Friday, August 23, 2013

Killing Hills

Today was hill day.   And it wasn't going to be like the usual hill days - this one was going to be hard work.  Katie and I had been discussing it and I mentioned that I would like to try running hills while keeping my pace up and she was all for coaching me through it.

So we headed out, warming up at a nice and easy pace.  We decided to start with the really tough hills that are closer to Southland and work our way down Sacramento to the easy peasy ones.

Up the first hill we went. Katie had brought her Garmin so we could see how fast we were going.  I was pumping my arms like an olympic sprinter and blasting my way up the hill.  We were both working hard so there was no room for talking.   Just moving.

When we got to the top - Katie said we'd done it between 6-6:30 mins/km   SWEET!  Ok - so I'd managed to maintain a pace on the uphill that I would have maintained on the flat.  Of course, I died at the top - gasping for air and thumping my heart.

After a moment or two, we moseyed back down.

Next street.  We took a moment at the bottom to regroup and then headed up. Again, We pushed like mad the whole way up.  My legs were burning by the halfway point, but I kept picking up my feet and forcing myself to keep it up the whole way.

Again, died at the top.  For a moment, I thought my tongue had gone numb.

Ok - third hill.  Deep breath.  I was tired and we were only on hill three.

Up, up , up we went.  Pumping arms.  Burning legs.   This one was a particularly nasty bitch.  so steep.  We were very happy to reach the top of it.  Just look how steep that is.  Could you imagine LIVING on that street?

Fourth hill...these were starting to feel more like they were getting harder instead of the easier we were expecting.  Still pushing strong.

When we got to the next street and saw another steep one...we made an executive decision...we needed to finish up on an easy note.  We were both beat.  So, we skipped a street and moved on to that last crescent with the gentle incline.   But on our tired legs, even that felt like a challenge.  Up and down the other side of the crescent to make up our sixth hill and we were done.

Six hills - each run hard.   THAT was a helluva workout.  I think we may have revolutionized how I attack hills going forward.  If I did that a couple of times a week - I'd be a hill pro!

If we hadn't had to rest so long at the top of each - that pace might have been faster...but given how jelly-like my legs still feel tonight...I am pretty proud of us right now.

And to Katie? Thanks, Coach! ;)


  1. Some time you really must come to Fish Creek and run The Hill of Death with me. Once will probably do it.

  2. Awesome job on those hills! Isn't it great to push yourself so hard you temporarily want to die? Makes you feel alive. :)


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