Tech Tip #12
Running remains one of the best ways to get fit for climbing and mountaineering (if you can’t go climbing and mountaineering), as you can do it anywhere, at any time, and with just a pair of running shoes. The older you get the more you have to fit into your day, and so my training is increasingly focused on quality, to not waste time doing things that are not that good for me, or have much value. I train six days a week, for about one hour (I listen to Podcasts, so I feel I’m getting double the benefit). I live somewhere where you can’t really train outside, and there’s no climbing (indoors or out), so everything I do is in the gym, which is probably what most urban climbers rely on (it would be great to spend weeks walking the hills of Scotland or the Lakes before a big trip, but that’s impossible for most people). These days my running is reduced to three sessions a week, and only running two miles (3.21. km), going as fast as possible. How I do this is to follow the US army fitness test methodology, where you have to run 2 miles in 17 minutes for a pass (60 points), or 13.18 for 100 (fucking fast!). To do this usually warm-up for 1 km, run the distance, then warm down again. I’m sure many will disagree, but for me, I think a fast 2-mile run, three times a week, is a great way to push the body really hard, increase your cardio fitness, and allow you to perform better in the mountains, with a low risk of injury and the best use of time (also, the Pentagon probably spent a billion dollars on research, so it must be a good approach!).