Get Goat Fit with WalkingWomen

Finding your inner goat

We love our goat levels to describe our walks and one of the best comments we heard from an American guest was “what on earth are these goat levels you use in Britain”.

Perhaps soon they will be the UK’s national grading for our trails! But for now, they are special to WalkingWomen. They get women chatting and we get a lot of questions.

For us the most important thing is choosing the right holiday for you

and being prepared and feeling fit and ready for your holiday. We start with our Goat 1’s and we work up to Goat 4 – check out Our Goat Guide

Our most popular are Goat 2’s and these are the most varied. Our advice is always to read the description of each holiday as we give the maximum distance,time expected,maximum elevation and type of terrain of each trip. The itinerary gives the detail but also ..

Always be prepared to be flexible and pack your spirit of adventure

When on walking holidays weather changes, a path is suddenly closed for tree felling or flooding or some act of nature – our guides always know and they may have to change a route.

Spain Virginia Woolf


We say Trust your Guide’ – they are the reason to come on guided holidays – they know their stuff, and their location and they cannot wait to share their passion for their land.

Carla Khouri, a qualified mountain leader and our Get Goat Fit Guide for the Box Hill walk gives her tips on preparing for your first hike. Perhaps you are wavering between Goat 1 and 2 – this will help you get ready.

As a beginner, you shouldn’t take on a particularly long or challenging route, so as long as you’ve got a good amount of cardiovascular fitness, you shouldn’t find things too challenging.

However, if you’re a bit further along in your hiking journey, taking on a longer route or simply want to be extra prepared, there are a few exercises you can do to prepare your body and mind for the challenge.

Top Tips – there are links to more info Carla wrote

  1. Cardiovascular conditioning Any form of cardio will do – as long as you are getting your heart rate up. Incorporate cardiovascular exercises into your routine, such as walking, running, cycling or using a stair climber. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate to vigorous aerobic activity three to four times a week. This will help improve your endurance, making it easier to tackle steep inclines and long hikes.
  2. Strength training
    Your leg and core muscles have to work hard when you’re hiking, so doing some strength training that focuses on these areas will make the challenge a little easier. Hiking can put a lot of strain on your leg muscles and lower back, so exercises like squats, lunges, step-ups and planks can be beneficial. Strengthening your upper body can also help with carrying a backpack.
  3. Hike-specific training If the idea of tackling a steady incline makes you nervous, then you can prepare by practising with smaller hills or even a set of stairs.Training with a loaded backpack can also simulate the added weight you’ll carry during a hike. This will prepare your muscles for the specific challenges of hiking.
  4. Stretching and flexibility If you want to perform at your best while hiking and reduce your risk of getting injured, you’ll need to ensure your muscles are mobile and well-recovered. Stretching and flexibility-based exercises can help.Focus on stretching your legs, hips, back, and shoulders. If you can join a yoga or pilates class. Perhaps book a massage. All the things that help you relax and stretch and be flexible.

If you like guidance try our 12 week programme to get you tip top goat fit – its just a guide

If you have less time until your holiday do just start as soon as you can and do what you can.

Goat Fit - Silhouette

Weeks 1-4:

  • Cardio:Each week 30-45 minutes getting a little out of puff – walking, jogging, cycling, gym work, playing a sport. Whatever you enjoy. Feel your heart pumping a little!
  • Strength: Each week a session focusing on full-body – a steady walk for an hour, an exercise/dance class. Walk with poles. Join a Nordic Walking Group. Get out as much as you can and walk. Take a swim if you are a swimmer.
  • Flexibility: Daily stretching or yoga/pilates. 15 – 20 minutes each day if you can.

Weeks 5-8:

  • Cardio: Increase to a session of 45-60 minutes each week. Try a little faster, a little higher. If you have a hill, or incline nearby walk up it.
  • Strength: Try 2 sessions a week with increased intensity.
  • Flexibility: Continue the daily routine you are doing.
  • Hiking: Include a proper hike each week – increase distance/elevation each time. If it’s a one goat holiday walking 1km per week is ok, 2 goats work up to 5-10km a week, Goat 3 needs stamina for 12 + km per week. Go steadily and walk with others if you can.

Weeks 9-12:

  • Cardio: Increase to a 60-90 minutes session each week. Could be walking, jogging, cycling, dancing, a sport – whatever floats your boat!
  • Strength: Try 3 sessions per week or at least keep 2 sessions going
  • Flexibility: Maintain daily routine.
  • Hiking: One long hike per week plus one shorter hike and try hikes 2 days in a row too.

Do call or email with any questions as we can direct you to more guidance, talk through some Get Goat Fit events and discuss a more personal service for you.

Let’s Get Goat Fit together




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