Extending training plans/maintaining ‘gains’

  • Creator
  • #46046


    I’m currently on week 4 of the 24 week mountaineer training plan (original aim of some Himalayan adventures in March 2021).
    Due to the current Covid/travel restrictions it’s looking more unlikely my trip could be either cancelled or postponed so I’m trying to work out how to maintain my fitness/strength and even keep improving beyond the 24 week program.
    Do I complete the 24 weeks as planned and then revisit sections (if so what periods/how long) or are there other progressions to this plan?

    I live in a flat area so all the hill/elevation workouts I’m doing on a treadmill at 18% and I have access to a wide range of equipment in a gym

    Thanks all – any advice appreciated!

  • Participant
    mzkarim on #46050

    I have the same issue.

    Aaron on #46053

    What are your alternative goal(s) and timing?

    watkins.sophie.r on #46057

    At the moment I don’t have a particular alternative goal as everything is so uncertain – I just want to continue to improve and not loose any of the work/improvements made during the initial plan.

    jakedev on #46069


    I’ll throw my 2 cents here. Do the plan as prescribed and figure out your weak areas.

    After your done with the plan you can do into maintenance mode (50-70% of your highest week volume and 1 strength workout every 10-14 days, or once a week for abit) and do some domestic adventures. Maybe a road trip

    There is always fun improving your aerobic base. I do a HR drift test regularly and can pretty much quantify my improvement.
    – IE So every treadmill workout I hope set it at 15%, 25# pack with chest HR monitor. I set the speed (2.1 mph right now) and go for 15 minutes then lap for 30 min and then another 30 minutes. My HR drift has come down to 1.8% on those settings so I need to go faster. In several weeks I may be going at 2.5 mph. Then I increase the pack weight and will bump down to 1.7 mph. Just know if you do this after a long day or ME session your drift will be really high to get a good reading have at least a day of rest before.

    You can apply this with the ME workouts or MAX workouts. Take your time and have fun.

    Don’t mean to rant. Slow day at work.


    Aaron on #46070

    My amateur thoughts are thinking about 3 general options depending on what your goals are:

    -Short term: If you have goals within a shorter time frame (a month or two?) of your original target date then extending the late capacity building phase a little then the diving into the scheduled utilization phase to be at peak for that goal window and spend the capital is likely just fine.

    -Mid-term: If the goal is mid term then an extended mid plan base/capacity building extension with the utilization components pushed out to closer to the event might work, being careful to not hold too much volume/intensity for too long.

    -Long term: If the goal type or timeframe is undetermined and long term then likely best to map backwards from that new date and remap your current and future cycle to end the current, with a break and then transition back into the next cycle with the new target date.

    Again, total amateur thoughts here.

    Anonymous on #46176

    I think @jakedev should rant more. I totally agree.

    This is the problem with goals based on objectives. What if something gets #$%^ed up? Does that mean all of the training was worthless? No, of course not.

    As @jakedev described, make your goals metabolic. Then you can apply your fitness to the best opportunity that presents itself.

    I raced skimo pretty seriously for about six years. But my performance and team goals were always secondary. My grand plan was to maximize my aerobic capacity. That allowed me to pursue whatever objective-based goal made the most sense at the time.

    Of course, that approach will never get you kudos on Strava, but those are a waste of time anyway.

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