I know everyone here probably know this, but The uphill Athlete training plans and protocols work.
I’ve been following the Uphill Athlete Training plans in Training Peaks for about 3 years now with a few breaks. I’ve followed both the 24 week Mountaineering plan and the Big Vert as of late. Now I’ve moved into using the Big Vert with a few modifications for adding some cycling and climbing to my Training.
When I first started using the programming I was a weightlifter looking to transition into endurance sports. I didn’t have much cardio, but I was used to lifting 6 days a week.
My original AeT test put me at 145 for my HR and 11 minute miles. At the time I didn’t even do the Anaerobic Threshold test because I didn’t want to be tempted to do any Z3+ work as I knew I was aerobically deficient. I just focused on Z1 and Z2 runs.
I followed that for two summers with some winter training and breaks. I was averaging about 7-10 hours a week for this time. With some long 3 month breaks from training when I was busy. Usually each time I came back I felt fresh and ready to go.
This last February when everything shut down I decided to really ramp up training. I live in the mountains so it was easy to avoid people. With no races or trips I needed a goal so I decided I was going to make an attempt at Everesting on Foot.
I slowly ramped up to about 15 hours a week from February to June with my sole focus on chasing Vertical in Z1/Z2. In July I decided to do another AeT test to really figure out where my aerobic threshold was now. I did the one hour test on the track and averaged a HR of 161 and a pa:hr of 2.18% and a pace of 8:21. I assumes my AeT was about 164 or 165 from these results.
I then did my first real AnT test. My result was an AnT of 175 which put me with the 10% to start doing Z3 work. I only had about 6 weeks until my planned Eversting date so I only did one Z3 workout a week and no ME as I was doing the shuttled version of Eversting so at the time I thought it might not be the most useful when I wasn’t going to be running down at all.
For my Everesting I used a local ski hill. It was 2350ft or so up so I had to do 13 laps. I used a mix of bikes and the Gondola to shuttle myself down. From the AeT test I decided to try to focus on just keeping at 155 for each lap. I was able to stick to this program and finish in 18 hours 30 minutes. My uphill time was 13:10 so I was able to hold a consistent 1 hour lap for each.
I’ve been training since the Everesting, of course taking a break for a few weeks after the event, and now signed up for my first 50. In order to get ready for this event I decided to do my AeT test again. This time I was able to hold a HR of 166 with a pa:hr of 3%. So I would assume my “true” AeT is about 168 now. My new pace was 7 minute miles. I did some hard Ski-Mo races a few weeks ago and my AnT is at about 180-182. I might redo the test running to get my true running AnT.
What I want to figure out is now that I feel like I’m at the point that I can add a larger volume of Z3 work what I would do for my training plan.
I am using the Mike Foot Big Vert training plan, extended to 24 weeks(race is in July) with some more Base weeks. I was looking to do 1 ME session a week and one VMA session on the track. My reasoning is the Big Vert plan has Strength instead of VMA or Z3, but I have an excess of Strength from my weightlifting background. I will beat most of my runner friends on sprints and and in the gym with ease. This is my logic on adding more VMA sessions so 200’s, 300’s and 400’s. Once I get into the Intensity stages and specific I will swap those for Z3 and Z4 work. Would this make sense?