You’ve just worked out the moves on your latest project and can’t wait to send it. You lower to the ground and rest, but as soon as you start climbing again, the moves feel more difficult. Half-way up, you’re unable to pull the previously easy-feeling crux and you slump on the rope too tired to continue. Although you might mistakenly think the answer is to become stronger, what you really need is more endurance.
With a solid endurance base you can put in multiple daily attempts on your project and bag the redpoint faster. Achieving this fitness however, does not come quickly and unlike the instant gratification derived from bouldering, improvements in endurance require a sustained long-term focus. This makes the winter season the ideal time to train endurance.
By simply adding these two back- to-back workouts to your climbing training program, you’ll notice endurance improvements in just a few weeks and massive, route-crushing gains in only a couple of months.
The workouts are best scheduled for the weekend as they require some time to complete.
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Part One – Saturday
This is the first part of the core endurance training workout.
1. Begin with a 30 minute easy climbing warm-up.
2. Rest for 10 minutes.
3. Attempt to climb 10 routes two letter grades below your average onsight level. Rest between routes should be minimal with no more than a few minutes down-time between climbs. While this workout may initially seem easy, by the tenth climb you’ll probably be struggling to complete the route. With the main work out completed, spend some time cooling off on very easy climbs.
The total workout time including warm up and cool down should be about two-and-a-half hours.
Advanced climbers should follow the same warm up and cool down program but instead aim to complete 20 routes at about two letter grades below their average onsight level. This added climbing volume will increase the workout time to over three hours
Part Two - Sunday
The Sunday workout is easier and you may be tempted to skip it, but this would be a mistake. This back-to- back workout shocks the body into adapting to the increased demands of endurance training, mentally prepares you for climbing while slightly fatigued and teaches you to climb efficiently.
1.Begin by slowly warming up for 30 minutes.
2. Once you’re thoroughly warmed up, rest for 10 minutes.
3. Find an easy traverse wall and attempt to climb continuously for 30 minutes. The intensity should be low enough that the workout initially seems too easy. Focus on footwork and efficiency. You MP3 player can help time pass more quickly.
Try to complete 60 minutes of continuous traversing. Again, the goal is finding a sequence that initially seems too easy – it won’t feel that way by the end of the work out. Use different hand positions and focus on movement.-GA