On a Training Lifestyle

Like Lee, I recently asked myself whether I could count what I call lifestyle activity to my training plan. I spend these hours walking to the subway everyday or carrying the groceries home from our local supermarket on the weekend.

My current training plan for Rainier demands 9 hours of training per week. If you have a 9 to 5 job, a family, and other commitments like me, nine hours a week can quickly become a challenge. Besides, groceries for my family can quickly tip the scale at 15 kg. Unlike most Americans, I don’t put the groceries in a car. I carry them in a backpack a kilometer or so to our apartment building and then up five flights of stairs to our flat. I might not be hauling 65 pounds of networking equipment across town in a backpack, but I am exercising.

Turkey Bringing Home the Christmas Turkey

Turkey Bringing Home the Christmas Turkey

When I designed my current training plan, I started wondering whether I could trade cardio sessions in the gym for recovery walks to my youngest daughter’s nursery school. Changing my daily commute by using a different train station would also add another 20 minutes of Zone 1 activity to my weekly total. Such hours really add up!

The American habit of driving to the gym may get you there more quickly, but it won’t contribute to your overall fitness. The New Alpinism has already taught Lee and I that a slow, long effort will eventually pay off. In fact, during a recent trip to Poland, I saw the return on my investment. Like money in the bank earning compound interest, I had a little extra left at the end of our long days.

Although I have found other ways to reach my weekly training goals, I want to address the issue of lifestyle activity again when I plan my next transition period. Until then, like the piano mover in the New Alpinism, I can’t wait to return to power lifting, which requires much less time commitment than Zone 1 and Zone 2 training.


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