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Hill Running

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

Aerobic fitness is good for base conditioning, however, skiing is essentially a power sport. As a very hypothetical example, if you took 15 runs of 2000 vertical feet each in a day, you might take a rest stop every minute or two. That could equate to say 30+ reps of 90s duration. I would think that would be a pretty solid day. So training for that kind exertion level, performance skiers are looking to enhance primarily their muscle endurance, strength, agility and power (which is a measure of force production divided by time). Obviously other fitness basics: balance, coordination, flexibility, aerobic endurance, etc. are important, but there is only so much time in a day. So, at some point, the skier has to focus more specifically on high intensity, low volume activity. After a summer of consolidating an endurance base, sprint work, helps develop the metabolic pathways used in maximal effort over short durations. I find hill sprints particularly are an excellent means of developing power and muscle endurance in the legs hips and lower back. Doing hill sprints, leg turnover is typically slower than sprints at a track, however, the force projection through the leg into the ground is higher. Because you have to extend the hip, the hamstrings come into play as do the glutes. Well developed hamstrings have been shown to reduce the risk of ACL separation as well.
 


Edited by georgert - 6/9/11 at 10:52pm
post #2 of 16
Love the hill work! In addition to all the physical gains, really helps with mental toughness. Those last few reps can be brutal, but I'm a glutton for punishment.

So, what's a typical workout for you look like? A couple of weeks ago I did 6 x 1 minute on a steep hill (not many reps, wanted to build gradually). Last week, did 6 x 2 minutes on a longer hill (with a slower pace for the longer reps). Though I think the longer hill reps will help me for a 5K I'm running next week, the shorter, more intense stuff seems better suited to getting in shape for hard skiing.
post #3 of 16
Hill work is awesome. I did not do it for a year post surgery, but ned to get back into it! Interesting to note: before I moved out here, I used to continue with hill training all winter long. My skiing was atrocious, but I was never injured. Once I moved to Summit County, I decided that I would ski every day instead. My skiing got better, but my muscles were not working as hard to protect my knee. Back to the hills!
post #4 of 16

steps are even more fun

steps are even more fun. and you can do your plyos on the way down.
post #5 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by duke walker View Post
steps are even more fun. and you can do your plyos on the way down.
I'm hearing the music from Rocky in the background! I think it was Bob Barnes who once said that in the summer, he practices running down the up escalators.

Wonder if Beaver Creek keeps their escalators running in the Summer?
post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 

Reply: "What's a typical workout for you like?"

Although it's not very clear in the video, this particular day we did a series of pyramids: There were seven cones set on the hill, approximately 10 yards apart from each other. The idea is to sprint to the first cone, then walk down, seven times. Then, sprint to the second cone, six times, walk down, third cone five, fourth cone four, three, two, and finally one long sprint to the last cone. There's a subliminal reward as you go higher, because although the run is longer, you do fewer reps. The total number of reps for seven cones is 28. Because in the oxygen debt delirium that ensues, through experience I know that it's virtually impossible for athletes to keep an accurate count. To keep track of laps, we make a pyramid of 28 stones at the base of the hill. One row of 7, one row of six, etc. When the athlete completes a lap, they toss the stone. After the last stone in the row is tossed, move on up the hill to the next cone until all laps and stones are completed, etc.
By the way, if you're working out with a buddy, you can have a little cheap entertainment by instead of throwing the stone away, put it in one of his rows.
Stay tuned, I'll be posting a few more workout suggestions and video in the next few weeks.
post #7 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by georgert View Post
if you're working out with a buddy, you can have a little cheap entertainment by instead of throwing the stone away, put it in one of his rows.
Very funny. Only problem is I can't find anyone crazy enough to run hills with me.

The total distance you guys run in that workout is immense, but what are the physical benefits of all the short repetitions at the beginning of the workout? Just to get the body warmed up? Or maybe to provide some variation so the workout isn't too monotonous?
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
It's both. To keep an athlete's mind in the game, it's important to set goals. By having a structured workout whereby the rules are laid out, each athlete can try and achieve the goal to the best of his/her ability while still getting in the prescribed duration/distance. The initial short intervals can be done at a very high intensity, so the pace at the beginning of the workout, through typically the third cone, is very high. The last couple of cones is more of a hard plod. So there is a range of velocities that the athlete is working at, although all of the repetitions are all within the 85%-95% VO2 max range.
post #9 of 16
Does anyone know if riding a bicycle up the hills yields the same training effect as running, assuming it's up the same hills? Lately I've switched from running to riding a mountain bike, and I love going uphill, both onroad and off. But am not sure of the gains.
post #10 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by georgert View Post
As a very hypothetical example, if you took 15 runs of 2000 vertical feet each in a day, .............

I would think that would be a pretty solid day.
30,000 vertical feet of uphill running? Let's see, the Pikes peak marathon, 26 miles round trip, climbs 8000 feet. So if I use that trail for my training site, I'll have to go up and down almost 4 times.

Yep, I'd call that a pretty solid day too. :
post #11 of 16
I think Georgous meant 15 Dh ski runs......right, you old greyhaired fella?

long time no see!!

Rog

C'mon, let's see some more videos. I know the snow is flying there today.

Jacques and his coaches were letting their kids have a blast at Alpental this last weekend. They were doing 360's and 720's off some kicker jumps. And last year, they were flying off a sweet 25 foot rock. I recall a 14 yr old girl got the most cheers for her jump, which she nailed.
post #12 of 16
rbtree: I think Georgous meant 15 Dh ski runs......right, you old greyhaired fella?

I guarantee it. Those guys might be in good shape, but 15 runs of around 2000 vertical would take about 9 hours if you are an amazing climber and there are NO BREAKS. How do I know? I have raced up Tremblant many times. It is 2200 vertical and it takes me about 37-39 minutes (one way). Some of the best can do it in 27-28 minutes.

I do believe that hill climbs on a bike are just as beneficial.
post #13 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by georgert View Post
Aerobic fitness is good for base conditioning, however, skiing is essentially a power sport. As a very hypothetical example, if you took 15 runs of 2000 vertical feet each in a day, you might take a rest stop every minute or two....So training for that kind exertion level, performance skiers are looking to enhance primarily their muscle endurance, strength, agility and power (which is a measure of force production divided by time)....So, at some point, the skier has to focus more specifically on high intensity, low volume activity. After a summer of consolidating an endurance base, sprint work, helps develop the metabolic pathways used in maximal effort over short durations. I find hill sprints particularly are an excellent means of developing power and muscle endurance in the legs hips and lower back. Doing hill sprints, leg turnover is typically slower than sprints at a track, however, the force projection through the leg into the ground is higher. Because you have to extend the hip, the hamstrings come into play as do the glutes. Well developed hamstrings have been shown to reduce the risk of ACL separation as well.
Did you write this yourself or did you outsource it to India?

No wonder I now rarely come here.
post #14 of 16
Thread Starter 

In response to Rick, apparently you didn't get that I was trying to compare the energy expenditure of actually skiing with activity you can do in the off season that stimulates the same metabolic pathways and similar muscle groups.So to spell it out, "15 runs of 2000" vertical feet" actually refers to ski runs, not running runs. Next time I'll use smaller words.

post #15 of 16
Your responding to a 3 year old post???
post #16 of 16
Thread Starter 
 What's your point?
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