This past weekend was an absolutely beautiful fall day here in upstate NY!
No workout at home for me!
Clear and sunny skies with temps in the 60′s. Can’t ask for much better then that!
Scott and I suck at planning so we decided upon waking (then laying around, then going out for breakfast) that we should get in a hike because the day was too good to pass up.
Because of the last minute plan we decided to hike one of the local mountains to our area, Hadley Mtn. Scott had done it before but not me, I tend to get in the car for a road trip before hiking and summiting, so this was new for me.
So we packed up his day pack (hehehe) and headed out.
The specs on Hadley:
- 3.6 miles round trip
- 1525 ft elevation gain
- 1675 ft summit elevation
- Inactive fire tower on summit (1 of 34 in NYS previously used for spotting forest fires)
- Took us 1 hour and 40 minutes to summit, spent some time at the top, hiked down. Total trip was 3 hours.
In was a great hike! Actually, it was our first hike of the season, to my extreme disappointment, and consequently felt like I had no business being there. Fitness tip: the only way to train to hike a mountain is to actually hike one, so that’s why I felt so out of shape.
And it’s a hell of a fat burning workout.
Which brings me to my 2 points of this blog:
1. To remind you how great a workout a hike up a mountain is.
I’ve been telling you forever how great high intensity interval training is for fat loss and fitness and how it is superior in results to long, slow cardio.
And what better way to do HIIT then to hike up a 60 degree incline for 1.8 miles?
In case you’ve never actually hiked a mountain before, it goes a little something like this:
20 steps, stop and pant, 20 steps, stop and pant, 20 steps, stop and pant (the entire way up)
If you’re really creative, when you stop and pant you pretend you’re looking at a fungus on a tree or an interesting rock at your feet. We know the truth!
Anyway, that’s really HIIT: short bursts of intense activity followed by recovery. And that is scientifically proven to blast away calories while you’re hiking and then for 24-36 hours even after you come down. It’s called afterburn and it is your friend.
2. To announce my intentions of participating in The Firetower Challenge
The Firetower Challenge is run by the Adirondack Mountain Club as an alternative to hiking the 46 high peaks in NYS.
Although I have 3 of the high peaks under my belt, thank you very much, I figured the Firetower hikes were better suited for hiking alone. Scott is always so busy with work and doesn’t care too much about hiking one way or another, so I will have to just grow a pair and go it alone one of these days.
Actually, I tried that once when I hiked Sleeping Beauty and I got lost. It was bad. Didn’t find my car until after dark. Ooops.
Anyway, I am sure it will take me a few years but it is one of my long term goals. And right now it is official, since I’m telling you so.
So, if you are local to the adirondacks I highly suggest you try the Firetower Challenge or attempt the 46′er club with me and keep me updated on your excursions.
Your Friend & Coach,
Susan Campbell, MS, CSCS
Author, Ultimate Home Workouts