Hiking tips to be able to discover the path less travelled.

Fitness has had such a major influence in my life, ever since I was young. I played sports throughout my entire life, was in training for the Navy at age 16 - but due to a medical problem, I was unable to be recruited - but continued my fitness regime on and off over the years. Sometimes I go hard-core by following a strict gym schedule, and other times the only exercise I get is through my walk to and from the fridge.

It’s not always possible to hit the gym 5 times a week when work and life commitments get in the way, and it can be hard to stay motivated and excited by a fitness programme, which is why I always try to find different and exciting ways to stay fit and fall back into love with my love of exercise and staying healthy and adventurous.

I’m always searching for new ways to do this - from specific and niched fitness blogs such as Sian Lifts Weights and Harmony Blaze, to YouTube videos (My favourites being Sarah’s Day and Carly Rowena), and even Instagrammer #fitspo accounts. But my favourite lately has been a bit of a unique one and something that we all do, every day and take for granted - walking. Which is why I absolutely adore the Two Blondes Walking ladies Fi and Lucy - these incredible bloggers are so inspiring and motivating through their love of walking and hiking in particular that they have really found their way into my fitness plans - in something that doesn’t take much effort, equipment or money.

Exercise doesn’t always need to be extreme. Even the simplest of movements can make a huge benefit to your body and mind. But even though walking is something we are all capable of doing I have learnt a few tips and tricks from following them that everyone should be aware of.

Always take a rucksack with you, it doesn’t need to be massive like you are moving into the wilderness for a week, but something that can keep all your essentials clean and dry.

Make sure you take precautions with what you pack. It may not seem like much, but a whistle can become your best friend if you get stuck or injured. It can be so much more useful than shouting and the frequency can be picked up by rescue dogs.

Stay hydrated and fed. Long-distance walking can burn a lot of calories, more than you may think and running low on energy like in any fitness regime can impair your ability to function. Always carry enough water and food with you that will provide you with nourishment. Keep snacks that contain a great source of fibre such as unsalted nuts, fruit such as bananas, or vegetable crisps - my favourite right now are the Sea Salt Off The Eaten Path Pea and Pinto Bean Sticks. They are super tasty, so it doesn’t feel like you are eating something so nutritious. Or you can never go wrong with a carry sachet of Pip and Nut peanut butter.

And the last and most important fact is to have fun. Make sure you are warm, well prepared, well fed and enjoying yourself. Go with a friend, your dog or just pop in an audio book and enjoy the great outdoors.

Life is made for adventure - and no matter what your size, age or ability is. There is no excuse not to walk down the path less travelled.

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