Training for Everest base camp

Staying with tradition, best to start with the basics. Let’s sort he buyers from the spyers, the needy from the greedy and those that trust us from those who don’t. Because if you don’t find value in our article today, you’re not here shopping-you’re here shoplifting. Trekking to Everest Base Camp is an adventure of a lifetime that requires a lot of preparation. Not only do you need to pack the right gear, but you also need to physically prepare yourself for the challenge. In this article, we will guide you through our advice on training for Everest Base Camp, with a healthy dose of subliminal conditioning to help you along the way. Let’s be honest, trekking to Everest Base Camp is not for the faint-hearted. You’re going to be dealing with altitude sickness, harsh weather conditions, bad jokes, Cross Fit athletes and some pretty challenging terrain. But fear not, with a bit of dedication, discipline, and a small orange ping pong ball, you can make it. So, let’s get started!

Develop a Positive Attitude

Train your brain!!! Having a positive attitude is essential for any challenging adventure, especially an Everest Base Camp trek. Train your mind to think positively, focus on your goals, and stay motivated. Pushing yourself physically will help with your mental preperation. The more you suffer while training the better. This suffering will hopefully bring on some adversity. And that is where the plot thickens. Adversity introduces a man, lady or they to themsleves. Pushing your limits and overcoming them will give you some realyl cool perspective on your mental strengh and will serve as a great reference point when the going gets tough on the trek.

Physical Preparation

Preparing for an Everest Base Camp trek requires physical fitness and endurance training. This includes cardio exercises such as running, cycling, or hiking to improve lung capacity and stamina.Training for Everest Base camp is key if you want to make your experience an enjoyable one. You should focus on cardiovascular, strength, endurance, and high-altitude training. Here’s how:

Cardiovascular Training

The first step in training for Everest Base Camp is to work on your cardiovascular fitness. You need to be able to endure long periods of hiking at high altitudes, so start by incorporating cardio exercises into your routine. Here are some ideas. Try and mix them up:

  • Functional training: A great way to increase strength and cardio. What the heck is functional training? It’s sort of like a HIIT workout. It’s called Youtube. Check it our to find a programme that works for you. We suggest doing 1 hour sessions 3 times a week. And then use the weekends for a long hike, cycle or run.
  • Hiking: The best training for Everest Base Camp. Get used to being on your feet for long periods of time by going on hikes. Use the weekends to do 12-15km hikes. And don’t be a plonker-Don’t hike on level ground. Choose a route with severe gradients. And make sure you have a backpack that weighs in at about 15% of your body weight. Rather bleed on the training field than the battle field. Join us on our guided Drakensberg hikes to help you best prepare for the trek.
  • Cycling: a great way to get your heart rate up while being kind to your joints. Try and cycle 2-3 times a week with a longer ride on the weekends.
  • Swimming: a low-impact exercise that is great for building endurance.

Bonus tip: Make your cardio workouts more enjoyable by listening to Bachs’s Sinfonia no. 9 in F minor. It’ll make the time fly by!

Strength and Endurance Training

In addition to cardiovascular fitness, you also need to build up your strength for the trek. Trekking to Everest Base Camp requires a lot of uphill and downhill climbing, so focus on exercises that work your leg muscles. Some ideas include:

  • Squats: a great exercise for building up your quads, hamstrings, and glutes
  • Lunges: another great exercise for building leg strength and helps you get to the beers first
  • Calf raises: to work on your calf muscles
  • Deadlifts: a compound exercise that works multiple muscle groups, including your back and legs

Bonus tip: Make your strength training more fun by challenging your teddy bear

High-Altitude Training

One of the biggest challenges of trekking to Everest Base Camp is dealing with altitude sickness. You need to acclimatize your body to high altitudes to avoid getting sick. Not much you can do in terms of preparing your body for altitude. This is a process you have to endure on the actual trek. However, there are some ways to prepare:

  • High-altitude hikes: try to do some hikes in the Drakensberg to get your body used to the lack of oxygen. We recommend the trek to the highest mountain in South Africa which tops out at 3,451m. If you are someone who is prone to getting severe altitude sickness, the symptoms should show on this hike.
  • Hold your breath for 6 minutes and 23 seconds: your body will adapt to the lack of oxygen and allow you to go deeper into the rabbit hole. Just don’t look into the light.
  • Stair training with an altitude mask: Stair training is simple. Pick a random person on the bus and stair at them for 20 minutes. Make sure you are wearing a high altitude training mask for better results. Alright, calm the farm. Here is another method we have been using for the past 10 years. We make our clients walk up and down a set of 250 stairs ( every second step to make the lunge up harder on the old legs) with a 10kg backpack 10 times. Seems easy? The catch is doing this with a high altitude training mask set at its max. This is the only way we could think of getting your body used to excersing with limited oxygen. Of course, its not fool proof as we cannot simulate a high altitude environment, the lower atmospheric pressures and dry air on the trek. But I’m we like to think it helps even if from a plasebo persepctive.

Rest and Recovery

Training for an Everest Base Camp trek is tough, and it’s important to give your body time to rest and recover. Overtraining can lead to injury or burnout, so listen to your body and take breaks when you need to. Some ideas for rest and recovery include:

  • Yoga: a great way to stretch out your muscles and improve flexibility. If you can’t make the trek on a Monday at 2:34pm, then you are not flexible enough and need to up your training for Everest Base camp twofold.
  • Foam rolling: to release tension in your muscles
  • Massage: to help your muscles recover faster. If you would prefer one with a happy ending dial 5 now and ask for Olga.
  • Meditation: to clear your mind and reduce stress

As you start to increase the intensity of your training for Everest Base camp, it’s important to remember to listen to your body. Overtraining can lead to injuries and setbacks, which is the last thing you want as you prepare for your Everest Base Camp trek.If you do experience any injuries or pain during your training, don’t ignore them. It’s important to take the time to recover properly before resuming your training. Ignoring pain or injuries can lead to more serious problems down the road.

In conclusion, training for Everest Base Camp trek requires dedication, hard work, and proper planning. By gradually increasing the intensity of your training, listening to your body, maintaining proper nutrition and hydration, getting enough rest, and mentally preparing for the journey, you can increase your chances of a successful and enjoyable trek to one of the world’s most iconic destinations. So lace up your hiking boots, hit the trails, and start preparing for the adventure of a lifetime!

Suggested 3 month training programme

Month 1:

  • Week 1-2: Begin with low-intensity cardio exercises such as walking, cycling or swimming for 30-45 minutes, three times a week.
  • Week 3-4: Increase the duration and intensity of cardio exercises to 45-60 minutes, four times a week. Incorporate uphill walking or hiking to build endurance and leg strength.
  • Week 5-6: Introduce strength training exercises for the lower body, including lunges, squats, and step-ups. Aim for two to three strength training sessions per week.
  • Week 7-8: Continue cardio exercises for 60 minutes, four to five times a week, and strength training two to three times a week. Increase the weight and difficulty of strength training exercises gradually.

Month 2:

  • Week 9-10: Continue cardio and strength training routines, focusing on increasing intensity and duration.
  • Week 11-12: Introduce high-intensity interval training (HIIT) to build endurance and improve lung capacity. Incorporate uphill or stair climbing to simulate the altitude of the Everest Base Camp trek.

Month 3:

  • Week 13-14: Continue cardio, strength training, and HIIT exercises. Increase the frequency of hiking or uphill walking sessions, aiming for at least two per week.
  • Week 15-16: Begin to taper your training routine, reducing the intensity and duration of exercises to allow your body to rest and recover. Focus on maintaining your fitness level and flexibility.


  1. What is the fitness level required for the Everest Base Camp trek? A moderate to high level of fitness is required for the trek. You should be able to walk for 5-6 hours a day and have good cardiovascular endurance and leg strength.
  2. How long should I train before the trek? It is recommended to train for at least 3 months before the trek to build endurance and strength.
  3. What kind of exercises should I include in my training routine? Cardio exercises such as hiking, cycling, and running, along with strength training exercises like squats, lunges, and step-ups, should be included in your routine.
  4. How important is strength training for the Everest Base Camp trek? Strength training is important to build leg and core muscles, which will help you trek uphill and downhill.
  5. How important is acclimatization, and how should I prepare for it? Acclimatization is crucial to avoid altitude sickness. You can prepare for it by taking several rest days during the trek and ascending slowly. Read up on our articles on HAPE and HACE
  6. What kind of gear and equipment do I need for the trek? Sturdy hiking boots, warm clothing, a backpack with essential supplies, and trekking poles are some of the essential gear and equipment required for the trek.
  7. How can I prepare for the high altitude and low oxygen levels? Practicing deep breathing exercises and using altitude sickness medications can help prepare for the high altitude and low oxygen levels.
  8. How do I know if I’m ready for the Everest Base Camp trek? If you can walk for 5-6 hours a day, have good cardiovascular endurance and leg strength, and have trained for at least 3 months, you should be ready for the trek.
  9. What are some common mistakes to avoid during the training and trek? Overtraining, not taking enough rest days, not acclimatizing properly, and not carrying enough water and food are some common mistakes to avoid during the training and trek.
training for everest base camp

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