The Uphill Athlete 8 week Mountaineering Plan is designed for climbers bound for a 1-3 day mountaineering objective. It has been used successfully for climbs of Mt. Rainier, the Grand Teton, Mt. Baker, Mont Blanc, the Matterhorn, Mt. Elbrus and many 4,000-meter and 14,000-foot peaks. This plan assumes that you have no strength training background. This plan is ideal for mountaineers and trekkers who have never engaged in an organized training program or who have not done so for a long time.
This plan is based on scientifically sound training principles and a combined thirty years of professional endurance coaching experience and sixty years of world-wide climbing and mountaineering experience. In order to complete this plan it is important to keep a few concepts in mind: Rest when you are tired. If you miss a workout do not try to make it up. Move on to the next day. If you miss more than two workouts in any given week, then repeat that week.
For those with higher aspirations we strongly recommend using our 16 week Big Mountain Training Plan or our 24 Week Expeditionary Mountaineering Training Plans. Following these longer programs will give the athlete a chance to utilize a more advanced and effective periodization schedule.
The plan starts with a self-administered Aerobic Threshold assessment test. From this you will establish the training intensity limit for most of the aerobic base training that will dominate your training. The first 8 weeks also include a simple, easy-to-apply strength program to develop what is called strength reserve, the ability to repeatedly execute strength-dependent movements such as taking a step while wearing a heavy backpack.
Do not increase the intensity 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.
For the very complete discussion of the concepts put to work in this plan, please refer to our 464-page book, "Training for the New Alpinism" published by Patagonia Books. For specific questions about this training plan, or to send us your success story and be featured on our website www.uphillathlete.com email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
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Steve House and Scott Johnston