Hills, or lack thereof (Read 37 times)




    I'm going to be on vacation in a very flat part of the country and there are no hills around, at all. No bridges of adequate height either. There is a two or three story parking garage nearby.... which I assume has some stairs. Anybody have any appropriate workouts that would take the place of the hill workouts????



      I know Nobby has mentioned stairs as a good alternative. What about sports stadiums in the area?


        Unfortunately no sports stadium close by either.....


        How many flights of stairs would be a good approximation of a hill workout?  I assuming two stairs per step??




          Unfortunately no sports stadium close by either.....


          How many flights of stairs would be a good approximation of a hill workout?  I assuming two stairs per step??




          Yeah, sure...  I was down for 3 days with temperature of 102...and we got poured with questions here!! ;o)


          In fact, the last one I was writing was about alternate for hill training--I need to track down where it was and answer this too...  Yes, steps.  Stadium steps would be the best but you can simply use building too.  Anything from total of 30 to 50 steps up to couple of hundred would do.  Usually, for a building, it goes zig-zag per floor and it's usually 10 or so steps per "zig"???  If you have a building 5 stories or more would be ideal.


          You might think two-steps method--skipping one step--is better but not necessarily.  Take a look at this footage:  Here's Toshihiko Seko, a 2:08 marathon runner, twice Boston marathon champion, doing hill training in New Zealand.  Think of it this way--we are placing this hill training between Conditioning Phase and Interval Phase.  You have endurance; you lack speed and power.  Capitalize what you have best (endurance) and go easy on what you hadn't developed (speed and power).  If you ignore that (try to jump into something fast or powerful), you face injury.  Unless you are used to this kind of stress, or unless you're training for 1500m...or even 5k, forget 2-steps.  Or you can mix it up if you want; you can do 1-step for the first time; do 2-steps the next...and alternate.


          One time, this young lady who was training for 800m, and I were supposed to do a hill training at MN Science Museum in St. Paul (120 steps).  While were were warming up, a terrible thunderstorm moved in.  It was so bad that we decided to move on to a near-by building--Land Mark Center which, if I remember it correctly, is a 7-storied building.  We alternated 1-step and 2-steps...we would go up, jog down (be careful, your legs get wobbly so make sure you won't stumble and fall)...and at the bottom (basement), we would jog around (good thing nobody was there!!) for a couple of minutes and back up...  Every 15-minutes or so, we went outside and did easy strides.  We ended up doing this for 1:05 (plus warm-up and cool-down for 15 minutes each).  I remember, going up the last time, our legs just gave in!!  It was, as I'd call it, "knees were laughing"!!  So we knew we did a good workout.


          The strides wouldn't have to be fast at all; but I call this "stretch out".  During hill training, your objective is: (1) introduce power and flexibility in your legs--this will be achieved by running uphill; (2) stretch out your form--this should be achieved by running downhill and strides.  So particularly if you can't run down fast on downhill section, you need to gradually introduce it somewhere else.  You don't need to do it too much but you would also want to get your body ready for some "sucking air" type of feeling (anaerobic exercise) which you would be doing a lot of in the next phase with intervals.  You will be sucking air by doing uphill anyway; but just a pinch of it with easy strides would also help.


          This is something I always talk about and a beauty of Lydiard training.  You put things together, one step at a time, gradually get you ready to race at your peak.  You need speed, yes.  But just adding it without any planning is crap shooting.  You do just enough amount when needed and get your body ready to do that before you do a lot of it.  That's the flow of training plan.




            Glad you're feeling better!  Thank you for the detailed response. I have a much better idea now  of what I need to do regarding hill training. I'm actually looking forward to the 'laughing legs' you refer to and some "sucking air" excercise.  Today is my first day of Hill training and will be on the road but my next 2 workouts will be on stairs. Thank you again Knobby, I'm really enjoying the training plan!




            Fight The Future

              To jump in here for my own clarification: so when the schedule calls for 31:00 minutes of hills, 15:00 warm up and 15:00 cool down, does that mean just one minute of hills? Or is the warm up and cool down in addition to the 31 minutes on the hills?



                The warmup and cooldown is not included in the hill workout total minutes.

                 2015 goals: run a bunch....race some.....repeat...