Camping in Quebec

Keeping fit while camping

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Fitness training for campers? Why not?

Warming up

Presented by Kinécible

Before any physical effort, it is strongly suggested that you warm up to prepare your body properly for intense exercise. It also helps you avoid injuries.

There are always lots of paths on a campground, so you can start warming up gradually, starting with a brisk walk and then speeding up if you can. We recommend walking or jogging for about 5 to 10 minutes. Be reasonable, though – don’t tire yourself out. You should be able to maintain a conversation with someone while you’re walking or jogging, so you shouldn’t be out of breath.

Once you’ve finished your walk or light jog, it’s important to prepare your joints and muscles for what is to come. Video #1 shows a few suggested exercises to warm up your whole body. You can do each one for about 15 to 30 seconds. 

Once you’ve warmed up properly, you’re ready to start the rest of your training.

Video


Strength training

Despite what many campers think, you don’t need to bring training equipment along on your trip to be able to keep yourself in shape. Just use your own body weight and a bit of imagination.

Australian pull-ups or inverted rowing

Use the kids’ playground equipment in the campground park. Lie down on the ground under the bar. Your hands, facing forward (pronation), should be a bit wider than your shoulders. Keep your legs extended (advanced version) or bend your knees (beginner version). Pull your chest toward the bar. This exercise will work your upper back. It’s important to keep your core engaged throughout the exercise.

You can repeat this movement 10 to 15 times, then rest for 45 to 60 seconds and repeat.

Push-ups

Use a picnic table or other raised surface. Place your hands on the table bench. Keep your legs extended (advanced version) or bend your knees (beginner version). This exercise will work your pectorals.

You can also do this exercise by switching the position of your hands and feet. By changing the angle of your body (feet higher than your chest), you’ll target the upper part of your pectorals.

You can repeat this movement 10 to 15 times, then rest for 45 to 60 seconds and repeat.

Squats

 You can do squats anywhere, since you don’t need any equipment. Place your feet shoulder-width apart. Bend your knees so that you are squatting as low as possible. Keep your body weight toward the back and keep your knees over your toes. Tighten your butt when you return to your starting position.

You can repeat this movement 10 to 15 times, then rest for 45 to 60 seconds and repeat.

Jump squats

Jump squats are like regular squats, but a more explosive version. Once you have squatted all the way down, jump off the ground and absorb the landing properly. This plyometric exercise will work your cardiovascular system much more than traditional squats.

You can repeat this movement 10 to 15 times, then rest for 45 to 60 seconds and repeat.

Alternating lunges

Step forward with one leg, lowering your hips until both knees are bent at about a 90-degree angle. Push with your leg to return to your starting position. It’s important to keep your knee directly over your foot.

You can repeat this movement 10 to 15 times, then rest for 45 to 60 seconds and repeat.

Jump lunges

Just like jump squats, jump lunges are a better cardio workout. But it’s important that you learn to do the basic lunge before attempting this variation.

You can repeat this movement 10 to 15 times, then rest for 45 to 60 seconds and repeat.

Chair

Brace yourself against a tree or wall and lower your body until your knees are bent at 90 degrees.

Hold this position as long as you can, then rest for 45 to 60 seconds and repeat. 

Video


Strengthening your core and stretching

A healthy body isn’t all about being “cut,” with well-defined muscles. It’s important to strengthen your deep abdominal muscles, too. Although you can’t see them, your deep muscles like the transverse abdominal muscle (TVA) have very important roles. They support your organs, help you exhale, maintain your posture and prevent back injuries.

You can work your deep abdominal muscles with the exercises shown in video #3. Make sure your posture is perfect. To engage your abdominal muscles, pull in your stomach, drawing your navel toward your spine. Once your core is engaged, hold this position as long as possible. 

Now that you’ve finished your training session, it’s important to think about stretching. Allow 5 to 10 minutes to work on your flexibility and relax.

Enjoy your training and have fun camping!

Video


The Kinécible team

About

Kinesiologists Andréanne Massé-Roy and Marie-Christine Ménard are great friends, as well as sharing a passion for physical activity. The co-founders of KinéCible, a local business offering various fitness services, are proud to encourage physical activity and healthy lifestyles from day to day.

Visit the Kinécible Facebook page

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