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Hike yourself healthy in 2015 – Outdoor clothing giveaway with Blacks

January is traditionally the month when we make resolutions that involve health and fitness – you know the ones. “This year I’ll lose that extra 5 kg that crept on over the last few years” or “This year I’ll train for a marathon to shake off the couch-potato that I’ve become”. The trouble is that such dramatic resolutions rarely last more than a few weeks while it’s the small actions that we take each and every day that have a lasting impact on health and fitness.

Vacation

Hiking for health in 2015

While I’m always trying to shake off those extra pounds I find it more effective to incorporate walking and hiking into my everyday life, rather than make resolutions to go to the gym that I don’t have time to keep. I walk 30+ minutes to and from work, enjoy walks in the country when I’m away for the weekend with the family and incorporate walking and hiking into my holidays too. A major trek like the Tour de Mont Blanc can sometimes be just the challenge you need sometimes but equally a walk along Canal Saint Martin and the Promenade Plantee helped me see a side of Paris that was a little off the tourist trail.

Walking in Wales Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

Walking in Wales

I’m giving away a £200 Blacks voucher

To help you to include walking and hiking into your daily life and your travels, I’ve teamed up with Blacks, the outdoor clothing store, with a giveaway of a £200 voucher that can be spent on the outdoor clothing or equipment from the Blacks website. Check out the interview the Blacks did with me on their blog here. You’ll find information about how to enter the Blacks £200 voucher giveaway at the end of this article.

The clothing you need for hiking

To give you some ideas, here’s my pick from the Blacks range of some things that I’d love to have in my wardrobe for walking and hiking. Cosy down jackets are great for everyday walking, whether it’s a walk in the country or a walk to work, while fleeces and t-shirts made of the latest technical fabrics will keep you at just the right temperature while wicking away moisture. For hiking, I recommend trousers made of quick-dry fabric, especially those where the leg zips off to make shorts or capris.

Blacks clothing

The links for the items featured here are for your convenience but since many items are in the sale these may soon be replaced by other new season items: Patagonia woman’s down hooded jacket in red £155 (sale) | The North Face Masonic Polartex Fleece Hoody in orange£35 (sale) | Adidas superNova Tee in purple £19 | Berghaus lowscale zip-off walking trousers in grey £40 (sale) |Royal Robbins discovery Capri trousers in black £25 (sale) | Ronhill Aspiration contour capris £34

The boots you need for hiking

For footwear there’s no substitute for a comfortable pair of walking boots with proper support for those long-distance trails such as the Tour de Mont Blanc, but if you are doing some warm weather hiking as I did in Mallorca last September you may prefer one of the hybrid walking shoes that are cut lower on the ankle and are cooler to wear. For active trail running or more sporty use you might consider some of the trail shoes that have well supported soles with lightweight upper. On all types of walking boot or shoe, look out for those that have breatheable but waterproof uppers such as those made of Gore-tex. Read my tips on how to choose the perfect pair of walking boots. 

Blacks boots

Walking boots and shoes are not something I would recommend buying online unless you have first tried them in-store, since you may need to try on many different brands and styles to find the most comfortable for your feet but you will find these styles or similar in the Blacks stores: Merrell Daria mid GORE-TEX Boot £110 | Salomon Ellipse Gre-tex hiking shoe £100 | Merrell All-out Rush Trail Running Shoe

Of course the choice on how to spend your £200 Black’s voucher is yours, but I hope that you’ll be inspired to do some walking and hiking in 2015 on your travels. All the styles featured are available on the Blacks website at the time of publication although many are in the sale and other new season items will be available soon. Now to give you a bit of inspiration to get hiking in 2015, here are some ideas from the treks that I’ve done in the past few years;

Walking the Tour de Mont Blanc Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

Walking the Tour de Mont Blanc

The Tour de Mont Blanc

This circular trail around the Mont Blanc Massif takes you through France, Switzerland and Italy over 170km and is normally completed over 12 days. Be prepared for arduous ascents and descents of up to 2600M, long 8 hour days walking and staying in mountain refuges that can be quite basic. You will be rewarded, however with stunning Alpine views and an amazing sense of achievement. This is an arduous trek but one which can be broken up into more manageable chucks – I walked it with a friend in stages over 4 years, or you can look for a company like Macs Adventure that offer a cut down version. Read about my walk on the Tour de Mont Blanc here.

Walking the dry stone route in Mallorca Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

Walking the dry stone route in Mallorca

The Dry Stone route in Mallorca

Although better known as a beach holiday destination, the island of Mallorca has some outstanding walking and I was there in September walking the Dry Stone Route along the western coast of the island. From the artist’s village at Deia we walked within sight of the sea and at the coastal resort of Soller started our climb into the Tramuntana mountains, following the old pilgrim’s trail to the monastery of Lluc and on to Pollenca on the northern coast. Combined with some time in Palma this is an ideal trail for those who are looking for moderate walking with some cultural interest. Read about my walk on the dry stone route in Mallorca here.

Above Solva on the Pembrokeshire coastal path Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

Above Solva on the Pembrokeshire coastal path

Walking the Pembrokeshire coastal path in Wales

Last spring I walked a section of the Pembrokeshire Coastal path in Wales with Macs Adventure ending up at St David’s, the UK’s smallest city. This part of the Welsh coast is rugged and wild with stunning clifftop views and hidden coves that you can only reach from the coastal path. If you can plan your visit from May to July I’d recommend the walks on Skomer Island during the Puffin nesting season when you can get very close to these colourful sea-birds as they hatch their chicks in burrows. Read about my walk on the Pembrokeshire coastal path here.

Climbing a Via Ferrata in South Tyrol, Italy Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

Climbing a Via Ferrata in South Tyrol, Italy

Walking and climbing in the Dolomites

Last September, I visited South Tyrol in Italy and was thrilled to climb my first Via Ferrata. These climbing routes (literally iron routes) have fixed cables that you are clipped to making it easy for anyone with the right equipment to climb them, although if you are a beginner I’d recommend hiring a guide. This part of the Dolomites is ideal for walking and hiking with many day hikes and long-distance trails and you’ll be pleased to know that this northern corner of Italy is also known for its gastronomy with no less than 19 Michelin star restaurants and numerous vineyards where you can taste the local wines! Read about climbing my First Via Ferrata here.

Blacks recently featured a Q & A with me on their blog about how I started blogging and some of my favourite travel and hiking destinations. Read the interview here.

How to Enter the Giveaway

To enter the Giveaway for a £200 Blacks voucher please use the Rafflecopter widget below;

  • Enter by taking a look at the Blacks website and then leave a comment below this post to tell me which items you would choose from their range to use when hiking or walking.

You can gain additional chances to win via the Rafflecopter Widget;

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms and Conditions

  • This giveaway is a prize draw/sweepstake
  • The prize is a £200 voucher that may be used to purchase goods such as outdoor clothing and equipment from the Blacks online store.
  • The giveaway is open to all readers in any location
  • The winner will be chosen at random
  • The giveaway runs for 2 weeks and ends on Monday 9th February 2015 at midnight
  • The winner will be notified by e-mail within 7 days of the draw ending and must confirm their acceptance of the prize by e-mail within 3 days or the prize will be allocated to another winner.
  • The giveaway is restricted to one entry per individual.
  • Any duplicate or automated entries will disqualify the entrant from this giveaway.
  • Entering this giveaway gives permission for you to be added to the e-mail list of Heatheronhertravels.com and Blacks.co.uk but we will never spam you and you can unsubscribe at any time.

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477 Comments

  • Reply
    christy spencer
    February 9, 2015 at 8:53 am

    http://www.blacks.co.uk/womens/122151-berghaus-womens-expeditor-aq-boots.html I would love a pair of these for hiking, they look very comfy x

  • Reply
    Claire B
    February 9, 2015 at 9:44 am

    http://www.blacks.co.uk/footwear/005227-salomon-women-s-fellraiser-trail-running-shoe.html Hubby owns a few pairs and swears by them so i would love to , too

  • Reply
    Rory Campion
    February 9, 2015 at 10:07 am

    THE NORTH FACE Men’s Thermoball™ Vest

  • Reply
    Lee
    February 9, 2015 at 10:53 am

    I need some new hiking boots and these look ideal.
    http://www.blacks.co.uk/womens/151174-hi-tec-women-s-altitude-lite-mid-hiking-boot.html

  • Reply
    Karen Lloyd
    February 9, 2015 at 10:56 am

    http://www.blacks.co.uk/womens/122277-merrell-womens-decora-chant-snow-boot.html

    I love Merrell footwear, so comfy and looks great too.

  • Reply
    jenette ogborn
    February 9, 2015 at 11:36 am

    http://www.blacks.co.uk/womens/60039437-scarpa-womens-baltoro-walking-boot-mid-pink.html love these look comfy and are pink too 🙂

  • Reply
    Alison Barker
    February 9, 2015 at 11:42 am

    Women’s Expeditor AQ™ Leather Hiking Boots

  • Reply
    steph lovatt
    February 9, 2015 at 12:20 pm

    This looks so warm http://www.blacks.co.uk/womens/139595-peter-storm-women-s-waterproof-parka.html

  • Reply
    Barbara Handley
    February 9, 2015 at 12:26 pm

    DIDRIKSONS

    Women’s Martha Duffel Parka
    http://www.blacks.co.uk/womens/100036-didriksons-womens-martha-duffel-parka-bright-red.html

  • Reply
    James Holyland
    February 9, 2015 at 12:50 pm

    http://www.blacks.co.uk/mens/106190-oakley-mens-antix-sunglasses-dark-brown.html. Chose something stylish

  • Reply
    Luke Bowes
    February 9, 2015 at 1:46 pm

    I would love to have this for hiking! – http://www.blacks.co.uk/mens/023642-the-north-face-mens-lixus-full-zip-hooded-fleece-jacket-black.html

  • Reply
    D McNicol
    February 9, 2015 at 2:07 pm

    I’d get the OSPREY Aether 70L Rucksack as I need a good one to replace my old one which is a bit tatty now.

  • Reply
    rebecca roberts
    February 9, 2015 at 2:14 pm

    http://www.blacks.co.uk/footwear/168965-merrell-women-s-daria-mid-gore-tex-boot.html

    pretty please 🙂

  • Reply
    John Mcgovern
    February 9, 2015 at 2:59 pm

    THE NORTH FACE
    Men’s Evolution II TriClimate® 3 in 1 Jacket

  • Reply
    Amanda Sakovitz
    February 9, 2015 at 3:45 pm

    I would use the THE NORTH FACE Borealis 29 Litre Daypack

  • Reply
    Christine Bray
    February 9, 2015 at 4:22 pm

    I love to keep warm when we go walking this is great http://www.blacks.co.uk/womens/019309-technicals-womens-particle-parka.html

  • Reply
    Prabath Jayalatharachchi
    February 9, 2015 at 4:24 pm

    My favorite is ” Men’s Crossroad Mid GORE-TEX® Hiking Boot ”

    http://www.blacks.co.uk/mens/078123-salomon-crossroad-mid-gore-tex-hiking-boot-black.html

  • Reply
    Valerie Kay
    February 9, 2015 at 4:47 pm

    The Berghaus Women’s Explorer Trek Walking Boot 🙂

  • Reply
    Rebecca Barnes
    February 9, 2015 at 6:11 pm

    I’ve been knicking my other half’s jacket for way too long… He’s coming close to marching me to buy one of my own!

    So I would have to spend the voucher on a sturdy jacket like this one: http://www.blacks.co.uk/womens/124048-the-north-face-womens-evolve-ii-triclimate-3-in-1-jacket-black.html

  • Reply
    Helen Garner
    February 9, 2015 at 7:32 pm

    JACK WOLFSKIN

    Women’s Sherbrooke Parka

    this looks really nice

  • Reply
    Adrian Bean
    February 9, 2015 at 8:27 pm

    I would love a 3 in 1 jacket

  • Reply
    Sarah Phillips
    February 9, 2015 at 8:31 pm

    http://m.blacks.co.uk/womens/womens-clothing/jackets-coats/3-in-1-jackets/

    Love this!

  • Reply
    Nicola Lynch
    February 9, 2015 at 8:39 pm

    I’d love the Patagonia Jacket in blue. I get so cold, this would be ideal! http://www.blacks.co.uk/womens/040564-patagonia-womens-down-sweater-hooded-jacket-mid-blue.html

  • Reply
    Hannah Whitling
    February 9, 2015 at 10:50 pm

    http://www.blacks.co.uk/womens/122261-the-north-face-womens-chilkat-ii-luxe-winter-boot.html so my feet stay warm while walking the dog and I also have better grip

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