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  1. #1
    Chris Hansen is offline Senior Member
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    Default Basement program for hiking?

    I went for a little hike today. It wasn't a real long hike but the hills were steep and there was snow and ice and the side of the ravine was muddy and slippery so it ended up being quite strenuous. I found myself out of breath and my legs were feeling the burn.

    I don't get out to places like that often enough to get in shape by doing it, especially in the winter. So I'm looking for ideas for my basement hero workout so I'll be prepared to hit the trails hard when I get a chance.

    I'm thinking of somehow programming in high rep step ups or reverse lunges or something but would love to hear about people's ideas or experience.

  2. #2
    ad5ly is offline Senior Member
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    I think you could hike outdoors in winter but be sure you dress for the cold conditions. Begin by hiking on sidewalks and roads. Wear boots that will keep the feet warm and have adequate treads to prevent or reduce slipping on icy patches. Set time goals like 20, 30 or 45 min. When you feel up to it and have developed the conditioning required for cross country hiking, then give it a try. Training in the basement just sounds very boring. Hiking is for the outdoors...Kinda of like surfing. But I say again, adequate clothing in cold condx - boots, gloves, head/face covering, and wind resistant jackets and trousers should be used. Don't be unprepared for cold conditions - example: German 6th Army at Stalingrad in the winter of 42-43. These guys froze to death in the thousands. Sorry for the history lesson. Could not help it!!...hehehe!!...Dennis

  3. #3
    Chris Hansen is offline Senior Member
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    Thanks for the response.

    I try to get out walking when I can but when it's cold and dark and icy I just don't have as much desire to do so.

    I'm also concerned more with the fitness involved in hiking up steep hills. I'd have to get in my car and drive somewhere to find that kind of terrain and I'm not likely to do it often enough to base a fitness program on it. So you could say I'm looking for an off-season program.

    I've heard high rep step ups, while boring, are effective so I might give that a try. I'm not quite sure how best to add them into my existing workout. I'm thinking of trying strength focus days on Monday/Thursday and endurance focus days on Tuesday/Friday. Then maybe try to get out walking on Wednesday and over the weekend.

  4. #4
    saintm is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris Hansen View Post

    I'm thinking of somehow programming in high rep step ups or reverse lunges or something but would love to hear about people's ideas or experience.
    Lately, I'm finding that the Bulgarian Split Squat is a fantastic all-around lower body exercise exercise, better for me then all the years I've been deadlifting.

    I work out in my garage gym, and I can list the benefits:

    ) Safer method of getting full ROM than with goblet squats or hack deadlifts.

    ) You really don't have to get to obsessive with form on these. Simply find something that's about knee height, take three accurate, standard steps from it, and rest your non-working instep on something soft.

    ) It starts off as a bodyweight exercise, and then really becomes a loadable bodyweight exercise. The best way to load it is 2 dumbells.

    ) It's the best way I can get a pump in my legs in my garage. I think I have terrible mobility issues, though.

    ) PTTP? GTG? Bear? You can do all sorts of the routines, provided your using heavy enough, loadable dumbells. If you completely new to them, I reccomend doing some kind of GTG method. I worked up to being able to do 8 reps per leg while holding onto 45# in each hand with a GTG schedule.

    ) According to Ben Bruno, a worthy goal is 5 or more reps per leg while loaded with 100% of bodyweight (that would be 50% bodyweight in each hand)
    ) The set up is very fast, and I take up much less space doing these than with an olympic barbell. I could have a simple time setting this up in an apartment or a crowded gym.

    ) A few laps of farmer's walks right after the BSS set(s) is a great squat/hinge/core/grip workout.

  5. #5
    ad5ly is offline Senior Member
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    Okay high rep steps in the basement sounds doable. You know cold weather outdoor hiking can be thought of as a challenge that you adapt to. Any out door hiking has just got to be better than being in the basement "hiking". If you have a television down there you can watch nature videos while "hiking". I associate hiking with being out in the in the fresh air - hot or cold - and hitting the trail with map and compass and my dogs. Back pack and haversack with canned tuna and beans. A fishing pole perhaps too. Maybe take a camera along too. And btw maybe a rifle to do some target shooting well away from residential areas. I'm talking FUN stuff...heheh!!...Dennis

  6. #6
    Chris Hansen is offline Senior Member
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    Thanks for the replies.

    ad5ly - I agree but I just don't get on the trails that often. There's a couple of parks in the area but the nearest worthy trails are 140 miles away. However, I'd like to be able to make the most of it when I do get out.

    I've been doing back squats (high bar) in the basement lately. Not very heavy yet. I have some unusual challenges and had some setbacks so I'm basically starting over. As a first priority, do you think there's a certain level of strength that should be attained before worrying too much about strength-endurance?

  7. #7
    ad5ly is offline Senior Member
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    Hiking is conditioning. If the goal of hiking is conditioning then high step reps and lunges as mentioned is fine. You could also include kettlebell / sandbag swings/snatches, rowing machine, stationary bicycling etc...and do actual hiking in the spring, summer. I will also give my opinion that hiking is not just walking. Hiking/rucking is "land navigation" where knowing how to use a map and compass is important and covering various terrains in various conditions comes into play. Night time land navigation, cold weather, hot weather, mountains, forests, national parks etc...In a nut shell it is the art of not getting lost outdoors...hehe!!..Military operations rely heavily on this skill...Dennis

  8. #8
    GeoffreyLevens is offline Senior Member
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    2 words....Wim Hof

    Seriously, I think the basement idea is excellent but that does not preclude doing some outdoor double up with cold conditioning. As Dennis mentioned above, proper clothes are a must, but layers easily added or subtracted as needed to be carried in a day pack. Chugging around the park in the cold, with no one else around can be pretty pleasant even blissful I think and cold really tends to thin out the crowd! Cold conditioning takes patience and persistence, you can't rush it. But it is pretty cool (pun intended) to find yourself comfortable in a wider and wider range of conditions.

  9. #9
    ad5ly is offline Senior Member
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    A cautionary bit of advise about hiking in wilderness areas. Never hike alone. Carry a cell phone or 2-way radio. Inform others where you are going, your general direction of the hike route, and when you plan to return. So that rescuers can find you if you do not return as scheduled. A news article about a young man who went out alone without informing anyone and no means of communications. His misfortune resulted when he had to cut off his arm with his Swiss Army Knife when he fell in a ravine between massive sharp rocks and could not get free. He was dying after a few days (of thirst) and had to make the decision to cut off his arm between the elbow and shoulder, then snap the arm bone to get free. No one knew where he went. He was just gone. This and the danger of wild animals, or zombies is why you consider safety everytime you go out into the wilds...Dennis

  10. #10
    Chris Hansen is offline Senior Member
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    ad5fly - That's a pretty freaky story. Unfortunately (fortunately?) there's no wilderness like that in my area. I would have to get the in the car and drive for quite a while to reach anything that remote.

    Ok, so it'll be moderate rep step ups for now. Last night's workout was a little under-whelming. But I hope to build up by spring.

    There's a set of stairs in the area that people do their workouts on. After two or three times up my legs get pretty wobbly. If I work my squats and step ups all winter, maybe in the spring I'll be able to make it worth the drive out there. I'll be a hill climbing machine.

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