Is RUCKING really as easy as it sounds; just walk while carrying weight? Yes. The concept is easy. Execution is another story. Ask the guys and gals rucking hours at a time some two or three times a week while hauling an extra 50 lbs. around town with them. It hurts; it’s exhausting; it breaks you down but makes you stronger.
The fact is some people love running. Some people don’t, but they still enjoy a challenge and recognize their need for exercise. Rucking is a great way to scratch that itch.
How to Ruck
The concept is simple. Get a rucksack or super-sturdy backpack, and load it down with a fraction of your weight. You’ll want to experiment with a safe starter weight. Over time, you’ll want to increase the weight to continue challenging yourself. Most adults can handle at least 20 lbs. over a short distance. Meanwhile, some ruckers carry 50 or more pounds over many miles.
Aside from the weight on your back, you just need a destination. Almost any environment is fine for rucking. Some will prefer rural trails while many ruck groups prefer urban rucking while visiting city landmarks.
Did you notice we mentioned “ruck groups”? Sure, you can ruck alone, but rucking beside friends or strangers with common interests is a lot more fun.
The idea of rucking didn’t materialize out of thin air. Soldiers have rucked more miles than they care to admit. Even if you’ve never served, you’ve seen military movies with troops traveling on foot with heavy loads on their backs. That’s rucking. It can also look like overnight hikers loaded down with everything they’ll need to survive. In a sense, rucking for fitness is really a form of preparation for those more practical examples.
Why People Ruck
Again, rucking is a great way for people who hate running and get bored in the gym to still get some cardio while strengthening their core. Rucking with others is also a great way to build camaraderie and accountability.
When and Where to Ruck
Casual rucking can happen anywhere, but there are also rucking groups, events, and challenges to help you ruck with purpose. GoRuck is, without a doubt, the most prominent advocate and organizer of rucking events and communities. They are the Spartan of the ruck world and, as such, their events often consist of obstacles beyond standard rucking. Meanwhile, rucking newcomers can learn how to prepare for such events at ruck.training. You can even enjoy monthly challenges to earn patches (to attach to your cap or rucksack) at ruckingchallenges.com.