The following workout routine should only be attempted by those Future Jarheads who wish to separate themselves from their peers and not by those who enjoy nature walks or long quiet walks on the beach.
It is important you understand that doing humps before boot camp is not necessary. For those of you who are more hard-core and very self-motivated and who wish to better yourselves both mentally and physically, then humps are the best way to go about it.
Humps are a huge mental challenge and if you can conquer this challenge now before you ship out, you will be much better prepared for not only boot camp, but for what comes after it as well. When it comes time to do humps in boot camp, your mind and body will be somewhat use to them while those who never practiced one prior to boot camp will be filled with fear, anxiety, doubt, and all sorts of other odd feelings.
cannot stress this point enough:
The type of strength you need to succeed as a Marine/recruit and the type of toughness that will benefit you the most as a recruit and Marine and as a civilian can be acquired by doing humps in the manner that is shown here.
There is a huge misconception that you must carry a lot of weight in order to get a good workout when doing hikes/humps and that you must hump many miles in order to benefit the most from humps. This is not true the same way that running great distances isn’t really necessary to prepare you for boot camp or the USMC.
Humps are the best way to build character and to toughen up anyone from the inside out, and it prepares you mentally big time only if you stick to your routine. If you follow the following advice, then you will be better prepared for not only boot camp, but for whatever comes after and it will also toughen your ass up both mentally and physically, this I guarantee you.
Keep in mind you can do some variations of what I describe here, but the core of the workout is what you do not want to change in order for it to have the greatest impact on you. And even if your job will not be infantry, you still can benefit from this routine. Just because your job is not infantry, you still will be doing several humps while in boot camp, and while at MCT and many of you will end up in an infantry unit and will have to do more humps during your enlistment.
This workout routine is made to be done over several months and it is not a routine you bang out in a month or two. You need at least 4-5 months to get the most benefit from this routine. If you have less time, then you simply adjust by either doing less humps, or doing them weekly or every ten days or so.
Some of you will do a one hour hump and it will not seem that bad and you will want to move on to a two-hour hump. No, no, no. You must do several of these one hour humps in order to better prepare your mind and body for what is to come. <<<<MENTAL PREPARATION.
You should try to hump once every two weeks and you must drink plenty of water the days before you go hump. While on your hump you need to carry water with you and you drink while on the move. You need to have your water bottle easily accessible so you don’t stop to drink.
Let’s assume you now can do a 3 hour hump with ease. Now you can add more weight, but you now will do a 1 hour hump so you get the feel for carrying more weight, and you repeat the same routine eventually ending by doing several 3 hour humps with the added weight. Trust me when I tell you that by adding as little as 5 pounds, you will feel it over time. You should add no more than 10 pounds each time you increase in weight. This is why you must get use to doing humps with basic weighted loads first. Trying to hump 15 miles with 75 pounds is silly and can be counter-productive and dangerous. If you are doing the initial humps with somewhat ease, then you can increase the weight and continue the initial routine.
You never want to carry more then 50 pounds. That is not necessary for what we are trying to accomplish here. By following a schedule like I mentioned, you then will be better prepared both mentally and physically to take on any hump of any length, this too I guarantee you.
Remember, no matter the length, it is very important you maintain the same pace for the entire hump. If you can add hills or inclines to your routes, then this is a plus and you still must maintain the same pace no matter the elevation, the surface, how you feel or the weather. THOU SHALL NOT MAKE ANY EXCUSES!!
A three-hour hump should average out to about 9-11 miles if you are moving at a good brisk pace non stop. A 1 hour hump should be a little more than 3 miles or somewhere around there. It all depends on your pace.
It is important you push yourself and that you not cheat yourself when practicing humps in order to get the most benefit from them.
Some important tips and advice about doing humps/hikes: