How To Get Physically Fit

A newbie's information to climbing: all the things you want on your first hike!

Read this guide before entering nature!

There is nothing more embarrassing than a city dweller who gets lost in the forest. So let us know where to go, what to wear and what to bring.

This way your first hike will be fun, adventurous and above all safe!

Today we will cover:

I am glad that you are enthusiastic about hiking and I can't wait to get started!

I took the picture above when I was walking through Killarney National Park in Ireland many years ago and every time I look at it I have to think of Tolkien's Middle Earth masterpiece, so I apologize (not really) for all that lord of the rings nerdery runs through this post!

Our community members also love hiking. In one of our recent success stories, hiking was mentioned as one of the fun activities she loved to do to lose 50 pounds:

Christina started rocking pull-ups after the nerd fitness coaching

By the end of today's post, my goal is for you to choose a path, choose a date, and identify a guy or girl to join your community (galship?).

Before we jump in, are you here because you are learning to hike to lose weight? Have you heard that playing sports and getting your body moving is fun?

Then you are exactly right with us!

As mentioned earlier, some customers of our hugely popular 1-to-1 online coaching program used hiking as part of their weight loss training. These people prefer to go outside than jumping on a treadmill, and our trainers have designed a program to do just that!

Here's how it works: Your NF coach will create a custom training plan based on your level of experience and goals. Training to climb a literal mountain? Maybe you need to get rid of an old ring? We'll make a plan to get you to the top!

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Okay, let's hike!

How do I find hiking trails near me? (How do I start hiking)

The view of a great place for hiking.

When you think of hiking, you can imagine a group of long-distance travelers tested on the road with oversized backpacks hiking through epic mountains for weeks.

Or maybe a couple of hobbits embarking on a worldwide adventure to destroy a ring of impressive power.

If you're just beginning your journey to a better lifestyle, just thinking about serious hiking may be enough to keep yourself in your comfortable hobbit hole.

Hiking can be an epic undertaking, but it doesn't have to be!

A hike can also be super easy and fun:

A quick trip (such a great word, right?) After working through your local park.
Explore the forest behind your house with your children on a Saturday morning.
A half-day hike with your friends on a fun nature trail.
A full day or night hike that includes camping.

Here is my definition of walking: A person (or a half or confident robot) exploring their surroundings and feet is on the actual ground. Like dirt. And grass.

Some might say it must be difficult to have a certain change in altitude, a blah blah blah require. It literally doesn't matter.

What matters is that you go outside and do something you wouldn't have done otherwise.

Here in the Nerd Fitness Rebellion, hikers would fall into the Adventurer class.

If you're looking for a fun “cardio” activity and want to work out in an exciting way, hiking is a great way to get your legs, feet, and body used to strenuous activities.

You can choose your speed and difficulty and always find the right challenge for you.


1) Decide how long you have to hike. This is a guide for beginners to hiking. We don't want to hike the Appalachian Trail. Instead, we want to start with trails that can be done in less than a day and that don't require you to pack a tent or bring extra clothing to change. Choose a hike based on your time – do you have time all Sunday? Or do you only have a few hours on a Tuesday afternoon? It took Frodo and Sam 6 months to get to Mordor, but you probably don't have that much time.

However, if you wanted to "go to Mordor", I also covered you there. You're welcome!

2) Decide whether you are hiking alone or with a friend / group – I love hiking alone – it is mobile meditation for me. However, it's also more dangerous if something happens while you're on the go! If you are traveling into the wilderness, I would recommend meeting up with a friend or your partner for your hike. This is the perfect opportunity to glue. This is especially true if you have more hiking experience or know the area in which you are hiking.

3) Determine your level – If you're a newbie to hiking and you're terribly out of shape, it's incredibly unintelligent to embark on an eight-hour hike through the unmapped wilderness. And as your mother probably told you before, "I thought you were smarter than that."

Start slowly and pick places in your city where you can stop if necessary and quickly get back to your car or home. No need to be a hero; It's always better to come back excitedly and say, "Wow, that was easier than I expected!" than realizing that you are six hours away from home and without steam. To be a hero is cool. But not THIS kind of hero.

4) Choose your hiking location – Keep it simple! Go to, enter your zip code and find your hiking trail!

Or go to Google Maps and search for large green lots. We call these "parks". Google the park name, learn more about it and decide if you want to go there. Don't make this step too complicated. Just start.

Ask your active, adventurous friends or colleagues if they know good jobs.

The world is full of trails and attraction – you just need to know where to look.

5) Regardless of where you go, let someone know where and when – If you are traveling alone, take the time to send an email or call someone and let them know that you will be hiking and when you are likely to be back.

We don't want to hear 127 hours (1) of stories about NF that would make playing video games very difficult.

You don't have to tell them the brand of your underwear (please tell me you are wearing underwear) or how many almonds you bring, but let them know the important details so they don't hear from you a certain time they know about that alert the relevant authorities.

So at the moment you should have answers to the following questions:

How much time can you devote to hiking?
Who you will be hiking with.
Your experience
Use or GoogleMaps to choose your hiking location.
Who you will tell about your hiking experience.

What shoes do I wear hiking? (Proper footwear)

Steve on the Great Wall of China

It's easy: stilettos, your favorite mini skirt, a halter top and a raw meat vest. You're welcome!

Wait, don't do that.

I'm a big fan of feeling good without breaking the bank. You probably already have most of the clothing you need for hiking.

What shoes should I wear to walk in?

In our article on healthy feet, we'll cover shoes in detail, but I'll cover shoes specifically for hiking here.

We at Nerd Fitness are a big fan of Merrell products – Merrell shoes of various types have treated me well over the past decade.

Just don't let a lack of quality walking shoes stop you from hiking. If you're worried, for safety's sake, choose an easy hike with your current shoes and boot up when you can boot up your gear!

Some people hike the Appalachian Trail barefoot (must be part of the hobbit). Whatever you do, don't let your shoe options stop you from getting started. Just make sure you break in your shoes and take them on test drives! Don't take off the labels of a new pair of shoes and then go on a multi-day hike – that's a recipe for blisters and a miserable time.

Okay, let's look at our feet.

After we've done that, let's look at some shoe options:

LEVEL 1: hiking shoes – “Hiking shoes” are ideal if you want to take simple day hikes or if you want to hike occasionally: They have a good grip on the ground, offer sufficient grip, but are not too heavy to be an obstacle.

Here are my favorite options if you are looking for new easy walking shoes in the market:

Merrell Vent hiking shoe
Merrell Trail Glove 4 (Men) – I have the blue ones. You rock.
Merrell Trail Glove 4 (women)

Oh, what's this? "Steve, I don't have hiking shoes! Is that the end of the world?

Do you have a sports shoe? Depending on the grip on the ground, they may be fine for an easy hike. If sneakers are your only option, lace them up, choose a beginner hike, and see how they work. Just be careful on slippery surfaces – your kicks may not give you the grip you need to get over it.

LEVEL TWO – walking shoes – I do not hike enough or do enough hikes of several days to justify the cost of walking shoes, but I would refer to Merrell boots again when they are on the market.

"Why boots over shoes, Steve?"

Although many prefer trail shoes (like yours really do), I can absolutely appreciate the value of a great pair of hiking shoes if you are going on a serious hike, traveling for several days or longer. They have more ankle support, thicker profile, thicker shoes and offer your feet significantly more protection.

REI has a great article to help you choose between trail shoes and trail boots. My advice? Start with what you currently have before deciding whether to invest in big boots or not. Once you have built up the hiking habit and decide to make it a bigger part of your life, you can make the investment.

My advice? If you want to buy boots, go to a professional store, get dressed properly, and then break in for many weeks before going on a trail.

Strange but fun for easy hikes: Vibram FiveFingers – I have hiked around the world in various situations and have worn my vibrams for almost 4 years. I felt like a ninja monkey and a hobbit. I looked weird, but something just felt right when I could feel the contours of the floor beneath me. I will say that when I walk in Vibrams it can be easier to turn an ankle when I step on a root or a rock. Stepping on sharp rocks can hurt. So I watched my feet a lot more than I expected.

I'm a lot more of a trail shoe type these days, but some still swear by Vibrams!

If you are looking for new boots on the market, this short video is a good introduction:


If you wear boots or sneakers, you want to wear socks that don't blister or make your feet sweaty and disgusting.

Depending on how long the hike takes, how serious you are about hiking, and how big your budget is, you can take a look at Merino wool socks.

Like the rest of your outfit, what you wear on your feet largely depends on a few things:

Weather! Are you hiking in the forest and it's 72 degrees outside? Or do you hike up the mountain in the cold?
Shoes! Are you in light hiking shoes, light hiking socks for victory. Hike in big boots in cold months? Large thick warm socks are almost a requirement.
Budget! Do you buy certain socks? Long or short? Great. If you're new to hiking, just wear the sports socks you wear during your workout.
What is the environment like? If you are walking through grass, tall plants, etc., I would wear high socks (which may include your pants). You are not out there to win a fashion show!

Here are the best hiking socks from Switchback Travel from 2018 and here a great article from Art of Manliness about proper foot care after a hike or a jerk!

What do I wear when hiking? (Dress)

Steve goes hiking in the forest.


Pro tip: Don't go through the wilderness without pants. I cannot stress this enough.

The real advice when it comes to pants depends a lot on your environment. When it gets cold, shorts can make you tremble. When it gets hot, the pants may become too uncomfortable.

Jeans? Ehhhhh. For sure. ONLY if the temperature is comfortable and you have no other choice. Being sweaty and hot in jeans is not much fun.

I am a big fan of my nerd pants – the Columbia Silver Ridge pants. Though they look kind of stupid, they're incredibly light, dry quickly, and can go from pants to shorts in just a few seconds!

Not sure what you will encounter when traveling through forests? Wear light pants. I'm terribly allergic to poison ivy and who knows what else. So when hiking I want to keep as much of my body covered as possible to make sure I don't come into contact with anything I'm allergic to. (2)

What kind of shirt should I wear?

My favorite options are long shirts and t-shirts made of merino wool: they are light, wick away moisture, hide odors and breathe well – even though you pay the highest price.

If you're just starting out, pick an old t-shirt and rock it – you can work to optimize performance once you've done a few hikes.

If you're going on a multi-day hike in a variety of conditions, it's great to wear light merino wool shirts that you can put on and that you don't have to wash. But just go for a hike in the forest in your garden? Whatever you would wear when running, training, etc. Aka, whatever won't chafe!


I have worn this mountain hardware jacket on most of my hikes and it has been fantastic (10 years and over) – very light, so packing is not a problem, waterproof so I am dry and heavy enough to block the wind when it rains to keep me warm when it's cold.

Don't bother buying a new jacket if you have a decent windbreaker, but if you do a lot of hiking or looking for a new coat in the market, here's my advice: go to a local shop and try it all jackets until you find one you like.

When you've found the perfect jacket, go home and check online (sometimes you can find the same jacket for up to 60% less). Then ask the local retailer if the price is the same or just buy them online.

Should I wear a hat?

You should definitely bring a hat. I usually rock my nerd fitness hat or my Red Sox hat (Booo Yankees), but when hiking in Australia I wore a hat with a huge floppy brim to protect my ears and face from the sun.

The tops of your ears and your neck are very prone to burns along the way. So either take sunscreen or wear a hat that covers them.

The same goes if you keep annoying things out of your hair, the sun burns your ears and face, and keeps you a little cooler.

What kind of backpack should I bring?

Immersing yourself in the special features of backpacks goes far beyond the scope of this article. I would recommend that you watch my friend Chase's "Bag Review" Youtube channel – guaranteed to be the greatest fun you'll ever have when learning bags.

What would I recommend to a beginner on a hike? The bag you have right now! If you take a short hike, you can just start with the bag you have. The lighter and more convenient it is, the better.

Multi-day hikes, where you live, pack and build a tent every day – this is beyond the scope of this article. I rocked a Kelty Coyote bag that I lived on for months and also used it for multi-day hikes.

If you have the resources, the time, and are planning specific hikes, go to an outdoor specialty store, speak to a professional, and adapt to your body type and the type of hike you do!


If your weather forecast is "75 and sunny" and you walk through a gradually sloping forest in the afternoon, you can limit what you bring with you.

If it's questionable or things could change during the day, versatility is your best bet – a jacket, pants that can turn into shorts, a long-sleeved shirt that you can take off or roll up your sleeves, etc.

Don't go out and buy anything new until you are sure that hiking is an activity you want to invest in. Borrow from friends and get along with what you have

Just start.


In your head you should say, "Steve, how can you read my mind ?!

I just decided:

I would hike in my current sneakers.
I have garden pants and high socks that I can wear.
I have a floppy hat.

I feel good to go! "


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How much water should I bring with me on my hike?

Killarney was a great place to go hiking.

If there is ONE thing you shouldn't leave your home without, it's a water tank so you can stay hydrated.

"How much water should I drink on my hike, Steve?"

Good question. I knew you were smart from the moment you started reading this article.

As a rough guideline, you should drink 1 liter of water every two hours. Increase this amount if you are hiking in very warm / desert-like climates.


I like stainless steel bottles or aluminum bottles over Nalgene or reused plastic bottles, but I make up with what you have. Just make sure you bring enough water with you to keep yourself hydrated during your adventure.

Do longer hikes? Get a hydration backpack (which can also serve as a hiking backpack!) To transplant water more conveniently.

In addition, you should have consumed water before hiking so that you don't start with a fluid deficit.

Hangovers + early morning walks – water = bears with bad news.

What equipment should I take with me on my hike? (Sun protection, knife and first aid kits)

Steve is attached to Machu Picchu

If you're just starting out, you probably won't be climbing the top of a mountain in Alaska, but going on an introductory hike that will help you build confidence and get you started.

Here's what I would recommend if you take your adventure with you:

Sun protection – – If it's sunny outside and you're walking through the forest or up a mountain with a cool breeze on your face, you probably won't be able to tell that your ears and face are absolutely on fire. Get waterproof, sweatproof sunscreen (at least SPF 30) to cover your ears, cheeks and neck.
Bug spray – – especially if it is "this time of year" in your region in which the errors occur in full. Nothing worse than coming home with arms and legs covered in insect bites.
First aid kit – It is a good idea to have first aid items with you: plasters and moleskin for blisters and cuts, neosporin or some kind of disinfectant for cuts / scratches and maybe one or two bandages just in case. Outdoor stores sell travel first aid kits (as does Amazon), but I advise you to make your own (you should have these things in your medicine cabinet anyway – and then you will know exactly where everything is!).
pocket knife – Not essential when you're in a park, but a good thing to take with you in the forest so you're ready for anything. Like McGyver.
Sunglasses – You don't have to go blind on the way. You probably already have sunglasses in your house: I would recommend bringing the $ 5 sunglasses instead of the $ 250 Ray bans.
mobile phone – A phone can help you save yourself in an emergency. If you have a smartphone, it can multitask as a compass, range finder, mapper, etc. Even if you have a mobile phone, it is not a bad idea to bring a compass or GPS system (unless it is bright and sunny and you can find your way around).

If you're going on a long hike, it's usually fairly easy to bring a lightweight phone charger with you to quickly charge your phone.

What food should I bring for hiking? What should I eat on a day hike?

Nuts are great snacks for hiking.


You know, the stuff that keeps us alive.

The answer to this depends heavily on how long you want to hike, what time of day and how much fun you are snacking on. The advice here will largely reflect the advice we give in our nutritional contributions!

Although it is by no means a complete list of snacks, I usually like to put them in my pocket before a hike:

nuts – almonds or walnuts. Ideal for nibbling, loaded with healthy fat and protein. Nut butter is also a great option for healthy fat – my favorite is Trader Joe's raw unsalted almond butter. Ingredient: almonds! However, they are high in calories. So if you are trying to lose weight, do not take a 10-minute walk and eat nuts worth 4000 calories. We in the industry like to call this "counterproductive".
fruit – I throw two or three apples in my pocket; Apples and nuts mean that I have pretty much all the fat, protein and carbohydrates I need for my day. Things like bananas, raisins and other fruits are also good options – choose them according to your personal preferences and tastes. Be careful with dried fruits because they can contain a lot of sugar and calories. So don't worry about eating dried fruits worth 5000 calories and call it healthy! This is reflected in our guide "Is fruit healthy?"
Beef jerky! Make your own or go with some high quality things bought in the store. Lots of protein, easy to pack and durable. Mmmmmm.

What about trail mix or granola bars? You'd probably think granola bars and trails are synonymous with hiking, but I'm not a fan of either unless they're homemade – these products are usually loaded with salt / sugar and processed grains and are damn unhealthy.

If you choose trails, make your own with dried fruits and raw unsalted nuts. If you have no other options, throwing a few granola bars into the bag isn't the end of the world.

More tips for eating here:

Original trail food

A book (optional) – I LOVE READ (more than I love lowercase) so I always travel with my Kindle. Although hiking with friends can be fun, I also enjoy hiking to a secluded spot overlooking a valley or sitting by the riverbank reading a book so I can get lost in a story for a few hours.

If it is a multi-day hike and you do not use technology, bringing a dead tree book is worth the extra weight in your pocket!

One camera (optional) – Even though I have a camera that I travel with, most of the pictures I've taken recently have been taken on my iPhone with apps like Camera + or ProHDR (which I damn love). Both apps are worth the price.

You don't have to be a great photographer, just capture the moment to lovingly look back at an old-fashioned grandpa. Of course, if you're a serious photographer, you've already planned to pack your DSLR so I can't go into it.

Seven hiking tips for beginners

Steve is hanging around with a bouquet.

KNOW THE LOCAL WILDLIFE! Do a quick search on your hike to find out what types of creatures you will encounter along the way. If you are hiking in the bear or snake country, it is very important to know this. Whether you carry a can of bear mace or know what to look for, this can help you avoid serious problems. Also watch out for wild ostriches.
CLEAN, CHECK FOR TICKS – If you are in a wooded area carving through the wilderness, check for ticks and shower with hot water and soap immediately when you get home if you come into contact with poisonous plants or similar things. I can't tell you how many times I woke up with a swollen face as a child because I had wandered through poison ivy the day before.
GOAL FOR THE HIGH FLOOR – I love hiking to high things: the top of a mountain, the high point in a city, the roof of a building. It gives you a good half way to stop, have lunch or dinner and enjoy the view. You also already know exactly how far you have to go on your way down. A tip on how to go down a steep mountain or many steps: shorten your crotch and, if possible, be sure to land on the balls of your feet with a bent knee – if you land thousands of steps on your heels it can hurt your knees and joints destroy because there is no shock absorption. I remember how painful my knees were the day after I hiked down the Colca Canyon in Peru with my buddy Cash because I didn't try to soften my steps and take care of my body.
URBAN WALKING – "But Steve, I live in a city, I can't go hiking!" Why the hell not? Load up your backpack, record a route on Google Maps, you might even find a tall building – avoid the elevator, climb the stairs. Or walk until you find a park, sit on a bench and read a book. Sure, it's not the same as hiking in the Rocky Mountains, but it will make your heart beat faster and get your feet moving! As The Goonies teaches us, adventure can be found in your own garden with the right attitude!
KEEP THE TRACK – If you have an iPhone or Android, download a hiking or running app to track how far you go and how much you hike. Although I haven't followed my hikes abroad (I leave my phone traveling in airplane mode), I've heard great things about RunKeeper and EasyTrails. If you have any other apps or suggestions on how to follow your walks, let me know in the comments and I'll add them here. I personally use a cheap Fitbit Flex 2 that tracks my steps and heights. Good enough!
GEOCACHING – Geocaching can be a lot of fun. Just go to the website, track your location, and then decide which cache you want to find. Think of it as a real version of Indiana Jones or Uncharted minus the Nazis and undead warriors. We cached ourselves in Sydney for a nerd fitness meeting and it was lovely!
GIVE A HOOT, DON'T POLLUTE – Pack it up, unpack it. If you bring something with you, you'd better come with me. Don't leave garbage in the forest and get additional garbage that you see out there. The wilderness thanks you for your service, citizen!

Not everyone who hikes is lost (START HIKING TODAY)

What shoes should you bring with you for hiking?

This article is just an introduction to stimulate your appetite and inspire you to hike and explore the wonderful world around us.

Hier sind einige andere Ressourcen zum Wandern, wenn Sie weitere Informationen wünschen. Fühlen Sie sich frei, mich in den Kommentaren über mehr zu informieren:

Tipps zum Primal / Paleo-Wandern
Wandernotfälle auf Kunst der Männlichkeit
Amerikanische Wandergesellschaft

Ich fordere Sie auf, eine Wanderung für das kommende Wochenende zu planen. JA, auch wenn Sie sich auf der gegenüberliegenden Hemisphäre befinden und es wirklich kalt ist!

Holen Sie sich tolle Snacks, schnallen Sie sich die Schuhe an, schnappen Sie sich einen Freund und erkunden Sie ihn.

Ich würde gerne von Ihnen hören, wo Sie dieses Wochenende wandern gehen.

Hinterlasse unten einen Kommentar und lass es mich wissen:

Wohin gehst du.
Wenn du gehst.
Und worauf Sie sich am meisten freuen!
Versprich, dass du nicht ohne Hose wanderst.
Alle Tipps, die Sie für Ihre Mitwanderer haben.


PS: Sie sind sich noch nicht sicher, ob Sie für Ihre große Wanderung bereit sind? Ich werde Sie wieder an unsere erinnern 1-zu-1-Online-Coaching-Programm. Wir haben Kunden, die das Programm erfolgreich zum Trainieren für das Wandern auf großen Bergen genutzt haben, und wir würden gerne sehen, ob wir Ihnen auch helfen können!

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PPS: Der heutige Rebellenheld: Saint, dessen Erfolgsgeschichte Hunderttausende Menschen inspiriert hat. 8 Jahre nach der Veröffentlichung dieser Erfolgsgeschichte ist Saint nun glücklich verheiratet, Vater von zwei Kindern und hat gerade eine neue Schaukel für seine Kinder gebaut!

Beachten Sie diese kleine Kletterwand? Ich bin mir sicher, dass seine 1-jährige Tochter und sein 3-jähriger Sohn (beide Rebellen bereits!) In kürzester Zeit schiere Felswände erklimmen werden. Er ist in der Tat ein Rebellenheld.



Bildnachweis: 77krc Mixed Nuts

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