Author Topic: Training for French Alps in August  (Read 1054 times)

Offline pitonpat

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Training for French Alps in August
« on: April 17, 2010, 04:39:50 pm »
My son Ryan and I are going to Chamonix this August.  At 57 and relatively fit, I still need to build up the legs and aerobic capacity in anticipation of an ambitious ticklist.  I'm currently training on an old hydraulic cylinder stair stepper, doing 500 steps (about 12" foot travel) per session twice a day.  Also, I'm riding a bike a couple of miles a day, mostly looking for hills.  I think I am maintaining a significantly high heartbeats/per/minute pace but I have no monitoring device.  Bpm returns nicely to a resting rate pretty quickly after the end of a session.

My work (building contractor) keeps me pretty active during the workday with climbing ladders and constant movement - I sit only in the truck to and from work, and at lunchtime.  Unfortunately I have no time to go to a gym for the full range of modern machines for exercise.

Oh yeah, I also do the Mountain Athlete mini-legblaster routine & the hamstring lifts, plus I usually do calf-raises ( lifting up onto the toes & down - 10 both legs, 10 each single leg- alternating, 10 both legs) while I brush my teeth, then a yoga stretching routine to relax.

I'm open for suggestions of additional ways to vary the routine without having to join a gym or buy exercise equipment (I'm a notorious tightwad!).  Thanks all for your input.     

Offline strandman

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Re: Training for French Alps in August
« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2010, 05:29:17 pm »
Well P John Bouchard told me that thr BEST training for the Alps was Cannon, in every way. The one time I went, I took his advice and it sure seemed to work. Lots of uphill movement, loose rock and decent length descents.

Get in a quick ascent of WG then do it again and.....

Offline pitonpat

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Re: Training for French Alps in August
« Reply #2 on: April 18, 2010, 10:55:58 am »
Hey Strandman,  I couldn't agree more.  The many times I've been to Cannon have all been a great workout.  The funny thing is, the climbing is no problem- what usually kicks my ass is the descent!  If you've read my trip reports about Cannon you'll know what I mean.  The problem for me is that Cannon is about a 9 hour drive away- I'm stuck here in SE Pennsylvania.  If I had some real hills nearby I'd just hike them.   

Offline strandman

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Re: Training for French Alps in August
« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2010, 07:23:21 pm »
WELL now I know. You gotta do the Bob D'Antonio gig. Work 100 hours a week then do new routes like a maniac ! OR maybe just cheese steaks and say fuck it..... I saw Bullet Bob recently and he is still whacked

Offline hobbsj

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Re: Training for French Alps in August
« Reply #4 on: April 19, 2010, 07:19:11 am »
Pitonpat,
   with a definite goal date, the best thing would be to come up with a form of periodization for your training.  It's usually not effective for the goal of climbing hard for 3 months, but with specific goals, it will have you in the best condition.  People tend to try to train everything at once and get little out of their time beyond basic fitness relative to their potential.  They don't stress any one system sufficient enough to cause large adaptations.  They go too hard on the easy days and and as a result, not hard enough on the hard days.  If you're more in to just enjoying your workouts and using them for fun than actually performing near your max, the informal approach may be best as, well, you don't have a task list to follow for your training that can lead to burnout in some people.  But with 4 months out, NOW is the time to get set up and planning the schedule.  Sit down with a good book on the subject and hatch out a plan.  Or, get somebody to do it for you.  It is hard to write a really effective training plan for yourself and be objective.  Plus, it can be time consuming.  But doing it now will give you a little wiggle room if there's problems and is actually a good amount of time to be thorough and reduce the chance of an injury with the harder workouts. 

Offline tradmanclimbz

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Re: Training for French Alps in August
« Reply #5 on: April 19, 2010, 08:02:10 am »
How about the stairmaster at Seneca?

Offline strandman

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Re: Training for French Alps in August
« Reply #6 on: April 19, 2010, 09:32:30 am »
The way Europe is handling a little  ;) dust, you may be going to canada. For real just go out and dodge some Philly traffic and sweat off some pounds in nice east coast heat and you'll be fine. :o
Oh ya, may your son break trail.

Offline pitonpat

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Re: Training for French Alps in August
« Reply #7 on: April 19, 2010, 05:57:49 pm »
Thanks all for the input so far.......both serious and humorous!

 Trad- I haven't been to Seneca since the 70's.  If I'm driving that far, I'm going to New England-  where I live I'm right about in between Seneca and New England.  The stairmaster is in my barn! 

Strandman, with my luck, the dust will coat the glaciers & snowfields in the Alps, which will cause them to melt more than usual and the several snow & ice climbs I have in mind may not exist!  Ah well, just have to be satisfied with the unbelievable Chamonix granite.  Poor me.  Oh yeah, Ryan is the designated trail breaker- no doubt there!

Offline Jeff

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Re: Training for French Alps in August
« Reply #8 on: April 19, 2010, 06:59:39 pm »
Get him to carry the bigger pack with the heavy gear too!  ::) Flatter his fitness! ;)

Offline strandman

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Re: Training for French Alps in August
« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2010, 10:11:18 am »
Thanks all for the input so far.......both serious and humorous!

 Trad- I haven't been to Seneca since the 70's.  If I'm driving that far, I'm going to New England-  where I live I'm right about in between Seneca and New England.  The stairmaster is in my barn! 

Strandman, with my luck, the dust will coat the glaciers & snowfields in the Alps, which will cause them to melt more than usual and the several snow & ice climbs I have in mind may not exist!  Ah well, just have to be satisfied with the unbelievable Chamonix granite.  Poor me.  Oh yeah, Ryan is the designated trail breaker- no doubt there!
I have heard Les Courtes has really taken a beating and Droites as well. Always the Midi !

Offline pitonpat

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Re: Training for French Alps in August
« Reply #10 on: April 20, 2010, 08:48:21 pm »
Get him to carry the bigger pack with the heavy gear too!  ::) Flatter his fitness! ;)

Yup.  I carry the lead pack, he's the packhorse!

I have heard Les Courtes has really taken a beating and Droites as well. Always the Midi !

Concentrating on the Vallee Blanche & Midi areas....Tour Ronde N. Face, Mt. Maudit Frontier ridge, Frendo on the Midi, Ryan-Lochmatter on the Aig. du Plan, Envers des Aiguilles rock climbing, Blaitiere, Peigne, L'M and the Petite Verte to acclimatise, Pte. Lachenal-Contamine route,  N. face Pain du Sucre are all on the possibles list.