Summertime is a great time of year to venture outside. If you are lucky enough to live by mountains you are probably familiar with the uphill hike. These hikes can feel a little overwhelming at times so here are some tips to help you survive!
1. Stretch. Stretching is crucial for any fitness task and a hike is no exception. You should warm your muscles up before you start and certainly stretch them out when you are finished. This will decrease your chances of injury along the way and release some of the stiffness the next day. You may want to try a stick or foam roller to assist with this.
2. Eat and hydrate. Before you start your hike you will want to ensure that you have something to fuel your body. I would suggest doing so at least an hour before the hike and having something light to digest. A protein shake, a nutrition bar, fruit and nuts are all good things to fuel yourself without leaving you heavy and crampy. Also ensure you have a significant amount of water and bring some along for the hike.
3. Do not try to gauge how long you have left. When you start the hike staring up to the top or focusing on the distance markers can be discouraging and negative self talk will only hinder your performance. Instead focus on the nature, your music or have a chat with a friend.
4. Positive self talk. For many it is about the overall time or speed but for beginners you need to focus on your accomplishments. You can focus on getting better later. In the meantime, way to go. Pat yourself on the back. Remember to encourage yourself. Think of all the people that don’t even attempt uphill hikes. Think of the great way you will feel when it is done. Breath that fresh outdoor air in. Applaud yourself! Your are rocking that rock! For B.C. residents – Grind that Grind!