Essentials of the St. James’ Way

At the time to do St. James Way is important to consider some advises that will help us and will facilitate our trip.

First of all, we must be prepared physical and mentally, because the Way implies a challenge and we are not always used to walk a lot of kilometres in consecutive days. It is not about doing a lot of sport the previous week; it is about train constantly during the previous six or eight weeks to get out body and our mind used to the wear that walking continually implies. Moreover, it is recommendable to start the training with the shoes that we are going to use for the trip and, at least on the previous week, do the same with the backpack that we will to carry to get used to the weight.

It is also important to plan when we want to do the Way. Most of the pilgrims think that spring and early autumn are the best seasons, because in summer the weather conditions can overwhelm us and in winter some hostels close their doors.

In respect of the adequate shoes to walk, most common is to use trekking boots, which insolate cold and hold firmly our ankles, and if we travel in the hottest months, it is recommendable to use sneakers, because they avoid the heat in our feet. We also should use seamless socks and made with fibre, and never use cotton socks, because they get wet easily and can produce blisters.

Another important thing is our backpack, which should not exceed 10% of our weight. We also should carry indispensable things only, and the backpack should have holding points to our waist and not only carry the weight over our shoulders.

The next step is to plan the stages of the St. James Way according to our rhythm and decide how many stages we want to do and how many kilometres we want to walk. It is important to adapt the distance of every stage to our physical conditions. A good idea is to start the Way doing short distances and make increases to reach an average of 20 or 25 kilometres per day. And if we feel bad or with physical disturbances, the best choice is to have a break or devote a whole day to our recovery in order to avoid injuries.

At last, it is recommendable to look for information about hostels, camping and hotels of the Way. In the hostels it will be required do show our pilgrim credential to stay overnight and it is usually not allow to book a room previously, and it is because of this that we should try to be informed about different options to sleep.

Doing St. James Way is a great experience, not only because of reaching Santiago, but also because of the travel, so every advice will help us and will make our trip unforgettable.

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