Thursday, January 27, 2011

Intervals - the hill edition

Last week, my sinuses had me down for the count.  I still went to the gym, but it was pathetic.  Basically, I sat in the steam room to try to get a sweat going and then rode the bike or jogged a little bit to see if that would make me feel better.

It didn't.

So this week, I'm a new woman.  Back to the grind.  Excited to run.  So I get on my good ol' trusty treadmill, plug in my headphones and get to work on my favorite, standard interval speed workout.  You know, the one I've been doing forever.  

My body hated me.  My lungs burned, my legs ached and I was dying from the word go.

Now, a long time ago, Coach O (my high school softball coach who, to this day, I look up to) told us that a woman can lose her physical conditioning after two days.  It was the excuse she gave us for why we wouldn't be getting the entire weekend off.  (ha!)  I believed her then... But holy moly, I really believe her now!

Therefore, I just couldn't face sprints today.  But my stupid schedule said, "run."  Fine.

So run I did - with hill intervals.  If you've tried the speed intervals and liked them, give the incline-first cousin a shot.  Here's how it goes:

Pick a standard speed - this should be an easy jog (5.5 ish) for a runner or a strong pace (4.0 ish) for a walker.  Begin your warm up and get up to your set speed by minute two.  You're going to stay at this pace the entire time.  At minute two, increase your incline to 2.0.

Time     Incline     Speed
0-2       0             warming up
2-3       2             5.5 for run, 4.0 for walk
3-4       3
4-5       4
5-6       5
6-7       6
7-8       7
8-9       8
9-10     9
10-11  10
11-12   9
(Continue all the way until your incline is at zero)  

Once you are at 20 minutes, begin your cool down.  If you are running outside, you can still do these, but you have to find a good hill.  Look around your house or around a school (normally bleachers are built on a hillside and you can find a good one there) - just make sure you're wearing good shoes.   Run up the hill and walk down.  Take a 15 second break and head back up again.  If you're in good shape, aim for 10 of these.  Then jog the rest of your time on your normal path.

You are welcome, my friend.

Good luck!  Let me know what you think!

1 comment:

  1. Really? You can lose condition after 2 days?!?! *sigh* I will definitely give this a shot- I havent encountered many hills, and I know I need to face them sooner or later. Great suggestion! (I say that now, before I have attempted it....)