Preparing for your adventure is part of the excitement of travel. With your detailed itinerary, reading list, and pre-departure packet you’re likely well on your way. However, if you have last-minute questions we invite you to call or e-mail the Home Team. With our in-house experts and worldwide guide network, we’re eager and always ready to help you prepare for your trip of a lifetime.
The more you walk or undertake some form of aerobic exercise before your trip begins, the more you will enjoy your experience. Spend some time exploring the Country Walkers travel checklist that includes training & fitness tips, and other resources to get you 100% prepared for your next adventure!
Depending on the activity level of your tour, we suggest that you prepare for your tour by incorporating some form of cardio exercise, 2-3 times weekly, for at least 6 weeks before your trip starts. Begin each activity with 5-10 minutes of stretching to prevent injury.
Remember to dress in comfortable, loose-fitting clothing and protect yourself from the sun. Throughout your exercise, drink plenty of water so that you stay well hydrated. If possible walk on varying terrain and hills. If you live in a flat area, try walking on a treadmill that has incline capability, or incorporate stairs into your exercise regimen. Even some of our easiest tours include climbing up (or down) to temples, historic sites, or medieval villages.
When training for walks on hilly terrain, you may wish to use walking sticks. During any activity (or while exercising) , maintain a steady, but comfortable, pace— and don’t hesitate to stop for frequent breaks.
Stretching adds flexibility and can make your walking, or other activity more comfortable. All stretches should be gentle, with no bouncing.
Warm up at an easy pace before stretching, never stretch cold muscles or you risk tearing them. Incorporate mobility exercises designed to take a muscle and joint through its range of motion. Start at the top of your body and work your way down. Find an upright pole or fence or wall to support you if needed:
Head Circles: Make 1/4 circles with your head. Start with your ear near your shoulder on one side, rotate your head around to the front, ending with your ear near the shoulder on the other side. Roll your head back to the other side. Repeat 5-10 times.
Arm Circles: With one arm at a time, make backwards arm circles with your palm facing out, thumb pointed up. Repeat 10-15 with each arm. Then make forward arm circles with palm facing in, thumb pointed down, repeat 10-15 times.
Hip Stretch: Stand up, take a half-step back with the right foot. Bend your left knee and shift your weight back to your right hip. While keeping the right leg straight, bend forward more and reach further down your right leg.
How you hold your body is important to walking comfortably and easily. With good posture, you will be able to breathe easier and you will avoid back pain.
Arm motion can lend power to your walking, burning 5-10% more calories, and acting as a balance to your leg motion.
Avoid over striding—taking longer steps to increase speed. This is potentially harmful and is inefficient.
Our trips are meant to be relaxing. On all our vacations your luggage will be transported by vans. Each pre-tour information packet includes a trip-specific packing list, however there are some general ‘what to brings’ common to all tours:
To help you prepare for your trip, we’ve carefully selected a range of comfortable, easy-packing travel apparel and accessories from leading brands such as Eagle Creek, Craghoppers, Patagonia, Tilley, and others. Whether you’re trekking Zimbabwe, walking Nova Scotia, or hiking the Highlands of Scotland, the Country Walkers Travel Shop is here to ensure you’re ready to enjoy your adventure to the fullest. Visit the Country Walkers Travel Shop
To help you prepare for your adventure, here are some of our favorite travel resource sites: