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5 week training plan for the 12-mile Slave Rebellion Reenactment walks

We’ve put together this training plan to help you prepare for your participation in SRR. 12 miles a day for two days is not as far as you think: research shows that visitors to Disney World average 12 miles walking in a day.

Walking uses a different set of muscles to other forms of exercise. The plan below will help you to feel ready for the Slave Rebellion Reenactment’s two 12-mile walks. Following this training plan will empower you and give you confidence as you join the Rebellion. Please do prepare for your walk: you will have a much better experience.
This plan builds up gradually, increasing your activity each week and giving your body time to recover.

Walking Training Program – 5 weeks leading up to two 12 mile walks.
Plan to do walking training 4 days per week, taking 3 days off per week to rest.

When you’re walking with others, don’t push yourself beyond your ability.

The plan starts with three 45-minute and one longer walk in a week and gradually increases mileage. You will begin walking at 2 mph, but over your walking training program you will be aiming to build it up to 2.5 or even 3 mph for the shorter walks. If you wish to walk faster and have the fitness to do so, please feel free. The point is to put in the miles and if you can walk at 3mph or faster that is fine.  During the reenactment, we will walk at pace of about 2.5mph

Week 1 – walk 45 minutes (1.5 miles) 3 times (= 4.5 miles) + 1 longer (2 mile) walk
Week 2 – walk 1 hr (2.25 miles/hr)  3 times (= 6.75 miles )+ 1 longer (3 mile) walk
Week 3 – walk 1 hr (2.5 miles/hr) 2 times + walk 1.5 hours (2.5 miles/hr) (= 8.75 miles) + 1 longer walk 2 hours (5 mile)
Week 4 – walk 1 hr (2.5 miles/hr)  2 times + walk 1.5 hours (2.5 miles/hr) (= 8.75 miles) + a longer walk – 3 hours (7.5 miles)
Week 5 – walk 1 hr (2.5 miles/hr) 3 times (=7.5 miles) + a longer walk – 3.5 hours (8.75 miles)

In order to be fully prepared for the event, train on a variety of surfaces (pavement, gravel, grass, etc.) using the shoes and equipment that you will use on the event.

Scheduling Your Training
Try fitting the shorter walks into your day – Look at Google Maps to figure out how far these regular journeys are: Walk to work. Walk to the shops. Walk to friends’ houses. Do the longer training walks at weekends.
If the weather is a concern, you can walk indoors or in a gym. Meanwhile, get some weatherproof clothing and layers to keep you warm and dry and plan to train outdoors in all weathers. Don’t forget the Slave Rebellion Reenactment will be going ahead whatever the weather.

Walking APPS
If you have a smartphone, there are several apps that will record your walk, and some will keep a map of your route and tell you your pace and distance. Many are fine. We have used Guru Maps Pro ($4) and FitBit (free. Just the phone app, and no need to purchase a FitBit)

Liquids and Food, Foot Care
Drink both water and sports drinks during all training and the reenactment itself (we will be providing both in November). Don’t wait until you feel thirsty. On the day we will have bottled water or water containers. It is important to refuel your body with foods that contain quality calories that will give you the energy needed to safely and successfully complete training walks as well as the event itself. Blisters are the most common foot problem. By building up slowly will harden your feet. Blisters are your body’s way of creating a natural protective cushion to protect your feet.

For more information, you can visit:

https://www.girltrek.org/  (There are two upcoming GirlTrek walks in New Orleans for self-identifying Black women, on Friday October 11th and Saturday October 19th: details in the ‘Find a Walk’ section of the GirlTrek website).