How Long Does It Take to Train for Backpacking?

By Anna Duncan

Backpacking is a great way to explore the outdoors, but it can be physically demanding. While it’s true that some people are born with natural athleticism and a passion for being outdoors, most of us need to train in order to prepare our bodies for long days of hiking.

The amount of time needed to prepare for backpacking depends on a variety of factors.

The first factor is your current physical condition. If you’re already an avid hiker and exercise regularly, you may only need a few weeks of training before embarking on your first backpacking trip. On the other hand, if you’re new to fitness and have never done any serious hiking before, then you should plan for at least one to two months of training before hitting the trails.

Your specific goals will also affect how long it takes to train for backpacking. Some people are content with day hikes and don’t have any intention of spending multiple days out on the trail.

In this case, you should be able to get by with only three or four weeks of training. Those who plan to spend multiple days out in the wilderness will need more time—at least six weeks—in order to build up their endurance and strength.

Cardiovascular Endurance

In addition to overall physical fitness, cardiovascular endurance is particularly important when it comes to backpacking. This means that not only should you be able to hike uphill without getting overly winded but also that you can sustain your energy level over long distances and periods of time. The best way to build up your cardiovascular endurance is by running or cycling regularly and gradually increasing your distances each week until you reach the point where you can comfortably cover several miles in a single outing.

Strength Training

Strength training is also an essential part of preparing for backpacking trips as it helps strengthen muscles that help support your body during hikes. You can do this by incorporating weightlifting exercises into your regular routine or even something as simple as carrying around a weighted backpack during walks.


How Long Does It Take To Train For Backpacking?

The amount of time needed depends on your current physical condition as well as what type of backpacking trip you plan on taking.

Those who are already avid hikers may only need a few weeks while those who are just starting out may require up to two months in order to adequately prepare their bodies for long days on the trails. No matter which route you choose, make sure that you focus on building up both cardiovascular endurance and muscle strength in order for maximum success.