A longer mountain trek, for example Fjällräven Classic, requires preparation. Regardless how many days you have planned to be out in the wilderness, you will expose your body to stresses that it rarely experience during your normal daily schedule. Your leg muscles, your feet and even your motivation – you will be under stress on so many levels that the more prepared you are, the more likely you will be able to lift your gaze from the ground and enjoy your surroundings.
The general fitness level is important when you are going on a longer trek since you will be carrying your living accommodations. Your heart and lungs will have to work hard and if you are not physically active during the entire year, you should start exercising three-six months in advance. Trekking, biking, running and swimming are examples of good activities that will improve your fitness.
Trekking in natural terrain
Your leg muscles, knees, feet and joints will be placed under a high level of stress during a multi-day trek. Prepare your body by trying to simulate the coming adventure during your work-out sessions. Walk in hilly terrain, up and down hills or mountains. Gradually increase the intensity by also walking off-trail, which will increase the effect of the work-out and also improve your balance. Try to take a long walk at least once a week.
Help your body get used to the backpack
Carrying a heavy backpack can feel uncomfortable in the beginning - it pulls on your shoulders and hips and every step gets heavier. Start by practicing with a lighter pack and then gradually increase the weight so your body gets used to the load. Pack it with things you will need during your work-out, but also with things you will need for your trek, for example a first-aid kit, a warm jacket, etc. Adjust the weight using a small container of water or a water bag - you will then always have something to drink with you. Work slowly up to the weight you will carry during your trek so you do not wear yourself out and suffer injuries.
Break in your hiking boots
There is nothing more frustrating than having to cut a trek short due to blisters. To ensure that your boots fit well you should break them in properly - 200 km is a good rule of thumb. Remember to also take care of your feet; file off calluses and regularly massage your feet with cream to stimulate blood circulation.
Do not over-exercise
Trekking in the Swedish mountains is difficult, but it is not like climbing a massive peak. It is important that you do not overdo it with the exercise. Before your trek you should have eaten well, gotten plenty of sleep and not pushed yourself so hard that your muscles and joints ache. The objective should be to start your trip with a rested, strong body.