Stamina Training Workout

Stamina Training Workout
Stamina and endurance are interchangeable: the ability to sustain your level of exertion over time and through tough challenges.


Difficulty: Moderately Challenging

Ways to Train

Step 1
Use the gear you intend to use on your expedition. Run in your trail shoes. Hike in your boots with the pack you will carry. This will allow you to break in pieces, become accustomed to or correct flaws and allow your body to adjust to the peculiarities of any one item alone, as well as your whole outfit together.

Walk with an empty pack and gradually add weight as you adapt if you are a beginner. Start with a pack of average weight and gradually add to the load as you progress if you are an advanced backpacker.
Step 2
Mimic the conditions you will face. Runners who participate in the ultramarathon race across Badwater and Death Valley have been known to do things like vent the output of their dryers into their running clothes as they train on the treadmill in order to recreate the heat they will face on the course.

If you will need to go without sleep, food or water rations, try staying up or fasting once a week, then attempting your workout. Try carrying your water bottle, but delaying your drink stops (within reason).
Step 3
Teach yourself to overcome mental factors in your training. The mind and body each want to quit at various times. Part of conditioning is learning to work through the points where you want to stop--not where you feel an injury or pain, but those times where you are fatigued, out of breath or feeling the emptiness in the pit of your stomach, as well as those times where your mind becomes overwhelmed with the effort, bored or frustrated.

Learn to work through the urge to stop by pushing yourself to that point on smaller courses and convincing yourself to continue to move, even for a short distance. Try for one more step, then 10, 20 and beyond.

Training Itself

Step 1
Train longer. In running, stamina is built through long, slow run days. This same principle can be applied to the practice of any outdoor sport. Whatever you choose to play or achieve, you begin to build your tolerance and ability by gradually adding distance or weight.

Build your distance slowly unless you are a well-trained athlete. An addition of no more than a mile per week is recommended by Jeff Galloway of Runner's World. Hikers and backpackers can use a similar rule of thumb to add to their distance.
Step 2
Train several times a day. Twice is sufficient, but if you have the time, several small sessions can equal one long session and make your body learn to work across the length of the day.

Running is a great basic form of training for any outdoor sport because nearly every sport requires a certain minimal level of cardiovascular fitness, the mental ability to continue past the point of fatigue, muscle tone, coordination and balance that come from running.
Step 3
Train specifically for longer, larger conquests. If you hope to trail run for distance or participate in an all-day climb, you need to get your body used to that level of exertion before the day of the event.

Long, slow runs will get you to a starting place, and then you can begin sport-specific training, which combines upper- and lower-body conditioning. String together a series of small climbs, small runs or short trips with a loaded pack to increase the duration of your workout if you lack one large course.

Article Written By Alice Moon

Alice Moon is a freelance writer with more than 10 years of experience. She was chosen as a Smithsonian Institute intern, working for the National Zoo in Washington, D.C., and has traveled throughout Asia. Moon holds a Bachelor of Science in political science from Ball State University.

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