Get Fit For The Slopes

Outdoor Fitness|December 2019

Get Fit For The Slopes
Are you heading off somewhere snowy to take part in your favourite winter sports? Personal trainer Jeff Archer reveals how to be physically prepared
Jeff Archer
If you’re hitting the slopes this winter, you’ll want to make the most of your time away without worrying about your fitness letting you down. Even if you’ve had a good summer of activity and you’re feeling in great shape, it’s worth thinking about some ski-specific preparations to help you transition smoothly from working your body in ways that you’re familiar with to potentially pushing yourself hard with activities that, for most of us, only feature for a few days each year.

Winter holidays mean day after day on the go without much recovery time, and most people report feeling a little fatigued at some point during a ski trip, usually on days two or three, or on their last day before returning home. Any day, or even half day when you’re not feeling great feels like a bit of a waste, so it pays to make a plan to get yourself in peak wintersports condition before you go.

IMPROVE YOUR STAMINA

To make the most of your time away, shape your training programme around your ability or the specific type of activities you’ll be taking part in on the slopes. If you’re an expert skier, you’ll likely either be planning for long days out or some lively off-piste action. Or both. Either way, you’ll need to be prepared for lengthy bursts of relatively low-intensity cardio work, mildly challenging to your strength and balance, interspersed with some moments of tougher activity when the skiing is more demanding.

Aim to include some longer CV workouts in the run-up to your trip, during which you spend much of your time working at around a six out of 10 intensity, but throw in regular bursts of 7, 8 or 9 out of 10 effort level before returning to a lower intensity. This will simulate working harder on the slopes periodically and recovering while still on the move.

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December 2019