Outdoor Gear – Walking For Health & Fitness
When it involves walking outdoors, the very best clothing to put on varies considerably depending on the area and also weather.
For instance if the weather is hot, it's generally best to avoid darker colours, because they absorb the heat of sunshine.
If you'll be walking on a road, use a reflective jacket or armbands to make sure that drivers of cars and trucks will see you when it starts to get dark.
While clothing made from cotton is normal, it may not be the most effective choice for walking/hiking.
When cotton gets damp, it ends up being a bad insulator and it does not hold in your body heat. This means you'll feel much colder and you may have a higher risk of hypothermia. Instead, look for clothes manufactured from woollen or synthetic materials.
Don't forget to put in walking socks when you are getting your walking/hiking outfit together. Socks that are made for walking/hiking often tend to provide more cushioning than common socks. They generally breathe far better too, which will reduce sweat and leave you much more comfortable throughout your walks.
Even when the weather conditions are nice, it's a good idea to take a waterproof, wind-proof coat along with you.
You never know when the conditions may change and a good water and windproof jacket goes a long way toward keeping you completely dry and comfortable.
During wet weather condition, wearing walking/hiking trousers will keep your legs dry. These trousers often tend to be much more durable than your everyday trousers,and in addition are water resistant.
Cold weather can make a long walk a lot less enjoyable.
The most effective method to keep warm during a walk is to put on a thermal jacket which will keep your body heat in and the chill out.
A woollen sweatshirt is also a great choice since it is well insulated and more water resistant than a cotton t-shirt.
In really cold weather, thermal underwear is excellent for keeping cozy, although tougher to take off than a sweatshirt, should the weather take a turn for the better.
Wherever you're walking/hiking you need something to carry all your gear in.
If you're not taking much with you, a smaller belt pouch/bum bag will probably be enough.
However, if you're planning a longer walk, it's best if you take a backpack/knapsack.
While a school/gym style bag holds a lot, a hiking backpack is the recommended choice. They are designed with better storage space and also comfort in mind.
Even if your backpack doesn't seem all that heavy at the start of your walk, lugging it around for long term periods can really wear out your back, arms and shoulders.
If you're walking with a heavy load, make certain you take regular breaks to give your shoulders a rest.
GPS and Navigation
In this day and age, lots of people already take a GPS device with them at all times.
Even a standard navigation app, such as Google Maps, can be extremely important - both walking locally or through wooded areas.
Providing you can get a signal on your mobile phone finding the best route to your destination can be very easy.
However, for routes that take you deep into countryside, it may be best to take along an actual GPS unit.
A device made for hiking/walking generally has a much longer battery life than a lot of smartphones, especially if you're listening to music on your phone whilst your walking.
Your smartphone just doesn't only act as a guide with the correct GPS application, many other apps that are available offer other benefits to walkers.
MapMyWalk acts as a GPS, calorie counter and route planner, all in one.
In addition to tracking your progress on each walk, MapMyWalk keeps data from walks you've taken in the past in order to let you see how your fitness is developing.
Not only can you save information from previous walks, you can also share the details with other walking-enthusiast mates (to compare everybody's progress) as well as post on your social network sites.
MapMyWalk isn't the only application available to health and fitness addicts.
There are countless digital pedometer apps readily available as free download. Solutions like Google Fit or Samsung's S Health give a free way to plan and track your fitness.
The use of an additional tool to track your progress is a wonderful motivator that will keep you walking for several years ahead.
Food and Drink
Whenever you go out for a walk, make certain to lots of water with you.
If you don't stay hydrated, you can end up struggling with tiredness or perhaps heat exhaustion.
You should pack food that is non-perishable and will not weigh you down. This is particularly true with longer walking trips.
Experienced walkers recommend eating lots of carbohydrates and also proteins, which offer fast energy as well as keeping muscular tissues healthy.
Dehydrated foods are excellent, due to the fact that they are much easier to carry.
Bear in mind, what you take with you can differ greatly from one walk to the another.
For example if you're just walking in your neighbourhood, you won't need more than good footwear and a bottle of water.
But it doesn't hurt to think about using weights and resistance bands to get a little more out of your walks.