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Cross Country for Skiing Fitness

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I run X-country for my school in the Wissahickon Valley, we run about 3-4 miles 5 days a week, with .5 miles up hill (steep) and .5 miles downhill (steep) and the rst is generally flat dirt road. I run about 9 minutes a mile working to 7.5. Will this be agood workout for ski season?
post #2 of 8
It will be a decent aerobic base. In all honesty it does not sound like much of a XC workout. Need some LSD, some repeats, fahrtlich, bounding......

When I was a Harrier we were practicing twice a day. (Uphill, in the snow both ways) 2-4 miles of easy running in the mourning before school and a real workout in the afternoon.

Afternoon could have been anything from 800 repeats to 12 miles of LSD.

Add some gym time and some bounding and you'll have your dry land about covered.
post #3 of 8
I'm doing a lot of trail running and some XC races as my primary means of ski fitness this off-season, but my mileage is about double yours and I'm planning to do a lot of high-intensity hill repeats in the coming weeks to condition my quads and lungs for the slopes. If you want to get set for ski season, you're really going to need some more challenging workouts, like tief said.

Sounds, by the way, like you have the same kind of clueless XC coach as I had in high school. Try to do some harder stuff on your own. And, next season, start building an aerobic base in June with primarily easy runs and work your way up to 40-mile+ weeks by the time school starts. You'll be running 6 minute miles in no time.
post #4 of 8
The more unpredictable the surface, the better it will be for ski fitness because it will be a greater challenge for your balance. On the downhill, try running "turn shapes' dwon the hill. If you don't have any knee issues, you can do "bounding exercises," which are a series of jumps down the hill. Have fun!
post #5 of 8
A tale of unusual cross training from an old fahrtlicher: back around 1974 I ran six miles every morning, then recreational skied about 6 hours, then ran six more miles each afternoon for 3 weeks of Christmas break during my sophmore year of college. The runs were moderate, about 7 min per mile pace, but over hilly terrain near a western PA ski area. Ran a 9:15 two mile indoors at the USMA a couple days after I got back from school break. Very good time for me, but not fast enough to get me off the bench of the college track team.
Keep with the cross country team; the leg strength will help you in the bumps and holding a long tuck.
post #6 of 8


Endurance, endurance, endurance! Running is key for skiing; much more important than people think. Hilly terrain is preferable.
post #7 of 8
There was an article in the Journal of Applied Physiology a year or so ago that showed that interval training (if I remember correctly, it was 6 sets of 30-60 second intervals at maximum exertion in between 10 minute recoveries at moderate pace 3x/week) could improve endurance by at least 50% (not a typo!) in as little as 2 months. Remarkable results with not a huge amount of input. It will also improve speed and explosive power.
post #8 of 8
How could interval biking (road and mtn), roller skiing and/or weight training complement or replace running for skiing fitness?
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