As preparation is the key to success, you need to make sure that you indulge in the Annapurna Base Camp Training Program before embarking on this lifetime adventure. This will play a significant role in completing your Annapurna Base Camp Trek. Trekkers must be well-prepared for cardiovascular endurance and strength training.
Many might picture Annapurna Base Camp Trek as a difficult trek in their minds. But there is nothing that could not be achieved with proper preparation and training. ABC Trek is doable and very achievable for anyone with or without prior trekking experience. And, you don’t need to be of the perfect physique to be able to do this trek.
However, as the majority of the trekkers are from the ground level and are trekking for the first time in this high mountain region, they might have difficulty adjusting their bodies to the high altitude of Annapurna Base Camp.
We will be covering a total distance of 115 kilometers and will be trekking for at least 6 days (depending upon your itinerary and length of walking days), 5-6 hours each day to high altitudes of 4,130 m during this trek. So, we must be prepared both mentally and physically to be able to complete this trek.
8 to 12 weeks of training in advance will help a lot in your adventure. On the other hand, you can take the training as an opportunity to lose unwanted weight as well. If you are already reasonably fit i.e currently involved in physical activities such as sports, then you are already halfway there! Or, if you don’t consider yourself fit, then you can start training 6-12 months prior.
We can engage in several types of workouts in order to prepare for the uphill trek to the ABC. Jogging, walking, running, swimming, sprinting, cycling, and hiking are some of the common exercises that will help us prepare for this trek. We can also join the gym for the necessary training.
The aim here is to build or leg muscles and endurance as we will be hiking a lot during the trek. But, we should not forget the shoulder training as well, as our shoulders also experience the weight of our bag. And if you wish to go on budget, then you might consider following the professional YouTube trainers for your training.
And after the six to eight weeks of training, we’re good to go! This Annapurna Base Camp Training Program article outlines the benefits and things we can do to get properly prepared for this lifetime journey.
Why Train for Annapurna Base Camp?
We’ll get full-time enjoyment through our whole journey if we are well prepared, mentally, and physically. Some of the best reasons why we should indulge in the Annapurna Base Camp Training program are as follows:
- To develop the mental and physical strength required to complete this hilly trek.
- Strengthen the upper leg muscles.
- To better the body’s ability to circulate oxygen at high altitudes of ABC.
- To keep away the chances of AMS (Acute Mountain Sickness)
- To boost endurance level and build muscle strength
- To get used to the 6-8 hours of long-duration hikes
Additional Benefits of training
1. It helps muscles to be in condition.
2. Strengthens our bones
3. It helps in reducing blood fat and cholesterol levels.
4. Enhances psychical well-being and raises mental performance.
5. It helps to get in proper shape by burning unnecessary fats.
6. Helps improve breathing, blood circulation, and endocrine functions.
7. Reduces the risk of heart attack and stroke by strengthening our hearts.
On the other hand, pre-training and preparation also provide us with some general ideas regarding how our body adapts to hiking for a longer duration and also increase our confidence to tackle the Annapurna Base Camp Trek.
Annapurna Base Camp Training Program 1: Practice Hiking
Hiking is probably one of the best ways that we can prepare for ABC Trek as no treadmills or stairs can recreate the situations of a trekking route. If you are a regular hiker or a hill-walker, then you should already have the conditioning required for the ABC trek.
But if you have no prior experience trekking in the hilly regions, then you should practice 5-6 hours of
at least 3 long-distance hikes every week, a couple of months in advance. Make sure you hike using the same hiking boots that you will be using on your actual ABC trek as there is nothing worse than a blister after the first day of your trek.
Aim to replicate the circumstances by hiking uphill 5-6 hours with some breaks between. Wear the backpack, hiking boots, socks, and clothes that you will be bringing on the actual trek. This will also help you get more familiar with the trek and ensure that all the gears are convenient and are in proper condition. Our mission here is to build the endurance level and get used to long-period hiking.
You can choose outdoor trails, or use whatever terrain you have access to nearby. It is better to do it on rough and steep mountain terrains that will give you a real first-hand experience of the elevation gains and loss. In case you live in a relatively flat area, then you can go for a long walk or regular jogging, or even go up and downstairs.
Your reasonable hiking goal would be to climb 3,000 feet, approximately 1,000 vertical feet per hour, or with an average backpack of 25 lb. in three hours. You should begin with one or two hours of hikes, increasing your way up to 5 to 6 hours. This way, you will be able to gradually develop your stamina and endurance.
On each hike, try adding two to three pounds and progressively add additional weights to your backpack until you are good at carrying twenty-five lbs. Following so, increase the total distance and altitude gain.
After gaining 3,000 ft with a 25 lb pack, begin reducing your rest breaks. Understand how your body copes to the altitude above 1,300 feet in height and after a month from your hike, you should feel comfortable carrying your goal of 25 lb pound.
An alternative training for pack weight is to carry gallon containers, so you can dump the water at the top if required for the decedent. If you feel comfortable doing these long hikes prior to the trek, you should be good for the real trek. Then, you are good to go on the actual ABCT Trail!
Moreover, these hikes also give you opportunities to get close to nature and explore amazing places nearby. You will also learn to deal with the forest environment. If possible, engage in many long high-altitude hikes as possible.
In case you don’t have any hiking locations nearby, then you can also book an early trip to Nepal to hike in the surrounding hiking trails surrounding Kathmandu Valley.
Phulchoki hike, Nagarkot hike, Chisapani hike, and Chandragiri are some of the moderate and budget-friendly hikes available for anyone looking for hiking over 2000 meters.
Annapurna Base Camp Training Program 2: Gym
Finding a good hiking trail could not be easy for everyone. So, if you do not have access to hills and mountain areas, you can also hit the gym to train and prepare. Gyms have a wide range of training equipment and assistance in helping develop your specific body muscles for the trek.
We recommend training four to five days every week. Focus on strengthening your leg and growing thigh muscles, as upper leg muscles will take the majority of the weight during your trek.
Squatting is another way to strengthen your thigh muscles. In case you don’t have access to the gym, jogging in the park or even walking around the neighborhood will also do good.
Make sure you do some stretching after finishing your training. Get a gym subscription, if you don’t have one.
The journey to the remote Himalayan region is not easy as the city areas. But it will be gratifying, enjoyable, and entertaining if you are mentally prepared before the trek. In this journey, you will walk through the rough rocky terrain along the rivers, jungles, gigantic mountains, and hills. Accommodations provided by the local teahouses will be very common which is beyond your expectations. You will be completely isolated for a few days in Nepal’s remote alpine regions. Therefore, you should be psychologically prepared yourself.
Additional Tips for ABCT Preparation
- Get your equipment early.
- Drink enough water.
- Get proper nutrition.
- Learn a few stretching exercises.
- Take time to acclimatize during your training and your ABC trek.
- Follow the rule of “Slow and steady”
- Mountain rule “What goes down must come up!”
- Hire porters and guides who will help you carry loads and guide you through your trek.
- Do 5-10 minutes of stretching exercises prior to and after your hike.
- Don’t try pushing yourself any further if you do not feel well during your trek. It can turn fatal.
- Get travel insurance!
- Put your safety first Priority!
- Believe you can do it!
- Start your training early as you can.
Annapurna Base Camp Trek is surely going to be a quite different experience than you will be training and preparing for. Therefore, take training programs, proper measures, and precautions before and throughout your trek.
Learn as much as you can about Acute mountain sickness (AMS) or Altitude Sickness. Go slow and take frequent breaks and above all, put safety your first priority!
We hope you found this ABC Training information useful. Tell us about your trip to Annapurna Base Camp and what you expect from it. We will surely respond to your queries within the next 24 hours and help you in planning your lifetime trip to the Annapurna Himalayas and make a tailor-made trip with a flexible itinerary that meets your needs.