My local track is being resurfaced,which is great because it really needs it, but it means I need to do my interval and speed work elsewhere. And it turns out that that’s not such a bad thing. Some times is good for the legs (and the psyche) to get on some different terrain, surround yourself with different scenery. Last week I did my 800 meter repeats in the shade of the rail trail so today I opted for hill repeats.
I found a great hill, 250 meters up, with roughly 500 meters back down and across to make a loop. I ran an easy 1.5 miles to the base of the hill and stretched. I initially set out to do 8 reps up the hill, but both the hill and the heat sapped me. I wanted to quit at 5, but I completed 6 before deciding to head home. However, on the walk back down the hill, as I staggered with my hands behind my head, struggling for breath, I started bullying myself.
“I really should stop. It’s so hot and I still have to run back to the car. It’s ok to stop now before I get injured,” I told myself.
“No way! You know that’s just an excuse and excuses won’t get you up hills. Go run another!” I demanded.
“But I can’t. I’m done. I’m tired,” I complained.
“That’s the point. You need to fight through being tired to get stronger and faster. That’s why we’re doing this!” I had a point, even though at this point I wanted nothing to do with it. Ugg. I deliberated with myself and by the time I’d reached the start of my loop I’d compromised to do one last hill charge as long as I didn’t care what pace it was.
I did two. And they were both my fastest reps.
I jogged my cool down hot, sweaty, extremely tired, but rather pleased with myself.
Sometimes getting the work done means ditching the track and finding a hill. Sometimes it means arguing with yourself in the middle of said hill. Keep pushing toward those goals and you’ll amaze yourself.