I personally like short term goals.
Goals that are within your reach, but force you to work consistently for a few weeks to attain them.
To be honest, it is truly amazing how quickly your body can adapt and change, if you give your body the stimulus, rest and fuel it needs.
You can use this for focused bouts of weight loss, performance enhancement, strength gains and more.
Over the last few weeks, I got into running hills. Walter Peyton, Jerry Rice and countless other athletes have used hill runs to develop incredible power and endurance, so I wanted to give it a shot.
Luckily, we live in Orange County and are surrounded by hills. After searching around Newport, Laguna, Aliso, Orange and other communities, I fell in love with a hill called Big Red at Peter’s Canyon. It is about 150 yards long (ish), dirt, and very steep.
The first time I ran it, about 6 weeks ago, I could only manage 4 intervals. I typically run up, walk down and repeat.
After 4 runs, I was cooked.
My calves, thighs and butt were burning, my throat and lungs were on fire and Big Red had truly humbled me.
So, I decided that I wanted to run this hill more often and develop a level of strength and conditioning to run 10 intervals.
I’m not sure about you, but in order for me to focus, I need to make goals that are a little nerve racking.
I like workouts that make me a little nervous beforehand.
This doesn’t have to be the case for you, but it is how my brain operates.
I decided that I would run at least twice per week. I planned on adding 1 interval per week, until I hit 10.
The first week, I was really into it. Got my two runs in, felt a little sore, but I was excited about the new challenge.
As the week’s went on, life started to get in the way. Work got a little crazy, my meals were scattered, summer parties on the weekend, travel and other challenges started to interfere.
Some days I felt great, while other days were a struggle from the start.
Of the 6 weeks that I was training, I made it out to the hill only 4 weeks as planned. I had to change times, days, missed other workouts completely, but I stayed focused and kept working. Some days I was tired, crabby, stressed out, or not feeling like doing it, but I kept going.
This last weekend, I went out on Sunday morning to do my work. I had missed the previous Thursday because of work, but I was rested and ready to get a good workout in.
I ran up, walked down, caught my breath and repeated the hill run 10 times. At the time, it didn’t seem like a big deal, but afterwards I thought about how I felt the first time I ran Big Red 6 weeks prior.
There is no way I could have made 10 intervals before, but after a sporadic 6 week effort, my body was able to handle those runs.
Lessons learned from Running Big Red
- Do something that makes you a little nervous
- Learn to adapt to a busy schedule
- Most days you may not feel like working out, but you always feel better afterwards
- Working hard clears your head
- When you feel like quitting, you’re usually about half way done
- Get a partner to join ya.
- When running outside in the summer, go in the morning, not in the middle of the day
- Use ice baths after tough workouts
- Always bring a little backpack with food and water
- When running a hill, that’s a mile from your car, make sure you have your keys before you walk back after your workout.
So, that’s my experience over the last few weeks. I will keep you posted on whats next.
Here’s my question for you…
What are you chasing this month?
Why are you working out or motivated to get off the couch?
Do me a favor and leave us a comment and share your reason for working out, current challenge or goal that you are working towards.
We are here to support ya!
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