No, not that four letter word. Or that one either. I’m talking about the dreaded HILL. #$%@!#
This week, I went back to incorporating hills into the weekly workout. It’s been a while, and I have to say, I never really look forward to that workout. BUT, I know that it’s good for me, so it’s time to change the hill from a four letter word into a friend.
- Wake up your routine: Running the same routes and workouts over and over again is BO-Ring. Mix it up by adding hills to make it fun (not really!) and break out of the monotony. I know I need that because the same old thing every week, week in and week out, is dreadful.
- Get speedy: The intensity of the hill workouts easily replaces the usual intervals or other speed workouts and can increase my endurance, stamina, and speed.
- Improve form: When I’m tired, I slouch and my form suffers. Nothing like the end of the race shuffle when my arms are swinging side to side instead of forward to reinforce the fact that I need to continue to work on my form. Focusing on the hills this week, I worked on quick turnover, keeping my chest open and forward, shoulders back, and keeping knees high.
- Get stronger: I’m so weak. Hilariously so. The repetitive motion of running doesn’t help. So, I need to get stronger, but I HATE going to the gym, mainly because I feel like an idiot, but also I ran into too many people like the Dude Perfect gym stereotypes video:
And the hubs balked when I suggested a home gym in the garage. 🙂
I do body weight strength training, though, and light weights at home. Running hills can replicate a strength workout because of the resistance of the climb. Whether it’s a long gradual incline or a short steep hill, your muscles develop differently than when running on a flat surface.
- Practice makes perfect: It never fails. All the races that are billed as “flat and fast” never are. There’s a hill. Somewhere. Small or large. And it usually comes at about mile 11 in a half and at about 22 in a full. Good grief. And since I’m training for NYC Marathon with MANY hills, I need to practice.
Hill: Four letter word or friend?