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Weight training for fast and light alpine?
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Mar 31, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: Me on Half Dome Boulder, Middle Finger of Fury  Aw...
Wondering if anyone had any good weight room workouts for fast and light alpine climbing? Looking to do multi-day mixed alpine climbs in a day fast and light. Examples of summer goals... NE Butress of Mt. Slesee in a day, Rainer in a day, etc... I'm doing a lot of other training such as big elevation gain days, running, biking, long sessions in the climbing gym and lots and lots of pitches outside. Looking to branch out into the weight room for diversity.

I've been looking at some of the stuff from gym jones and mountain athlete, but was wondering if anyone had any great weight room workouts they'd be willing to share. Thanks!
From Flagstaff, AZ
Joined Jun 18, 2006
836 points
Mar 31, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: Mountain Bandito
In the WT. Room try and stack a upper body work out with a lower body work out and add in some simple core training. For example pull-ups to balancing on a bosu ball while doing bicep curls with military presses with dumb-bells to squats (still on the bosu) to push ups on the basu and then box jumps. Throw in some planks and a rowing machine and you will be dry heaving for more.

+1 for Gym Jones. "unfuck your head"
From Valdez, AK
Joined Oct 20, 2009
3,020 points
Apr 1, 2013
In the weight room, I go back and forth on two basic workouts: kettlebell HIIT training (great for full body, fat burning and hormone optimization). You can find all sorts of workouts online. And I also use barbell training to increase my max strength, without increasing my weight. There are many good programs out there: but this is a good start: archive.mensjournal.com/traini...
You can also try some of the 5-3-1 systems or 5x5 systems. Use a system that involves the big 5 lifts (deadlift, squats, bench press, overhead press and bent over rows). And go for bigger weights and less reps. Remember that you want to get strong, not big. Strength, fat loss and hormone optimization.
Do not forget that too much training will exhaust you, so pace yourself.
Joined Nov 11, 2010
31 points
Apr 1, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: Me scaring years off my mom's life
I asked a similar question here


and got some good responses.
Austin Baird
From SLC, Utah
Joined Apr 26, 2009
116 points
Apr 1, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: Day Lily.
I don't have a special workout however I do lift to support my multi-pitch climbing experience. I find doing low weight + high reps + quality technique (quality to your body) = lighter while climbing (feeling) and a nicer, less stressful experience (makes pulling ropes and hills easier, etc).

Be mindful of working primary and antagonistic muscle groups + always vary your routine to confuse your bodymind. Also I throw running in here and there.

Every day = core something (don't need to work core daily but I do a little daily which = laziness but happy with results.

Mondays = chest and back
Tuesdays = legs (climbing day)
Wednesday = arms (shoulders, bis, tris, forearms)
Thursday = legs (climbing day)
Fri = just core

Back = pull ups and frenchies (frenchies rock!) + randomly a different exercise here and there for muscle confusion (choose one example being a machine exercise or dumbbells)

Chest = dumbell presses (great so your strong side doesn't compensate for weaker), straight bar (45lb bar) chest presses and the incline chest press

Legs = calve raises, calve raises, calve raises (toes in, out and straight forward), squats, leg presses, and I don't know the name but I do this contraction exercise for antagonistic muscle. Also run and walk stairs always, no more elevators if possible. Skip steps sometimes.

Arms = shoulder raises (light, light weight + hold static like frankenstein walking with arms out for a long time to mimmic stress on rock), cable shoulder exercises, shoulder presses, bicep curls (forward, wrist turned and across chest), dips, tricep extensions, forearm with dumbell (endurance) and heavy finger rolls (forearms) for strength.

Core = planks, L hangs, leg lifts, crunches, bicycles and various stuff on those big rubber balls

This is not a hardcore workout but it serves well as a supplement. Remember stress and tension is what you want to mimmic so light weight + long sessions/reps (hold one for a long time). Enjoy!
The Stoned Master
From Pennsylvania
Joined Dec 5, 2012
4,568 points
Apr 1, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: Showing off Johns almighty poop tube on the top of...
I would recommend looking into crossfit. Some of the hardest workouts you can do that will get you in super shape. The Alpine Training Center in Boulder uses crossfit and I think the first class is free. Steven Lucarelli
From Moab, UT
Joined Jul 8, 2005
4,503 points
Apr 1, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: Day Lily.
One important "ingredient": intensity. Your workouts don't need to be long. Its the intensity and quality of your technique/workout that can make all the difference. The Stoned Master
From Pennsylvania
Joined Dec 5, 2012
4,568 points
Apr 1, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: hotlum / bolum route on Shasta
I think that you have to keep in mind the goal of the workout. My workouts are varied, so below I will give an example of a one week workout and reasons why.

Monday: Heavy squat and deadlifts (400 - 500lbs) - low reps for strength

Tuesday: Hill sprints (45 seconds up / ~2 min recovery) 8 reps - to build speed OR short all-out Crossfit workout (Fran or the like)

Wednesday: Long easy run (6 - 8 miles) OR carry light pack for an hour + - this is for recovery and just to stay used to working for a long time at an easy pace.

Thursday: Rest day

Friday: Interval training - 135lb back squat (10 sets of max reps for 1 min/ 1 min recovery) - increasing work capacity

Saturday: climb, hike, run or rest

Sunday: climb, hike run or rest - Listen to your body.

These are the things that I do. I'm not the fastest out there, but I also do a fair amount of slow / heavy work. If I were going for speed, I would do more speed work and reduce the weights.
Josh Wood
From Oneonta, NY
Joined Nov 16, 2011
15 points
Apr 1, 2013
Rock Climbing Photo: One of my first trad climbs, Ooga Chocka at Crowde...
I haven't been lifting much for a while, and I never did much research on the topic, but I used to do this gym session in between climbing days. I liked it a lot and it is really hard.

Supersets of 10 reps per lift. No rest between lifts, ~3 min rest between sets. I did all barbell lifts with 135 lb, vary as you feel adequate.

Sit up twist
Bent over row
Hanging leg raise
Push up
Clean and jerk
Pull up
Barbell lunge

I started out doing two or three sets, increased sets and decreased rest time as I progressed.
From Raleigh, NC
Joined Nov 7, 2011
262 points
Apr 2, 2013
I think serious competitors in "fast and light" endurance sports other than climbing tend to do most of their weight training "out of season" -- like months before they're peaking in their fast-and-light performance big events.

The reason is that weight training tends to build "Fast Glycolitive" muscle fibers, while the main kind most people want for endurance performance are "slow oxidative" fibers. So after an intense weight training phase, they do lots of "long slow distance" workouts with the theory that those will transmute the FG fibers into SO fibers.

But maybe climbers want to keep a few extra FG fibers on hand ready for some strength moves?

Joined Oct 29, 2010
4,539 points
Apr 2, 2013
Tripple Hundo's
100 pull ups push ups and sit ups with weight vest in 1 hour.
you will most likely think your head will explode by the end.
I would add some hangboard for contact strength.

I think it is a good compromise to doing wieght training. You do all exercised with body weight + vest and lots of reps for the endurance side of things.

I do:
10 pullups
20 sit ups
20 push ups
10 pullups
20 sit ups
20 push ups
10 pullups
20 sit ups
20 push ups
10 pullups
20 sit ups
20 push ups
10 pullups
20 sit ups
20 push ups
10 pull ups
10 pull ups
10 pull ups
10 pull ups
10 pull ups

if its too easy add weight, if its still too easy do pushups and situps each cycle for total of 200 each.

works good for a tight schedule
John Greer Jr.
From modesto, ca
Joined Jun 4, 2009
93 points

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