Hills build strength. Hill training will help you maximize the strength needed for running 5Ks and 10Ks. Doing a few hills, before the start of speed training season will strengthen the legs for running better than any exercise or equipment. Hill repeats will produce muscles that have a higher capacity to perform – in speed training and in a race.

Hill workout: Done on a Thursday, by time goal runners. Warm up as before a speed workout. Pick a hill that is not steep at all. If it is too easy after the first workout, pick a slightly steeper hill. Run up at approximately goal pace, slightly over the top, and walk down. Never strain or run all out. Numbers of hills are noted (2H) meaning (2 hill repeats). Before each hill count down from the top, the number of walking steps as follows:

First time – 50 walking steps

Have done some speed training – 100-150 walking steps

Advanced speed trainers – 200-300 walking steps

Hill Running Form:

  • Start with a comfortable stride – fairly short
  • As you go up the hill, shorten the stride
  • Touch lightly with your feet
  • Maintain a body posture that is perpendicular to the horizontal (upright, not leaning forward or back)
  • Pick up the turnover of your feet as you go up and over the top
  • Keep adjusting stride so that the leg muscles don’t tight up – you want them as resilient as possible
  • Relax as you go over the top of the hill, and glide (or coast) a bit on the downside

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