I’ve never been much of an adventurer. My idea of an adventure is pretty much dining out with my kids, so you can understand my surprise when I tried hiking and actually loved it. Who would have thought that I would become a passionate hiker one day? Don’t get me wrong, I do enjoy spending time outdoors, but anything more intense than brisk walking in the park really isn’t me. We yogis love finding zen by getting lost in nature’s beauty and becoming one with the earth and its energy – not by hiking through the dense forest. At least this is what I thought, until recently.
Being out in the woods, away from the chaos of our daily lives is one of the best ways to connect with ourselves and nature in a way that brings peace and an amazing sense of well-being. But that is not all. According to many researches, hiking can be a great additional therapy to help individuals fight depression. Plus, it is a social activity – hiking with a group of friends encourages you to keep going and practice it in the long run. Plus, it is a great cardio workout to help you get in shape while hanging out with your friends. It’s a win-win.
The best part of it all though, is the fact that you don’t need any specials skills to start hiking. I personally got just a few basic pieces of gear – a pair of hiking boots for women, proper clothing and a backpack. I have to admit, it felt a bit overwhelming to get the right stuff at first. As a newbie, it was a bit hard to know which hiking boots for women I should get and what features to look for. But after a few hours of research and asking for help on forums, I decided to purchase light-weight and compact boots which are also waterproof. According to other hikers, light-weight boots provide extra support as well as an increased comfort and a greater enjoyment on the trail.
When it comes to clothing for hiking, anything made of cotton is the best option for dealing with sweat and keeping the body temperature stable. I chose a backpack that fits all the stuff I need (water, sunblock, high energy snacks) without being overstuffed. It also features thick hip-support straps and an upper chest strap, which have been my shoulder’s best friends.
But besides having the proper gear, there are also other things I’ve learned that made my hiking much more enjoyable. Here are some of them:
- Rushing while hiking can only do you harm – it could lead to taking a wrong turn, unnecessary injuries and it could certainly make you enjoy the trip less. Breathe out, breath in and enjoy the scenery;
- Checking the weather predictions for the day before embarking on a trail is a smart thing to do;
- Knowing when to end your hike and head home before you’re drained of energy is essential -it could ultimately save your life.