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Arnold Clark’s guide to Kiltwalk training

It’s time to get into training!

Some enthusiastic walkers at the 2016 kiltwalk

Some enthusiastic walkers at the 2016 kiltwalk

You can do it!

Before we train our bodies we need to train our minds; the body achieves what the mind believes.

No matter how fit or unfit you think you are, training is essential.

There are three distance options for the Kiltwalk – 6, 13 and 26 miles (23 for Glasgow) to suit different abilities. This is the perfect opportunity to challenge yourself. If you were thinking of doing the 6, why not push to 13? And if you were thinking 13, believe you can do the 26 – what’s an extra 13 miles? If you are planning on the 26 why not do two, three or even all four walks! Whatever you choose, the sense of achievement you will feel at the end will inspire you to want to do it again.

So it’s time to get training. Let’s start releasing your endorphins and preparing your body for the challenge ahead.

Top tip - Wear your event day shoes during your training as this will avoid getting blisters. This is key if you’re buying new shoes – buy them now.

What do you need to do now:

  • Build up
  • Rehabilitate
  • Refuel
  • Rest
  • Repeat

Build up

  • 1–4 Weeks: 4–11 miles
  • 4 – 8 Weeks: 11–14 miles
  • 9 – 12 Weeks: 17–26 miles

Increase your pace each week and include hills in your training as well as off-road walking.


Rehabilitation will be a key element to your training. Most people leave this out but it should be treated as seriously as your walking training.

Some people may suffer knee soreness. Stretching the muscles surrounding the knee will reduce this.

Stretches – hold each one for at least 30 seconds.

Quads Stand on one foot, lift the other and hold against the bottom, while keeping a slight bend in the standing leg. Keep your knees together and push the hips forward, keep your head and chest up. You should feel a stretch up the front of your quads.

Calves Use a wall for this stretch. Stand away from the wall placing both hands on it shoulder-width apart. Put one foot forward and bend the knee while keeping the other leg straight. Keep both toes pointing forward. You should feel the stretch up the back of your calves.

Hamstrings Sit on the floor with one leg straight and the other bent with the foot resting on the inner thigh. Lean forward and aim to hold onto the foot. If you cannot reach the foot, get as far down the leg as you can ¬– this could be the shin or the knee. You should feel the stretch down the back of your leg.


A healthy balanced diet will give you the fuel you need for your training. Make sure you refuel during the event to make sure you have enough energy and don’t become fatigued.


The most important thing to do is listen to your body – if you feel you have had enough, it’s time for a rest. Have at least one rest day per week.


Get your playlist ready and do it all again.

Good luck and enjoy!

About the Author

Natasha Abbott

Staff writer at Arnold Clark