Whether you love hiking or not, you should read this story about how my family is preparing to get back out in the woods as a full family unit again. We’ve always enjoyed being outdoors, but the last few years things went topsy turvy, and now we’re back ready to prepare our mind and body for the long treks into the woods for some awesome New England hiking trails this year!
It’s that time of year, the time to get out in the woods and enjoy nature’s beautiful scenery. I love being out in the woods more than anything else in the world. I’ve gone to cities, and I’ve traveled to different towns, I even enjoy the ocean at least once a summer, but get me out on an adventure in the woods and I’m in my zone.
Something that I forgot we used to do during our previously married days was going out on hiking adventures with our children.
This type of active family lifestyle was something we both wanted to instill in our kids, but alas the unpredictable life happened, we divorced for nine years, things went a different direction and now we’re back on this path together again.
I’m so excited that we’re together again because that means for the first time in years, my pre-teen and teens are comfortable and happy to go out on adventures.
We talk about hiking nonstop in this house, and I can’t wait to share how we’re adjusting our lifestyle habits to prepare our family for many summer hiking adventures together!
With all of that being said, there’s this little problem with our love of hiking … we’re out of shape!
I lost a significant amount of weight this past summer while we were living in tents, hotels, and even sleeping in our vehicles, but once we got settled into a home, I made up for all that lack of food. My other half and I put on 20 pounds each and we know that’s not good!
As a means to work off the winter weight, we all have put on over the winter of 2020, and get prepared for our hiking adventures, we’re doing a few things around our neck of the woods here in New Hampshire.
How We’re Preparing for Hiking Season
Below you’ll find a list of lifestyle changes we’ve started to make as a means to prepare our bodies for hiking season. With short walks, lake visits, and other outdoor adventures as well as a change in our eating habits, we’re making an effort to get ready to hit the woods this summer!
More Veggies and Fruit
Eating healthier is one of the best ways to get your nutrients and help ensure you’re heart-healthy. I have hypertension and since putting on 20 pounds this winter, my blood pressure is creeping back up into dangerous levels again.
We recently grilled some chicken for dinner, and I thought it would be delicious on top of some iceberg lettuce with a little mozzarella cheese and ranch dressing. It was delicious! This type of diet change, eating the meat on a salad, for example, helps get me back into the habit of eating veggies and other good-for-me foods again.
A Daily Walk
Ever since the weather got warmer, my kids have been taking a 40-minute walk together every day. This has not only helped them get back in shape, but it’s strengthened their sibling bond!
A daily walk might be something I’ll start doing too, but for now, it’s helping my middle son most of all to get his legs ready for these long hiking adventures we’ll be going on in the summer season.
I get a lot of activity handling yard work and going up and down the stairs in our house 100 times a day 😀
I just love the Zumba workout I’ve been doing. I’ll admit that once thought to be a new daily activity, I’m only doing Zumba occasionally to get my body ready for hiking season.
The Zumba Exhilarate Body Shaping System is FUN, energetic, and makes me happy, but my knees hate me and well, unpredictable life tends to take over so I do need to get back to my daily Zumba workouts. Above is a “before” photo to document my body changes along the way.
We’ve been getting our water from a local spring and boy oh boy is it the best water ever! The town water here tastes and smells like chlorine so I stopped using it for anything.
Instead, we venture to a fresh water spring that runs for locals to fill up their water jugs. We fill them once a week, sometimes twice and are going through 2-3 gallons of water per day for just drinking, and that’s not the entire family – that’s most my oldest and me who’ve increased our water consumption.
I like to pretend my increased water flushes out those Little Debbie snacks I keep eating when I should be grabbing a celery stick instead. 😉
Share Memories of Hiking Fun
We always eat dinner together as a family, sometimes my other half isn’t here, but when he’s here he sits for dinner too. Eating dinner together as a family without electronics, not even a TV on, is something I’ve always been pretty strict about.
Sadly, over the years I’ve been in bad situations that made my kids uncomfortable and so family dinner time was adjusted during those times to keep the peace until we could be comfortable and safe again. Eating dinner together provides us with the time to share memories of hiking fun together.
We randomly engage in conversations about our past hiking adventures, and even our homeless family trip to Groton, CT this summer. Sharing these stories helps inspire the younger two boys to recall how much fun we have when we get out there on the hiking trails and experience new places.
At the end of the day, all I can say is that there are many ways you can work to get your family prepared for the hiking season. These are just some of the ways we’re working to help encourage a love of the great outdoors, and a healthy body to be able to handle some of the more difficult hiking trails we may encounter during our family hiking trips this summer.
If you’ve never gone hiking, I highly suggest you find an easy trail near your area. Get your hiking shoes on, grab a hiking backpack, and bring plenty of water and then head out to a trail and start seeing how this type of outdoor activity can strengthen the bond of your family unit.