Author: Uphill Athlete

This at-home Anaerobic Threshold test will help you determine your Anaerobic Threshold (AnT) heart rate, which will be useful when it comes to controlling and monitoring your training. You should perform it at least three days after any hard efforts. It can be done either on a steep treadmill (15 percent), a steep uphill, or, if you are a well-trained runner, you can do it on the flats. The test portion (excluding warm-up) will take at least 30 minutes and up to 60 minutes. You will need a recording heart rate monitor. This test requires maximal output so you need…

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Pinpointing your Aerobic Threshold (AeT) heart rate is the first step in setting up your training intensity zones. These zones will help direct your training to ensure the development of a strong aerobic base. While the gold standard for measuring it would be a laboratory test, the following Aerobic Threshold outdoor test works well for most (around 70 percent of) people when it comes to determining a baseline for aerobic training. If you have access to a treadmill, consider doing an indoor variation of this test: Read the eight-step instructions for determining your AeT on a treadmill.You’ll want to do…

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Determining your Aerobic Threshold (AeT) heart rate is the first step in setting up your training intensity zones. These zones will help direct your training to ensure the development of a strong aerobic base. While the gold standard for measuring it would be a laboratory test, the following Aerobic Threshold treadmill test works well most of the time to determine a baseline for aerobic training. If you do not have access to a treadmill, we have also developed a DIY outdoor test. Note that treadmills allow for more control. You’ll want to do the following AeT test in a fasted…

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We rely heavily on something we call Scott’s Killer Core Routine, as detailed in Training for the New Alpinism. This is a progression Scott Johnston developed and fine-tuned over 25 years of training world-class cross-country skiers. Many of his athletes competed at the Olympic and World Cup level, so we’re confident in the efficacy of this program for endurance athletes. We’ve modified his time-tested routine here for ski mountaineering and skimo racing. Ski Mountaineering Core Training: How to Do Scott’s Killer Core Routine 1.     To learn the exercises, start with one time through the circuit per workout. 2.     Do the…

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Stuss Leeds is an avalanche forecaster and ski patroller living in Colorado. His lifelong dream was to climb an 8,000-meter peak.Nearly two years ago, Colorado-based mountaineer and skier Stuss Leeds decided that he wanted to attempt a climb of Makalu (8,485 meters), the fifth-highest peak in the world. Makalu is part of Nepal’s famed northeast corner, a zone dominated by the highest terrain on earth. Located just east of Mount Everest, Makalu is an aesthetic and intimidating peak. Its south and west aspects hold sparse amounts of snow and ice, forming some of the world’s biggest high-altitude walls, and giving…

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In 2001, two Venezuelan climbers reached the summit of Mount Everest, inspiring the then-14-year old Giselle Cesin to become the first Venezuelan woman to reach the top of the world. Her hopeful journey began this year with success on Denali.Giselle Cesin’s path to Denali is unique. She’s been an endurance athlete her whole life—swimming, cycling, triathlons, marathons, and numerous Ironman events—though never a climber, until recently.The mountains have always drawn her in, but “Venezuela has limited mountaineering,” says Giselle. “We have rock mountains … not the kind of Denali-like mountains with big glaciers and ice. The only mountain that we…

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When building training plans and during actual workouts, the determination of appropriate intensity for the workout is an area of much confusion for mountain athletes. Some sports, such as swimming and road or track running, rely on recent competitive performances to guide intensity by using percentages of race pace. Rock climbers can use grades (though these are admittedly flawed for a variety of reasons) to monitor intensity. But mountain athletes do not have such a straightforward metric for determining intensity because the effort it takes depends on factors that vary such as terrain, conditions, altitude, etc.Training Intensity Monitoring MethodsFor mountain…

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We know from decades of training and coaching that the best way to measure and regulate intensity, in order to stay under your Aerobic Threshold, is through a combination of monitoring your breathing and your heart rate. How do we apply that to training?What Is Intensity?Intensity is how hard you’re working and is a reflection of what metabolic pathways are fueling your movement. A dog walk is low intensity. An all-out sprint is high intensity. Almost all successful mountaineering is carried out at low to moderate intensity.The Two Breathing Thresholds: Real-Life ExamplesSteve has worked as a professional mountain guide since…

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In this article about the physiology of intensity monitoring, we define terms and explain the underlying metabolic processes that determine the ventilatory markers of intensity.Aerobic Threshold (AeT), aka Ventilatory Threshold (VT1)When ventilation is slow and controlled to the point where the athlete can carry on a conversation without needing to catch his or her breath or can maintain breathing through the nose, then fat metabolism is providing half or more of ATP for locomotion. This ventilation threshold is often referred to as the Aerobic Threshold (AeT) or the First Ventilatory Threshold (VT1). Its upper limit corresponds to the point where…

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$59  This is a beginner to intermediate level plan for those with the goal of skiing Colorado’s Grand Traverse Race or a similar long backcountry ski race. It can also work well for those seeking a better fitness base for a multi-day Hut to Hut ski trip such as Canada’s Wapta traverse, the Oertler traverse in Italy, Austria’s Hoch Tirol Traverse, or the Haute Route. This plan does not require daily access to snow for skiing but the results will certainly be better if you can get on snow 3-4 days per week for most of the plan. Alternative workouts…

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