Hill zone park workout

Workouts
14 Jul 2010
Hill zone

If you want to increase your running pace - fast - head for a hill.

Hill running can be hard work, but it's not the easy sessions that give you dramatic fitness gains. 'Hill sessions are probably the hardest sessions you do and your heart rate gets up high very quickly,' says Halsall. 'You'll also reach your lactate threshold, when lactic acid starts to accumulate in the blood, which is punishing.' The benefit is that this uphill struggle will mean that 'when you're back on the flat, you'll fly. In the advanced session the exercises between runs will pre-exhaust your energy systems and give you a crossover into strength training.' Pick a hill with an eight to ten per cent incline that you can run up for about 100m, take a deep breath and get moving. We've treated level 2 as the standard but if it's too hard, start with level 1. When you've mastered it move to level 3.
 
LEVEL 1
 
Warm-up
Jog for five minutes on flat ground followed by bodyweight lunges and squats.
 
Workout
1 Walk fast to the top, then walk back down x3
2 Skip to the top, then walk back down x3
3 Jog to the top, then walk back down x3
4 High-knee skips to the top, then walk back down x3

Form guides for the exercises in this workout are on the right.

Warm-down
Jog for five minutes, then do some static stretches, focusing on your quads, hamstrings and calves.
 
LEVEL 2
 
Warm-up
Jog for five minutes on flat ground followed by bodyweight lunges and squats, star jumps and side lunges.
 
Workout
1 Hill sprints x10. Do the first repetition at ten per cent of your maximum perceived effort then add ten per cent more effort every repetition. Jog, rather than walk, back to the start.
2 High-knee skips x10. Leap and bound up the hill, keeping your knees high and using a powerful arm action to propel yourself up the hill. Jog back to the start.
3 Lateral shuffle x10. Crouching down in a squat position, move diagonally forward, sidestepping all the way to the top.

Form guides for the exercises in this workout are on the right.

Warm-down
Jog for five minutes then do some static stretches, focusing on your quads, hamstrings and calves.
 
LEVEL 3
 
Warm-up
Jog for five minutes on flat ground followed by bodyweight lunges and squats, star jumps and side lunges. After that do 20m of fast, small steps on your toes to fire up your calves.
 
Workout
Split your path up the hill into four equal points 25m apart and do the following drills.
 
1 Hill sprints x10. Increase your speed after every 25m marker. Jog back down to the start.
2 Leg circuit and sprints x10. At each marker you will perform 30 reps of one of the following leg exercises - squats, lunges, squat to calf raise and jump squats - then sprint to the next marker then perform the next exercise. Jog back to the start.
3 Descent sprints x10. Jog to the top of the hill, then run flat out to the bottom. This will teach your body to run faster.

Form guides for the exercises in this workout are on the right.
 
Warm-down
Jog for five minutes then do some static stretches, focusing on your quads, hamstrings and calves.

The great outdoors programme - introduction
 
Circuit zone

Outdoor gym zone
 
Sports zone

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