hills to climb

I revived a component of my running training this evening, in preparation for my trip up Mount Si next month.  They’re called hill repeats, and they’re not fun until they’re over.  But they make you strong, and are a very efficient means of training.

Naturally I didn’t run them.  I walked them.  But I added an extra challenge that I’ll talk about in a minute.

To start out I walked down to the base of the hill on our street, about 3/4 of a mile away.  Then I walked up the lower 1/10 of a mile up the hill (this is the steepest portion) about seven times, trying to go faster towards the end.  It’s definitely a good workout, particularly when I shaved a full 30 seconds off my time with the last repetition.

Better still, I mixed in reps with sideways walking.  I alternated one straight walk, one right-handed sideways walk, and one left-handed sideways walk.  By the end, by legs were burning and I thought my heart might beat right out of my chest.  Even with the swimming I’ve been doing, I guess it’s been a while since I’ve worked that hard.

I was pretty tired after my seventh rep, and wondered how I’d feel when I got back to my house (up the hill!).  More tired.

I learned today that I’ve got work to do before I’m ready to climb Si, and before I’m ready to start running again.  I realize that I’m not going to try to do the mountain as fast.  But it’s an opportunity to get healthy.  I’ve been working out.  But it’s pretty clear that I’ve not been working out quite hard enough.  I’ll have to fix that.

By the way, now that I’ve finally caught my breath (two hours later), I’m feeling great about having done this.

Maybe when I’m able to drive again, I’ll need to venture into the mountains for some real hill climbing.

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