CROSS TRAINING- Resulting in functional muscles. Over the last few months I’ve modified my workouts significantly with each long distance hike I’ve completed. With the knowledge and at first unaware I was developing what I call now functional muscles. Im big on being able to put your body to work, not just for training in the gym. Having modeled for the last 15 years I more then understand estetiques and can appreciate it. Weight training is very important both with free weights, machines and using your own body’s resistance. Alternating body parts throughout the week and incorporating several full body exercises has really helped me stay fit and get in shape. Posture, balance and a proper functioning kinetic chain is prime and it should never be over looked. A common pain many people experience is lower back pain, especially due to the sedentary lifestyle we’re living in. This can be a result from an under developed core, gluteus or most importantly muscle imbalances in the feet. Something I recommend doing is an over head squat assessment, this way you’ll be able to understand what you’re working with. Squat as if sitting in a chair, hands over head running parallel with your ears. Of course this will be hard for you to do on yourself, especially from side view but at least you will be able to feel whats happening in your body. Example is your range of motion limited, is it hard to keep your arms up, do your feet turn in or lift up? Observing all 5 check points, front view -feet and knees. Side view pelvis, shoulders and head. Remember to look below and above for any problems in your body. You should be able to gather enough information with 5 squats.
I recently hiked Mount Baldy in winter conditions. One thing I love about the outdoors is being able to adapt to the weather and mother nature. I believe that spending more time in nature has been a huge part of my emotional growth. This his newfound adventurous mentality I’ve adapted for the last year has not only helped me with training outdoors all season long, but also served in my personal life. One thing I’ve never mastered is change. Im sure many of you can relate… When Im about to do a big hike, I sometimes get this wave of anxiety, playing in my head what might happen if I’m not prepared, or better yet, not being comfortable with last minute changes. Something the outdoors as taught me is that things happen and it’s normal to alter pans. Life will always going to surprise you and it’s how you deal with it in the moment that truly distinguishes your character.
I hiked Mount Baldy again, but this time the conditions were very different. Weather conditions (which can be found on www. mountian-forcast.com) were in the 40’s at the portal and gradually decreasing to the low 20’s at summit with around 50 mph winds. I had to prepare best I could for the low temperatures and high winds.
Here is a list of the majority of gear I wore and brought along.
1.North Face Apex + Etip gloves
2.Medical Kit for 2 ppl for 1 day
3.REI Carbon fibre trekking poles
4.North Face hiking Boots
5. Arc’Teryx Gortex Shell
6. Patagonia pack
7. Arc’Terxy Brize 32 day pack
8. Smartwool hat
9. Arc’Teryx fanny pack
10. Kahtoola Micro spikes
11. Pocket knife
12. Arc’Teryx puff coat
13. Gregory 3 Litre camel pack
14. Smartwool neck gaiter
15. Smartwool base layer
17. Patagonia base layer legging
18. Smartwool socks
I’ve spoken about it but can’t stress enough how important it is to understand what your clothing is made of and how you will layer or remove layers effortlessly when needed. You don’t want to constantly undress releasing body heat and lowering your heart rate, so understanding how you react to physical activity and temperatures is vital. Zipers AKA vents are your friend! You can read more about it on my previous blog “Calorie Burning/Toning..” for more info.
A few highlights from this hike were of course the beautiful snow cap mountains, fresh air and sunshine along with having to use micro spikes 3/4 of the way up AND down. That really added to the Cross Training Workout! It was definitely a surprise but I was ready then I ever could’ve imagined. The winds were the harshest I have ever experienced feeling like I could get blown away so photo ops were limited! Thanks to my partner Don Lee for standing by me, and always getting ready for an adventure. Thank’s to him, we managed to get a few photos at summit. Due to the weather conditions we decided not to attempt the Devil’s Backbone- - it’s a very narrow and exposed path on the mountain top ridge. Always remember to make your health and safety top priority, there’s always next time! Be prepared, and don’t get discouraged by the surprises along the way.