This is the plan that we recommend for those who have already had a season or two of structured endurance training looking to boost their performance in Skimo races. This 24 week plan progresses gradually through first a Transition Period in order to prepare you for the hard work of the Base Period. While it is gradual it will be demanding in terms of time and energy. It will require considerable effort to complete. It is not for a novice as it starts off with over 6 hours of required training per week and peaks at 14 hours per week. It will take you through general strength, max strength and finally a muscular endurance period. The aerobic system will be used to support the hard work of this muscular endurance work. Neither the strength work nor the aerobic work can be compromised or the training effect will be compromised. The two have to fit together and support one another.
While all the workouts are listed as running or hiking to allow for preseason dry land preparation you can and should substitute skiing or roller skiing in where ever possible.
To make the best use of this plan: Familiarize yourself with the training concepts and principles described in the book "Training for the New Alpinism". Pay particular attention to the notions of Continuity, Gradualness and Modulation. Rest when you are tired. If you miss a workout do not try to make it up. Just move on. If you miss more than 2 in a week then repeat that week.
The plan starts with an Aerobic Threshold assessment test. From this you will establish the training intensity limit for most of the aerobic base training that will dominate in the overall plan but especially in the first 8 weeks. The first 8weeks also includes a basic strength program to prepare you for the harder work to follow.
Do not increase the intensity of the early aerobic base building workouts and hope to gain more benefits or to squeeze a 1 hour workout into 30 minutes. There is no short cut when it comes to aerobic adaptation.
This plan has proven successful for Skimo racers who used it properly to compete at the local and regional level.