The Ultimate Camping Trip Workout Routine

For the fitness freak on a camping trip, there shouldn't be any excuse not to train. You may be away from your normal gym — but that doesn't mean you should deny your body its usual workout routine.

One thing is for sure — if you shirk your training commitments while camping for longer periods, the chances are, every little bit of mass you packed on previously will come crashing down in front of you. Mother Nature's laws are rooted in "no pain, no gain". In light of this, how do you combine a suitable workout routine with a camping trip? We are here to answer that question.

It's all about harnessing the beauty of the natural environment to use in your workout. Even though you may not have access to your normal exercise machines, it's still possible to try the following ultimate workout routine guide for campers. These are geared towards fitness lovers who want to increase their vitality, add body mass, and stay fit while going camping.

Suitable Workouts for Camping


Squats make this list of good camping exercises because, they don't require heavy equipment. To get started, all you need is your body. Making the best use of the handy things around you, you could do a great squat to uplift your power. Let's delve into the technique of squatting.

  • ​Stand on a firm and stable platform.
  • ​Place your feet slightly apart.
  • ​Begin pressing the hips backwards, while bending the knees. Using this procedure, you are lowering the glutes towards the ground.
  • ​As soon as the knees bend slightly over 90°,  press up to your initial standing posture.
  • ​3 sets of 10 reps isn't bad.

Tree Branch Pull-up

Take an early morning walk into the woods. There may not be a metal bar for you to do your normal pull-ups. But there will be plenty of trees with extended branches within your reach. At this point, you can easily improvise. A tree branch can easily serve as a bar for your pull-ups. This routine aims to work the arms and build the muscles in your back.

To get started:

  • ​Search for an appropriate tree with hanging branches that are within your reach.
  • ​Stand under the branch and grab onto it with your palms curled and facing you.
  • ​Flex your elbows and pull up your body until your chin is above the bar.
  • ​Then slowly lower yourself back to your original hanging position.
  • ​Do as many reps & sets as you can

NB: In doing this routine, you must ensure that the tree branch is strong enough to take your body weight. You don't want to spoil your trip by falling from a broken tree branch.

Walking Lunge

This is another ideal move that knows no limits.  It's convenient in many locations including the middle of camping grounds. Lunges allows you to burn huge chunks of calories.

To start:

  • ​Widen your feet to be about shoulder-width apart.
  • ​Using 1 leg, take a giant step in a forward direction.
  • ​Allow the standing leg to go downwards, near the ground. The upper body should be straight during this move.
  • ​Cast off with your legs and then alternate the steps.

Farmer's Walk

What's more natural than walking for your health, energy, and fitness? Traditional gym spaces are too small for longer walks. So, when you finally find yourself in an open camping ground with wide spaces, you can walk to cover up for your gym’s shortcomings. Farmers' walks are more fun and rewarding because they push you to your limits. To get started, you will need two small weights.

At camping grounds, you can easily find rocks of suitable sizes.

NB: for the sake of balance, the rocks should be of approximately equal sizes.

  • ​Holding a rock in each hand — start walking, covering a distance of 100 m (109 yards) or more.
  • ​As you hold the rocks in your palms, you may feel some strain. Hold the weights firmly as you move through the obstacles in the terrain.
  • ​When you finally reach your mark, put down the rocks and perform a set of push-ups (at least 5 reps).
  • ​Then pick up the rocks and walk back to where you started from. You can repeat the routine 4-5 times.


Push-ups are some of the coolest all-weather routines that you can easily incorporate into a camping workout plan. Most people are familiar with the steps for a push-up, but we can still go over them (for the sake of beginners). Push-ups can pack your arms with muscles.

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  • ​Stand upright and close your feet
  • ​Extend both arms forward and lower them to touch the ground.
  • ​With your palms on the floor to support your body, and your closed feet stretched backwards, lower your torso until your chest is just above the ground.
  • ​Then push yourself up to your initial position; that's 1 rep.
  • ​Do as many as reps & sets as you can.

Bicep Curls

Around the vicinity of your camp, you should be able to find some logs (to substitute for dumbbells) to perform bicep curls. This will help build the forearms you have been yearning for.

​Stand up and hold a dumbbell in each hand.

  • ​Let your hands hang sideway with your elbows near the torso. Keep your palms forward to face you.
  • ​Now, stabilizing your upper arms, breathe out and curl up the logs to reach your shoulders by flexing the bicep muscles.
  • ​At the top, pause for a moment, inhale and lower the weights back to the initial position.
  • ​For intermediate trainers, 2 sets of 12 reps is cool.


Sit-ups are good for toning the abs. The good news is — they can be done anywhere by anyone. A camping trip will become more fulfilling when you include sit-ups in your routine. To fire up the core muscles, dive straight into sit-ups. Here are the necessary steps to follow.

​Find some flat ground (for instance, you may lay your camping mat) and lie backwards on it.

  • ​Bend your knees and keep the feet flat on the ground.
  • ​Place your hands at the back of your head.
  • ​Lift your shoulders from the ground, moving your chin towards your bent knees. The angle shouldn't exceed 30°.
  • ​Then lower yourself gently back to the ground. Repeat enough times to complete your reps and sets.

Chest Press

When doing camping workout routines, you don't want to forget about your chest. Even with minimal weights, you can have a full blast with chest press. This would stand in for a bench press.

The only precaution is that, you must use rocks of comparable sizes to ensure uniformity. Well, if you have already got your rocks ready, then let's start.

  • ​Lie backwards on a log while holding your rocks.
  • ​Begin pressing the rocks above the chest. Extend your arms straight and then lower the weights back to your chest.
  • ​Push up the rocks again and repeat the steps.

Squat Jump

If you want to further vary your routine, you can do squat jumps to cater for your cardio needs. The uneven surfaces of the natural environments may even prove to be more beneficial to your squat jumps. Assuming you are on sandy terrain, you will need to activate your body's full power to avoid slipping on the rough and loose surface.

Here's how you should go about it.

  • ​Spread your feet to be shoulder-width apart. Slightly bend your knees.
  • ​Begin squatting downwards and press your hips back until you reach the lowest squat level.
  • ​At this point, strengthen your feet and launch yourself into the air (as high as you can jump).
  • ​Try to land softly on your feet with your knees & hips bent to cushion you from a hard impact.
  • ​Then get back into the starting position and repeat up again.


Step-ups can be combined with extension of the back leg to keep your heart functioning at its best. At the campsite, you can always try to look around for pieces of wood (logs) that you can use for step-ups.

  • ​After finding a round-shaped log, step onto its surface by lifting the right leg.
  • ​Press your heels to lift your body to the top. Using the power of your glutes (the left one), extend the remaining leg behind.
  • ​Use your left foot to step down, and follow it with the right one.
  • ​The target here is 15 steps each for each leg.

NB: In order not to compromise your safety, the log used for the step-ups must be stable, since you don't want it to roll and injure you.


Camping gives you the chance to explore and admire the beautiful corners of the world, but it takes you far from the gym. To rejuvenate your system, and stay strong throughout your camping activities, it's a big plus if you take some time off to follow this ultimate guide for camping and exercise enthusiasts. 

Kevin Smith

About the Author

Kevin Smith

Ahoy there! The name’s Kevin Smith, the proprietor of this little travel and outdoors blog. The outdoors has always been a passion of mine since I was a kid as my parents were avid campers themselves. They taught me everything I know when it comes to camping, hiking etc. and I would like to do my part by imparting my know-how to like-minded individuals who enjoy the same hobby as me. I started this website in the hopes of helping other people when it comes to answering questions, giving tips and recommendations focusing on the camping niche. Along with some close friends of mine, we are here to help you make the most out of your outdoor experience. Enjoy your stay and enjoy the wild side!

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