If you've scheduled a travel adventure for yourself, you are undoubtedly excited — and probably nervous. The best adventures are the ones that test your limits, and you can tell you're approaching your limit when your excitement begins to approach fear. The best tool to help you deal with those pre-adventure jitters is preparation. Being prepared will also go a long way towards keeping you safe.
Read and Research
Find out all you can about your destination and the activities you'll join. Read blog posts and articles by those who have gone before you. Read any information your guide may have provided, but look for information and checklists that other outfitters have published, too. Read up on your destination and your activity, and study maps until you feel confident that you understand exactly where you're headed.
Browse the Latest Gear
Shopping for new gear is not just a fun pastime, it can be part of your preparation strategy as well. Of course, you can't spend your way to mastery. If your gear is even a few years old, though, new versions could have major improvements and new features that you should know about. Research with the intention of keeping your gear current, but balance that with the knowledge that most improvements are incremental or even cosmetic. Remember that you don't have to buy every shiny new thing on the market.
Roll Out a Safety Net
While there's no point dwelling on every danger you might face, there is a lot of value in being prepared. Your safety net should include a first aid kit that will cover the most common injuries for your planned activities, a cell phone that's likely to work in your destination and that you've programmed with local emergency numbers, and the right insurance coverage at home and abroad. Membership programs like MedJetHorizon add to your safety net by ensuring that you can get back to your home hospital quickly if you need serious medical care.
Train Your Mind and Body
Doing your research, updating your gear, and being prepared for an emergency are important, but nothing can substitute for being in the right physical and mental shape for your adventure. If you're already regularly participating in similar activities, you only need to maintain your condition or make slight adjustments to your fitness regimen to be ready. If you're out of shape or haven't been active in a related sport recently, you should start training weeks or even months ahead of time.
General strength and cardiovascular fitness are very important, but specific training is vital if your life will literally be in your own hands. Look for ways to train that offer conditions as close to possible as those you'll be experiencing on your adventure.
Adventure travel is a great way to add excitement to your life and expand your boundaries. Responsible preparation is the key to an adventure that is as safe and fun as it can possibly be.