Ski tours offer endurance athletes perfect basic endurance training. While the cardiovascular system is challenged uphill, the muscles are put to the test downhill
Perfect base training
For runners, cyclists, swimmers and inline skaters, winter is the time for basic training. What this means is that long endurance sessions at moderate intensities are the order of the day to create a solid foundation on which to build speed work. The problem is that three-hour long jogs in winter are pretty extreme, and even three-hour bike rides are not always a treat in cold when the fog hangs over the lowlands in sub-zero temperatures. The solution: conquer the mountain on foot – for example with a ski tour. A ski tour is not a leisurely walk in the snow, but uphill quickly a sweaty affair. By choosing the route and the pace, the pulse can be challenged at will, but it can also be throttled in such a way that a steady workload of several hours is possible.
The beauty of it is that the experience of nature makes you forget that it is an extensive and extremely profitable workout, and instead you think you are on a Sunday excursion. While uphill it is mainly the cardiovascular system that is challenged, downhill it is the musculature that gets more of a workout. The warming spring sun not only melts the snow crystals, but also makes the thighs burn. Without a fall, a downhill run in powder snow is a demanding but positive strain for the whole body. And if you spend a whole week in the high mountains, you’ll also enjoy high-altitude training with lots of extra red blood cells.
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