Hill seeking and race planning

26 Mar

Over the weekend I spent a lot of time trying to find my next half marathon. I made a goal this year of doing at least 2 and I already knew I was going to repeat the Mohawk Hudson River Half in October, so I was trying to shoot for another one in early summer. The other criteria I was going for were: 1) inexpensive, 2) easy travel and accommodations, 3) not be on a day I have something scheduled. These criteria proved to be pretty difficult to meet. I had to rule out many, many options.

After a lot of consideration, I finally signed up for the Jog4Jugs Half Marathon on May 11, which is local, inexpensive, and supports a great cause (breast cancer research). It is also quite hilly.

So with that decided, I figured I best get to work on some hill repeats!

hillseekerMonday evening, I headed out for my run (in the daylight!) and purposefully planned my route to include three hills. I powered up each of them 5 times, for a total of 15 hill repeats. I used the downhills for recovery and made sure to stride out at the top instead of just stopping. I felt pretty powerful and probably could have done more, but I wasn’t trying to kill or injure myself, so I finished strong on repeat #15 and headed back home. Did I really just almost admit that I enjoyed a hill workout?

When I finished my last hill, a couple of neighborhood boys playing nearby clapped and cheered for me as I passed them. That was a true running rockstar moment for me! Maybe if all hard workouts had cheering sections, I’d kick ass all the time.


My workout stats are a bit skewed due to the rest in between hill sets, but here are my totals:

5.02 miles | 50:56 total time | 10:09 avg pace

I followed the power hills with a 10:00 arm circuit using my lolofit Easy Arms app. Here’s yesterday’s workout:

  1. Reverse arm circles – 20 reps
  2. Dumbbell push press – 2 sets: 15 reps
  3. Upright rows with dumbbells – 2 sets: 15 reps
  4. Sidelying lateral raise – 2 sets each side: 20 reps
  5. Front raise with dumbbells – 2 sets: 15 reps
  6. Bent over lateral raise (flies) – 2 sets: 15 reps

Since I worked my legs pretty hard, I spent a lot of time stretching out. This was a great workout and I am considering doing it once a week or so in preparation for the half in May. I’m also looking into other hill and speed workouts to incorporate into my training. Since May 11 is not too far away, I am not going to push myself too much and risk injury, so I am going to keep my expectations pretty conservative.

In other news, I also signed up for a fun trail race on April 6 called Dodge the Deer 5K. Last time I ran a trail race was during cross country in high school, so this should be a good time! I’m also considering a 10K at the end of the month, but we will see. Not looking to go crazy or anything here.

Wondering what other races I have up my sleeve for this year so far? Check out my race calendar here.


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