If you’re a seasoned walker and 5km is something you do quite easily, why not challenge yourself and enter the 20km walk event in this year’s Sunshine Walk?
Things to consider when participating in a longer walk include:
- Preparation: Increase the distance of your regular walks slowly in the weeks leading up to the event. If you are currently walking 5km 3x week, increasing one of those walks by 1km per week should have you walking up to 15km at least by the time the Sunshine Walk event is upon us.
- Hydration: In the days prior to the walk, limit alcohol intake and slightly increase water intake. During the walk, drink to thirst. Walking a long distance with a full bladder is not advised, or comfortable! You may not need a drink at every drink station, but a mouthful may keep you hydrated
- Energy: Eat a high-carbohydrate meal in the day before the walk, breakfast is essential although you can keep it small and energy-dense (e.g. honey on toast), and you may need a few light high-energy snacks (such as a few dates) for during the walk. Afterwards, replenish both your fluids and energy stores with a nutrient-dense meal and plenty of water.
- Foot care: Wear thick cushioned socks, supportive walking shoes and ensure your toenails are appropriately trimmed a few days prior.
- Recovery: An appropriate warm-up and cool down will help prevent injury and post-exercise muscle soreness. Any new activity may result in post-exercise muscle soreness, but this should settle within a few days. Follow your walk with some very light activity the next day (for example, a gentle yoga class or a 3km walk) to keep your body moving.