Hillbounding at Dawn


With the time change, an early morning workout is now a reasonable proposition. It was still dark when I left my house but by the time I reached my bounding hill after a warm up run, the grey light of dawn was already etching the trees and buildings into visibility.

It was cold. Below freezing. A layer of frost covered the grass and fallen leaves and collected on my shoes as I ran through the grass of the training fields. My breath hung in the air. But I was already warm and sweating beneath my jacket.

The hillbounding workout is a short but intense one. This particular variation is called “jesters”. It involves bounding from one foot to the other up a steep hill with a focus on explosive power. The hill I use is plenty steep but a little on the short side. Since it is just a short run from my house, the convenience outweighs the deficiencies. When doing an early morning workout like this you cannot make it too complicated. Otherwise, it’s too easy to screw the whole thing and stay in bed a while longer.

Ten times up the short, steep hill. Brief recovery on the way down after each repeat. Turn around and do it again at the bottom. Remember to breathe deep lungfuls of air. Make every stride count. I did this three times with skate hops — V2, V2 alt, V1 — in between sets.

I was done after 45 minutes but it was plenty.

It was still early when I got back home. And there was still time for coffee before work.


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