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Motivation for Training

2020 Camino Guides

jgiesbrecht

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Planning Camino Frances in March 2020
Has anyone else really struggled with motivating themselves to get active before their walk? I work a driving job, and many days probably don't even hit 2 miles a day because of it. In September I did really good, walking 4 or 5 miles multiple times a week, but then the past 6 weeks I've just sucked again. I fly out 17 weeks from today, and hoping to do CF from St Jean and include Fisterra and Muxia. I'm sure the weather change and less light outside haven't helped lately. I also know I don't need to overdo training, but I definitely need to get more consistently active. I am overweight, no surprise there. I even considered a gym membership for 4 months because there's one minutes away and it would get me at a consistent pace and things, but not worth the cost for a short term. I don't have the luxury of rest days, etc once I'm there. My flights are fixed, and I know I need to train now so that I'm not miserable there. So, all that being said, this isn't a question for those of you in good shape, consistently active, etc. For anyone who struggled before the camino, how did you get through in preparation?
 

davebugg

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Camino Ingles (2019)
I do not know if 'struggle' is the right word for me, but I hate working out. I do it at least 5 days a week, but I do not enjoy it. How do I motivate myself to go? I just start heading out the door. . . I know once I start, that it is my nature to keep going until I finish. So I do not think of anything about how long the workout will take, what I will be doing, how the workout will feel. . . I just focus on walking out the door and getting in the car to drive to nearby trailhead.

Keep in mind that doing a Camino is also a mental challenge to get going day after day: when the weather is bad, you are sooooo tired from a bad night's sleep, your feet hurt, your GI system is acting up, 'Santiago is still HOW far away', you have a head cold, etc, etc. . .

So, this phase of motivating yourself to workout is also good training to develop the mental discipline that will help motivate you to keep walking when ON Camino. :)
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Has anyone else really struggled with motivating themselves to get active before their walk? I work a driving job, and many days probably don't even hit 2 miles a day because of it. In September I did really good, walking 4 or 5 miles multiple times a week, but then the past 6 weeks I've just sucked again. I fly out 17 weeks from today, and hoping to do CF from St Jean and include Fisterra and Muxia. I'm sure the weather change and less light outside haven't helped lately. I also know I don't need to overdo training, but I definitely need to get more consistently active. I am overweight, no surprise there. I even considered a gym membership for 4 months because there's one minutes away and it would get me at a consistent pace and things, but not worth the cost for a short term. I don't have the luxury of rest days, etc once I'm there. My flights are fixed, and I know I need to train now so that I'm not miserable there. So, all that being said, this isn't a question for those of you in good shape, consistently active, etc. For anyone who struggled before the camino, how did you get through in preparation?
How much time do you have to do the Camino? I have seen many people who looked rather unfit start in St Jean and make it to Santiago, so if you have enough time, you can do it, even with minimal training. Just don't push yourself the first week or so. Lots of people "train" on the Camino. That said, I think that you will enjoy it more if you are in better shape. If the gym membership will motivate you, then I'd say do it. Improving your cardiovascular fitness will really help with walking up hills!
 

Dani7

Stop wishing, start doing.
Camino(s) past & future
(2020) Camino Frances
I do not know if 'struggle' is the right word for me, but I hate working out. I do it at least 5 days a week, but I do not enjoy it. How do I motivate myself to go? I just start heading out the door. . . I know once I start, that it is my nature to keep going until I finish. So I do not think of anything about how long the workout will take, what I will be doing, how the workout will feel. . . I just focus on walking out the door and getting in the car to drive to nearby trailhead.

Keep in mind that doing a Camino is also a mental challenge to get going day after day: when the weather is bad, you are sooooo tired from a bad night's sleep, your feet hurt, your GI system is acting up, 'Santiago is still HOW far away', you have a head cold, etc, etc. . .

So, this phase of motivating yourself to workout is also good training to develop the mental discipline that will help motivate you to keep walking when ON Camino. :)
Very well said. Great advice.
 

jgiesbrecht

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Planning Camino Frances in March 2020
Godwilling I will go SJPDP to Santiago in 32 days, and then Santiago to Fisterra to Muxia in 6, then the next day get a ride back to Santiago and fly out the following. So hopefully 38 days for the full walk.
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
Francés (2016 & 2017), Norte (2018), Francés-Salvador-Norte (2019), Portuguese (2019)
Godwilling I will go SJPDP to Santiago in 32 days, and then Santiago to Fisterra to Muxia in 6, then the next day get a ride back to Santiago and fly out the following. So hopefully 38 days for the full walk.
That's a pretty ambitious schedule. Please don't be disappointed if you just make it to Santiago, and not Finisterre/Muxia.
 
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Anamya

Keeping it simple
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015)
Portugues (2017)
Lebaniego (2019)
As mentioned before, SJPDP to Santiago in 32 days is doable, but very ambitious.
In total you have 38 days, which is amazing! Would you feel comfortable in just letting the camino happen at its own speed for you?

Walk short stages in the beginning, don't push yourself too hard, don't feel ashamed of stopping to rest or even take a taxi/bus if things get difficult. It is your camino.

Preparation is good and I'd recommend going for walks when possible, but you never know how your body will react to the camino, even with training.

I'm a normal, not sedentary but not sportsy person, and my husband is a very fit soldier. In our first camino, he had a sunstroke. In the second, he had many blisters. In our third, his knees were hurting. I never had ANYTHING (and hopefully will stay that way!).

Go, enjoy one day at a time and you will eventually get somewhere. And it will be amazing.
Buen camino!
 

martin1ws

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Somport to Finisterre Jul-Aug 2018
At first some thoughts that are not the answer to your question:
If you have enough time, you can "train on the camino". If you are flexible, you have enough time... if you think... I have got 38 days and I will see how far I will come... you have much time... e. g. time for as many rest days as you want or need... and you can come again later if you have not reached your target... or you can skip parts of the pilgrimage and go by train or bus there.
You have to do nothing (well, besides walking the "last 100km" before Santiago if you want to get the compostela).
Maybe you are planning your camino like an "normal-life" event and you do not need to plan your camino like this.

For your motivation for training:
Maybe train together with a friend?
Maybe you can combine it with fun-events... like walking to the fun event XYZ.
Maybe as an "adventure". Walking in the night?
Maybe in smaller steps. For example not taking the next bus stop from work to home but the second bus stop and walking to this second bus stop.
 
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Telboyo

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
I intend to leave the UK the day Before Brexit and walkMarch -April 2019 Camino Frances
Take it easy at the start, stay at valcarlos and then attempt Roncesvalles or even further the next day. Many people say that valcarlos route is easy, I can confirm that the final climb to ibaneta at the end of the day is not easy but it is all downhill from there. The first week is the killer for most people and it actually gets easier after that. I also hate working out but after the first 10 days I had the energy to "work" out each Friday. On Fridays I would force my pace to 6 to 6.5km per hr using my poles to pull me up the hills. I was amazed how refreshed I felt on Saturday mornings
 

yesshesaid

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2019)
Has anyone else really struggled with motivating themselves to get active before their walk? I work a driving job, and many days probably don't even hit 2 miles a day because of it. In September I did really good, walking 4 or 5 miles multiple times a week, but then the past 6 weeks I've just sucked again. I fly out 17 weeks from today, and hoping to do CF from St Jean and include Fisterra and Muxia. I'm sure the weather change and less light outside haven't helped lately. I also know I don't need to overdo training, but I definitely need to get more consistently active. I am overweight, no surprise there. I even considered a gym membership for 4 months because there's one minutes away and it would get me at a consistent pace and things, but not worth the cost for a short term. I don't have the luxury of rest days, etc once I'm there. My flights are fixed, and I know I need to train now so that I'm not miserable there. So, all that being said, this isn't a question for those of you in good shape, consistently active, etc. For anyone who struggled before the camino, how did you get through in preparation?
I agree with those who comment that, if you have time to train on the Camino, you'll be okay, but if you're on a tight time schedule, you run the risk of injuring yourself early on if you are badly out of shape and rushing. It's worth getting your cardio fitness up to snuff beforehand, even if you can't walk long distances! Everything hurt for the first two weeks for me, then stopped hurting, which was paradise. And I'd been doing a lot of cardio work.
 

Zordmot

First timer Spring 2019
Camino(s) past & future
April-May 2019
Do what you can and don't worry.

I think that at least as important is getting your feet in good shape. I'd recommend a pedicure right away and at least 2 more before you start. Moisturize your feet 2x every day before you go.

Bring along with you a roll of Ace athletic tape (Walmart) and each morning put tape on all the places where youve had blisters or cracked skin in the past. And where you felt pressure yesterday. I'm usually known as Blister Man but i walked the Camino twice this year and NO blisters.

As far as getting in shape I found that you can make the most of your limited workout time by doing steps. Is there a sports stadium nearby? By doing steps you're getting in twice the workout in the same time. Start by walking slowly. Put tunes or podcasts in your ears. You'll find that quickly you gain speed. You COULD walk the Camino today. Every little thing you can do in these next 17 weeks will be appreciated by your best friend, your body.
 
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RJM

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
A few times
All I can tell you is make sure your pack is the lightest it can possibly be. Wear footwear that works for you and pace yourself at the beginning and don't injure yourself going beyond your limitations because you'll have to stop walking the Camino and that would suck.
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
C/F: 2013, 2014
C/M: 2016
C/P: 2015, 2017
C/I: 2018
Voluntario: 2014 - 2019
When I first started doing the Camino, I lived in northern Virginia where the terrain was rolling, no hills of significance. but, it gave me a chance to load my rucksack and walk several miles with it, as sort of a shakedown cruise. This got me comfortable walking with the rucksack and my hiking poles. That was all the training I did for my first three Caminos

Since then, and having moved to even flatter Florida - like a billiard table - I learned that if you want to practice hills, you need to gear up, then either find stairs or high school bleachers to walk up and down. Practicing walking in bright unrelenting sun and heat, as well as humidity to build or test endurance or various sun protection methods works great, but not hill walking.

I belong to a gym with machines. So, as long as I can withstand the odd looks from the others, I can load my rucksack and use the stair climbing machines in air conditioned comfort.

To discourage vapid comments from others, I placed a strip of 2" WHITE duck tape horizontally, across the rear of my rucksack, lettered in BOLD BLACK MARKER, that reads "Practice for HIKING." So, people can see what I am doing without engaging me in conversation.

That would require removing my earphones. I NEVER use earphones on Camino. But, given how boring walking on a treadmill or stair machine is, it helps me get through my time. I usually play my library of Galician music, or other Spanish albums I have accrued to get me motivated.

My rucksack is filled with a simulated weight load, so I do not have to keep the bag packed all year. I find that a 15 lb. bag of kitty litter works fine. It helps if you own a cat...

Note: As I go to the gym 5-6 days a weeks for weight machine-based muscle conditioning, including a very basic 20 minute aerobic routine, I reserve my simulated hiking on the stair machine or treadmill for a month or so before I depart for my Camino.

I decided to do this because there is no effective substitute for hiking outdoors except hiking outdoors, at least IMHO. I try to simulate anticipated conditions as best I can given my location and resources. The machines can be configured for flat hilly or steep terrain. Also, knowing my average walking speed from experience, I can set the speeds and grades accordingly.

My goal with mostly indoor training is simply to assure that my ageing joints and muscles will not fail me on the first days of a Camino. If I have pain while in the gym, there is time to see the doctor.

There is IMHO, a valid saying that there are three stages to any Camino:
  1. The first week or so is your body getting used to the 'new' strain of walking and carrying a load daily.
  2. The second week or so is your mind getting conditioned to the daily pattern of rising, walking, showering, doing laundry, eating, sleeping, and repeat, daily.
  3. The third week and beyond, your body and mind, has usually gotten into the physical and mental 'groove.' Now, your mind can empty itself and begin to benefit from the emotional benefits of walking a Camino. Of course, as most of us approach the end of our Camino at Santiago we actually dread that happening. I know I do...
Personally, I have found this to be more or less correct especially for newcomers to the Camino. However, and as my wife has clipped my Camino wings to walks of nominally 14 days, (+/-), I need to accelerate the break-in process. She just worries about me - a lot.

So, my advance training regimen is designed to reduce the above three phases so the first two occur during the first week. Having done six Caminos, it does not usually take a week. The third stage gets a full week, or the remaining time on Camino, to expand my conscious and unconscious self. This is my 'me time.' Even in retirement, I find it of immense help to recenter myself by walking a Camino.

Also, I always plan 5 - 6 days at Santiago to reconnect with the city, the saint, the places, sights and smells I so adore. I also enjoy reconnecting with my friends at the Pilgrim Office and elsewhere around town.

It feels good to walk into my favorite cafes, shops, and even my favorite lavanderia (coin laundry), and be recognized and greeted like I was a friend simply gone for few weeks. In that way, it is like coming home...to my second home...

Hope this helps.
 
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Yoyo

Carpe viam!
Camino(s) past & future
2017: CF 800 km
2019: CF 180 km
Having had a mostly sedentary lifestyle, I took up swimming 3 times a week for 45 minutes, four months before my first camino. Excellent cardio workout while easy on your joints. This may be an option for you too if you prefer it to walking.
I also started making healthier food choices. As a result, when I started walking, I had lost 7 kgs (the weight of my pack!) and my blood pressure was down to normal.
These days, while using the treadmill, I watch camino-related YouTube videos. That keeps me motivated and time flies while working out.
By the way, it took me 38 days of walking plus 2 rest days to get from SJPP to SdC (female, mid-fifties).
Good luck to you!
 

Isca-camigo

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Various ones.
I feel it's possible to walk your way to fitness on the CF, apart from 3 big problems
1) The 1st day over the Pyrenees, which can be quite literally a killer for unfit people.
2) walking to a time scale, which will put ever increasing pressure to walk set distances as your body tries to adapt to the daily repeated walking
3) finding out on the Camino that your footwear is not right, I speak from experience on this one and it's not fun.

If you feel you can't motivate to do the training then I suggest on starting in Pamplona, and taking your time." Little by little" will actually get you a long way.

Buen Camino
 
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Liam Ryan

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
2016
The first day from St Jean is one of the toughest and it will help massively if one has a decent level of fitness. In my opinion, the motivation would come from knowing that one can enjoy the whole Camino experience that much better if one is not worried about fitness. So why not remove that possible obstacle to what can be a great great experience. Wishing you a wonderful time.
 

CdnDreamer

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (12, 15 & 18) San Salvador (18), Portuguese (19)
Put walking on your calendar with a start time and then dont cancel that appointment. If you feel too tired, or the weather is crappy put on music or a pod cast and start. I tell myself I can do ten minutes and usually once I am outside and interested in the podcast I dont return home for an hour. This past Saturday I hadn't walked and it was dark and cold. I went to the Santa Clause parade and walked along taking pictures and following a great float. I walked over 2 hours!

You will thank yourself for any weight loss you can do before climbing the mountains in Spain. We just dont any hills that compare in Ontario and every hill in Spain I wished I was lighter.

If you cant get outside you can do squats and lunges. Doesnt that sound like fun!;)
 

Jomas

Member
Camino(s) past & future
C.F. april-may 2018

C.F. (undecided) 2020
In my opinion, the motivation would come from knowing that one can enjoy the whole Camino experience that much better if one is not worried about fitness. So why not remove that possible obstacle to what can be a great great experience. Wishing you a wonderful time.
I'M agree :)

Hi Jgiesbrecht.
the motivation you already gave yourself, writing: "I know I need to train now so that I'm not miserable there". Beyond the excellent advice given to you by the pilgrims doc of this forum, (don't start too hard), it is really true that if "something goes wrong" (I mean physically) your path is interrupted, or at least worst you'll slow down your gear plan. And then it will no longer count for 32/38 days. I've seen people stop, after a week and believe me, there was a deep bitterness in their eyes ...the salts and downs, the backpack that does not weigh like a shopping bag, muddy and stony ground, hot and cold:
they had not considered all this or were asking too much of their physique (and this is always subjective).
If you want to get the most out of your camino experience and complete your travel program, try to find time for a light constant workout.
G.L.
ciao
 

AlwynWellington

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
please see signature
I work a driving job, and many days probably don't even hit 2 miles a day because of it.
I normally suggest people consider working up to, before stopping for breakfast:
1) 15 km walked;
2) 400 metres of elevation gained;
all with your pack and ger on your back.
And try for a multi-day trip or two.
The purpose is to train both body and mind.
And to sort out you clothing and equipment.
Walking is different from gym work, although that will help.

For you , @jgiesbrecht , that may not be possible, even with 17 weeks to go.

So, as many have suggested above, it will be training on the job for you. And start with easy stages. There is nothing magical about starting at Saint-Jean. My suggestion is start from Logrono (a good transport hub). You will have one slightly challenging pull up a hill a day or so before Burgos.

Kia kaha (take care, be strong, get going)
 

Ekelund

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
“It’s your road, and yours alone. Others may walk it with you, but no one can walk it for you.” Rumi
There is nothing magical about starting at Saint-Jean. My suggestion is start from Logrono (a good transport hub). You will have one slightly challenging pull up a hill a day or so before Burgos.
AlwynWellington has a good point, you do not have to start in SJdp, you could consider starting in Pamplona or Logrono to avoid the mountain walk. And it would give you more days to walk to SdC.
Pay attention to the weight of your backpack, you want it as light as possible. You can search the Forum for other peoples packing lists, you will be surprised how little you need on the Camino.
Buen Camino to you
 

alhartman

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Hope so!
As others have alludedto, your plan is very aggressive. You have 32 days SJPdP to SDC, Gronze, Brierley, and amis.fr treat that as 33 or 34 stages. Are you a fast walker (steady at 5+km per hour? Can you keep that pace for up to 7 hours a day? And day after day? No rest days?? Miss Burgos cathederal? Astorga Gaudi palace?

And endurance is not the only potential problem: boots/feet/blisters stop many; joints can start to 'fail'; pack weight is a real issue particularly for those of us over 30BMI.
The first day is the hardest on the camino (yes break into 2). From Ontario, you also have a 6 hour time change. Why Muxia/Fisterra?? Why start at SJPDP?
Part of the camino lesson is to learn to listen to our bodies. Mine says 'start slow and then taper off'--even though I usually walk 20km every Saturday and Sunday, I m always tired until the 9-12 day; have no joint problems, never had a blister.
If your constraint is 38 walking days, work with that. By all means do the camino, but let go of overly high expectations.
I'd start in Pamplona--easy to get to, lots of albergues afterwards to make stages of any length. If you body is feeling great, keep walking, if it is tired, take a short day. I would also make Fisterre contingent and not a goal; SdC is a great city.
buen camino
 

David

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Moissac to Santiago Spring 2005 was the first foray.
Sure, getting the body used to walking countless miles wearing a pack is a pretty good thing if the person works in an office and drives there and back or drives for a living so sits down all day - but if the person is an active healthy person? Just pack and go - certainly it could be difficult the first week, but pacing, taking it easy, walking in a relaxed manner .. the body will respond and get fitter and the person will be fine (I am talking about an average joe/jill who is healthy and fairly active anyway).

But 38 days to include transport transfers and jet lag and Muxia? and you are unfit and overweight? That isn't going to cut it. Leave out Muxia, start in Pamplona, leave out any rest days ... and you just may, may, have enough time. If you can change your flights add on another week or ten days so that you are relaxed!
As for training in winter - who wants to do that? Go for it six weeks before your flight!

Hang on! - You might join a gym??

Here is how I would use a gym card ....

i-started-using-my-gym-card-today-finally-using-his-22168262.jpg
 
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Anamya

Keeping it simple
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015)
Portugues (2017)
Lebaniego (2019)
I'd start in Pamplona--easy to get to, lots of albergues afterwards to make stages of any length. If you body is feeling great, keep walking, if it is tired, take a short day. I would also make Fisterre contingent and not a goal; SdC is a great city.
This is such a good suggestion. Reduces the time pressure a lot!
 
Camino(s) past & future
(September 2017)
Has anyone else really struggled with motivating themselves to get active before their walk? I work a driving job, and many days probably don't even hit 2 miles a day because of it. In September I did really good, walking 4 or 5 miles multiple times a week, but then the past 6 weeks I've just sucked again. I fly out 17 weeks from today, and hoping to do CF from St Jean and include Fisterra and Muxia. I'm sure the weather change and less light outside haven't helped lately. I also know I don't need to overdo training, but I definitely need to get more consistently active. I am overweight, no surprise there. I even considered a gym membership for 4 months because there's one minutes away and it would get me at a consistent pace and things, but not worth the cost for a short term. I don't have the luxury of rest days, etc once I'm there. My flights are fixed, and I know I need to train now so that I'm not miserable there. So, all that being said, this isn't a question for those of you in good shape, consistently active, etc. For anyone who struggled before the camino, how did you get through in preparation?
The first step is always the hardest.
 

Gerry McCulloch

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
23 May 2019
Has anyone else really struggled with motivating themselves to get active before their walk? I work a driving job, and many days probably don't even hit 2 miles a day because of it. In September I did really good, walking 4 or 5 miles multiple times a week, but then the past 6 weeks I've just sucked again. I fly out 17 weeks from today, and hoping to do CF from St Jean and include Fisterra and Muxia. I'm sure the weather change and less light outside haven't helped lately. I also know I don't need to overdo training, but I definitely need to get more consistently active. I am overweight, no surprise there. I even considered a gym membership for 4 months because there's one minutes away and it would get me at a consistent pace and things, but not worth the cost for a short term. I don't have the luxury of rest days, etc once I'm there. My flights are fixed, and I know I need to train now so that I'm not miserable there. So, all that being said, this isn't a question for those of you in good shape, consistently active, etc. For anyone who struggled before the camino, how did you get through in preparation?
The first step is always the hardest.
Hi
Motivation to practice can be diminished if you view it as a chore. Try to look forward to it in the knowledge that you will be better prepared for the physicality of the Camino. I constantly prayed the rosary as I walked. This helps enormously.
 

Jay Es

Member
Camino(s) past & future
May 2017 the del Norte, home via the Portuguse to Vigo, Planning a Via de la Plata for October 2018.
I think if you regularly do even a couple of miles a day you'll be O.K on the Camino, with one proviso. That the beginning of you Camino you walk 10 km a day or fewer for the first week and add a little each day after that.
Staring at SJdlP might be a big ask as that hill is a biggy. I would start someplace far flatter and walk easy for two weeks.
 

Robi Diaz De Vivar

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2016), Norte (2017), Portuges (2018), Mozarabe (2019), Primitivo (2019), Via de La Plata (2
Has anyone else really struggled with motivating themselves to get active before their walk? I work a driving job, and many days probably don't even hit 2 miles a day because of it. In September I did really good, walking 4 or 5 miles multiple times a week, but then the past 6 weeks I've just sucked again. I fly out 17 weeks from today, and hoping to do CF from St Jean and include Fisterra and Muxia. I'm sure the weather change and less light outside haven't helped lately. I also know I don't need to overdo training, but I definitely need to get more consistently active. I am overweight, no surprise there. I even considered a gym membership for 4 months because there's one minutes away and it would get me at a consistent pace and things, but not worth the cost for a short term. I don't have the luxury of rest days, etc once I'm there. My flights are fixed, and I know I need to train now so that I'm not miserable there. So, all that being said, this isn't a question for those of you in good shape, consistently active, etc. For anyone who struggled before the camino, how did you get through in preparation?
Hi there and the best of luck with your walk next year. For me the only useful training has been walking. It really is just a matter of putting the Kms/miles in. It combines 2 good disciplines. The first is getting your body used to the repetition involved in consecutive long walks - it also prepares your feet and ankles for the horrific abuse which you are about to put them through - very important; and the second is forcing yourself to do something when you would really rather do something else. The other great thing about walking a lot before you go is that allows you to assess whether your footwear is up to the job because if you get blisters or other problems training then you really need to think of other options.

I really found (and still do) that my best training motivation was the fear of failure - "How was ever going to get there? How humiliating would it be if I hold everyone that I am walking with back?" Whenever I feel that then I am out the door, rain or shine pounding the walking paths. I manage about 5 walks every 2 weeks and average about 30 kms a week and I have found that that gets to me the start line in good shape. One other thing I would recommend doing your training walks with some weight in your rucksack so that you are prepared for that when you start. A full pack is not necessary as your initial adrenaline burst will ensure that you don't notice the extra.

I hope that this helpful
 

Krissten

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (July 2018)
Frances (May 2020)
There is so much amazing advice here. A lot of what I am saying is repeat.

Unless you live in a very hilly area and have an extra 4-5 hours to walk every day, you pretty much have to use the Camino to train for the Camino. This means planning shorter stages early on, listening to your body and stopping before it starts screaming at you and not after, and not feeling that you need to adhere to a strict schedule. With this mindset, you may find that you get to the point where you can walk 20 miles a day and make it to Santiago in your time frame but it may not. But in my opinion, picking a couple of days to bus ahead and rest,or cutting out several km at the end of the some of the days by hopping in a bus or taxi, is far preferable to not finishing at all because of an injury. I have seen many people younger and fitter than me leave early because of pushing it too much.

But even though you can not recreate the Camino at home, you can still do things to help maintain fitness. Zumba, spin, swimming, strength training classes, yoga will all be an asset to you on the Camino. So find something you enjoy and do THAT. It’s okay if you don’t enjoy walking at home. Many people (including myself) are bored to tears with distance walking in their home towns.

At some point, you have to do some long walks(and long walks a couple of days in row) so you know what it will feel like have more tired legs. This lets you test your gear, check your pack weight (unless you are going to do a transport service which there is no shame in), make sure your shoes work, and work out whatever foot prep regimen you decide on. For me, this process starts 2 months before I leave. I start at 6 miles and try to get up to 10 miles. But I get so so bored. Reading the Camino message boards and watching YouTube videos and movies like the way helps with motivation at this stage. A good podcast or audiobook helps too...

Consider a weekend hiking trip to somewhere near you with a family member or friend. It will help you test your shoes and gear with elevation change in addition to helping you train. You can check the forums or some do the Facebook groups to see if there are fellow pilgrims in your area.
 

AlwynWellington

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
please see signature
my best training motivation was the fear of failure
@Robi Diaz De Vivar , how right you are.

As I was walking in memory of a great friend, failure to complete would only be excused if I suffered a major injury or worse. In the event I had just over four years to prepare my feet, body and mind: and get my gear sorted. And I needed all of that time.

And because of my age and going to my "furthest end of the earth" (and associated cost), contemplating failure (except to learn how to avoid it) was not an option.

Kia kaha (take care, be strong, get going)
 

Reetuska

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
January Camino Frances
I am going to do my first camino in Jan and been trying to train a little too enthusiasticly so I got knee problems. Now I wish I had taken it a little easier. Getting the muscles strong around the knee would be good, I think. Downhill parts will be the hardest for knees. Little worried if I will make it on the Camino. Luckily I have plenty of time. Training on the Camino should be olay. I dod trekking in Nepal before without training and with poor equipment. I did ”suffer” at the beginning but my strength kept improving all the time. At the end I felt I could easily go around Annapurnas again!
You will be fine as long as you don’t push too hard😀
 

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