Via Francigena

Walking in the heat: 6 life-saving tips

Walking is an activity that can be done all year round, and each season that is chosen has its pros and disvanatges. 

For example, trekking in summer is pleasant thanks to the many hours of daylight available: the sun sets later, you can spend more time outdoors, the clothing used is less cumbersome, but the temperatures can be an element to be considered very carefully.  

Tips for a walk   

You will certainly be familiar with many of the tips we are about to provide, such as:  

1. Avoid the hottest hours. This is not just to say it. Walking in the early morning hours or late afternoon will make your walk less tiring.  

So avoiding the 11am to 5pm time slot will keep your body from getting too tired. 

2. Listen to your body. There are general tips that can be considered, but no one knows our body better than ourselves. Let us practise listening to it more. In general it is advisable to take many breaks during the walk, even thinking of dividing the walk into several days if the kilometres are many. We are not doing a marathon, but a walk.  

3. Choose the walk carefully. The choice of the walk is fundamental and does not depend only on the pleasantness or the degree of adventure it offers. We must be sure that we are able to walk a given itinerary, according to our body’s needs.  

4. Watch out for hydration. Take plenty of fresh water, fruit, supplements and mineral drinks with you. Be careful with herbal teas: it is advisable to read the ingredients first, as some can either lower or raise your blood pressure. Try to avoid lemon or hawthorn infusions, while ginger and liquorice infusions can be taken.  

5. Protect your skin from UVA rays. Even if we don’t go to the beach, the sun beats down hard in the warmer months and adequate sun protection protects us from sunburn, erythema and sunstroke.   

6. Choose appropriate clothing. Wearing breathable clothes and comfortable shoes is essential, as is wearing a hat and refreshing your wrists and forehead several times.  

In addition to these tips, there are other factors to consider. Let’s see them together.  

Which itineraries are most suitable?  

As a general tip, we advise you to choose walks with higher altitude stages with mild temperatures, frequent shelter areas and water courses.  

In addition, taking a walk on foot, starting from the summit and arriving in the valley, will give you the pleasure of the descent, to end perhaps with a rest and a well-deserved nap.  

Some of the stages of the Francigena in Southern Italy, especially in Puglia, can also end with a nice dip in the sea or a moment of relaxation on the beach.  

If, on the other hand, the mountains are not included in your itinerary, at least be sure to choose routes that allow you to shelter from the often unpredictable summer downpours. Once you opted for your trip, it will be easier to choose your equipment.  

How to prepare your backpack?  

Special attention must be paid to the choice of backpack, its model and weight, as well as the necessary things to carry during the walk. There are different models with different shapes and capacities for every need, depending on the itinerary and other key factors: we have dedicated a complete guide to choosing a trekking backpack which you can consult here.   

Once you have organised your equipment and itinerary, you will be ready to set off on your next walking adventure. We recommend you follow our advice and consult our apps and guides page to stay up-to-date on signposting and credentials.  

Enjoy your walking or cycling trip!

Azzurra Papalia
Azzurra Papalia
Sono una blogger e mi piace scrivere di sostenibilità. Mi ritengo una persona curiosa, determinata ed empatica. Da piccola mi dicevano di diffidare dalle cose semplici così ho preso alla lettera il consiglio e affronto la mia vita come una sfida alla volta, di tanto in tanto complicandola di mio, grazie al buon sangue calabrese.
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