Endurance

Rob Pizem, working for the first free ascent of the Frank Zappa Appreciation Society, 5.13+, Escalanta Canyon, CO

Running Away From Redpointing

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By Steve Bechtel Since the dawn of time, man has been obsessed with finding an easier way to get past hard work. Wonderful things like the wheel, the incline plane, and the internal combustion engine have helped us get past the drudgery and pain of too much tedium and work for too little reward. Much…

TS Strawberry Roan

Unlearning “Endurance” Training

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By Steve Bechtel I think I’ve been to a dozen different crags where I’ve seen some dude doing toprope laps on a route he’s got totally wired to “train endurance” at the end of the day. The thing is, this guy has been doing the same thing for years, and getting nowhere. It’s not that…

Golden

Getting Back to Top Form Quickly

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By Steve Bechtel In a perfect world, we’d redpoint hard routes every weekend, all year long. We’d always feel recovered, and we’d be able to boulder at our limit one day and free big walls the next. But in this world, we have obligations, injuries, and seasons that keep us from climbing well for large…

TS Wheaties

The Todd Skinner Workout

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By Steve Bechtel Once upon a time, there were no climbing gyms. There were good climbers, among them my friend Todd Skinner, who did a fair amount of hard training off the rock. During the late 1980s, Todd and some friends developed a freestanding “box” of slats with several different sizes of wooden edges attached…

Kerry Demo

Understanding the Lactic Energy System

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by Steve Bechtel If you’ve ever climbed to the top of a strenuous route, you’ve felt the burn. If you’ve ever trained super-hard, you’ve felt the debilitating soreness the day after the session. Undoubtedly, you’ve also read or been told that one or both of these is due to lactic acid buildup in your muscles….

ESTIM Equipment

E-Stim Might Make You Weaker

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By Steve Bechtel I am as excited about the next big thing in training as the next guy. When Electronic Muscle Stimulation (E-Stim) came on the scene, I could almost feel my forearms getting stronger just thinking about it. It was a great idea for climbers; a way to train the forearm muscles when you…

High-Low Plan

The High-Low Plan

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The Plan This training program is designed for route climbers working on redpointing higher grades. This is the style of plan most of our climbers started using back in 2010 or so, featuring significantly reduced power-endurance training. The idea comes from the training plans designed by the legendary Charlie Francis, widely considered to be the…

Work Capacity – Climbing Hard All Day Long (part 1)

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By Steve Bechtel Most of the articles I write are aimed at improving performance in single-pitch rock climbing. Understandably, there are big questions when it comes to converting your single-pitch fitness into longer efforts such as big walls or alpine routes. When it comes to performing at a high level for a long day or…

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