Pre-Trail Training: The 1 Month Update

So it’s been 1 month since I started my mildly organized plan to drop the flab and tone up properly for my Appalachian Trail thru hike in a couple months. I had a loose plan for dietary changes and exercise, and below is a little more detail what I did all January. You can scroll to the bottom if you just want to see my 4-week progress.


Regarding beverages, I’ve kept away from the hops, although there have been a few social days where I would have gladly enjoyed a beer or 5. I have a cup of coffee in the morning with a little powdered creamer, and the rest of the day I just drink a whole lot of water.

As mentioned before, I’m not big on breakfast generally speaking, so if I eat anything at all in the morning, it’s just 1 boiled egg or a piece of fruit (an orange or an apple).

I love cooking and trying new things, so I tried out a lot of new recipes for my lunches and dinners, and a lot of them I found on Pinterest. One of my favorites that I highly recommend can be found below from Katya’s blog “Little Broken.” If I snack at all, it’s fruit, a handful of pistachios or raisins, 5-6 whole-grain crackers, or celery dipped in tahini.

Lentil Chili – amazing flavor!


I’ve been walking or hiking 1-4 miles a day (2 miles on average), nearly every day in January. I slacked a little on the 3rd week and took a few days off since I was feeling a little washed out (there’s a head cold going around apparently). However, I have not slacked at all on my morning routine which is to wake up around 5:30-6:00 am and squeeze in a 30-40-minute-long workout 6 days a week. I stumbled on this awesome leg workout by celebrity training and health coach, Jennifer Dene. I loved it!



Date: 1/28/17     Height: 5’2”     Weight: 121.5 lbs. (2 ½ lbs. lost)

Measurements (*some needed strictly for body fat %):

  • *Neck: 13”
  • Bust: 35.75” – 1 ¼” lost
  • Waist at narrowest point: 30.5” – 1 ½” lost
  • Waist at naval: 35.25” – ½” lost
  • Hips at widest point: 38” – 1” lost
  • Biceps: 10” – no change
  • Forearms: 8.5” – no change
  • *Wrists at narrowest point: 5.5”
  • Thighs at widest point: 20.25” – no change
  • Calves: 12.75” – ½” gained

There’s always room for error in the measurements. For example, I suspect that the initial measurement for my calves may have been inaccurate. However, I do my best to prevent any inaccuracies by having another person (and the same person), do my measurements for me, and doing them the same time of day. I also don’t exercise prior to measurements, which can alter them. My weight is taken first thing in the morning, prior to exercise and food.

Estimated Body Fat %: 31.01%

A 3.16% decrease since last month (not too shabby)! According to the source used to calculate these results (see below), I’m a little below the value that the average woman in my age range falls under (32%). The 19-26% range is preferred for women ages 20-40 (good to excellent condition), and is my pre-trail goal.

(The algorithm used to calculate estimated body fat was produced by Health Status LLC and is based off of a combination of algorithm from the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corp, U.S. Army and the YMCA which estimate body fat percentages without calipers.)

Estimated Body Mass Index (BMI): 22.2

Although I already fell in the normal weight range (18.5-24.9) a month ago, my BMI has decreased by 0.6 values.

(BMI as calculated by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute.)


I feel a lot stronger than I did before (the holidays have a way of making you feel sluggish), and I think getting up early and exercising has gotten me into a healthier sleep pattern. I’m normally a restless sleeper, but I’m been staying asleep longer and feeling more energized in the morning than I ever have (funny, how routine works).

Month 1 was just to ease me back into getting active again. I plan to do some more strenuous routines and step up my mileage over the following month. As far as diet, I’m going to reduce some of the starchy carbs I have been taking, and use some substitutes instead (for example: cauliflower “rice” instead of brown rice, sweet potatoes instead of white potatoes). Here’s to more progress by this time next month!


4 thoughts on “Pre-Trail Training: The 1 Month Update

    1. Haha! I’m usually not so disciplined, but I’m very determined to get myself in shape this time to prevent getting injured the second time around. Last year my lazy butt didn’t train at all! I’ll likely break down and drink some beer two weeks prior to leaving, but hoping I hold up until then! Thanks so much for reading! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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