Today’s workout is not brought to you by my bitter experience at the Diva Half Marathon in Vail, despite the hilly terrain. I based it on a 5K training workout from the latest edition of Running Times magazine. The magazine workout, from a well-known high school track coach, consisted of an 800 meter run at 5K pace followed by a 200 meter jog. You then go up a nearby hill for 100 to 200 meters, jog down and repeat. An easy jog or walk for 2 to 3 minutes between each drill allows for maximum exertion during each set.
The workout looks a little different on the treadmill, but it’s a tough one nevertheless.
1) Warm up for 10 minutes – longer if your body needs it. Use an incline of 1 %.
2) Increase your speed for 4 minutes. You want to try for 5K pace or, if you don’t have a 5K pace, run at a perceived exertion of 8 (10 is so hard you cannot go on). You are still on a 1 % incline.
3) Recover at a light jog or walk for one minute.
4) Raise your incline to 6 % and haul up the hill as fast as you can for 1 minute. Return to a 0 % incline and jog easily or walk “downhill” for one minute.
5) Repeat the incline for one minute and the light jog downhill. (step 4)
6) Run easy (or walk) for 2 minutes on an incline of 1%.
7) Repeat step 2 – the 4-minute speed drill – and step 3 – the recovery.
8) Raise your incline to 7 % and haul up the hill as fast as you can for 1 minute. Return to a 0% incline and jog easily downhill for one minute.
9) Repeat step 8.
10) Run easy (or walk) for 2 minutes at an incline of 1 %.
11) Repeat the 4-minute speed drill and 1-minute recovery at an incline of 1 %.
12) Repeat step 4, the 6 % incline and 1-minute “downhill” jog two times.
13) Cool down!
The workout lasts about 45 minutes. If you want a longer run and greater challenge repeat the sequence once or twice more.