I'm looking for some advice, I'm running the Barcelona marathon on 17th March next year and wondering what the effect is of skiing/snowboarding on your body, I've heard that it changes the firing secquence of the muscles and can take about a month for them to get back to normal. I want to run a good time and hopefully a PB so don't want to massively jeprodise my performance.
A group of friends are going skiing 24th Feb - 3rd Mar so I would only have 2 weeks to get back into it before the marathon, and I know this should really be a tappering period.
Not run a marathon (yet) but have skiied in training for races up to Half. How experienced a skiier (or boarder) are you? If you're a beginner you'll be wasting a lot of muscle effort to learn, if you're experienced then it will depend if you're coasting down motorway blues or giving yourself a workout on a mogul field as to how much you'll suffer.
If you don't take it easy, you could expect some DOMS which will have gone by the race, but is probably not helpful in training.There's the question of "specificity" - training your muscles for the task at hand, but I wouldn't have though a week would make much odds, especially if you do a bit of treadmill whilst you're there to remind your legs what their day job is.
That just leaves the prospect of getting injured, which could happen anyway, and of course the apres ski...
On the plus side, I found that the level of fitness running gave me made a big difference to my skiing. I going skiing with a ski race nut who was staggered at my new endurance (if not my technique).
I've done it, and it worked well, but it depends what sort of week you're anticipating, like Cormorant says.
I come down an hour early and do a snow run after skiing, or in the dark if with a friend, at least every other day. Running on snow is good training, and skiing is better than being at work for fitness for most people. Altitude training! Agree best not to go too nuts on moguls, but principally to avoid an injury at that stage too! And not to drink too much for the week either is probably helpful, of course
James Ive been on ski trips before 4 spring marathons all in April with the nearest trip being 3 weeks before the race.I timed my LRs so that I did one 20m the day before I went and an 18m the day after returning .My legs were a bit stiff but dont know if that was due to skiing full on or swelling in the legs from flying. (Wear compression tights when flying).On one trip I ran every morning before skiing and on another I ran afterwards . I ski pretty full on and dont avoid moguls or off piste and reckon that walking in boots and skiing all day is as good as the runs missed that week.Im also sure the exposure to altitude helps though I was told two weeks was needed to provide any benefit. No doubt there will be an expert to comment on this soon.
The only issue is the risk of injury and blowing all that marathon training .
A week of skiing is a good way to start your taper. I did a week skiing at exactly that point in the build-up to Barcelona and felt very fresh - did 2:57 in that one too. The only problems I've had with Feb ski weeks before was from simply over-doing it; one year I was skiing from 9 - 1 and then doing 10-mile runs in the afternoons and it all left me a bit worn out - skiing is tiring and there are altitude effects too.
There's some great runing in many resorts though, in particular Val d'Isere where you can run up to the head of the valley.
The "firing sequence of the muscles" stuff sounds like mumbo jumbo to me. Was it accompanied by advice about electrolyte drinks and hi-tech socks?
Wow! Hats off to you guys who run before or after a day's skiing. That's a good effort.
Is it Alpine skiing you'll be doing James? The reason I ask is that cross-country skiing, my preference, is said to be really good cross-training for runners. Hal Higdon rates it quite highly too.
Don't get injured just before your marathon!
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