First off, this was my first time training for 6,000 meter mountains. Both Huayna Potosí (19,974 ft.) and Illimani (21,122 ft.) were significantly higher than any other mountain I had climbed in the past.
The overall training period was 20 weeks. During this period, most weekends were spent in the mountains and most of the work week was spent in the gym doing cardio and strength workouts. In addition to the training, I also gave up all alcohol 6 weeks before the climb.
Strength and cardio…lots of it.
By far the most beneficial part of the training was getting out and climbing mountains. The elliptical and treadmill were useful, but they definitely do not train your legs for actual climbing and descending.
Below is an overview of the peaks I climbed as part of my training program for Bolivia.
- Quandary Peak (14,265 ft.)
- La Plata Peak (14,366 ft.)
- Mount Bierstadt (14,065 ft.)
- Mount Elbert (14,439 ft.)
- Mount Democrat (x2) (14,148 ft.)
- Mount Lincoln (14,295 ft.)
- Mount Cameron (14,238 ft.)
- Mount Bross (14,177 ft.)
- Mount Sherman (14,035 ft.)
- Mount Shavano (14,229 ft.)
- Tabeguache Peak (14,155 ft.)
- Grays Peak (14,278 ft.)
- Torreys Peak (14,275 ft.)
- Mount Belford (14,197 ft.)
- Mount Yale (14,196 ft.)
- Horseshoe Mountain (13,898 ft.)
- North Star Mountain (13,614 ft.)
- Grizzly Peak (13,427 ft.)
- Mount Sniktau (13,234 ft.)
- Green Mountain (8,150 ft.)
Overall, I think the training went really well. Unfortunately Jenn and I both got sick a few days into the trip so it was hard to tell how hard the climbs would of been had we been healthy. Either way we managed to summit Illimani which was our main objective for the trip.