A lot of people are under the wrong impression that people who are in their midlife years are no longer active or adventurous. But this is not always the case.
A lot of active and adventurous midlife women spend their days still doing a lot of physical activity. Some are even active weightlifters and bodybuilders.
If you are over 50 and are looking to find an active and adventurous habit to get into, then hiking is a great one for you. Before you start hiking, though, make sure that you check out these ten hiking tips that will help guide you.
Check with your doctor first
Before getting into any physical activity and incorporating it fully into your life, a check-up with your health care provider of choice is a must.
Doing a quick check-up and figuring out where your body is at and listening to what it’s saying will help you find out what your limits are and what you can push.
It will also help you figure out what sort of diet you need or if you need any equipment to support your hiking hobby.
Hike with a companion or in a group
If you plan on going hiking, it’s essential for your safety not to go alone. Ideally, you should have a companion or a group to go hiking with you.
Hiking in a group is the best option, of course. Plus, it will help you get to know a lot of people you wouldn’t have gotten in touch with otherwise.
But if you do plan on going hiking by yourself, make sure that you inform all your family members about your route. So that in case of an emergency, they know where to look for you.
Once you have a doctor’s approval to go hiking, then it’s time for you to build some endurance. That way, you can survive the hike without being too fatigued after it.
If you don’t go hiking often, then it might be best that you start off walking some distances first. Slowly build up your walking or hiking endurance by incorporating some inclined and rough terrain.
Before you go on any walks that are high, make sure that you do some warm-ups so that you don’t shock your muscles.
Choose a trail that’s right for you
There are a lot of different hiking trails that suit different types of proficiency in hiking.
When choosing a hiking trail, you shouldn’t only select it based on the views that you get to see. You should also consider the trail’s level of difficulty.
If you’re hiking with a group of people who you think are more capable than you, don’t be pressured to keep up the pace.
Hike at your own pace
As mentioned before, if you’re hiking with a group of people who are going at a faster rate than you are comfortable with, don’t try to match their pace.
Hiking isn’t a competitive sport. What you should look into is how much you enjoy the hike trails and the entire experience of hiking.
Try hiking poles
When packing for your hiking trip, consider investing in good-quality hiking poles. It can help keep your balance, especially when traversing tough terrain.
Aside from that, it helps ease the heavy load from your lower body when you’re hiking, as it takes a lot of the weight away from it.
No matter what sort of physical activity you’re getting yourself into, it’s crucial that you stay hydrated. This is especially important if you’re hiking on a relatively sunny day, which will make you dehydrated faster.
Bring extra bottles of water with you in case you run out while you’re on the hike.
Listen to your body
When you’re going hiking for the first time, make sure that you don’t push yourself too hard.
You should make sure that you listen to your body and what it’s telling you, back out when you need to.
The goal of a hike is to enjoy your surroundings, as well as improve your physical health.
Plan for emergencies
Although no one wants emergencies to happen, you must be prepared. That way, you’ll know what to do when it happens.
You should make sure you have a way to bring attention to yourself, like with a whistle, a first-aid kit to treat injuries, as well as navigation tools in case you get lost.
Have a way to contact your friends and family
In case of an emergency, you would want to ensure that there are ways you can contact your loved ones. Notifying them where you’re hiking and how long it’s going to take you is a great way of preparing for a hike. Also, make sure that your phone is fully charged and that you have an extra battery pack to help you in case you run out.
Being active and adventurous in your midlife years is still important to help you live a good long life. Although some physical activity can be intimidating to start, it shouldn’t be the case for hiking. It’s an activity that both the young and the old can enjoy together.
No matter what age group you are in it’s important that you prepare before doing any physical activity. That way, you won’t get any injuries. Instead, you can spend your time improving your physical state while having a good time.
About the Author — Geraldine Mills is a self-confessed wanderlust from the land down under, Australia! She funds her adventures by working as a travel writer. She loves sharing the allure of backpacking and being one with nature. Check out her other published articles.