Let's go to the mountains

Good mood, good friends, plenty of energy, and great fall weather make for a great hiking excursion. Do yourself a favour and try one of the many nature trails available on our beautiful island, while making sure you’re well prepped to enjoy the great outdoors at its best, by following some simple tips outlined below:  

Hydration is King

A typical hike can last from 2 to 6 hours depending on the route you chose and your group endurance. But no matter how many hours you have planned out, you also need to plan out regular hydration, before during and after the journey. Although the amount of water needed varies from person to person, the American College of Sports Medicine suggests:
• Drinking approximately 500 ml of water, 3-4 hours before hiking
• Hydrating in frequent intervals during the hike, consuming about 800 ml every hour, by taking small sips every now and then
• Make sure you also hydrate after the hike in order to replenish fluids lost during the work-out

Snacks to boost and replenish energy

The same prep needs to be done when it comes to snack hikes that will enhance and replenish your energy throughout the experience: 
• Make sure you whip up a hearty, carb-rich breakfast, at least 2 hours before you start your journey. Try a slice of bread with honey, with a banana and some raisins.
• Pack snacks that are easy to carry with you, light and nutritious. In terms of quantity, an easy rule to remember is to eat small portions periodically until you are full, but not bloated.

Homemade hiking snack ideas:
• Trail mix: try an energy boosting combo almonds, unsalted peanuts, dried cranberries, dates, chocolate chips, and dried fruit (or experiment with your own combos)
• Energy bars: combine honey, tahini and melted dark chocolate chips with cereals and nuts. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours and cut it into 5cm thick bars when hardened. 
• Outdoor-ready sandwiches: choose tortilla wraps over sliced bread and avoid tomato or cucumber as the moisture softens the bread (try peanut butter with red pepper or bananas)

Now that you know the basics, time to gather your friends and meet up in nature. Happy hiking!

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