasing your kids about the playground.
  • STRENGTH: The strength training plan is recommended and you will find makes a difference in your strength and stamina. If you already have a strength training plan you don’t need to switch to this one, just keep up your own. We are focused on quads, hamstrings, inner and outer thigh and core. You can accomplish the weekly strength quota in any order on any day, you don’t have to do it all in one session. I do mine while binging on Netflix generally! Keep watch for shin pain, knee pain, and foot arch pain!
  • STRETCH: Stretching is going to make it all feel better and help avoid injuries. Hamstring and hip flexor stretches are key post training, and day post training if you are feeling sore. Look up stretches for hikers on Google and pick a few to try!
  • GEAR (*Full Gear): the gear (clothes and shoes) you will be wearing on the hike you are training for. Use these pre-departure hikes to try out the clothes and shoes you will be wearing. Everything from your socks and undies to your head gear needs to be tested. If it doesn’t work at home, it will not work abroad. Chaffing, bunching, or twisting? Don’t pack it!
  • GOAL: When you don’t feel like training – acknowledge it but don’t let it beat you. Remember the goal! You want to feel fit, chatty, well in body and the mind at the end of each day’s walk. On most long distance hikes you will be walking probably around 30km on our longest day and 15km on a short day. This is not impossible but it is not a small feat either. Any training you do here at home will positively impact your hike away from home! Trust me! Your feet and body and mind will thank you. Think of it as pre-loading some trip self-care!
  • TIME: do not be intimidated by the time it will take to walk any of the distances below. Yes you need to make time to get this training in but I promise you it will not take over your life. Think of it this way … 1km = 10mins for the average person. This should help you carve the necessary time from your very busy schedule to get the training in. Feeling guilty that you are taking “so much” time for yourself? Download books to listen to, call you mom or your sister while you walk, make a date with the partner for a walk, etc.

The 20 Week Training Plan:

Week Hike Strength Gear
20 3x 3km 1x this week:

20 squats

10 lunges each leg

20 calf raises

20 fire hydrants

10 10 crunches

cat/cows

30sec elbow plank

No Pack

Focus on boots / socks this week

19 2x 3km

1x 4km

1x this week:

20 squats

10 lunges each leg

20 calf raises

10 fire hydrants

10 cat/cows

10 crunches

30sec elbow plank

No Pack

Keep the focus on boots / socks

18 1x 3km

1x 4km

1x 5km

2x this week:

20 squats

10 lunges each leg

20 calf raises

10 fire hydrants

10 cat/cows

10 crunches

30sec elbow plank

Pack Optional

Pay attention to how body feels after each distance – gentle stretching will help smooth the differences

17 1x 3km

2x 4km

1x 5km

2x this week:

25 squats

15 lunges each leg

25 calf raises

15 fire hydrants

10 cat/cows

15 crunches

40sec elbow plank

5lb Pack

You should have your boot/sock combo perfect by end of March. Now let’s focus on the comfort of your pack.

16 3x 4km

1x 5km

2x this week:

30 squats

20 lunges each leg

30 calf raises

15 fire hydrants

15 cat/cows

20 crunches

50sec elbow plank

5lb Pack

Can you make time for yoga this week?

15 2x 4km

2x 5km

2x this week:

35 squats

20 lunges each leg

35 calf raises

15 fire hydrants

15 cat/cows

30 crunches

60sec elbow plank

5lb Pack

A yoga session would be ideal this week

14 1x 4km

3x 5km

2x this week:

40 squats

25 lunges each leg

40 calf raises

20 fire hydrants

15 cat/cows

35 crunches

60sec elbow plank

5lb Pack

Yoga please, one session  

13 4x 5km 2x this week:

40 squats

25 lunges each leg

40 calf raises

20 fire hydrants

15 cat/cows

35 crunches

60sec elbow plank

10lb Pack, this is a big jump use your water bladder, as you drink down your water the pack gets lighter and helps you adjust

Yoga, one session

12 4x 5km

1 of these hills

2x this week:

45 squats

25 lunges each leg

40 calf raises

20 fire hydrants

15 cat/cows

40 crunches

60sec elbow plank

10lb Pack, hills will impact how your boots feel, if your toes slide and hit the front of your boot – stop and tighten the top of your foot laces a little or risk losing toenails

Yoga

11 4x 5km

2 of these hills

2x this week:

50 squats

25 lunges each leg

40 calf raises

20 fire hydrants

15 cat/cows

40 crunches

60sec elbow plank

10lb Pack, if you are using poles – start to trial them on 1 of these days this week

Yoga

10 4x 6km

1 of these hills

2x this week:

55 squats

25 lunges each leg

40 calf raises

20 fire hydrants

15 cat/cows

10 double d’s

60sec elbow plank

10lb Pack, use your poles for 1 of these hikes again, are you liking them?

Yoga

9 4x 6km

2 of these hills

2x this week:

55 squats

25 lunges each leg

40 calf raises

20 fire hydrants

15 cat/cows

15 double d’s

60sec elbow plank

10lb Pack, again those poles for 1 hike

Yoga

8 4x 6km

3 of these hills

2x this week:

55 squats

25 lunges each leg

40 calf raises

20 fire hydrants

15 cat/cows

20 double d’s

60sec elbow plank

10lb Pack, use those poles on 2 of these

Yoga

7 3x 6km (1 hills)

1x 7km

2x this week:

55 squats

25 lunges each leg

40 calf raises

20 fire hydrants

15 cat/cows

25 double d’s

60sec elbow plank

10lb Pack, poles as you like

Yoga

6 2x 6km (1 hills)

2x 7km

2x this week:

50 squats

25 lunges each leg

40 calf raises

20 fire hydrants

15 cat/cows

30 double d’s

60sec elbow plank

10lb Pack, poles as you like

Yoga

5 1x 6km with hills

3x 7km

2x this week:

50 squats

25 lunges each leg

40 calf raises

20 fire hydrants

10 donkey kicks

15 cat/cows

35 double d’s

60sec elbow plank

15lb Pack, poles as you like

Yoga

4 4x 7km

1x 10km

3x this week:

50 squats

25 lunges each leg

40 calf raises

20 fire hydrants

15 donkey kicks

15 cat/cows

40 double d’s

60sec elbow plank

15lb Pack, poles as you like

Yoga

Any big ticket items you need to purchase?

Let’s start talking about a shared med kit

3 2x 7km

2x 10km

2 of these hills

3x this week:

50 squats

25 lunges each leg

40 calf raises

20 fire hydrants

20 donkey kicks

15 cat/cows

20 double d’s

10 reverse crunch

60sec elbow plank

15lb Pack, poles as you like

Yoga

Start making a pile of what you will pack

Anything you need to purchase

Let’s start planning our shared first aid kit

2 4x 7km (one hills)

1x 13-15km  

3x this week:

50 squats

25 lunges each leg

40 calf raises

25 fire hydrants

25 donkey kicks

15 cat/cows

20 double d’s

15 reverse crunch

60sec elbow plank

15lb Pack, poles as you like, make this longer hike the day after you do a 7km

Yoga

Finalize your packing list / to pack pile

1 4x 5-7km hike

2 of these hills

3x this week:

50 squats

25 lunges each leg

40 calf raises

30 fire hydrants

30 donkey kicks

15 cat/cows

20 double d’s

20 reverse crunch

60sec elbow plank

15lb pack

Yoga

Packing list is final

Do that laundry so it’s ready to go

 

 

 

 

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