I’m not sure if there are other generations of skiing fans out there—other than my own—who remember Warren Miller movies featuring a Mohawk-sporting extreme skier named Glen Plake (aka Plake G). As a budding junior high skier, he was my idol. Plake G was doing things on skis that blew my mind—skiing faces I wouldn’t even fathom climbing with safety ropes, doing backflips off of massive cliffs, soaring over moving school buses.
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In 7th grade, after drooling over all of Miller’s movies, my friend Jeremy and I decided to train together for the upcoming ski season so we could tackle the bumps and jumps of New England’s mountain terrain. Three times a week, we woke before school, laced up our Rollerblades, slid on the knee pads, and grabbed the ski poles for a 6:30 a.m. dry-land training trip. We did daily push-ups, sit-ups, squat jumps. We endured long drives to the slopes and then took as many runs as our legs could handle before cramping.
Looking back there would be no way I would have or could have done that training on my own. Having a partner was the added motivation I needed to get out there. Plus it made it so much more fun with my training buddy. This month, inspired by Plake G and our ski training routine, I have a partner workout for you. This routine will not only inject variety into your current exercise program, it will also improve your strength, cardiovascular fitness, and flexibility.
You: Row 1,000 meters as 500 easy intensity at 24 strokes per minute; 300 meters at medium intensity at a 26; and 200 hard at a 28.
Partner: 10 burpees, 10 squats, 10 sit-ups, 10 push-ups, 10 lunges (each leg), and 20-40 seconds holding a plank. Do all at an easy intensity while focusing on good form. Rest for one minute and then repeat.
You: Row 1,000 meters as 500 medium at a 26 and 500 hard at a 26-30.
Partner: 10 burpees, 10 squats, 10 sit-ups, 10 push-ups, 10 lunges (each leg), and 20-45 seconds holding a plank. Perform at hard intensity. If you finish all exercises, cycle through again until the rower finishes the distance. Rest for one minute. Switch stations. Repeat.
Partner: 10-15 burpees, 10-15 squats (add a jump if possible as you extend legs), and 10-15 sit-ups or crunches or until rower completes their 500 meters.
You: Row hard for 500 meters at a 26-30. Rest for one minute. Switch stations. Repeat.
Partner: 10 push-ups, 10 lunges (each leg), hold a plank until the rower completes the 350 meters.
You: Row 350 meters hard at a 26-30. Rest for 30 seconds. Switch stations.