Hi everyone! I'm from the city and have no experience but want to research and prepare as much as possible. Also, I am looking for experienced hikers to go on trails with. One of my main goals is to lose weight and for general health. Looking forward to the journey :-)
I'm from New Orleans and I'm not sure what kind of hiking to do. My health is good and I'm used to walking, but I wonder if I should start off with a beginner's trail and work up to more difficult terrain and longer duration. Also, to lose weight and improve health requires some time (work and other obligations may curtail the amount of time I can devote to hiking). Could it be days? a few weeks?
Depending on how this works and scheduling, I'm willing to travel to another State to go to a trail (especially in the regional South).
I would start with daily(or as often as possible)walks out your door or as close as possible to build general fitness/lose weight.Build a base that is slightly challenging but doesn't leave you too winded.When that distance/speed becomes easy, increase to challenging levels again.
This will give you the fitness to do local, regional(or beyond)hikes with others.I use to belong to a Southern Outdoors Adventure yahoo group with quite a few members from New Orleans.There is/was a Louisiana backpackers club and paddling club that would meet your requirements for hiking with others.Of course, now meetup groups are popular for this,as well.
You might also try posting in the Southern forum here.I know Cajun(hiker) is in Baton Rouge and they have Halloween meetups on the Bayou...
You could look for a hiking group in your area on meetup.com. All it takes is a credit card to start a hiking group there, so be as careful as you would be about someone you met through this website - don't consider people to be entirely reliable and knowledgeable until you've gotten to them.
Thank you for your link, Null. I will look into it further. I'm willing to travel too, but for convenience, this would be good. If I can find someone to go with me, even if they're no more experienced than I am, I'll give it a go.
Post by Bateauxdriver on Feb 12, 2017 0:34:37 GMT -8
Hey Jenn. Just found your post. Luckily for you the Louisiana Hiking club is very active. They just hiked on the North Shore at Fontainebleau State Park this weekend. I'm a member b7t haven't been on an outing for a while. Reminds me. The $10 annual dues are due. I highly recommend you check them out. Camp fest is coming soon their annually gathering. www.hikelouisiana.org
Jenn, you bring up some doable goals for yourself.
The fastest, surest way to loose weight involves weight training (including machines) and a sensible monitored diet.
Weight Loss: The general idea is to eat 6+ meals a day each with nearly the same amount of calories AND start a fitness program that stresses LARGE muscle involvement (mostly below the belly button). Eating 1/6th of your daily amount often will fool your body into thinking you are not trying to starve it. This project may take joining a gym and getting somebody to show you how to properly use the equipment and weights. You want to be able to eat enough to make your exercise program work. If you are too tired to finish your exercises, boost the calories a bit. If you are hungry often, boost the protein a bit. The goal is to build muscle and have enough fuel (food) to have it happen. Your diet should be more protein, fewer carbohydrates and low fat/oil. Plenty of sleep and water is needed so that you can recover and rebuild muscle. If you energize large muscles and eat a consistent well planned diet, you will never be hungry and you will steadily convert fat to muscle. Weigh your self every two weeks. Make a chart (date vs your weight) on chart paper and post it on your refrigerator. No alcohol, sugar or anything white. Muscle Milk is a good protein supplement. You can include banana, apple, pear Brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrot, frozen berries, spinach, or anything else in a blender.
Take a day off once a week to do anything you want reasonably.
Fitness: I don't know how over weight you are, but running or jogging is not a good idea if you are over weight or obese. Figure out your BMI and read what that means. To protect your body, you will need to loose some weight before you start an impact/jogging program. When you are ready, look here: exrx.net/Aerobic/WalkProgram.html.
Challenges: Toward the end of your exercise program you want to be able to jog (NOT on concrete or hard roads) for 20 minutes and still be able to carry on a conversation comfortably. You want to be able to determine your max heart rate and be able to maintain a high heart rate. How you figure this out is to take on a many floored stairwell. Using 'step breathing' inhale on left foot, exhale on right foot. You are looking to get your heart beating at a rate that will allow you to maintain a generally uncomfortable pace (up stairs or LONG hill) for over 15 minutes. That is close to 80% of maximum heart rate. Simply slow or speedup the number of steps you are taking to get 'in the zone'. For example, if you are gasping for breath, reduce how fast you are going up the stairs or hill. If you are coasting, step up the pace a bit. The goal is your ability to continue a steady pace uphill for an extended time simply by adjusting your step breathing to accommodate your heart rate. To come down those stairs, get a death grip on the hand rail and take steps down 3 or four at a time S L O W L Y.
If you have access to a Precor (or similar non-impact machine) Use it as a warm up - 10-15 minutes or when you start to glisten from perspiration. While on your weight reduction program save the energy you would put into an aerobic program to do another set of two on a big muscle machine or weight. If you are over weight, put off a running or jogging program for at least 6 weeks. You can walk, for up for 60 minutes if you think you need to work on walking.
Develop an exercise program that works muscles below your belly button on even days and muscles above that line for upper body strength on odd days. You want to get as much as you can out of the even days...once a day. Start out slowly and easily. If you have sore muscles you were trying to be a heroine - and quit doing what you did to cause damage.
Plan on copious amounts of water all day long. Train your gut to accept a lot more water.
Get an exercise buddy. It will make you be punctual and serious about your weight loss program.
When you get your weight down, and you know what your 80% heart rate is, hit the bricks or a trail that will take an hour. The one thing you don't want to do is get fit on a long trip. That can be very uncomfortable - get reasonably fit first.
While hiking, start step breathing about 20 seconds before you start an incline. It takes about that time to get oxygen filtered into your muscles. Not need to start a long hill with oxygen deprivation to begin with.
Hi Jenn, we seem to be in similar situations! I am from central Louisiana and new to the hiking world! I am active but would enjoy the chance to make myself stronger mentally and physically in the outdoors! I have joined the Louisiana Hiking Club and look forward to some group hikes but I work every other weekend so will have to get creative in planning trips! I am willing to drive south to find some good trails, there are also some great ones here in Kisatchie!