Backpacking 2-Week Fitness Plan

This Backpacking 2-Week Fitness Plan is a comprehensive, full-body workout plan designed for the avid hiker to get in the best possible shape for a backpacking trip. All major muscle groups needed for hiking are targeted in a calendar optimized to build strength, balance, and stamina.

Our backpacking 2-week workout plan comes with a calendar, free access to the workouts, and support from the Ryan and Alex Duo Life team. As avid backpackers ourselves, this is a proven plan to train hard for the best hiking trip ever. There’s no equipment required and all workouts can be streamed directly into your home.

what to expect?

Our backpacking 2-Week fitness plan is hard. And, the intermediate-advanced workouts challenge your strength, agility, and stability. However, safety and injury prevention are even more critical. Therefore, our backpacking 2-week workout plan will focus on flexibility, balance, and range of motion to keep you injury free on the trail. We guarantee that this is the most effective plan you can follow to prepare you for the trails in the shortest amount of time. 

To make sure the backpacking 2-week fitness plan is good for you, take our Fitness Test and pass as intermediate, especially in the Core Strength and Lower Body Strength tests.

The backpacking 2-week fitness plan uses professionally designed workouts that will guide and educate you through every step of every workout. Since the workout plan consists of short, challenging total body workouts every day of the week, it’s the only exercise you’ll need to prepare.

training considerations for your backpacking adventure

As experienced backpackers, we know that cardio is king when it comes to preparing yourself for the trip. Lower body strength is critical since you’ll likely be carrying up to one-third of your body weight on your hips. Core strength is also crucial for stability and reducing the risk of lower back pain. However, training for your backpacking adventure is not about beating your body into great shape. Instead, strengthening and improving cardiovascular condition, flexibility, balance, and range of motion are all important. This is what keeps us steady as a mule and safe on the trails.

how can it be done in 2-weeks?

Many hiking experts recommend long workouts over an extended period of time to build your endurance and train your body for the trail. In our experience, our backpacking 2-week fitness plan’s explosive and high intensity workouts accomplish the same goal in significantly less time (and we test our workouts carefully). That is why we created this hiking 2-week workout plan to include these short, structured workouts that don’t require any equipment. As avid backpackers ourselves, this workout plan has been tested and proven. Our conclusion: you can get in great shape for a long hike in just 2-weeks!

As we mentioned, the backpacking 2-week fitness plan is challenging. To break up the intensity, there are built-in recovery days, such as yoga, to reduce chance of injury. It’s critical that the program is followed day-by-day. Remember, train smart not hard.

why you need this


why be in great shape for backpacking?

  • Enjoyment. Truth is, you are not going to enjoy the trails unless you are in shape. To be relaxed, in the present, and enjoying the beauty around you, it’s better to not be huffing and puffing with an achy back. When you’re in great shape, you’ll have extra time for a lunch or a fishing break, energy to reach that desired campsite next to the lake, time for side trips, strength to carry a bag of wine for the first night (that’s how we roll), or even time for an afternoon nap.
  • Efficiency. You can get more trail in with less time. You’re likely operating on limited vacation time so being better conditioned allows you to see more and do more in the time you have in the great outdoors!
  • Freedom. Whether you’re just out for a day-hike, slackpacking, frontcountry hiking, or backcountry hiking, being in shape gives you options. If you’re feeling strong, maybe you’ll opt to go deeper into the wilderness or summit a mountain you wouldn’t normally attempt. When you’re just out there on your own two feet, the options are endless.
  • Safety. The worst thing that can happen on the trail is an injury. Being in great shape will reduce the risk of injury by improving balance, range of motion, coordination, and strength. This 2-week backpacking booster training program will even strengthen your eye foot coordination!
  • Maximize Return. You invested time, money, and vacation days into your backpacking trip. Invest in your fitness too!

how is our backpacking 2-week fitness plan different?

  • It’s Fast and Fun! All workouts are around 30-minutes. Sorry but the StairMaster and treadmill sound mind-numbingly boring, as is loading up a backpack with rocks and finding a local hill to summit. With our program, you’ll have plenty of variety to keep you focused and out of your comfort zone.
  • It’s Stupid Simple. No gym required and everything can be done at home with your own body weight. No more online picture-by-picture routines telling you to do lunges until your legs fall off. With us, you’ll have a calendar to follow and online steaming workouts that instruct you on what to do, how to do it, and for how long. No thinking required.
  • It’s Functional Training. Our program is going to challenge you body in similar ways as backpacking will. Your glutes and hamstrings will be worked, just like how it is on the trails.
  • Backpacker Approved. Developed by backpackers for backpackers. We all know how valuable our time is on the mountain. Let’s make the most of it!

Here's The Plan


the 2-week backpacking booster training program plan…

  • Our backpacking training workouts don’t require weights, benches, pull-up bars, or bands. The only recommended equipment is a yoga mat, carpeted floor, rug, or bath mat for padding.
  • You don’t need a gym to complete this program. All workouts can be done at home, in a hotel room, at a local park, or in your grandma’s basement.
  • You’ll work out 7-days a week. Two of those days are reserved for yoga and active recovery to keep you injury-free.
  • Workouts are about 30 minutes. The shortest routines are 25 minutes and the longest are 40 minutes, including warm up and cool down.
  • You will download the 2-week (bonus 3rd week included) calendar and gain access to the workouts on Beachbody On Demand for free. If you use a heart rate monitor, you can compete with us for each workout. Also, complete our bonus exercise if you are feeling ambitious, and stay accountable in the Backpacking 2-Week Fitness Plan Portal.

the fitness plan rules…

  • Follow the program calendar to a “T.” A goal without a plan is just a wish… and getting ready for the trails in 2-weeks is a BIG goal! Don’t decide that you didn’t like a workout and skip it. Usually it’s the workouts that we dread (such as cardio or leg day) that bring us the greatest results.
  • Do this program with your partner (added accountability and a relationship boost) or hiking buddy (you don’t want them slowing you down).
  • Be accountable via email or through the program portal. The more you share the more we can help and motivate. Ryan and Alex Duo Life has put thousands of people through these workouts programs and those who stay accountable are significantly more likely to finish what they started.
  • This program is comprehensive. You do NOT need to do any additional exercise beyond this plan. This could lead to overtraining and injury. Instead, if you have extra time, focus on eating healthy, whole foods (mostly veggies), drinking lots of water (increase hydration to prepare), and stretching!

Backpacking 2-Week Fitness Plan 

This Backpacking 2-Week Fitness Plan is designed for the intermediate athlete to get in the best possible shape for a multi-day trek, and fast. All major muscle groups needed for backpacking are targeted in a calendar optimized to build strength, flexibility, and stability. The plan comes with a calendar, free access to the workouts, and support from the Ryan and Alex Duo Life team. As avid backpackers ourselves, this is a proven plan to train hard for a trekking adventure.

day 1: focus T25 cardio

Duration: 25 minutes with an added 2.5 minute cool down
Equipment: None
Workout data, Alex: 161 bpm heart rate maximum and 123 calories burned
Workout data, Ryan: 169 bpm heart rate maximum and 355 calories burned
BONUS workout (after your scheduled workout): Wall sits until failure. Make sure your knees are bent to 90 degrees and that you are putting your weight into your heels. Breathe, visualize that campsite next to a mountain lake, and enjoy the burn!

Pep talk…

Alright, day one is the foundation for hitting the trail strong with lower body strength moves, intense cardio, and a constant focus on engaging the core. The workout today is fast-paced compound movements. Make sure you maintain good form and DO NOT fight through any knee or back pain. Instead if you feel any pain, reduce the impact of the workout by follow the modifier on the screen. Below are pointers to get the most out of this workout.

  • Always engage the core. Core strength is critical for backpacking. Have you ever felt lower back soreness after Day One on the trail? That is because your abs weren’t strong enough.
  • Focus on form with the lunges. Make sure you keep your knee behind your toe. Quadricep strength is incredibly important for backpacking. Strong quads are going to protect your knees and allow you to give the trail a beating… instead of the other way around.
  • Move really, really fast! This is a cardio workout. To maximize your 25-minutes and your heart rate, make sure you are pumping your arms wildly. Drive your hands from cheek (butt) to cheek (face) rapidly. Backpacking requires cardiovascular endurance and we need to get ready for the trail quickly. 
  • Get airborne! These plyometric moves are a huge component in this 2-Week Backpacking Booster Training Program. These moves quickly strengthen your lower extremity muscles. Make sure you are bending your knees on the landing and jumping as high/far as you can with proper form.

What day is best to start?

It really doesn’t matter. You will be doing a workout, yoga, or active recovery for every day of the week for 30 minutes. Start as soon as possible! Monday works well.

What if I have more than 2 weeks?

That’s great! Way to be on top of it. This can be done more than once. You can also spread it out by mixing in your own training. Your Beachbody On Demand free trial, however, is only free for two weeks. After that, you’ll be charged the 3-month subscription price of $39.

What if I want to lift weights to prepare?

You don’t need to. Lower body strength, agility training, and explosive plyometric moves are a huge part of this program and are even more effective than weights for getting you slope-ready fast. How about this: if you can walk normally on Day 3 then go ahead and do weights!

What if I prefer to workout at the gym?

Go ahead. You can stream these workouts on your phone, tablet, or laptop and even download up to seven workouts for offline viewing. The gym is a great place to do that but it’s not necessary.

How much space do I need for the workouts?

The more you have, the better but you can always modify the moves so they fit in your available space. We regularly do these workouts in hotel rooms in a 6’x6′ area.

What fitness difficulty level is this program?

Intermediate to advanced. If you signed up to downhill ski, you are fit enough to do this. There is a modifier to follow in each workout if you feel the moves are too advanced. If you work out every day and consider yourself to be close to peak condition, this will still challenge your balance, flexibility, range of motion, and lower body strength and explosiveness.

Are you the trainer that streams the workouts?

No, we are not the personal trainers recording these videos. These are world-renowned, master trainers like Tony Horton, Shaun T, Autumn Calabrese who have professionally designed programs marketed through Beachbody. We are huge believers in the efficacy of their programs and, as Team Beachbody Coaches, we have ample experience doing these workouts with the trainers live as well as on our own. Our own successes at backcountry, free skiing are testaments to these workouts.

What is the cost of beachbody on demand?

As mentioned, this program includes a free 2-week trial of Beachbody on Demand. If you decide to continue after the 14 days is completed, you will pay $39 for a 3-month membership plan. If you would not like to pay, we will help you cancel and send automated email reminders before the trial is up.

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