Now that the weather is warmer, it’s time to head outdoors to exercise. And if you want to take your walking routine up a notch, why not hit the trails and try hiking? Whether you live in a big city, the suburbs, or in a rural area, you can easily take a hike through a local park, a woodsy part of town with well-marked trails, or on the beach (sand makes for a great workout!) — or check out Rails to Trails to find old railroad tracks that were converted to trails in your area. Hiking not only challenges your muscles in new ways and helps you lose weight faster, it’s also a great opportunity to get in touch with nature, relieve stress, and enjoy the fresh air. Bring the family along!
If you’re a hiking newbie, follow these tips that hiking pros recommend before you head outdoors:
healthy snacks and water. You can bring
nuts, reduced-fat mozzarella cheese sticks, or natural no-sugar-added peanut
butter and veggies on all Phases. On Phase 2, you can enjoy some fresh fruit —
apples and pears travel well. Our South Beach Diet 100-Calorie Snack Bars, Good
to Go Cereal Bars, Good to Go Bars Extra Fiber, and Good to Go Bars Gluten-Free
are also convenient take-along options, if you don’t have time to prepare a
healthy snack. To carry your water, use a reusable water bottle or canteen made
out of polycarbonate.
clothing and appropriate shoes
that can handle the trails and terrain. Hiking shoes or hiking boots are ideal
for rugged paths because they have more traction and are stronger and sturdier
than regular sneakers. And remember, synthetic athletic socks are better than
cotton because they wick away moisture and help keep your feet dry and
map of the trail if possible.
Remember to check the weather and trail conditions before you start your
journey to ensure a safe trip. If you’re traveling to an unfamiliar area to
hike, check with a local bookstore or tourist organization for a map. You may
also try researching online to see if it’s possible to print out a map before
with a half-mile hike
round-trip and less than 500 feet in elevation gain if you’re not in condition.
As you build your endurance you’ll be able to hike longer (and
along a first-aid and emergency kit for longer hikes. Make sure it includes a safety blanket, bandages, a
flashlight, a small pocket knife, sun-block, insect repellent, and waterproof
- Always tell someone where you’re going and whom you’re with in case of an emergency. That way, if something happens, there will be a person who can help locate you.