Training Approach to Multiple, Varied Mountain Objectives

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  • #38742

    I’ve completed the 8-week mixed/ice training plan, which was a nice introduction to some consistency and the Training Peaks experience. But this year I have two primary objectives for this summer; one lands in June, the other in late July or early August.

    Both are substantial in terms of time-on-foot and gear needs, but each involves maybe 2-3 nights out. The earlier one involves some technical ice/rock after glacier efforts and decent approach, while the latter is a pure mountaineering effort up Rainier’s Emmons route. It’s about 16 weeks until the first goal, and another 6 weeks after that for Rainier. I’m not sure how to use the time between now and the first, though I was considering the 8-week mountaineering plan for Rainier.

    I XC ski somewhat regularly, and do a couple spin-bike efforts of 45-min to 1-hour at Zone1/2. I’m relatively fit and have been consistently active in rock/alpine-rock climbing for a year.

    Does anyone have advice about how to approach the next 16 weeks and then the 6-ish week gap to the second mountaineering objective?

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    Anonymous on #38747

    Thanks for writing in with your questions.

    The number on thing you can do to improve your performance on these long mountain objectives if to build a big aerobic base with time on your feet. As soon as weather/conditions permit I’d recommend starting to run and build to longer mixed/run hikes on hilly or even better mountain terrain. Provided that you technical skills are up to snuff for the first climb, that is.

    If not then you need to get more time on goal similar technical terrain.

    Some of those skill building days can also be combined with long duration Z1-2 tie on your feet. But, really, time moving on your feet, especially over rough ground is going to pay off best for these goals. You can never have too much aerobic base.


    ascasson on #38752

    Thanks Scott. To you or anyone with thoughts, would this mean doing something different from the 8-week plan or just adding a larger base period to that plan? Perhaps it makes sense to do an extended version of that plan for the first objective, then rest and cycle back through it for the second objective?

    Anonymous on #38909

    Do you mean the 8-week mountaineering plan? If you have 16 weeks, I would use the 16-week plan. It fits your timeline, and it’ll be focused on general aerobic fitness.

    ascasson on #38910

    Sweet, thanks Scott. I did mean the 8-week, but I will go with the 16-week. It sounded rather intimidating given its description; I guess I can always rework it a little.

    Anonymous on #38915

    Yes, for sure. Almost every training plan will have to be reworked to the individual constraints of the user. The thing that is most often scaled is the training volume.

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