When going for a long hike, Having good endurance can be a key factor between a fun excursion and a bad one. A certain level of fitness is required to be able to continue your hiking journey without too much hassle.
That why we present to you our custom made endurance hiking training program to build up your strength and conditioning to an optimal level.
Box Squats (4 to 6 reps) × 3 sets.
Power Plank (30 to 60 sec) × 2/3 sets.
Chin-ups (3 to 5 reps) × 3 sets
Lunges (8 to 12 reps) × 3 sets
Hanging knee raises (10 to 30 sec) × 3 sets
Step-ups (8 to 12 reps) × 3 sets
What box squats allows you to do better than regular squats is releasing some weight off some of the muscles on the lowest point of your squat so that other muscle groups can activate and fire up.
This exercise helps you with your explosiveness and can improve your vertical jump quite a bit.
The very first thing we will talk about is the box’s height. What we don’t want more than anything is for you guys to be below parallel.
We want you to be able to sit back comfortably get into a position where you don’t fall and hit the box and be able to control it the whole way down. If it is a little bit above parallel that’s okay.
The stance should i little bit wider than you normally would in a normal squat.
This will make it easier for you to get into a better position with the box but it also makes it imperative that you guys screw your feet into the floor in maintained external rotation.
The wider we go the harder it is to force those knees out into the right position.
Another important point is always staying under control while coming down and keeping a vertical chin so that you can use your posterior chain.
Take a dead stop when you are sitting on the box and make sure you use the least amount of momentum when going up again. While using your glutes to stabilize your knees in place.
- Box height should be around parallel.
- A wider squat stance.
- Screw the feet into the floor.
- Control yourself all the way down.
- Sit full stop and then stand back up.
- Use your glutes to not let your knees shoot forward.
The core is made up of much more than just the rectus abdominis or the muscle we know as the six-pack and one of the best ways to strengthen the entire core is going to be to use a plank.
however that is only if the plank is challenging for you. If you can sit here and bang out three and four minute planks, It’s not actually going to create enough overload to make that exercise much of a benefit for you at all.
There are ways you can do to transform your regular planks into power planks. And here are five ways for you to reach that.
Get on all fours and get on your forearms. now you can either do a long lever one which you go all the way out and extend yourself or you can measure your fist with your eyes.
Keep Your back nice and neutral and don’t put it in hyper-extension. The whole time you’re engaging your core and squeezing your glute muscles, Hamstrings and Quads.
Come up and just hold it 30 seconds to a minute while squeezing everything you can.
Knee to Elbow Plank:
You need to set up so that your hands are directly underneath your elbows and drive it up into a plank position and avoid raising your bottom into the air.
If we were to take a ball, it should roll from your head down to your toes.
Draw your body down, Shoulders down the spine and try to avoid choking the neck. Open up that space, Hold the plank and bring your knee up to your elbow, engage your abs and push it straight back.
Stabilize the entire body and just let that leg move up to your elbow and down. If you need to modify drop down on your knee and just bring knee to elbow.
another way to modify this is to come down to your forearms if you have issues with your wrists elbows and shoulders and pull your knee with the same movement.
Depending on how fit you are, If you are just starting try to repeat this one from about 8 to 12 repetition for every-side. If you are more advanced try pumping those numbers up.
If you have someone to help you it will be easier to set. Just lay down and ask the other person to put the weight just a little bit over your glutes. If you do not have someone to help you just do the following.
First, you lay down right next to your weight. Then Slide the weight over your hips as you roll over to your belly.
Position it so it rests on the glutes and lower back, Double check yourself, Balance everything and lift. This can be done either on your forearms or with straight arms.
The time on this is one is like the others, from 30 to 60 sec with two to 3 sets and 1 min rest in between.
One of the many benefits chin ups is it works biceps, Back and a little bit of your upper chest. It is also considered a perfect exercise for general strength and conditioning.
Chin ups can be done in simply 5 easy steps:
- Grab the bar with a closer grip than a pull-up with your palms perpendicular to your torso.
- Extend your arms and retract your shoulder blades as if you are going to squeeze something behind you.
- Keep your neck and chin aligned with your spine.
- Drive your elbow to the ground while keeping those shoulder blades as close to each other as possible.
- Return to the same position keeping your shoulders retracted.
As you get more advanced you will be able to do more variation such as weighted chin ups. But the general number you want to look for when starting is from 3 to 5 repetition of 3 sets.
Lunges are one of the most underrated exercise when it comes hiking. Not only does it target most of your lower body and gives you great core strength but it also works as a stretch for your hips, groin and thighs.
Here are the steps needed to do lunges with good form:
- Start with your legs hip distance apart and take a step forward.
- Lower your body until both legs are at a 90 degree angle.
- Lower your back knee until it’s just above the ground.
- Push into the heel of your front foot to bring your back leg forward.
For the repetition you can do from 10 to 20 reps on every-side for 3 sets.
If you feel comfortable in doing so there are some other variations to make it harder suck as downhill and uphill lunges or dumbbell lunges.
Hanging knee raises
If you’re uncomfortable at first with the idea of hanging from a pull-up bar to do this there are a couple variations you can do first to get used to the lift.
you can sit in the captain’s chair which help in supporting yourself since your arms will be in the pads and your back is against the seat and you can easily raise your knees that way.
You can also have some abs straps hanging from the bar, You put both your arms inside the straps and that will support your body weight while you can keep your focus on the movement.
Nevertheless, There are two variation that you should be working with. The first one is more strict form variation that will be focusing on muscle building.
The second one is a little bit faster paced with the reps and will focus on raising your heart rate up. Both variation have the same starting form.
At the beginning you’re gonna get a double overhand grip on the pull-up bar with your hands wider than shoulder width.
With your feet you’re going to bring them together as you start to hang and have them just a little bit out in front of you.
keep everything nice and tight, Feet out in front together and bring your knees up get that 90 degree angle and keep going up towards your chest and back down.
- Grab the bar with a over hand grip shoulder width apart.
- Retract your shoulder blades and tighten your core and glute muscles.
- Slowly lift both your knees and bring them into your chest.
- Wait for 2 second.
- Lower both knees in a slow and controlled manner.
Step ups are a good exercise if you are looking to build both strength and endurance in your lower body.
Before you start you will need to place a box or chair. When stepping in the box your leg should be at hip level and no higher than that to avoid any injuries from happening.
Your hip, Knee and your ankle should be at 90 degree angle and no higher.
Step up and touch the box with your other leg and drop back down. Shoulders stay back down the spine, Chest should be in a open position.
Take your time in going down the box specially if you have issues with your knees, You do not want to drop too quickly.
Keep your head long and tall all through the movement, shoulders back and exhale as you lift and inhale as you lower.
The repetition should be from 8 to 12 reps for each leg for a total of 3 sets.
Details to remember:
- When stepping up maintain your knee in line with your second and your third toe 90-degree angle.
- as you step up shoulders should be back chest open.
- Push into the ball turn to your heel as opposed to your ball of your foot engage your glute right to lock out your knee.
- Exhale as you’re coming up inhale as you drop down.
Bonus tip (Endurance hiking training program)
With any type of sport whether it is a strength and conditioning or a endurance hiking training program, The key of becoming more efficient in a certain movement is specification.
What will help you be a better hiker in terms of the endurance is walking for a long period of time at the same pace you would when hiking.
Having a good program is an important point in becoming better in whatever you do. We hope this one will help you in Starting Your Hiking Journey and give you the endurance needed to have a better experience while doing your trek.
If you have anything you would like to suggest or any question concerning the the workout make sure to leave it down below.