Multi-sport Training

Hi All,

I want to gauge people’s thoughts on training for climbing during the winter while also working on fitness for backcountry touring. Has anyone tackled this? I am looking to start one of the Proven Plans in a couple weeks but also want to stay fit (and improve) my fitness for touring. I have a 4-day backcountry ski trip coming up in about 6 weeks and would like to dedicate time towards that whilst doing the Proven Plan. Is this even possible?! It’s tough to make time for it all so I understand that something may need to be sacrificed or not reach full potential.

If anyone could lend any thoughts on how to approach training for both simultaneously, I’d appreciate the insight.


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I know quite a few folks who have. Which Proven Plan? Climbers at some levels with the needs we usually see at that level will be doing more general fitness than others.

For the skiing, I’d suggest leaning heavily on low volume, high intensity strength work, coupled with low intensity aerobic conditioning and doing your best to avoid getting tired just for the sake of getting tired. Otherwise you’re almost certain to dig yourself a hole.

Yeah I figured I wasn’t the only one out there. I’ve been looking at the 5.12 plan for awhile now but one of the recent Instastories showed that the 5.12 plan is targeted for .11b to .12a so now I’m thinking the .13 plan may be more appropriate. So I could see some potential confliction here since the .13 plan will likely be more specific rather than focused on general fitness.

Maybe I could hold off on the Plan for a little bit longer? Starting it in January was going to line up perfectly with the spring climbing season so I’m quite torn.


Climb 5.12 is definitely more climbing specific general fitness. Particularly if big hold endurance and learning to rest on route is a need, it’s the best choice.

I’d decide what the main goal is. Impossible to do both at the top level - there will always be a compromise. It’s up to you where you compromise.

what sort of ski trip is it? Are you hut based and trying to max your vert or is it a self sufficient traverse sort of trip? Its really hard to prepare for the slog of long days of ski touring without doing some longish days of ski touring.

If it was me, and I also wanted to save energy for climbing training I would put in one long day of ski touring per week and maybe two other very short aerobic sessions, like 30 min or so. high intensity leg work as Kris mentioned would also be good, loaded box steps are a lot like a steep skin track.

Thanks Kris.

Thanks for the reply Ian. Each day on the trip will just be day missions from the hotel basically. So no super long days doing a traverse or trying to max vert. Just being on “vacation”, I know that we will just want to maximize our time and be out for awhile each day. What you suggested makes sense to me. I appreciate the thoughts.