Uphill Water Carry

  • Creator
  • #50756

    When I do uphill walk on a relatively steep slope I see that even without additional weight my HR quite soon goes above AeT even when I walk quite slowly.
    Should I nevertheless add weight to this exercise or should I continue without additional weight till my aerobic capacity will allow me to add speed or weight?
    I am 58 y.o. in overall good physical condition.

  • Participant
    LindsayTroy on #50767

    Hi Andrey,

    I have some questions for you:

    What is your AeT and AnT? Have you done a base Max Strength period? and what is your training history and volume?

    You will want to keep your heart rate in Zone 2, and so what this may indicate is that you need more base volume before you are ready to do uphill carries.

    Andrey on #50769

    Hi Lindsay,
    My AeT is 132 and my AnT is 148.
    I am not sure what MaxStrength is. Can you explain?
    I follow now 8 weeks ski mountaineering hut-to-hut program.

    For the last 5 years my training schedule was:
    2 times per week strength training (not sport specific)
    2 times per week running 45 – 60 min mostly in Zone 3.
    1 time per week long hike (16 – 20 km) mostly in zone 1 (I am living in a pretty flat country).

    During winter I work as ski instructor which is almost 100% downhill (hence mostly anaerobic effort if I ski with good skiers).

    jakedev on #50793


    I had the same problem for awhile, and turned out to be my leg muscle endurance.

    If you have either of the books look up the Max Strength part of the programs. It is important that you do this 8 week period before endurance and that you maintain it during the endurance phase.

    In regards to ME. Instead of the uphill water carries start with a 8 week cycle of the gym ME workout listed on this site. Then start with very small uphill carry sessions (like 500′ vertical) and see how your HR responds at that point.

    This is all in addition to keeping aerobic volume up of course.

    Rachel on #50794

    I think from what I’ve read about the 8 week plan is to build muscular endurance so you can handle a heavy pack during your goal event. If you do have a hut trip coming up after you finish the plan definitely do those weighted climbs. You would benefit the most if you have fully developed your aerobic base but sometimes we just have to work with what we have!

    PS if you don’t have an event then what the others are recommending (max strength phase) is a great way to develop your fitness long term and a way to extend your training plan!

    LindsayTroy on #50796

    In case you don’t have the books, this is a condensed version of what they say about the Max Strength period:

    “Minute for minute, these are among the most important workouts of the year because they give you a boost in strength that pays off in many ways.”

    “As a quick reminder: This is the stage where we increase the available pool of muscle fibers for the brain to choose from. Increasing Max Strength lays the groundwork for the conversion to Muscular Endurance. Following these prescriptions will produce large gains in strength, with no gains in body weight (often you will lose weight due to the resulting boost to your metabolism).”

    Excerpt From: Steve House and Scott Johnston. “Training for the New Alpinism: A Manual for the Climber as Athlete.” Apple Books.

    And here is a link where you can find more about the exercises used in the Max Strength workouts: https://uphillathlete.com/general-strength-routine/

    I think Rachel is right, in the 8 week plan since there isn’t a lot of time, the goal is to build on what you already have. Whereas in an ideal world, you would first do an 8 week Max Strength period to build up the pool of available muscles

    Andrey on #50799

    I do have the event, but of course I do not want to limit my training just to this event so your advice is very valuable for me.I just got the book ‘Training for the Uphill Athlete’. Will check if there is anything over max strength there.

    Andrey on #50800

    I think I have the same problem. I believe I should put more emphasis on my legs muscle endurance. The problem with the gyms these days is that they are closed so will have to find solution at home.
    I do work now much more on my aerobic volume and I do start to feel the difference!

    jakedev on #50816


    I’d emphasize a 8 week Max Period before you dive into a a high volume ME period. Max Hill Sprints have been my go to. Just need a steep hill or stairs.


    You don’t need a gym this workout. Just something to step up onto. You can find it under the resources tab at the top of this site. I’d browse through all those articles. Some really cool stuff there.

    FREE At Home Muscular Endurance Workout with Progression

    – You’ll notice the site says to start at 4 sets of each exercise.
    – When I first started I started at 2 sets to make sure I didn’t over do it. Only when it is maybe 6/10 intensity did I increase my sets. I did this q 2 weeks during the MAX period to get the body used to it and then in the ME phase do it 2x a week and increase the sets. As they say on here alot “better to undertrain than to overtrain”.

    Andrey on #50851

    Jakediv, thank you for taking time to answer!
    Will move to max strength phase after I finish my current 8 week program and will get back from my ski touring event.
    I can not agree with you more that “better to undertrain than to overtrain”, especially as you age!

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