Fitness Gear

What you need to become a hiking powerhouse

And the key investments that'll get you there in no time

Why you need to become a hiking powerhouse

Hiking gets scandalously overlooked as a serious training method. When you ramp up the intensity of it, you get all the health benefits people spend hours in the gym for, with the bonus of stunning scenery, crisp fresh air, and no heated rivalry with that bloke in the “SWEAT SQUAD” vest.

Benefits like boosted bone density, burning way more fat than muscle, aiding recovery from other workouts, and the reduced risk of overtraining in comparison with running. But before you can reap the rewards, you’re going to need to do some serious prep…

Defend Against A Deluge

The sharper-eyed will have noticed that rain is pretty likely when you head anywhere north of Dover. Make sure you fork out for some effective waterproof kit, like the Finisterre Mistral Jacket (£185) and the Patagonia Torrentshell Pants (£80). Made with fabrics designed for dealing with harsh conditions, without taking away breathability. Good for when you’re sweating uphill in the rain. 

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Fix Up Your Feet

Sure, you may be able to get away with a pair of trainers if you’re doing two laps of Clapham Common pond. But when trudging up hills and clambering over rocks for most of the day, it ain’t gonna cut it. Try the Danner Explorer 650 (£151.74) for the kind of water resistant, non-blistering support you’ll be congratulating yourself for come the end of the day. Don’t be that guy sliding down a hill in Converse.

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Make Sure There's Always Coffee

If ever there’s a time you’re going to need caffeine, it’s after a night trying to sleep in a tent. Pick yourself up a Jetboil FLASH Cooking system (£90), which boils two cups of water in two minutes, and means you can experience a hot cup of Joe at the top of a mountain. A better location for it than the Muswell Hill Pret? Not for us to say.

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Simplify Map Reading

Walking across a field of cows, a massive crumpled map slapping you in the face with every gust of wind. Not a bad look, for sure. But now you can use a handy app that actually helps you understand what all those weird symbols mean. Which is good as ordinance survey map reading is ridiculously hard if you’re not used to it. Take a real map as well though, just in case your phone breaks. 

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Never Run Out Of Power

You’re sat in a tent halfway through an episode of Ozark and your phone dies. Bad news is, one of those £10 charging packs from the corner shop isn’t going to cut it. You’re going to need something with at least two charges in, like the Anker Power Bank (£27.99).

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