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Training suggestions

Training suggestions

Postby Brian94 » Sun Jul 12, 2020 6:57 pm

Hello all,

I am new to hill walking and bagging, and had done 2 Munros in the past 2 years for charity. I am looking to get out more and enjoy more what our beautiful country has to offer, and have been out starting small for the past 2 Sundays, taking on Dumyat and Tinto. Both were pretty straightforward, but it did indicate to me just how unfit I have gotten!

I am looking for anyone who has any experience in the training side of things... What kind of things would you recommend to build fitness for taking on more Munros? What kind of things would you recommend for recovery? What things do you lot eat while out on the hills and what do you eat when you get back?

My next target is next week, taking on Ben Lomond (again) and plan on continuing on from there.


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Re: Training suggestions

Postby Marty_JG » Sun Jul 12, 2020 7:16 pm

Brian94 wrote:What kind of things would you recommend to build fitness for taking on more Munros? What kind of things would you recommend for recovery? What things do you lot eat while out on the hills and what do you eat when you get back?

The best way to get hill-fit is to walk hills, so try the hills of lesser height: Corbetts, Grahams, Hughs. The closest thing most gyms will have is a stair machine. Otherwise your daily sweat-inducing cardio of choice will help your general cardiovascular fitness.

Recovery... rest. A nice bath if you have one. If your legs really ache some Tiger Balm (Deep Heat, etc) can be good.

Eating, before you go something slow-release energy: banana, porridge, etc., on the hills its your choice but I like tangerines (sweet, refreshing... tangy) I also like taking boiled eggs with me (not least as the dog likes them too) just remember to take any littler INCLUDING organic litter such as tangerine skin or eggshells back with you. When you get back, again whatever you like but if you want to maximise the workout effect ensure you have had some protein. Hydration is far more important than food.
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Re: Training suggestions

Postby kenncunn » Sun Jul 12, 2020 7:33 pm

Hi Brian,
The best way to get fit for the hills is just to do more hillwalking and your fitness will come.Start with single Munros and as your fitness increases you can link other hills if this is possible.You could do some running to increase stamina or if a member of a gym use the equipment in there.
You will probably feel sore after a day in the hills this is DOMS(delayed onset muscle soreness)just your muscles telling you they are not used to this exercise this will diminish if you are walking regularly.
If you type in what to eat in the search bar at the top of page there is a past topic will give you some tips.
Have some complex carbs such as pasta the night before and a breakfast of porridge or something similar in the morning before you go to keep energy levels up and most importantly keep hydrated on the hill taking regular drinks before you get thirsty as dehydration will sap your energy.
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Re: Training suggestions

Postby Giant Stoneater » Sun Jul 12, 2020 8:04 pm

I find cycling helps a lot and I don't mean a leisurely stroll.
Doing some local walks and just increase the distance over a period of time will help with fitness also doing some stretching excercises before a walk and after a walk also stops the legs from seizing up.
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Re: Training suggestions

Postby rodderss » Sun Jul 12, 2020 9:20 pm

Hi Brian

That’s a question I asked a couple of years ago on here as I struggled badly on the hills.
Last November I finally decided to do something about it.

Firstly if your carrying too much weight, lose it, I lost over 2 stone Nov to Feb by healthy vegan eatingIf your not overweight skip that bit and just eat healthily.
Secondly started weight training with a personal instructor twice a week in January , lockdown put an end to that but kept it going in lockdown by online training with dumbbells legs and upper body.
Start jogging follow a couch to 5k app then move to a 10k app , it’s easier than you think.
Within 8 weeks I could run a 26 minute 5k

That improve your strength and cardio and top it up by hillwalking and your hill fitness will be sorted.

I no longer have to be waited on all the time, can keep up with the young lads now.haha

Any way good luck with whatever you try.
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Re: Training suggestions

Postby Manwaeadug » Sun Jul 12, 2020 10:27 pm

I like to think I'm reasonably fit. Not as fit as I was, but I can still walk at a fair clip for miles and I can run a wee bit when I need to......

I walked the Monument Hill/ Bennan Hill trail in Straiton the other day there and I was blowing out my backside going up Monument Hill right at the very start.

That's the training I'm putting in to get me fit for proper hills. I reckon it'll work and for munros I'd scale it up.

Any sort of endurance sport or exercise then, as mentioned, it's slow release energy like porridge before I start and quick release energy like jelly babies for a boost when needed. On the few trails I've done so far I've also had a few sandwiches, chocolate raisins and plenty of fluids with me......plus water and treats for Manwaeadug's dug! I like to stop for a wee munch while I enjoy the scenery and solitude. :D
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Re: Training suggestions

Postby Scottk » Sun Jul 12, 2020 10:53 pm

Walk regularly and take your rucksack with you as often as possible. Even an hour a day will soon make a difference.
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Re: Training suggestions

Postby Hike Man » Mon Jul 13, 2020 11:15 am

My general approach to the hills is to pace yourself and avoid over exertion. If you have a fitness watch or heart rate monitor then wear it and stick to the easier heart rate zones where possible when on a long walk. If you really push too hard then you will find it difficult to eat and drink as your stomach will say no which will then increase fatigue. It will also make it difficult to maintain the lower heart rates as once you Jack it up it seems to stay up. You will also experience heart rate drift on longer exercise periods which means higher heart rate for the same effort.

Regular cardio helps but you need to incorporate hills in the equation to activate the set of muscles used for that.

I make up a mix of dried fruit, salted nuts of some sort and candy coated peanuts and keep eating as I go. It depends on what you find is easy to eat and is high on calories. They say the average adult will use about 100 calories a mile so you can estimate before you go what amounts of grub you will need. On day trips sandwiches with whatever takes your fancy have served me well in addition to the chocolate and other tasty bits.

As others have said drink regularly as you go. I normally take a sports drink or some sort and plenty water. Water is quite often plentiful up the hills so pack sterilising tablets and top up the water reserves as you go to limit the weight you carry.

If out in a group always walk at the pace of the slowest walker. If you don’t then the poor slow walker is going to get very tired very quickly trying to keep up and will get the least rest at the stops you take. Just take your time and enjoy it.
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Re: Training suggestions

Postby JonetCol » Mon Jul 13, 2020 12:26 pm

As with any form of exercise doing stretches- both before and after - helps prevent muscle and joint probs and aids recovery. I'm getting on a bit and if I don't do my stretches I'm sure to suffer.
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