Adventure Consultant/Uphill Athlete 12-week Everest Base Camp Trekking Plan

Average Weekly Training Hours 06:05
Training Load By Week
Average Weekly Training Hours 06:05
Training Load By Week

This 12 week training plan is ideal for the moderately active person planning a trek such as Everest Base camp or the Annapurna Circuit who lives and works in a city and/or is otherwise limited in their ability to hike outdoors on mountainous our even hilly terrain due to weather or locale. The exercises are meant to be done largely on the equipment available in most commercial and even some well equipped home gyms. So, access to a treadmill, stairclimber machine, stationary bike and rowing machine is required. If yo have access to big hills and mountains right out your back door though, feel free to substitute the real McCoy for these exercise machines. The only other special requirements will be a heart rate monitor to control the intensity of the aerobic workouts and access to some steep stairs such as found in tall buildings for fire exits. Preferably these stairs will allow you at least a continuous climb of 5 minutes but smaller buildings will suffice. You will just need to go up and down more. The most important factor in your successful and enjoyable trek is going to be your fitness. Sticking with this plan will give you the base fitness you need to not only complete the trek but to enjoy the experience.
Time requirements begin at just over 4 hours in the first week and peak at over 7 hours in the final week.

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Sample Day 1
1:15:00
Aerobic Threshold Test for Zone 1 and 2 determination

If you do not have a good idea of your aerobic threshold heart rate you need to establish that first thing before beginning training as this will set the upper limit for your aerobic base training. Since this is most important training you will be doing it is a good idea to get it dialed. One way to do this (the best) is with an expensive lag test.
https://www.uphillathlete.com/getting-tested-part-2-how-to-interpret-your-test-results/
It can be tricky to find a good lab as detailed here.
https://www.uphillathlete.com/lab-metabolic-test/
If you are careful and diligent you can do your own test using Training Peaks Premium edition. 
Thats what we are going to explain now. Read this article to understand this test better.
https://www.uphillathlete.com/heart-rate-drift/

This test can be done on either on a treadmill, stair machine or a flat to very gentle loop course outdoors.  It can not be done on an uphill/downhill out and back course.

1) TREADMILL: Set treadmill to 10% and begin running slowly. Gradually build speed till HR stabilizes at what you FEEL is an easy aerobic effort. Allow 10 min to find the speed allow you HR to stabilize there.
Once that is dialed in do not adjust speed or grade. Run continuously for 60 min at this speed. Record HR and upload to TP

2) OUTDOORS: Run, preferably on a flat (or very gently rolling) course, at what feels like an easy aerobic pace. Once your HR stabilizes start the recording feature on your GPS enabled HR monitor watch. Record for one hour while you do your best to keep the HR as close to that initial HR number. Upload the data to TP.

If the Pa:Hr is greater than 5% your initial HR/pace was above your Aerobic Threshold and you should do the test again at a lower HR. This may take several attempts to find a Pa:Hr decoupling of less that 5%.

Once you determine your AeT HR set that as the top of your Zone 2 in your Training Peaks Zones. Subtract 10% from this and set that as the top of your Zone 1.

Sample Day 2
1:00:00
Basic Strength Work

Warm Up: 10min on Treadmill hiking 5%-10% grade.

Core: The attachment and video will show you how to do each exercises correctly.

Bird Dog: 8 reps each leg
Bridge: 8 Reps each Leg
Leg Raise Progression: 8 Reps each leg
Side Plank: Hold for 10 sec. on each side.
Plank Progression: 20sec hold
Super Man: 3x5sec hold

As you get stronger feel free to add a weight vest while doing these exercises.

Below is the link to the videos. We suggest you start with phase one of each exercise but you can do what you suits you best.

http://www.uphillathlete.com/strength-demo-basic-core-routine/ 

General Strength:
Box Step ups 3x10 reps (Each Leg)
Heel Touch 3x10 reps (Each Leg)

(You can adjust the set and reps if it is too hard or too easy as well)

You can adjust the height of the box for both Step Ups and Heel Touch. I recommend using a 10-14in box for step ups to start and a 6in block for heel touches. Or a box 75% height to your knee for box step ups. If you are doing the workout from home a stair works well for both box step ups and heel touches.


If balance is a challenge doing these put your box next to a wall for assistances.
You can add resistance if with weight once you feel strong with just body weight. You can use a weight vest, water jug, bar or other types of weight to make it more challenging.

Here is a link to a video demonstrating how to properly do both exercises.

http://www.uphillathlete.com/strength-demo-box-step-up-and-heel-touch/

Sample Day 3
0:30:00
Treadmill Hike

Set Treadmill to 8%, keep your Heart rate under Aerobic Threshold.

Sample Day 4
0:30:00
Treadmill Hike Or Stair Master

Set Treadmill to 8%, keep your Heart rate under Aerobic Threshold. 

Or if you want to mix it up do the stair master for 30min keeping HR under AeT.

Sample Day 5
1:00:00
Basic Strength Work

Warm Up: 10min on Treadmill hiking 5%-10% grade.

Core: The attachment and video will show you how to do each exercises correctly.

Bird Dog: 8 reps each leg
Bridge: 8 Reps each Leg
Leg Raise Progression: 8 Reps each leg
Side Plank: Hold for 10 sec. on each side.
Plank Progression: 20sec hold
Super Man: 3x5sec hold

As you get stronger feel free to add a weight vest while doing these exercises.

Below is the link to the videos. We suggest you start with phase one of each exercise but you can do what you suits you best.

http://www.uphillathlete.com/strength-demo-basic-core-routine/

General Strength:
Box Step ups 3x10 reps (Each Leg)
Heel Touch 3x10 reps (Each Leg)

(You can adjust the set and reps if it is too hard or too easy as well)

You can adjust the height of the box for both Step Ups and Heel Touch. I recommend using a 10-14in box for step ups to start and a 6in block for heel touches. Or a box 75% height to your knee for box step ups. If you are doing the workout from home a stair works well for both box step ups and heel touches.


If balance is a challenge doing these put your box next to a wall for assistances.
You can add resistance if with weight once you feel strong with just body weight. You can use a weight vest, water jug, bar or other types of weight to make it more challenging.

Here is a link to a video demonstrating how to properly do both exercises.

http://www.uphillathlete.com/strength-demo-box-step-up-and-heel-touch/

Sample Day 6
0:20:00
Stair Climb

The stair climb workouts are going to be very important to progression for this training plan. Hiking stairs up and down is similar to all the vertical you will gain and drop while trekking into base camp. Going down is just as good training as going up. Through the 12 weeks you will progress to longer and harder stair climb workouts. As you get stronger you will have an option to add a weighted back pack for more resistance while you climb.

Having a tall building with stairs will make the training easier. There are a few options on how to do this workout. If you don't have a very tall building near you, you will have to do laps up and down. If you do have a very tall building you can do a continuous workout upwards. If you don't have any type of building with stairs you will have to use a stair master. Stair master workouts are not the same as using stairs but you can make it work.

Option One: Building with not many stories-
Workout-Hike Up for 5min and back down for 5min. Do this twice.

Option Two: Building with many stories-
This is a continues upwards workout with a few minutes to go back down. Hike up the stairs for 5min then turn around and hike down for two min. Do this 2 times.

Option Three: Hike on a stair master for 20min with HR below AeT.


All of this work should be below your Aerobic Threshold that you established earlier this week.

Sample Day 7
0:20:00
Stair Climb

The stair climb workouts are going to be very important to progression for this training plan. Hiking stairs up and down is similar to all the vertical you will gain and drop while trekking into base camp. Going down is just as good training as going up. Through the 12 weeks you will progress to longer and harder stair climb workouts. As you get stronger you will have an option to add a weighted back pack for more resistance while you climb.

Having a tall building with stairs will make the training easier. There are a few options on how to do this workout. If you don't have a very tall building near you, you will have to do laps up and down. If you do have a very tall building you can do a continuous workout upwards. If you don't have any type of building with stairs you will have to use a stair master. Stair master workouts are not the same as using stairs but you can make it work.

Option One: Building with not many stories-
Workout-Hike Up for 5min and back down for 5min. Do this twice.

Option Two: Building with many stories-
This is a continues upwards workout with a few minutes to go back down. Hike up the stairs for 5min then turn around and hike down for two min. Do this 2 times.

Option Three: Hike on a stair master for 20min with HR below AeT.


All of this work should be below your Aerobic Threshold that you established earlier this week.

Uphill Athlete by Steve House and Scott Johnston
|
Uphill Athlete LLC.

What originally inspired us to write Training for the New Alpinism, and what inspires us to continue to share the things we’ve discovered through Uphillatlete.com, is the information void when it comes to specialized training for endurance mountain sports. We have successfully demonstrated a more systematic approach, using proven principles, to help you improve both your chances of achieving your goals, and your long-term fitness and safety in whatever mountain sport you are practicing.