Despite the fact that I’ve long since abandoned the official training plan leading up my September half marathon, I did feel the need to incorporate some hill training into my training. Every single training plan recommends it, sometimes on a weekly basis. They can’t all be wrong. So I figured I should get out there and run some hills once and while. Tonight was night #1. We found a 400 metre hill about 1K away from our flat and decided we would do 5 repeats. Easy peasy.
It’s still hard. 5+ years of regular running and those damn hills are still hard. They just never seem to get easier with time. But alas, I know they’re good for me, and a necessary evil. I can’t train on long runs alone.
This article from Runner’s World claims that you can see significant fitness benefits with just six weeks of hill training. Running uphill forces your muscles to contract more powerfully because you’re working against gravity to move up the hill. The result? More power. And we all know more power leads to longer, faster running strides! Yay! In addition to being a fantastic fitness booster, this article, and many others claim that running hills can even be fun! You can learn to love them – everything from a gentle slope to a mountain. Uphill or down. I beg to differ. The only fun part was when we got back to our flat and ate dinner. For now, I’ll begrudgingly continue hill training as part of the plan leading up to the half marathon. After that, I’m sticking to flat terrain.