I’m sure many fellow Australians can relate when I say training for mountaineering/alpinism in Australia isn’t easy. Why not you ask? Because theres no mountains to climb, it’s flat as a pancake! The best we have are the Aussie 10 peaks in Mount Kosciusko National Park, with it culminating on Mount Kosciusko itself standing at a whopping 2,228m, a mountain that can be done in shorts and flip flops in less than 8 hours during the summer time. We have places such as Mount Arapiles, Mount Buffalo, The Blue Mountains, Baroomba & The Grampians for some decent rock-climbing and if weather permits, Blue Lake for ice-climbing but that’s pretty much it. So how do we train? I’m only new to the world of Alpinism and Mountaineering so keep in mind this is coming from a newbie.
We make do with what we have. We might not have much mountains but most will have access to; good hiking trails, gym facilities, swimming pools, running tracks and indoor rock-climbing centres. This can make up for our weekly training routines. We can work on all of the relevant fitness components to mountaineering and alpinism. For example, cardiovascular fitness and lung capacity (swimming, running, stair-master), muscular endurance (calisthenics, high rep weight exercises), muscular strength and power (mid-low rep weight exercises), flexibility and core strength (stretching, yoga, pilates), load carrying (weighted hikes and treks). Every month or so we can work on our rope skills and/or alpine environment skill set and pay a quick visit to somewhere like the Blue Mountains, Mount Arapiles or Mount Kosciusko National Park. And if we’re lucky enough, 2 to maybe 3 times a year we can travel internationally to somewhere like New Zealand, Ecuador, the Alps, Andes or even Nepal to practice our skills on some serious mountains. This brings me to my own personal routine, here it is:
MY WEEKLY ROUTINE
- SUN – Long Hike/Trek – 3 to 8 hours with 20-25kg pack
- MON – Strength & Conditioning – Upper Body + Core
- TUE – Run, swim or stair-master
- WED – Strength & Conditioning – Lower Body
- THU – Run, swim or stair-master
- FRI – Strength & Conditioning – Upper Body + Core
- SAT – HIIT on Stationary Bike + Strength & Conditioning – Lower Body
TOTAL: 4 cardiovascular training sessions & 4 strength & conditioning training sessions
I’ve recently toned down my training after training to often and for to long previously
IDEAL MONTHY & YEARLY TRIPS
- Every second week, head over to my closest rock-climbing centre
- Every month, head over to the closest outdoor rock-climbing destination such as The Grampians or Mt. Arapiles
- For 1 to 2 weekends during winter, head over to Mount Kosciusko National Park & Blue Lake for some Alpine experience and ice-climbing
- Every 4 to 6 months, book a trip to New Zealand, Nepal, the Andes, the Alps, etc to train on some real technical and high altitude mountains or if ready one of the seven summits
This part of the routine is the ideal situation. An optimistic preference.
So there it, my current training routine. Hope you can get something out of it.
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