- On 06 Dec 2019
The Coast to Coast is rightly rated one of the best walking routes in the world. But how fit do you need to be to walk the Coast to Coast route?
In seeing some of the best sights natural England has to offer you will walk across valleys, hills and mountains. It is better to have some previous hill-walking experience. By the time you take your first steps in St Bees, you should ideally be at a good level of fitness and stamina. The natural environment can be demanding at times.
Our Fitness Tips For When You Walk the Coast to Coast
Our top tips for prepaing for your Coast to Coast walk are as follows:
- Take regular long distance training walks (12+ miles)
- Increase daily activity and exercise
- Increase your exercise types (cycling, swiming, jogging) slowly and steadily
- Aim to complete at least four 2-day walks of at least 12 miles on consecutive days
- Ensure your walking boots are worn in – and waterproof!
- Practice walking with your rucksack packed
- Consider a walking pole
We recommend that you undertake a 3-month training plan before your start. Take regular long distance training walks (over 12 miles) and increase exercise and activity levels daily.
Walk as much as possible. Walk to the shops, to work, at lunchtime, at weekends, and incorporate exercise as part of your daily lifestyle. Also include other types of exercise such as swimming, cycling, jogging and the gym.
Build up slowly and steadily. If you are in any doubt then please seek specialist advice or contact ourselves. Build up your walks so that you are doing regular long distance training walks (over 12 miles), and include hills and rough terrain as much as possible. Part of the attraction of the walk is the challenge of tackling different terrains and weather conditions. Including these in your training will not only help you come best prepared to enjoy it. It also gives you a great excuse to get out walking in your home area.
Aim to complete at least four 2-day walks of at least 12 miles on consecutive days before your C2C walking holiday (i.e. four walking weekends). Increase your activity levels slowly and steadily over time.
Ensure your walking boots are well worn-in, comfortable, waterproofed and have good ankle support. Your boots are the most important thing. If you get blisters then each step will be painful, and you’ll take around 500,000 steps to walk the Coast to Coast!
Practice walking with your rucksack packed with everything you’re going to carry with you, to get used to the weight and also adjust the fit for comfort. Choose a rucksack that has a rigid back to stop it slumping and pulling downwards. We recommend a small air gap between the rucksack’s rigid back and your own back to minimise sweating.
Lots of people find poles very helpful. They assist climbing hills by greatly helping balance. Poles can take the stress from the knee joints when used correctly, especially if the poles have spring ‘shock absorbers’. Poles are best used in pairs for symmetry and should be correctly adjusted. When you stand with your elbow bent at a right angle, the pole handle held in your palm, the tip should be in the ground.
If you are flying into the UK and have difficulty bringing poles we do have a few pairs for hire.
This is a journey for you to enjoy soaking up the constantly changing scenery, and the culture of the folk that live along the way. The pace at which you take on the challenge is a question you need to carefully consider. Remember each walking day will be strenuous, but at a pace you can enjoy, it will be extremely rewarding.
Well prepared this will be an adventure you will treasure!