View Full Version : Preparing to hike the trail in 2017

06-22-2015, 22:16
Hey Y'all I am new to the forum and preparing for a thru-hike in 2017. I am a 21 year old male, heading into my senior year of college and I am starting to prepare for the trail now. Currently, I am 5'11", 360lbs, I started training about a month and a half ago and am down 20lbs already, I have gotten myself into a groove of losing 1 to 2 lbs a week. I am just looking for any advice on preparing for the trail, or gear suggestions, resources beyond this forum, or pre-hike suggestions near Arizona (where I currently live). Anything at all helps!

This community is an awesome resource to be a part of! I am so excited to go through this long journey hopefully with some of the people I meet through this forum!

Thank y'all!


Just Bill
06-22-2015, 22:34
Work on the weight, not much point gear shopping ATM as your body will change and affect your choices.
An incline treadmill comes highly recommended.

So does actual hiking and car camping!

Otherwise- you got time- welcome!

06-23-2015, 07:44
I agree with Bill. Two other sources helped me get started. One was Andrew Skurka's book "The Ultimate Hikers Gear Guide." http://andrewskurka.com/product/ultimate-hikers-gear-guide/. I think it is a good resource that gets you thinking about your gear as systems and choosing multiple use items. The second would be trailjournals.com. Reading others gear lists and experiences can only be beneficial. Make sure you do some hiking prior to your thru-hike. I think you learn more about efficiency and using your gear by getting out there. There really is no substitute for that. Have a great journey.

06-23-2015, 07:53
Work not just physically on your weight but emotionally, cognitively and if you can spiritually - and get help from those who care about your wellbeing. Get to the root of it if you have not already and overcome it. Yes use the hike as a motivator and on some ways you have already started it as it is part of yoru hike and part of your life's journey. Try to build activity into your lifestyle and structure your life around activity.

Your hiking gear and methods will change as you lose more weight. So it is hard to recommend to go on backpacks as you will need new equipment then ($$$), but if you have the equipment go on some easier group ones (hiking clubs and groups such as meetup, your college may have some also).

JumpMaster Blaster
06-23-2015, 21:48
Try your best to drop weight BEFORE you commit to buying anything expensive, unless you want to start training by carrying a load, and sell the pack on eBay when you drop weight. Maybe start work on a stairmaster & core work as a building block. I started out with basic, rudimentary equipment, but someone was always willing to buy it used.

Another possibility- if you're looking to drop serious weight, try the ketogenic diet. If you start now and stick with it, you'll be a fat burning machine in 4-5 weeks. PM me for info.

06-23-2015, 22:52
Thanks for all of the support everyone! I am definitely focusing on losing weight for right now, I was down another 2 pounds today when I checked! I am going to stark hiking the mountains near my college hopefully once week with a pack and am starting to plan overnights up in Sedona and Flagstaff for the long weekends. Does anyone have any suggestions for boots or trail shoes that I should get and start breaking in now while I am counselling at a camp in Georgia? Also, what on average is the cost for a thru hike? I've heard anything from 4,000 to 15,000 and I'm starting to save now, my goal is about 6,000 (for gear and the hike) is that enough? Should I budget for higher?

Thanks again everyone!