Sunday, January 27, 2013

Eating Hills for Breakfast

Our training plan calls for us to run 5 times a week (until we transition to 70.3 training in March) and I knew that I wanted to incorporate a variety of runs through the week. This is to help us not get bored and also to make us stronger. 

I decided that I wanted to try to run hills, either a designated hill workout or a really hilly route, at least once a week.

I have to keep telling myself this

I mentioned earlier in the week how Mike and I were planning on running the Freezeroo race this weekend, well we didn't. I didn't register us and I just wasn't feeling it, plus it was a good 1.4 miles longer than we were supposed to run on Saturday (the Hearnish 10K is actually 6.385 miles).

Well that didn't mean that I couldn't just make a route using most of the race course and adding a little bit extra to make it 9 miles.

 Two grade 5 hills!

The route is extremely hilly, but there are some nice downhills.  One exciting thing is that I ran the HUGE hill at 10:30 pace this year compared to the 11:00 pace I ran it during the race last year. I also ran the 9 miles at 9:33 pace overall and I did the 10K last year at 9:49 pace, I'll take it! Mike killed our workout today and ran a 15K (he ran back looking for me one time when I didn't do exactly what we were supposed to) at 9:10 pace.

Now, why are we doing so many workouts that include hills?  Well other than the fact that they make you stronger and faster, we are doing a lot of hilly races this year.

Around the Bay 30K (the last part is hilly) - March
Seneca7 77.7 Mile Relay - April
Flower City Half Marathon - April
Musselman Triathlon (our 70.3) - July
Mount Desert Island Marathon - October

Last year I really wanted to run sub-9 minute pace as much as possible during Seneca7 but it just didn't happen. It didn't help that I was sick, but the hills were killer. 

 Running my second leg which was completely uphill

Mike's second leg had a HUGE hill, he's using his hand to show the incline

This year I want to CRUSH those hills. 

Plus, running a marathon that is pretty much constant hills requires us to train on hills. I don't want to completely fall apart during my hometown marathon!

Here are some articles about hill training that you might find interesting:

Exercises for Hill Running - Livestrong.com

Do you try to incorporate hills in your training?

18 comments:

  1. Oh, yeahhhh--those Seneca7 hills were crazy! Although, I was runner two, so I was very fortunate in terms of terrain--virtually zero hills for me. ;) They definitely make you stronger, though, which reminds me I *need* to run in Central Park once this week. Hope you had a great weekend!

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  2. AWESOME JOB!!! I heard the Flower City is beyond hilly! I ran the Queensboro bridge today at my fastest paces 10:04 the one (the harder) way into Manhattan and 9:45 (The easier) way back back to Queens. That bridge is 1.25 miles of TOUGH inclines, hill work, well, WORKS!

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  3. I live in a hilly river town - no real choice but to run some hills unless I hit trails along the river. But in any direction from my house I'll hit hills within the mile. Named my blog "Climbing those hills..." because of how badly they kick my butt (mentally and physically). Great training idea to get them in though. I've thought about doing hill repeats, but haven't needed to build quite that much character yet. :)

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  4. The street I live on is the highpoint for the area so hills are all I run on. For the Chicago marathon I tried to make the least hilly route I could to get used to race conditions but it was tough. My training partner said, jokingly, that I could run a sub 2 hour half if it was straight uphill. When I run up them I would stare at the top of the hill and call myself Lance Armstrong (biking on hills was his specialty). I may have to change my mantra now...

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    1. Haha, yea... I don't really consider Lance Armstrong an inspiration anymore. I'm sure you'll figure out a new mantra!

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  5. I run hills but I have no choice because my neighborhood is ALL hills. They do help a lot and I have noticed that I run stronger because of them.

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  6. Go girl! Hills suck - but they make you faster and stronger. Go get them!

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  7. My two full marathons this year year, MCM & Nashville both include hills. I heard Nashville is a beast! I HATE hills. I slow down so badly on them so I too am trying to add some hill work. Yuck. I know we will both be stronger and better prepared because of it though.

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  8. Those kills sound better than pancakes! Ah ha ha ha ;)

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  9. I would love to incorporate more hills, but it is so flat here. Great job on the improvement from last year!!

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  10. Great job on getting in some hill training. It will definitely help you be STRONG!

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  11. Oh man I HATE hills. haha I am glad my 1/2 ironman is near the beach...flat for the win :) Great job with your workouts!

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  12. Nice run!! I hate hills but I'm going to start training on them weekly. After yesterday's hilly ATB route I definitely need more practice. They do say hills are speedwork in disguise :)

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  13. I ran the Hearnish 10k this past weekend--woo-hoo, those hills were no joke! It was interesting to see how many people walked that last hill. I think I would re-name the race the "Hellish 10k"!

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    1. Haha definitely a good name for it! We didn't walk the hill last year either, but we noticed that almost everyone else around us was! There was no walking for us yesterday, either :)

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  14. Way to tackle the hills Jamie:) I have to admit hills are growing on me. I love the way it makes me feel to conquer a hill. The last half I ran in October was completely flat. It sucked! Not sure if it was the headwind or the boring terrain, but I hated it and I felt awful. There is something to be said for running a hill and cruising the downhill:)

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  15. You have my utmost respect for hill training. I know it's something I should do but I haven't bit the bullet just yet.

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  16. Nice work! I don't mind hills, it might be the hiker in me, but I like the change of muscle use. It was tough when I was living in my hometown because it was flat, even now I need to make an effort to find hills but I do try to make sure that not every run is flat.

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