After reading the title, you may be thinking, is this asking me about my age? However, it's not about your age at all. When I ask if you are over the hill, I'm referring to running.
Hill running is a great form of training that will improve your overall strength and endurance. It is often skipped during training for a number of reasons. The main reason is it often requires the runner to reach far beyond his or her comfort zone. So what is one benefit to hill running and how can you use it in your training?
One of the greatest benefits to hill running is it helps develop a more explosive and powerful runner. As you run up the hill you are strengthening your lower as well as your upper body. The lower body is strengthened by requiring the legs to work much harder with each step compared to running flat. To propel yourself up the hill, arm drive becomes crucial. This upper body arm drive helps build strength and power.
When it comes to finding a hill, I realize it can be difficult. This is where you will have to get creative and find stadium stairs (local high school), parking garage (if safe to do), or a sledding hill. If all else fails, you can use a treadmill and set the elevation up and get moving!
Here are a few tips for hill running:
Change your running steps to short, quick strides
Run on the front or balls of your feet
Lean into the hill slightly
Focus your eyes ahead and slightly up the hill
Try to keep your hill runs short, but focus on speed and power. Each run should be no more than 1 minute in length and recover by walking on the way back down. Your reps and sets can vary based on your conditioning level, but try to get 10-15 hill runs in before a 5 minute rest. If you are up for the challenge, you can repeat 10-15 more hill runs after the 5 minute rest period. Please remember, hill runs are tough, so stay humble and know your limits!
For further information or training, please feel free to stop by Elite Endurance or send us an email.