The Valley of Flowers trek is super popular when it comes to Himalayan treks in Uttarakhand and rightfully so. Especially because of the views, the grand valley, the majestic Hemkund, and other attractions on this trail. What no one tells you about the Valley of Flowers trek is that while it is good for beginner trekkers, there is definitely a need for trekkers to be physically fit to do this trek. So, when it comes to preparing for the Valley of Flowers trek, don’t leave fitness behind.
During the Valley of Flowers Trek, you complete over 50+ Km of trekking on 5 consecutive days, you trek roughly between 6 – 14 Km every day. There are a few patches in the trail (Govinghat to Ghangariy and the entire trail to Hemkund Sahib) that are quite steep and can only be done if you’re physically fit.
If you don’t have a fitness regime already, we recommend you start one at least 8 weeks before your trek. Eventually, you should be able to build your endurance over a period of time.
Preparing for the Valley of Flowers Trek – Your Fitness Guide:
Let’s admit it, to trek, you need to be fit. You can’t enjoy the beautiful view if you’re huffing and puffing for breath, now, can you? The level of fitness required varies for various treks. There are a bunch of easy trek-friendly exercises that you can do at home without equipment.
What are trek friendly exercises?
These are workouts work on very specific muscle groups that you use while trekking. They will help you improve your balance, strengthen your core, improve your endurance and help you trek with ease.
The below exercises help you build three essential parts of your body that are most important while trekking:
Exercises for the Valley of Flowers Trek:
- Stair Climbing
How will this help – Pushing your body against gravity is a great cardiovascular activity. Stair climbing helps strengthen the muscles around your knees and helps build endurance.
How will this help – Push-ups help you strengthen your upper body and your core, which is very important when you ascend while carrying a backpack.
How will this help – Squats are the best form of functional fitness. They promote balance and stability and strengthen the legs, thighs, hips, buttocks, and hamstrings.
How will this help – Crunches work on your abdominal muscles to build your core strength. This exercise will help you keep your balance on uneven surfaces.
- Interval Running
How will this help –Running is a great aerobic cardiovascular workout that uses more oxygen. This workout helps make your lungs stronger.
How will this help – Burpees is a great full-body strength training exercise and the ultimate example of functional fitness which helps abs, hamstrings, chest, glutes, and arms.
How will this help – Rest is an integral part of your fitness routine which must not be missed. Overdoing can cause an unnecessary injury to your body.
Fitness tips to keep in mind while preparing for the Valley of Flowers Trek:
- If you wish to include more cardio into this workout, you could add in cycling, swimming and running as well. But remember, everyone has a different body type, it is advised that you speak with our Founder before beginning your fitness regime.
- The trek to Gurudwara Sri Hemkund Sahib can be challenging for most trekkers as you hit an altitude of 4,633 m and the trail is steep from the start all the way up to the top. This is where your endurance will play a major role. You can check a detailed blog on how the Hemkund Sahib trail looks like here.
- It is always recommended to do smaller one-day, two-day hikes to prepare yourself for a multi-day Himalayan trek. Sign up for smaller hikes over the weekend that can also help you build your stamina.
- Prepare yourself mentally and physically before you embark on the trek. The higher altitudes you reach, the more tiring you get, so prepare yourself for this before the start of the trek!
Your trek experience depends on how you prepare yourself for the trek
Always remember to not take your fitness for granted especially when you’ve signed up for the trek. Start your preparations immediately to experience the trail better. If you are not physically fit, you may end up not enjoying the trek or worse, not being able to complete it. This can make or break your experience.
While the Valley of Flowers is an easy-moderate trek, it still requires you to be in good shape.
Valley of Flowers Important Links:
- If you want to check the Valley of Flowers Itinerary: Head over to our Valley of Flowers trek page
- For queries regarding the trek: Go to our Valley of Flowers FAQs page and find answers to all your questions
- To see how the Valley looks during the monsoons: Check out this photoblog of 45 stunning pictures captured during the monsoon trek to Valley of Flowers
- Wondering what to carry for the trek: Read this blog with a detailed list of things to carry for the Valley of Flowers trek
- If you are looking for more treks to do in 2021: Here’s a link to our upcoming treks lined up for 2021
- Wondering how we’re ensuring safety during the COVID-19 situation: Click here to learn all about how we’re keeping treks and our Nomads safe during treks.