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Monday, October 21, 2013

Incline Treadmill Calculator

This is an Incline Treadmill Calculator I have been using for a couple of years now for my Elbrus Race training. I also use it for training for my speed ascents on Colorado 14'ers and Utah Wasatch Front peaks.

Incline Treadmill Calculator

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If you have access to a Nordic Track or Freemotion Incline Trainer, they are able to go up to 40% incline. Some of their models can also do a negative incline of -6%. I've noticed though that the console report for vertical feet gained is a little off from the math as the incline gets steeper. I think this is because of their internal parts just counting passes of the sensor and doing integer math, instead of our Javascript calculator doing floating point math on the total miles and time. If anyone working for the company can explain it, I'd love to see the answer in a comment below.

7,167' in 114:06 (a little less than 2 hours) and 4.64 miles
If you don't have access to a steep incline treadmill, an average commercial treadmill should be able to do 15%. Let me quick explain the percentage of grade. This is the number of feet of vertical change over the distance of horizontal change. For example, if you walk 1000' and end up 10' higher, this is a 1% grade. Highway passes are rated for grade, with 6% or more being fairly steep for many trucks.

Riding the Incline Treadmill with Wireless Earphones

10% of a mile would be 528'. If you were to ride your treadmill for 2 miles at 10% you'd be going 1056' of uphill travel. As you can see, this can be quite a workout and an incline treadmill can be great training for mountain hiking.


Minimalist footwear is great to strengthen the feet for incline treadmill use
If you'd like to see some great example Incline Treadmill Workouts, check my posts here and at my OTHER BLOG for some of my own Incline Treadmill Workouts. Remember, stay safe when working out and don't do something that isn't good for you. YMMV.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Stairmaster Workout - Stepmill Calculator

This is a Stairmaster Workout Stepmill Calculator I have been using for a couple of years now for my Elbrus Race training. I also use it for training for my speed ascents on Colorado 14'ers and Utah Wasatch Front peaks.

UPDATE: I recently rewrote this to output data similar to the Incline Treadmill Calculator. I want it to work better with my "Couch to Colorado 14er" Training Program, due out in Mid-March. For the Journaling system I suggest consistency when you log your training sessions. MORE INFO - 22 February 2014

Stairmaster Workout - Stepmill Calculator

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This Stairmaster Workout Stepmill Calculator will automatically highlight your results, so copy it to your clipboard and then paste into your own workout tracking software, or blog, or journal. Remember, if you can't measure and track it you can't manage it to the best of your ability.
Stairmaster Workout


Stairmaster Workouts:

I prefer simple, basic, Manual Program sessions when possible. There are some variations between models. Some allow you to start with simple Level Settings. Others allow you to manually enter your Steps Per Minute. In either case, a few minutes of messing around will let you find out which settings match your current level of fitness. Mine does Steps Per Minute, so I'll use that for these programs.

Beginner Stairmaster Workout

Set the Stepmill for 20 minutes at 25 steps/minute. After about 5 minutes bump it up to 30. Try to go up 5 steps/minute every 5 minutes until your heart rate exceeds your 80% level. If that doesn't happen, in the next workout start at 30 and work your way up. Keep going up until you end with 5 minutes in your 80% heart rate zone.

Intermediate Stairmaster Workout

Set the Stepmill for 40 minutes at 50 steps/minute. Your goal is to keep your heart rate in the 75-85% zone. Adjust the steps/minute up or down to accommodate this zone. It's not a contest to see who has the highest heart rate or the fastest steps/minute. Stay in that intermediate zone for the entire 40 minutes. This is a great cardio workout.

Advanced Stairmaster Workout

One: set the Stepmill for 24 minutes at 120 steps/minute. Enjoy the ride. This is similar to doing the famous Manitou Springs Incline, 2,000' of vertical, in 24 minutes. That's a really good result for that classic hill climb. If you want more info on the Incline [SITE ONE] [SITE TWO]

Two: Interval Stairmaster Workout: Use the Interval Workout Function to program in 120 steps/min for 3 minutes and 75 steps/minute for 2 minutes, and have that repeat 12 times. That's a great one hour interval workout.

NOTE: If your own Stairmaster Workout doesn't use a set static constant steps/minute the Workout Report screen at the end will tell you your Average Steps Per Minute. Use that number in the calculator above.

Stairmaster Workout Disclaimer: don't get hurt. It's pretty easy to fall off a Stepmill, and if you go off the back, expect to fall a couple of feet, much more than you would off a treadmill. Make sure a qualified professional has cleared you to use a Stepmill. Be careful.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Ice Climbing Training: Shoulder Mobility Kettle Bell Circuit

I don't train shoulders hard for Ice Climbing as they don't have to do a lot of work, but you do need to keep them in balance with your lats. If your lats are too strong for your shoulders you could have some mobility and injury issues. Here I'm doing a quick circuit with kettle bells to loosen up and dynamically strengthen my shoulders.

Note that these are not traditional kettle bell swings. Don't throw a lot of weight around here. Pick a weight that you can do sets of 25 with. I mix up the order every other day or so with Front, Side, and Rear swings. Use a light balanced stance that allows you to be stable during the full range of motion for the swing. If you have to lift your heels a lot you are probably using too heavy weight.

I could do these every day and have full recovery, since I'm not going to failure or really stressing the muscle that much. YMMV.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Ice Climbing Training: Ice Tool Chinups

Now that I'm done with Elbrus Race 2013 I have to start training in earnest for the upcoming ice climbing season, about 6 to 8 weeks away. This morning I did an upper body routine and I'll be sharing that with you over the next few weeks so maybe you'll start training with some of my tips.

This morning I did Ice Tool Chinups. Here I'm using a regular hangboard with the tips of the tools placed at the junction between jugs and slopers. I have to be careful not to slip, but that just adds to the specificity of the training I think.

10 Second Dead Hangs are a great addition to the training
Others I've talked to have said they use eye bolts and get a more secure hook with the tips. Whichever works for you, be warned that ice tools are pointy, and dangerous, and can damage walls and your hangboard. Be careful.

I'm doing sets of 3 here, and mixed it up with other training in Superset style - A set of Ice Tool Chinups and a set of Standing Low Rows in this case. Repeat a half dozen or so times and then get on to the next exercises. Over the course of the next couple months I will most likely add weight rather than increase sets or reps. YMMV...