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I remember my first marathon (Big Sur) and the days before driving the course. It is a very hilly point to point course on hwy one in Northern California.
Flash forward I did finish in just over 4 hrs. They have one hill called "hurricane hill" at the 13 mile mark, I remember getting to the top and saying "efff this, never again will hills be a challenge.”
After this race I realized how important hill training is to a training schedule. No matter what you cannot escape hills, they are all around me in my home town.
I can hate them or learn to love them. I decided to love them and take them as mini accomplishments that need to be conquered. You grind it to the top and then look out over the views, it is very rewarding. I go heavy on hills on all my courses as most trail races are all about getting verticals it’s inevitable.
Hills and loving them!
I find the biggest hills near my house and run them regularly. You might not think it is helping you because it seems slow but you need to run hills to handle them. Just do them! But don’t run hills more than twice weekly and put a day or two in between.
I love to put my head down and take it one step at a time, sometimes if it’s a new hill I walk very steep sections and then know what the hard parts are and I can be better prepared on my next time up.
Take it as it comes and never say never. The more you run hills the easier they will become.
Michael Anderson on Running is a regular My Best Runs column.(02/10/2019) ⚡AMP
The Big Sur Marathon follows the most beautiful coastline in the world and, for runners, one of the most challenging. The athletes who participate may draw inspiration from the spectacular views, but it takes major discipline to conquer the hills of Highway One on the way to the finish line. Named "Best Marathon in North America" by The Ultimate Guide...more...