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General Climbing Discussion

Training options

1:38:15 PM
I reckon there should be some more talk of training on these forums, so i'll start. :-)

It seems i've recovered from some recent minor tenderness and have just spent the last few sessions testing out the body, getting ready for a new focused training assault. The key word being focused.

There's heaps of woody training options and I'm looking at a roadtrip in about 6 wks so there's room for a 3-2-1 cycle i reckon (I have a good base so don't need the 4wks in the 4-3-2-1). So, what do you guys suggest?

In the past I've tried Intervals, systems, HIT, campusing, complex, hypergravity bouldering, ARC, and I have my favourites. The need for focus was kind of evident as last night the workout went like this:

- traverse intervals to warm up
- power pullups
- 4x4's (4 hardish boulder problems 4 times)
- 5 min on the 45 wall
- one arm traverses
- stretching, etc
- weights for back muscles

So, i'm aiming for a focused program starting next week. Suggestions?
1:48:59 PM
More information required...

Roadtrip - type of climbing?
- bouldering - pumpers or power?
- single pitch - trad, sport - pumpers or power?
- multi pitch?

Looking for volume or difficulty?

Your strengths and weaknesses?
1:51:11 PM
Whats your weak point?

Got a good stamina base? - Keep this ticking over and focus on power.

Got power and no stamina? Focus on stamina.

If I had a choice, I'd go for power (campus, max rep pulls etc) - Power is everything and harder to come by/keep . Stamina is easily obtained in a relatively short time plus, you'll always get *some* fitness on a trip.

You'll get a shed load of different views as everyone has their favourites. Above all, whatever you choose. Keep it uncomplicated and make sure you stick to it.
2:23:51 PM
Of course you would go for power Stu, after all, training endurance only makes you weak.

It all depends on your current weaknesses adski, and what kind of climbing you intend to do on your road trip. If it is trad then I guess focus on the endurance, sport, power and power endurance, bouldering (unlikely I know)just crank up the max strength and power.

Fingers are key. You could start off with a max strength building phase where you would do some weighted hangs on the hangboard. Repeaters are great for this, just make sure you add enough weight so that you fail within 4 to 10 seconds. Anything more and you are no longer at your limit and are wasting your time. Add some lock offs and weighted hangs in there as well to work your arms. Then maybe a few sessions on the system board, before a little bit of campusing. Then you would maybe do some intervals and finish off with some more campusing. I like to start and finish off each session with a few frontlevers as well just to make sure you are totally punished.

Plenty of antagonist work on the off days and make sure you are totally fresh before any max strength or power sessions.

Six weeks is not very long though so you won't be albe to do everything. A 3,2,1 program is way too short to get any real gains but can certainly act as a great mid season top up.

As you (and I know only too well) know, training and getting strong indoors does not necessarily translate to an increase in climbing performance. Make sure you train enough movement and that your head is in the right space to make the most of what ability you have.

2:42:17 PM
Thanks guys, i guess I missed a bit of basic info. As much as it could make Goodvibes' day I'm not aiming for boulder projects on this trip, rather I'm on a single pitch sport grade crusade. And my weakness is definitely not stamina as I do well on pumpy routes, so power would be the thing to concentrate on. I'd say finger strength and lock-off ability.

I was kind of hoping some of the people on the forum who know me would be able to point out some weaknesses, in the nicest possible way of course. Perhaps with a compliment sandwich? :-D

strengths: footwork, technique, steep routes on good holds, sequence memory
weaknesses: carrot bolts on steep routes(!), power cruxes, slopey crimps, Nowra.

I kind of agree about the finger strength, but I don't have access to a hangboard for the next month, perhaps setting fingery boulder problems and doing them with weights would be a good substitute?

I have to say I disagree about the 3-2-1 being too short for real gains. Well not really, as it's only 6 wks, but training in cycles would have to be the best way to avoid burnout and overuse. If I had 12 wks wouldn't two cycles of 3-2-1 be superior to say 6-4-2?
3:11:31 PM
You don't need a finger board to train finger strength. Just find a first knuckle edge some where and hang it, taking off fingers and adding weight where necessary.

Campus board for power cruxing. Make big moves and make sure you pull through every time, even if you can't do the full movement - No soft-c--k matching. Keep it short (under and hour) and stop. Do as a stand alone, and not tacked on at the end of some climbing.

Make sure you train your antagonists, particularly your triceps as they help with the one - arm lock offs.

Train on your board completely front on - No fagging, or poncy drop knees. You're there purely for strength, you don't want to be using any tricks to make moves easier.

Finally, I agree with Goodvibes - 6 weeks isn't long enough to show any real results. This is the marker where I would expect to just be starting to see the effects of say 6 weeks of 2-3 times a week campussing sessions etc.
3:46:47 PM
I experimented with a 6 week program last year - with surprising results (I have previously been a fan of 12). I did 2 weeks general enduro mileage on easy routes that I had wired - then 2 weeks bouldering on a board (power) - then 2 weeks power-endurance (again, mainly on a board). Took a weekend off at the end of that thinking I wasn't overly fit - at least for anything longer than 10 moves, yet jumped on a 30m line one-grade off my limit (anyone for Tiptoe Ridge?). 4 shots later it was done. It pays to be specific though.

The meat of the route was in 18m (my perfect distance), had a distinct boulder-problem crux, and two good rests before and after. It was sort of like doing three boulder problems in a row - with 10-15 seconds rest inbetween them. I knew I could do the single problems - I just didn't think I'd last the whole distance - so I climbed fast with no mistakes. If it had been some sustained complex marathon with easier moves, but no rests - I probably wouldn't have got to the halfway mark! Moral of the story: Choose your routes wisely!
4:06:02 PM
I've only done 7 week cycles this past 12 months and found the recovery/lack of boredom much better. Single pitch climbing got the most beneficial kick when I threw in a couple of days a week where I was doing resistance bouldering (ie 20-40 move problems) additional to the training cycle.
One Day Hero
10:24:04 AM
Wow, you guys take this shit seriously!

I have my own formula;

Plan A - work full time, get on rock most weekends, do wierd training midweek with words like "resistance cycle" involved......climb like shit!

Plan B- quit job, leave city, go somewhere with nice rock and pastries, don't train at all because you are on rock five days a week......climb like a demon and wonder why the hell you ever bothered with "tuesday night power endurance circuits"
One Day Hero
10:27:04 AM
Unfortunately I'm stuck on plan A for now.....may move to Plan C in the future (have kids, get fat, talk endlessly about how good you were in the old days!)

10:36:50 AM
On 24/08/2006 One Day Hero wrote:
>Plan B- quit job, leave city, go somewhere with nice rock and pastries,
>don't train at all because you are on rock five days a week......climb
>like a demon and wonder why the hell you ever bothered with "tuesday night
>power endurance circuits"

5 days a week?! What about the other two potential climbing days!
12:12:41 PM
On 17/08/2006 adski wrote:
> If I had 12 wks wouldn't
>two cycles of 3-2-1 be superior to say 6-4-2?

Simple answer, NO.

No need to double the rest time either, one week should be enough. Three weeks of max strength/power training is good as a top up but you can't seriously train everything in that time. Most max strength/power techniques require you to be completely recovered before you begin so there is difficult to fit in campusing, dead hangs, system training etc in just 9 sessions. Anything more than 3 sessions a week of this stuff and you are kidding yourself that you are working at your max. A few sessions of strength followed by a couple of sessions of recruitment just isn't long enough for any real gains.

As said before though, works great for a mid season top up.

2:18:53 PM
On 24/08/2006 nmonteith wrote:
>5 days a week?! What about the other two potential climbing days!

They're for either mountain biking or getting drunk

There are 13 messages in this topic.


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