There are some days at the gym when you know it’s not happening. You know it and your legs know it. You might think you want to be there, in theory; but deep down you know your heart is at home, sat on the sofa, with a hotdog and a tub of ben and jerry’s (not that my other half would let me anywhere near the sofa with either of those two items).
Today was one of those days. I found my usual treadmill in the corner of the gym with a growing sense of doom about the whole sorry situation. I started running. Within a minute I was thinking of the chocolate fudge brownie milkshake I had at home in the fridge. It was calling. I stopped. If there was any chance of salvaging the workout, I would have to make it short, but make it count.
So that was when I made the decision to do hills. I did four sets of 250m at 7% incline and 11km/h; then I collapsed to the floor, weeping. (Not literally. In my mind.) Oh my god and all his angels, I thought. What sadistic new hell is this?
The above is me doing hill runs.
The whole debacle came about on the wise recommendation of a twitter follower, who pointed out that hills were a necessity for improving stamina. There’s a reason for that. Hills are sadistic. They are categorically not fun. They will literally bugger up your thighs and have you crying out for your mother by the time they’re done with you.
I know, I know, the point is to keep doing them and improve. But I feel a bit torn here. I want to improve; but at the same time I want to enjoy running. It’s not like I’m an olympic athlete (HA!) I’m just a regular, lardy runner trying to get a bit of regular exercise. Is it really worth going through the pain of hills, in the hope they they will improve my times without destroying my love for running? What do you think?
The above is me after I finished.