6 month trek training guide

Trekking toward Lake Pedder | Chris Buykx
Trekking toward Lake Pedder | Chris Buykx
Every year we guide hundreds of travellers on treks around Tasmania’s remote wilderness, and one of the main things that influences how much you enjoy your experience is not while you are on the trip- but what you do in the months leading up to it. That’s right: Trek training! We’ve created a 6 month trek training guide for a moderately graded trek, such as the Overland Track, or the Walls of Jerusalem Circuit, or mainland treks such as the Larapinta Trail or Jatbula Trail.

Top tip:

The more time you put into trek training in the months leading up to your trip, the more you will enjoy your experience and safely complete your wilderness trek. Trek training is more than just walking; it’s preparing the body for the increased intensity of undulation, terrain, pack weight, kilometres walked and overall endurance.

6 months out

If you have limited experience trekking long distances, we recommend you slowly condition your body to walking from 6 months out. Start with a simple physical preparation regime like a walking program, walking three to four days a week on level ground, up to 40 minutes at a time. Consider walking to the shops, short bushwalks or coastal walks during the week and on weekends.

5 months out

Maintain walking three to four days a week, however start to include hills and stairs to your walking regime. To condition your body to some of the steep hills you may experience on your trek, choose hills that are steep or have a higher incline. It is also a good idea to begin walking on uneven grass or rocky paths to help you get used to uneven ground and surfaces. This terrain can be slightly more difficult than a concrete footpath, however will help you strengthen the muscles of your lower limbs. Walk for a minimum of one hour at a faster pace than what you’re accustomed to. Moderately graded adventures require you to carry a full pack up to 18kgs, so during your trek training you will need to prepare your core and back to carry your pack. Introduce core-building exercises to your regime, such as sit ups or planks, and carry a light backpack with you on these walks.

4 months out

If you live near the coast, start to walk along the beach on your training walks. Do not walk along the hard, compact sand close to the water’s edge, but seek out the loose, soft sand away from the water. This sand mimics muddy tracks and strengthens your leg muscles. Carry your backpack while walking and increase your walking time to 1.5 hours.

3 months out

Increase your walking routine to five days a week and walks for a minimum of 1.5 hours each time. You should aim to increase the weight of your backpack by 0.5kg every week, and try to find steeper hills and stairs to increase the difficulty level. When walking up stairs, alternate between single steps and double steps to condition you for uneven stairs and surfaces on your trek.

2 months out

By now you should be accustomed to walking on all terrain, including steep hills and stairs, uneven surfaces and soft sand. Increase your walking duration to 2-3 hours every day for the entire week (that’s right, even if it rains!). By doing this, you are mentally preparing for your multi-day walk. We’ve found that the hardest part of a multi-day trek is not any individual day’s walk; but knowing that you have to wake up the next day and do it again, so it’s important to prepare yourself mentally for this in the lead up to your trek. Add weight to your backpack until it weighs between 18-20kg. The aim here is to exceed the weight you intend to carry during the actual trek. While training, use the hiking boots and gear that you will use during the real trek. This will help you ascertain whether they are the right fit, whether they give you blisters and if you need other socks or shoe inserts to add comfort where possible. You should have a hydration system in place now, whether it is 3 x 1L water bottles, or a Camel Back system. Practice drinking as you walk on your training walks.

1 month out

Continue with your training but reduce the intensity to avoid a burnout – the last thing you want to do is get an injury a week into the trek! In the week before your trek, reduce back to some light walking with occasional hill climbing - but don’t be too hard on yourself. Also, reduce your alcohol intake one week before the trek as it impairs your performance (set that aside for you celebratory dinner after you complete the trek!). Ready and raring to go? Check out some of our moderate and challenging treks and start planning for your next multi day trek.
Travel Advice

Comment (0)

Your comment will be visible after the administrator's approval.

b i u quote

Save Comment
Join Newsletter
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/ADS.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Adventures South"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Adventure South</div>
Adventure South NZ is unrivalled in their geographic coverage, originality and overall quality of adventures holidays in New Zealand. Choose from walking, cycling, winter or multi-activity holidays, on either the North or South Island.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/AWH.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Australian Walking Holidays"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Australian Walking Holidays</div>
Australian Walking Holidays specialises in small group guided walking adventures. Since 1982 we have been guiding small groups of travellers on Australia's finest walks across our tropical, coastal or red centre landscapes.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/GCT.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Great Canadian Trails"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Great Canadian Trails</div>
Great Canadian Trails specialises in active holidays in Canada. With both guided and supported self-guided options available, our unique itineraries draw upon some of Canada's most inspiring parks, trails and landscapes from coast to coast.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/HUM.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Humac Challenge"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Huma Charity Challenge</div>
Huma enables those with adventurous spirits to challenge themselves and make a difference for a cause close to their heart. Travel, fundraise and meet life-long friends on one of Huma's meaningful and unique challenges around the world.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WB.jpg?v2' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Walkers’ Britain"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Walkers' Britain</div>
Walkers' Britain (formerly Sherpa Expeditions) have specialised in walking and cycling trips in the United Kingdom and Europe since 1973. Explore iconic trails and destinations on a self guided or small group active holiday with Walkers' Britain.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WB.jpg?v2' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Walkers’ Britain"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Walkers' Britain</div>
Walkers' Britain (formerly Sherpa Expeditions) have specialised in walking and cycling trips in the United Kingdom and Europe since 1973. Explore iconic trails and destinations on a self guided or small group active holiday with Walkers' Britain.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/TAS.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Tasmania Expeditions"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Tasmanian Expeditions</div>
Tasmanian Expeditions is the most experienced operator of treks and adventure travel holidays in Tasmania. We own and operate the most comprehensive range of adventure holidays available across Tasmania's varied landscapes.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/UTX-new.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Utracks"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>UTracks</div>
UTracks are the active European holiday specialists. Whether you prefer cycling or walking, 2-star or 4-star, small groups or self guided, land, river or sea – UTracks can help you to explore Europe exactly the way you want.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WYA.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="World Expeditions Schools"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>World Expeditions Schools</div>
World Expeditions Schools is our specialist division dedicated to organising tailor made overseas school group adventures. Specialists in Service Learning projects, choose from more destinations than any other school group provider.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/YOM.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Yomads"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Yomads</div>
Yomads offers adventures for the 20s and 30s on six continents. Designed as a way to bring young and likeminded travellers together, Yomads caters to those interested in lightly structured and active trips that allow freedom to roam and explore.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/ACT.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Australian Cycle Tours"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Australian Cycle Tours</div>
Australian Cycle Tours specialises in high quality self guided and guided cycling experiences in a selection of the most beautiful regions in Australia.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WEX.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="World Expeditions"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>World Expeditions</div>
The pioneers of original, worldwide adventure travel holidays since 1975
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/TJX.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Trail Journeys"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Trail Journeys</div>
Self-guided cycling experts on New Zealand's Otago Rail Trail and more
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/BMAC.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Blue Mountains Adventure Company"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Blue Mountains Adventure Company</div>
The original Blue Mountains canyoning, hiking, climbing and abseiling experts
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/GWNZ.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Great Walks of New Zealand"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Great Walks of New Zealand</div>
Explore New Zealand's most spectacular wilderness regions with the self-guided hiking experts
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/NAA.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="North America Active"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>North America Active</div>
USA Canada hiking & cycling tour specialists, choose from self-guided or guided trips