By Ruth England, Program Director
The goal of resistance training is to increase running efficiency, build muscular & tendon strength, acclimate the body to the rigors of uneven & hilly terrain & to increase mental toughness. When running hills you should not base your pace on what you would run on the flats. You should attempt to run the same time for each repeat or loop but should not concern yourself with what the pace actually is in terms of minutes per mile. Initially, you should just run the hills at a steady rhythm until you can determine a challenging time, then you can attempt to keep the repetitions at the same pace. Please be careful to take it easy on the downhill sections to limit the chance of injury.
Hill Repeats: Hill repeats are repetitions of the same hill. Unsually the hill will be between 200-800 meters long & the pitch will entirely depend upon the runner's tastes & ability level. It is important to try & keep a consistent time for each uphill. If you go out too fast, you will be unable to sustain an even pace & probably be forced to abandon the workout or seriously compromise its purpose.
Hill Series: Hill series workouts are 1-3 mile loops or out & back courses that have hills of various lengths & steepness. The purpose of including these in your training is to learn to find a rhythm at different efforts. As you reach a hill your effort will rise as you rise & correspondingly decrease as you descend. It is excellent to try to lock back into a strong steady pace when you hit any flat sections of more than 400 meters in length.