8 Useful Tips To Consider When Gearing Up For Walking

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‘It does good also to take walks out of doors, that our spirits may be raised and refreshed by the open air and fresh breeze.’ Seneca Click To Tweet

As I probably mentioned so many times already in previous articles, walking is such an easy and handy exercise. You can make it part of your daily life, walking to the public transport instead of driving (when and if possible), park further than your destination so you can have at least couple of minutes of a stroll, and many more. If you want to find out more or just refresh your memory check out❗👉10 Tips On How To Start The Walking Adventure.

You do not necessarily need any special gear to walk in the course of your daily life.

All you need is to use your common sense and dress appropriately. Go for comfortable shoes, or have spare walking shoes if your work uniform requires a particular outfit. Also, consider the weather and stay warm in the winter, cool in the summer, dry in the rain.

However, if you are planning walking during a trip, holiday, etc, there are few items to consider when gearing up. You may find that the list of things to prepare for walking/hiking will be different from one person to the other.

Some of us will go for the basic needs while others might include lots more items as they like to go for more comfort no matter where. Such as besides the clothing, footwear and first aid bag they might like to include other accessories such as camping chairs and/or walking poles, etc.

'Carry as little as possible, but choose that little with care.' Earl Shaffer Click To Tweet

No matter our preferences that are based on our own uniqueness and individuality, we believe that our suggestions with the things to prepare for walking/hiking is a good starting point for any one interested in walking. So, have a look at them and start gearing up for your walking adventure.

Things to prepare for walking/hiking

Shoes

No matter the type of walks, the most important gear is appropriate footwear; waterproof walking shoes or walking boots, depending on the type of walk you are planning (local or weekend away, maybe hill walking).

Even more important than a waterproof attribute is the shoes fit and comfort. The shoes should feel supportive with its uppers feature light, breathable and flexible, the sole to be shock-absorbent and the insole moisture-resistant.

Also, pay attention to the heel. The heel wedge should be raised to have the back of the shoe twice thicker than the front.

Lastly, your toes area should be roomy to avoid blisters and other injuries.

Also, it is important to check out your older shoes for any wear and tear. If the heels and/or soles of the shoes are visibly very worn might cause foot problems and it is very important to avoid that, as on the long run can affect not only your walk and your legs but can also have a painful impact on your back. For more information about health problems caused by inappropriate footwear.              ❗👉Check out the article here.

Our feet changes in size as we grow older, so pay attention to the ones you have: if they feel tighter than before you might consider replacing them. Wearing tight fit shoes can be harmful for your feet and can develop different health problems.

When you buy new ones you might want to consider going for one size up so your feet will have plenty room to move around until the end of the day, when our feet tend to get bigger due to the pressure forced on them by caring our body around for the entire day.

Nowadays, most brands offer a variety of shoes specially designed for walking with an assortment of style to please as many and diverse customers. Some companies even offer a customise feature, where you can customise the design to your likes. Do a thrill research before purchasing your walking shoes as they are the most important part of your gear.

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If you are on a budget, check out shops and online offers frequently  for bargain. Many of them offer huge discounts half season or at the end of the season. If you are searching online try one of the following key search to have a great view of what the market has to offer: walking shoes for women, walking shoes men, walking shoes waterproof, walking shoe wide fit, walking shoe go outdoor, walking shoe on sale, walking shoe cheap, walking shoe stylish, and many more. Just try and play around with words, looking for the features you want for your shoes.



Waterproof clothing

Do not get taken by unpleasant surprise along the way by this continuous climate change.

'There is no such thing as a bad weather, only inappropriate clothing.' Sir Ranulph Fiennes Click To Tweet

Always be prepared and remember that owning at least a waterproof jacket is a very good and reliable investment, especially in the UK, where the rain is hardly missed.

Now you can find many shops and brands that offer a lifetime guarantee for its products (such as           Craghoppers and many more) so it is definitely worth the investment.

Also, regarding the clothes, it is best to use layers so you can adjust accordingly to the temperature. If you are thinking of going on a trip is best to consider insulating clothes (fleece) because they are ideal to keep you warm.

Lastly, but not least, consider your safety and others. Consider choosing brightly coloured outer garments to be visible by drivers, bikers and other walkers.

Also, if you are on a budget, check out regularly the shops for good bargains. Most of the shops offer huge discounts.



 

 Waterproof backpack

Another good investment that can last over at least a couple of years is a waterproof backpack. Otherwise, you can use a regular backpack and have handy a plastic bag to use when needed/raining.

Choosing a backpack is strictly a matter of preference and necessity. However, it is a good idea to choose one that can expand and have many pockets which are useful when travelling.

Also, it should be light and hold the weight you think you’ll normally have on average.

If you do not like coloured garments, then the backpack can be chosen with a reflector or decorated with one so you will be visible on the roads.



 

Accessories

Depending on the weather, length and location of your walking are smart to have handy the following accessories:

  • hat will protect you against weather conditions ( sun, rain ),
  • sunglasses are not only protective but also stylish,
  • compass to help you orient and navigate in nature and is a good kit to be used with map,
  • a whistle might be the tiniest among the travel kit but can be a lifesaver in times of needs so do not trade lightly when looking to buy one – chose one that is powerful and has a chain attached (or you can attach one) so it can be at a hand touch distance at all times. Also, should be very light to flow on the water if needed. This little item is crucially helpful when the weather condition makes other kit items less efficient to use to call for help (fog), and of course do not forget the map.
  • torch because you never know when the lights can go down. You can choose from a variety of sizes, shape and charging options. You can choose a rechargeable model or battery powered. Some of them are even waterproof in case you think that this feature might come in handy to you.
  • maps can be very useful and they are widely used today. The planning maps from the Lonely Planet are quite good and popular for the features it has such as quite a cheap (under £5), durable and waterproof, an easy-fold format in a good size, lots of information about transport, attractions, etc. You can find everything you need on Amazon.

In all of the outdoor shops, you should be able to find the accessories mentioned above. However, if you are not sure if the shop closest to you will have what you will need or like, or even you are not sure exactly what would be best to get, you can always shop around online, look at different offers, read about the features that each item offers so you can make a better-judged purchase.

Again, want to remind you that if you are on a budget or you just like a good bargain keep checking out shops and online sites as there are always huge sales half way season or end of season. Unfortunately, most of the time, when one product gets discounted the desired size and/or colour might not be available. I am a popular petite 12 size at clothing and 5 size for shoes, which means I can hardly find things on sales as they already out of stock while full price. So be ready and consider to buy something that you have seen and really liked at full price if you believe that your size is popular.

Mini Travel Aid Kit

Although the content of your travel kit will depend heavily on your travel plans, there are some basic items that each kit should include:

  • antiseptic, painkillers, wound cleaning gauze, sterile dressings, bandage tape, plasters, tweezers, scissors, emergency blanket
  • antihistamines, insect repellent and bite treatment, sunscreen, sunburn treatment
  • medication for pre-existing medical conditions
  • country-specific: anti-diarrhoea medication, rehydration sachets, anti-malaria medication, mosquito net, water disinfectant

You can put together your own kit with the things you want to be prepared or you can buy different types of kits already put together in nice tidy and mostly waterproof bags.

Basic Safety Measures

When you are walking, whether is within your local area, as part of your daily life or is within your walking adventure getaway weekend or holiday, always use your common sense and try your best to keep not only yourself but all those you encounter safe.

Here are some tips to stay safe:

  • Always wear a reflector if you are walking on a country lane in the dark.
  • Wear brightly coloured clothes so you are visible for drivers
  • If you are walking on a road that is missing a sidewalk then walk facing cars
  • Avoid high-speed and congested traffic
  • Beware of dogs and people
  • Make sure the roads are safe
  • Try walking with a companion, not only for safety but also for the pleasure of sharing your experience

Lastly, but not least keep your planning kit within your reach such as a map, compass, whistle, torch etc. so you will know how to find your way around but also signal for help in case of need.

 International Distress Signals

No matter where you do your walking it is always best to be prepared, and knowing an international known distress signal is one of them.

In case of need use your safety whistle giving three (six in the UK) short blasts followed by a minute pause.

If you hear an SOS signal described above, respond with short blasts and continue until you reach the one signalling for help.

You can also make use of the torch to signal if you are in distress.

 Energy Bars And Drinks

Energy bars are perfect to have in your backpack.

They are not only small therefore not taking up space but they contain cereals and other high energy foods great for quick energy to help you keep moving and get to your destination.

They are lifesavers if you get stranded and might take a while until you get to a place with a nice meal.

Do not forget to stay hydrated. Be environmentally friendly and try using the refillable bottles.

Gear Up

Always be prepared

Do your research and know exactly what gear you’ll need and where to get the supplies you need for your walks.

Even if you personally do not need it, you might give a helping hand to others.

So remember for the walking adventures you need good shoes, preferably waterproof, weatherproof clothing and backpack or a plastic bag to use when needed/raining, accessories, aid kit, energy bars, drinks and your basic knowledge of staying safe.

Once equipped with all of the above, start living and enjoying every step of the way.

‘Walking is the best possible exercise. Habituate yourself to walk very far.’ Thomas Jefferson Click To Tweet

❗Please, if you like what you have read, share this article so other people can benefit from it❗

Until next time,

Oana and Paula

12 Replies to “8 Useful Tips To Consider When Gearing Up For Walking”

  1. This is really a great compilation of things to have and look for when going for a long walk or hike.  Being single, I can never be too careful and my two little dogs would be of little use if I got myself in trouble.  You have some great items here that I would have never thought about like the waterproof backback and the first aid kit.  Probably both worth having along.  I know here where I live, it can be sunny and at a moment’s notice we can get a brief rain.  Thanks for all the useful information!

    1. Hi

      Thank you for your comment and I am so pleased that you find the information useful. 

      Enjoy the walks, no matter the weather.

  2. I am in total agreement with you on what essentials we need to take with us on a walk. If its in an unknown area, one that we haven’t walked before, we are possibly going to come across something that we may not have encountered before. So having a contact device or maps or first aid and especially water is important.

    I tend not to take so much with me when I am walking locally in areas that I know, it can of course be argued that I am wrong in this. Going out for a long walk for me is often a means of escape from the daily humdrum of life. I want to be free of everything, I often leave my phone at home, pick up a bottle of water and off I go.

    Its great to be outdoors and away from everything for a while, to breathe the air, to immerse ourselves in the countryside and see Nature in all her glory.

    1. Hi Louise

      Thank you for your comment. I do feel the same about going outdoor, to be free of all. And as you said on local and short walks we can leave everything behind but on long and unknown paths is better to be prepared. 

      The nature is blooming and its lovely. Enjoy the summer!!!!

  3. Making walking a daily part of my life has been a long time goal for me. But it just never seems to pan out. It seems to have you have everything covered when going out for walks. 

    What types of shoes would you recommend for just general track walking? We have a track close to us, which would be perfect if I could just get out there. I like the rain gear recommendation as we get a lot of fo rain here in wet BC. But once again how do I build up the motivation to get out there?

    1. Hi Jag

      I totally understand how you feel, as I was in your shoes not long ago. Getting started is hard, especially if you work long hours, all you want is to hit the sofa and do nothing. But you must push yourself and one of the best motivation is to read about the benefits of walking and to find a friend that is interested in walking. Pairing up with a buddy to walk is very helpful because even if you do not feel like walking you will push yourself harder just to not let your friend down. 

      For more tips read the articles under Walking Tips on our website, especially ‘ 10 Things You Must Know Before You Start Your Walking Routine’ and ‘Start Walking -12 Simple Suggestions To Start Your Walking Routine’. 

      For starting I would recommend to use the walking shoes you already have. For example I am very happy with the ones I have from Sketchers if its dry out as they are very comfortable and light, and for wet days I prefer the North Face ones as they are very protective. 

      After few walks you will start to see what kind of shoes would be better. Overall, you need shoes that are light weight but also protective.

      Do not forget to check us out again for future tips.

      I wish you a great start and hope that it will happen soon. All you need is start with one step and the rest will follow.

      Enjoy the summer!!!!

  4. Definitely a great outline for walking, and even more so for hiking. What jumped out at me here that I’ve never seen in alike articles is the fact you recommended energy bars. This is especially true if one is looking to embark on longer walks. I think a lot of people underestimate the importance of adequate nutrition, especially when out walking or hiking on trails that encompass a number of hours. Shoes, first aid, water, and backpacks are important, but always have some food (especially those high in carbs) available. 

    1. Hi Todd

      I do agree with you very much – food is a must on outdoor adventures and the energy bars are so handy as they are small packed and full of nutrients. 

      Thanks for reading the article and hope you’ll revise it the site for new ideas.

      Enjoy the summer!!!

  5. This is a great detailed guide to long walks. I love walking but I have to admit that I am never prepared as well as detailed in your post as I usually to impromptu walks that end up talking hours of exploration or being lost most of the time and me spending hours trying to find my way back to where I began.  I have been lost on the Bruce Trail  in Hockley Valley in Orangeville, Ontario, I got lost in the night in Oxley’s Woods in Shooter’s Hill and even in Wareham Forest out of all places, so had I known to take a whistle, maps, and enough supplies as listed in your post, I would have been equipped, I tend to rely on my Mobile phone and in all these instances it ran out of power or couldn’t get a signal in Wareham Forest.  Thanks for the tip about the whistle SOS signal, another new lesson for me today.  Many thanks for a well-written post.

    1. Thank you for your feedback. I am very pleased that the information in the article was useful and please refer back to it anytime you are planning a trip so you will be prepared for your adventures.

      Enjoy the summer!!!!

  6. I am starting to make taking walks part of my daily routine, and since my family is planning on vacationing this summer once the kids are out of school, I decided ro look up things I could probably need to be able to take my walks out there.

    Your list is so detailed and very thoughtful. I especially like that you included getting a whistle, which is definitely very important incase of an emergency. Which I never even heard of thought of, if I had decided to pick things on my own.

    Even having a little first aid box, can also be a live saver, one never really knows what lies out there , especailly in an environment you are not used to.

    i will be sure to bookmark this, and use as my to do list to make sure I dont leave out any important items.

    Cheers..

    1. Hi Queen

      I am really pleased that you have found the article useful…that was the purpose of it. Indeed, there are so many simple things with a major importance when travelling, so please refer to the list anytime you are planning a trip and also to check out further ideas.

      Have a lovely summer!!!!

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