We have our final flurry of long walks coming up before the summer lull.  Two local and two further afield.  All are excellent.  Have a read and see if you fancy any of the following – we’d love you to join us:

Tintern Abbey/Offa’s Dyke, Sunday 4th June (3 hours) – Not only do you get to park beside and admire the beautiful and romantic Tintern Abbey but you also follow one of the country’s oldest trails – the Offa’s Dyke path.  This takes you to the Devil’s Pulpit and a magnificent view of Tintern Abbey from above.  It is a mostly wooded walk with one long ascent on a wide and good track.  There’s a nice pub at the end if you want to stay for lunch afterwards.  For more information click here.

Stoke Estate and Purdown, Wednesday 14th June (2 hours) – How many times have you driven up the M32 and seen the yellow mansion house?  Well our Odlbury Court instructor Clair will be taking you right past it on this fabulous local walk as well as showing you parts of the beautiful Stoke Estate.  For more information click here.

Cheddar Gorge/Yeo Valley spectacular, Friday 16th June (half or whole day depending on how energetic you want to be!) – This glorious walk is centred around lunch at Yeo Valley HQ.  There’s a massive waiting list to eat here – the food is excellent and the venue quirky.  You can choose to do either a half days walk ending with lunch or a whole day’s walk with lunch in the middle.  In any event this is a unique and spectacular walk so don’t miss it.  For more information click here.

Portishead Woods and Portbury Wharf nature reserve, Wednesday 21st June (2 hours) – Our final long walk of the summer is a delightful and easy local two hour walk, winding its way from the Portishead open air swimming pool to the Portbury nature reserve and back, passing through the Marina along the way.  A cuppa awaits you at the end if you want.  For more information click here.


Hot weather walking advice

Walking in the UK is normally a cool affair, so when the temperature rises as it did this week it often takes us by surprise.  In case we happen to get another hot spell, here’s some advice for when you’re out Nordic walking:

Lowering your body temperature in the hour before you Nordic walk in the heat slows the rate at which your core temperature rises once you’re out the door.  So try precooling before you head out.

Hydrate before, during and after your Nordic walk.  Don’t be afraid to ask the instructor to stop so you can drink.  On a longer walk you may also need to replace vital salts and minerals so take electrolyte tablets with you.

Wear the right clothes and shoes
Light-coloured clothes will reflect the sun’s rays away from you (rather than absorbing them with dark gear).  Wear moisture wicking fabrics where possible.  In any event avoid tight clothes that won’t allow a breeze to get through and switch to thinner socks as your feet will naturally swell in warm weather.  We don’t recommend Nordic walking in sandals for the obvious risk that you might spike yourself!

Keep a cool head and protect your skin
A breathable cap or hat with a wide brim is ideal for keeping the sun off your head.  Sun screen is important too so don’t leave home without it.  If you’re sensitive to insect bites now is the time to buy some deet based insect repellant.  It will also deter ticks.

Stay safe
Watch out for the key signs of dehydration: thirst, headache, not being able to think clearly, drowsiness, fatigue, achiness.  If you get any of these tell your instructor, stop in a shady place, rest and rehydrate.  Cardio exercise in scorching heat can put serious stress on your body and raise your heart rate.  Wearing a heart rate monitor will help you keep an eye on how you’re dealing with the heat.  In any event and at all times listen to your body and stop if you need to.