The city where I live and train is full of hills. I generally love to run hills. The great thing about hills is that by running them, you work all of your leg muscles – the quads, the hamstring and those side ones on the inside and outside. They are also great for conditioning, stamina and endurance.
However when one has a tender Achilles that has been acting up for the past two weeks – hills can be dangerous and the risk of injury tends to go up. So as I began my run on Tuesday, knowing that I had 3 miles of hills to run – I was a bit concerned how the Achilles would stand the stress and pounding!
Let me try to describe the hills that I train on. There is a trail that I run and bike called the Highline trail and a section of it has a series of hills that can be treacherous, if one is not trained and ready for those hills. You begin the hill section with a slow gradual climb which turns into a steep downhill. The next hill is a bit steeper as is each successive hill. I have described this section as being similar to labor contractions at the end – one right after another – big hills, shorter ones but they just keep coming. Did I mention that there are curves thrown in just for fun! The uphills are hard, but the downhill can be down right dangerous. Once you reach the top, it seems that the bottom just drops out from under you.
But I love these hills – they are challenging and great for conditioning. The Achilles held and I think I am back in business, at least as far as training goes.