Crosstraining during aerobic capacity building

  • Creator
  • #61133

    Hi, I’ve been working on aerobic capacity building due to my ADS (primarily for ultrarunning) and am wondering about crosstraining. From everything I gather from the UA resources, maximizing the training volume at Z2 will maximize the rate of increase in the AeT (injury risk notwithstanding). However I’m trying to avoid more than 8-9 hours a week of training running on foot to avoid risking injury, so I am wondering how effective crosstraining is in terms of building the aerobic base?

    More specifically, I would like to do an additional 4-6 hours of biking/skiing/erging in Z2/week if that will help build my base, but I’m not sure if these are less useful than running. Is aerobic capacity a function that is improved locally (hams, quads, calves…) when stressed via AeT training such that crosstraining is less effective, or is the benefit systematic enough that crosstraining in these forms will help increase my AeT?


  • Participant
    dcgm on #61145

    I’ve been getting about half my weekly aerobic volume from hiking hill laps, unladen. Walk up, walk down. HR is quite comfortably in Z1/Z2 on the way up, sometimes drops a little bit on the way down but I don’t worry about that. Less that 15% grade gets a bit inefficient and the one time I used stairs it beat me up noticeably worse than when I used foot trails, but in general it’s been very low impact and it’s obviously more specific to foot-borne activities than rowing, riding, or poling.

    Too soon to tell whether this is working, and I won’t claim it doesn’t feel a bit silly to put on shorts and shoes and go walk, but this is the advice I got more or less verbatim from the coaches.

    Shashi on #61314

    Check out Scott Semple’s response to a similar question here –

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