At first a colleague, then soon a neighbour, quickly becoming a mentor but a friend she’ll always be. Mel is a special one. This woman is hard as nails and a terrifying warrior. Not satisfied with just going fo
r a run, she insisted on doing some hill reps one evening. I rock up fresh and ready to go. She rocks up straight from an intense squash session. I told you she is tough.
I’d never thought about doing any hill sessions (why do that?!). Makes perfect sense when you live at the bottom of (and surrounded by) some big bastard hills. My thoughts were to just run up and down a few times. Mel wanted something tougher though, she wanted us to burn with pain. We decided to sprint to the nearest lamppost and job back to the start, then sprint to the second lamppost and job back, and so on until we reach the top. Naturally with this approach, it started off nicely. It was about a 10second sprint to the first checkpoint. At the third lamppost though the incline changes rapidly (think an exponential curve). By the time we are hitting the top of the hill the ‘sprints’ are taking a minute and a half. Needless to say there was an awful lot of panting by this point.
The only downside I could see to running hill reps like this with someone else is that it doesn’t really provide the sort of environment you can chat away in comfortably! That being said, on a personal level I actually really enjoyed this variation to ‘just running’. Since this run I’ve done the session a few times, adding a reverse pyramid to make the run a little more symmetrical.