This morning I was blessed with the most ideal of weather conditions. Sunny, light crisp breeze, and cool temperatures.
Heidi wanted to do hills. So off we went. The problem with getting up so early is that even though your eyes are open your legs are still sleeping. It took everything I had to crank my legs into gear. By the time we had gotten to mile 3 I was ready to roll. I had my breathing down, I was able to control my pace better, and felt my motion to be more rhythmic.
Hill after hill we conquered. By mile 4 Heidi said she was "feeling it". But I know that means "Keep me moving Nita". This was her Tempo run. That means she ought to be hearing her breath more and her voice less!
I was leading most of the last 2 miles in. "Elbows down Heidi, Come on, Turn those legs over." I yelled at her as I heard her heavy breathing. She was doing great. I was so proud of her. "Strong Finish Heidi, All in, come on you can do it."
Not only did we finish at a little over 6 miles but there was still enough gas to top it off at an even 7 miles doing a track work out!
I did that last 3/4 of a mile with repeats. 200 meter repeats roughly. I heard my own breathing now and was barking orders to myself. "Finish strong Nita, turn em over."
THE BENEFITS OF HILLS:
You'll build strength.
Running inclines, is a form of resistance training that builds up the muscles in your calves, quads, hamstrings, and glutes. Hill running strengthens those areas more than running on flat ground. You'll also strengthen your hip flexors and Achilles tendons.
You'll reduce your risk of injuries.
- As you strengthen your leg muscles through hill running, you considerably reduce the risk of suffering from running-related injuries.
You'll strengthen your upper body.
- Uphill running forces you to drive your arms harder than you do when running on flat ground, so you'll improve your upper body strength.
You'll build confidence.
- The more you run hills, the less intimidating they'll seem when you encounter them on a race course. Your improved strength and technique on the hills will definitely give you a confidence boost when you're racing.
You'll get faster.
- The muscles you'll use to run up hills and repeats at a race are the same ones used for sprinting, so the strength you build will improve your speed.