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Building hill fitness with strength training

*Are you training for one of our challenge events?

*Do you want to be able to power up those pesky hills?

*Would you love to enjoy a walk without worrying how many miles are left?

At Yorkie Talkies Outdoors, we're an inclusive community and welcome people at all levels of fitness. It's absolutely fine if you're happy with the walks you do already. However, if you wish, we can help you build up to longer walks with more ascent.

If you're keen to build your hill fitness and endurance in between YTO walks, we highly recommend strength training.

Body weight exercises are are perfect place to begin, each one can be progressed as you get fitter.

*Leg and glute movements such as air squats and lunges are great for building lower limbs that will carry you happily and safely both up and down hill.

*Core work like planks, dead bugs and sit ups are excellent for increasing your balance and stability.

*Arm exercises, think press ups and tricep dips, are fantastic if you adore a good mountain scramble.

Once you have grown in confidence and developed your skills, adding weights will up the ante, and the benefits to your body (and mind!) will continue to be felt and seen.

Using weights in the gym by yourself or with a friend, or in a group fitness environment have myriad benefits. You'll feel fitter, build bone strength and muscle (important for menopausal women) look leaner and your mood and mental health with be boosted.

YTO leaders Emma and Gemma are enthusiastic about the unbelievable difference that strength training has made to their fitness over the years. It can be hard work and learning how to move your body in a new way can be scary. HOWEVER, it's deeply satisfying and a source of great joy to feel yourself getting stronger.

Think of strength training as functional fitness and an investment in your future. You'll be able to carry heavy shopping, enjoy a full day of gardening, chase after the kids and, of course, climb hills, mountains and walk for many miles of beautiful views in the company of YTO.

We know that everyone has physical challenges; old injuries and existing medical conditions. But don't let that hold you back. Strength exercises can be regressed depending on the person.

It's vital to remember that we all have things we are naturally good at too! Who knows, you might have an Olympic Lifter, a Strongman or a Burpee Champion waiting to be unleashed!!

Now, we're not recommended you head to the gym and start back squatting 50 kg or chucking a 20 kg kettle bell about. Guidance, from a PT, coach or gym instructor is important, especially if you're going to be adding weight or have dodgy knees, hips or back.

Emma has been training at Legions gym for a couple of years


£7.50 per class or £50 per month or sign up for Personal training with Ash and get circuits for free

Times and classes:

Body Weight Circuits Monday - 6.45 pm

Boxing Circuits Wednesday - 6.45 am

Equipment Circuits Friday - 6.45 am

Gemma has been a member of Dominus CrossFit since September 2022.


Unlimited membership - includes 40 classes and all open gym slots - £85.00 per month

Twice weekly - two classes per week, two premium open gym and unlimited open gym - £55 per month

Classes include:

Cross Fit, Olympic Weightlifting, Met Con, Strongman, Yoga and Power Lifting plus open gym sessions for independent workouts

Times: Monday to Friday 6 am - 8.30 pm, Sat 8 am - 4 pm and Sunday 9 am - 5 pm

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