All Aerobic Workouts on Stairs

  • Creator
  • #32582

    I am going for a hiking/mountaineering objective. For aerobic base training, my options are limited between running (flat) or walking on stairs.

    Since stairs are more related to mountaineering, and perform less stress upon the body (more risk of injury), is there any reason to include running at all? Or can all workouts be done on stairs?

    Thanks in advance!

  • Participant
    Mariner_9 on #32623

    My 2c from having trained in the flatlands for hiking/splitboarding:
    – the advantage of training on stairs if you go down as well as up is that it improves eccentric strength which is helpful for hiking and skiing/boarding
    – the disadvantage is that your HR will be well below your AeT on the way down. Running or using a treadmill allows you to keep your HR close to target for the entirety of the workout
    – going upstairs but not downstairs can be practically difficult as some (many?) buildings regard stairs as fire escape-only and restrict access to the stairs from the lobby
    – I would not assume stairs will be injury-free. The descent places a fair amount of stress on the knees

    J R on #32674

    I also climb stairs in a tall building as my main workouts.

    My building has 20 flights (260 feet) of elevation gain per lap, and I can get down the elevators in 35-45 seconds. I usually only go up, and take the elevators down, doing laps ( with weighted pack) for up to 2-4 hrs some days. I can get my HR to AeT pretty easily if I choose.

    ……so I also would like to know if this is adequate without adding running into the program. ( climbing stairs are easier on my aging knees!)

    Anonymous on #32695

    Stairs are a great training modality for those without access to steep mountainous terrain. If you have not read this you should. David trained almost exclusively on stairs before becoming one of only 6 people to climb 2 8000m back to back in one season without supplemental oxygen, with one of the being Everest. Nuff Said??

    They may be boring but they beat treadmills and stair machines. I suggest hiking down on at least 50% of your training days. The specific eccentric strength gained will be invaluable in the mountains. With David He did only his high intensity weighted climbs using the elevator to ride down between laps.

    Good Luck.

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