Greetings to everyone! As some of you might know, I am training for Mount Everest expedition and I hope to attempt it in 2019. Attempting something like Everest requires immense physical as well as mental strength and I am spending every second of my life right now training for it. In this blog, I will talk about the physical training regime I am undergoing right now.
I have been trekking since the past 8 years and most of it was without any special training as such but when I decided to start mountaineering in the Himalayas, I knew I had to do some specific training in order to improve my performance in the mountains. I started with some running and cycling. That worked for me in the initial days but as I have my eyes on Everest now, it was time to step up the game.
This is what my training regime since the past 3 months looks like and it is only bound to get more intense as expedition date comes closer.
My day begins at 3:30am with some breathing exercises and meditation. This is very important for mental training but we will talk about it specifically in the next blog.
At around 5am I leave for long distance run or cycling. Now for mountaineering, it is very important to do training which is of low to medium intensity and which lasts for longer duration. Why? Because when you are climbing in the mountains, you are walking at a comfortable pace for a very long time at a go so your body needs to be used to working for longer duration. Running and cycling are done on alternate days each. I run for a minimum of 10km in under 45 minutes and cycle around 50km in less than 2 hours. This is the base level of cardiovascular fitness any mountaineer must have! Heart and the lungs are the most important muscles for mountaineering!
If you are serious about training, you must have a heart rate monitor to track your heart rate and its progress with time. You must have your heart rate in Zone 2, which is between 75% and 80% of your maximum heart rate. Most of the training for mountaineering should be done in Zone 2 as this is the zone your heart rate is in the mountains at most times.
After a good cardio warm up with running or cycling, I hit the gym for strength training. The workout regime in the gym should also keep your heart rate in Zone 2. I do a mixture of a lot of bodyweight training. For example, combination of various push-ups, pull-ups, squats, lunges, calf raises etc. Apart from this, I do weight training thrice a week.
After sweating for 2 hours in gym, I have a healthy breakfast which includes a lot of eggs, chana, fruits and porridge. Now throughout the day, between the usual work I do some climbing in the gym we have set up in our home. Climbing is a very effective training method for upper body and core and I try to do as much as I can.
In the evening session, I do some core workout every day and some high intensity, low duration workout thrice a week like 100m sprint, German drill or flipping tires of 110 kg across the park.
After I come back home, I do some stretching and Yoga to relax the body and muscles and after an early dinner, I am off to bed by 9:30pm to wake up again the next day and do it all over again.
Now it is very important to take at least one complete rest day in a week. As they say, training makes you weaker; it is the recovery that makes you stronger so take your rest when your body demands. A little bit of pushing is also important but one must know where to stop. Make it a routine to do a warm up before and stretching after every session. This is a very important part of your regime and often ignored by people. Ignoring warm up and cool down could result in some serious injuries which may last a lifetime so be wise about this!
I am lucky enough that I get to live with train under the mentorship of @arjunvajpai who is one of the most renowned mountaineers in the world.
I hope this blog was helpful and if you have any queries or suggestions, leave them in the comment section below. Cheers!