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Hiking the countryside remains to be one of the best ways to explore nature. Even the easiest trail though can be grueling on your body if you’re not prepared for it. Here are five tips and exercises that can get you back exploring the trails.

1. Set Up a Training Schedule
Before you decide even to hit the easy trails, you need to build up your core and stamina. Even an easy hike can overexert and injure someone who isn’t prepared for the uneven terrain and slight uphill grade. One example of a training schedule suggests cardio, for 30–60 minutes each day. Start slow and mix it up. Injuries can occur easily from overworked muscles.

2. Cardio Exercises
Since hiking involves steady-state exertion, cardio is an excellent way to build up the stamina and muscles needed. Moderate-intensity workouts are suggested since it will build up the energy system used in hiking. However, it’s a good idea to add a high-intensity workout as well as recovery days to avoid overuse injuries.

3. Add In Some Resistance
Adding some form of resistance training along with cardio will work and build different muscle groups. Step-ups and heel downs are great for building balance. Training with dumbbells and resistance straps can help strengthen your core. Lunges, crunches, and planks can do the same.

4. Weight Training
If you’re considering doing some backpacking, add your backpack with your cardio. Start at about 20 pounds and add 5 pounds every few days until you’re at the weight you’ll be hiking with.

5. Go On Training Hikes
Whether you’re getting back into hiking or never hit a dirt trail before, you’ll want to add in some training hikes before you go on a big hike. Find some baby trails at your local parks or national forests to start with. They can build strength to prevent rolled ankles and be very relaxing at the same time.

Training and building your strength before the big hike will go a long way in preventing serious injuries. …


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Leading the Way Through Compassionate Leadership

Loss reduction? Profit maximization? Return on investment? How about developing your compassionate leadership capacity as your metric for success? It may sound a little counter-intuitive, but if you work on these five factors, you will realize that greater success through increased innovation, increased profits, more work unit cohesion.

5 Factors to Develop Your Compassionate Leadership

1. Begin With Yourself

Practice caring for yourself and making sure that you have a sound work-life balance. This balance ensures that you have more resilience and capacity to be able to practice compassion. If you are stressed out and at your wits end all the time, you will miss opportunities to be empathetic when it could most help those around you be more successful. …


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For those who have hiking enthusiasts in their lives, coming up with the perfect gifts for the holidays — or any other occasion — can be tricky. To help your holiday shopping, these are a few great gifts that any hiker is sure to appreciate!

Snacks for the Hiking Trail

Every good hiker knows that bringing along snacks is essential any time that they hit the hiking trail. For affordable yet useful gifts for hikers, hiking-friendly snacks are perfect. From beef jerky to granola bars, there are plenty of options for stocking stuffers! …


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The end of the year is a valuable time to give back to your community — and many find the holiday season the perfect time to support local organizations and those in need. Below are some ideas for holiday volunteering and for continuing to help into the new year!

Provide Meals

Give the gift of warm meals to those in need. Many local communities have soup kitchens that have volunteer opportunities to serve meals. Soup kitchens serve a variety of meals for free or at reduced prices and often need volunteers to prepare the food, serve the meals, and help with clean up. …


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Building Community, Courtesy of Unsplash

Communities serve an important function. They act as a hub of interaction and information between like-minded people, members, residents, and fans. Individuals sometimes get together in the form of groups and communities to look for short-term solutions to common challenges or things they have a shared passion about., More often than not, communities work on long-term projects towards the common goal of its members. This is why you as an active member of the community, should always be ready to create atmospheres that foster engagement and good will for everyone.

Are communities really that important? Well, as you may have read in the Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, being social and participating in a community is an essential human need. It helps them on the path towards their search for self-actualization. …


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Whether they are a family member, friend or neighbor, we all know someone who has proudly served our country as part of the Armed Forces either in the Guard, the Reserves, or Active Duty in times of peace at home, deployed abroad to protect our national interests and/or allies, or in combat. These Veterans not only deserve our thanks gratitude but our imitation of their service.

Our veterans would first be formally honored with a national holiday known as Armistice Day marking the conclusion of World War I. Later following World War II and the Korean War President Eisenhower renamed the holiday Veterans Day making it much of what it is today — a day to recognize all the men and women who have served or are serving their country as members of the Armed Forces and especially combat Veterans. …


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Being a leader can be intimidating at times. Your teammates depend on you and your skills to get the job done. Every successful leader is always looking for ways to grow and develop new skills. Keeping an open mind and a passion to learn can make you into a great leader and find success. Here are four ways to develop your leadership skills:

Become a Learner

As a leader, its important to have a constant need to learn. Your team members depend on your intelligence and skills to get the job done. Being an active learner is a great ways to develop your leadership skills. In the workplace, there will always be opportunity to learn new things. It will help grow your mindset and your team’s capabilities. …


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Being a great and successful leader can be a challenge. Some leaders are born and others are made through acquiring talents and skills. Managing an effective and efficient team can be difficult, especially when you’ve been put into a new role of leadership in the workplace. There are five essential leadership skills you must master:

Building Relationships

To be successful in business, it’s important to build and maintain relationships and connections. Having a strong network can help you move up in your field, give you incredible resources and also make you a great leader. Every successful leader has strong relationships and connections. One of the strongest cornerstones of building relationships is respect. Respect is what keeps teams and partnerships functioning effectively, and managing relationships efficiently. …


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Many people think of hiking as a warm-weather activity, but hiking during the winter can be a wonderful experience. Hikers certainly do not have to worry about things like heat exhaustion or heat stroke, and they can enjoy the beautiful scenery in many areas. Of course, hiking in cold weather does present its own challenges, but those who follow these five tips can be successful with it.

Dress in Layers

Dressing in layers is a good idea for anyone who is going to be spending time outdoors in the cold weather. This is particularly true for hikers. …


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Photo Courtesy of Unsplash

While deciding on where to go on your next trip, there is a strong likelihood of you being faced with many choices. Considering you want the most of any trip you take, choosing a travel destination to visit can be hard. Luckily, many surveys have been conducted by the Adventure Travel Trade Association for making this process easier. Their results for best travel destinations, especially in the developing world, may surprise you!

The Adventure Travel Development Index defines adventure travel as the interaction of people with nature, culture and physical activity. 315 tour operators, assorted tourism officials, travel writers, and some hospitality industry experts were roped in for ranking the top travel destination of our list. …

About

Brian Palaia

Brian is a highly accomplished Senior Executive, Town Manager, Entrepreneur, Consultant, Instructor with over 24 years of leadership experience.

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