Sunday, 18 April 2010

Fit For Purpose

People often say when they see the children, "I bet they keep you fit..."

Oh, sure, I'm in reasonable nick: I'm used to lifting a 16kg weight, and carrying the same down the lane to school every day, but when I get tired, I put her down and she walks for herself. I also run up and down the stairs a fair bit, but I'd have to climb them forty times to match a 1,000' ascent - and there are no slippery rocks in my house, or scree.

During my July and October trips last year I spent the first three days feeling stiff and achy, and was only able to 'go for it' on the last few of days of each visit (two of which were written off by bad weather). This year, I had determined to get properly fit before I go.

Now that my ankle sprain is healing nicely... I'm stretching, swimming, doing step exercises and press-ups, etc., but my main technique is to carry an increasing collection of house bricks around with me... 8kg so far ...on the school-run, round Tescos, on strolls with the kids. My reckoning is that the best way to get fit for walking with a heavy pack is to walk with a heavy pack.

I've also joined a local walking group - previously anathema to me - which is now forcing me out onto my local hills (the South Downs) at least once a week. I take the bricks too - for the entertainment of my fellow walkers if nothing else.

How do you get/keep fit for the hills?


Martin Rye said...

Exercise bike in the garage and weights. Add in walking to work when I can and I can get fit for the hills no trouble. Saying that there is always more scope to train harder. Life gets busy sometimes and I seem to be behind with my training plans.

Leigh said...

I found garage exercise too dull, but accept that it's much more efficient than any training walk that includes a visit to the pub...

Shamus said...

I regularly accept that a 800m round trip to the pub is better than no exercise at all.

I can just imagine the look on some poor policeman's face if he stopped you (randomly of course, and asked what was in the bag!

womagwriter said...

Circuit class once a week, swimming once a week, run (5-8km) once a week. In theory!!

I hope that swimming builds up general fitness and helps keep me flexible, circuits builds muscle strength, and running helps with the cardio-vascular fitness plus a bit of strengthening muscles around my dodgy knees. I was definitely fitter in the Lakes this year than last.

Leigh said...

Shamus - the stop and search might or might not be random, depending on how long I've been in the pub!

Womag - I'm great at theoretical exercise too; but you set a much better example of the actual thing. I must try harder.