I’m sure that most of you out there are in much better shape than I am, but there are probably also a few of you who may need a little help getting in shape for your next hike. The best way to get in shape for hiking is very simple: Put on a daypack and go hike!
But. if you don’t have time to hit the trail as often as you would like, there are plenty of simple bodyweight exercises you can do that require little to no special equipment and can help you get into backpacking shape.
Strength training is very important, and you don’t even need to go to the gym to get a good workout! All you need is a little open space in your house or yard and a few light dumbbells (5-20 lbs depending on your fitness level). The workout I describe below will take about 45 minutes, and should be done 3 time a week.