Running Training: Skills, Drills and Hills (Hill Repeats Session)

A three part training session last night with Purbeck Runners as we worked on running form (skills), did a series of repeats up steps (drills) and then hit some hills…

As ever, my memory of the actual session is terrible – I really need to make notes at the time! 

Prince Albert Gardens Swanage (Google Maps)

The Session

We began with a gentle jog for around one mile before pausing to begin a series of ‘skills’ that combine a warm up with improving your running form:


1) Flicking legs up behind
2) Raising knees high in front
3) Combo of flicking legs high behind and then raising knees
4) Lunges
5) Running sideways then with leg crossovers
6) Running backwards


So to the bottom of a set of steps with a path that looped round from the top and back to the bottom and the beginning of the steps again. Here we did the following drill:

3x 1 step at a time
3x 2 steps at a time
3x 3 steps at a time

Then we reversed it and ran three times down the steps and back up the path.


You can see the different sets of hills clearly in the image below, with the elevation gradually increasing with each set.

Session elevations

Session elevations

Short & Sharp x3

We then moved across to a point just around the corner which is actually the start of the Lifeboat Loop 5k. It is a short but VERY steep hill that we ran at 100% effort up three times. By this time my legs were actually shaking – a combination of the effort in this session and residual tiredness from The Beast two days before.

Medium Length & Incline x3
We then moved to the path in the centre of the picture at the top of this post which offered a gentler incline but a longer distance and ran this three times. You’ll notice that I’m not mentioning any timings with any of these repeats as it was all effort based – straight from the, ‘if it’s not hurting, you aint working’ school of training!

Long & Final All-Out x3

The final set of repeats was on a longer path which also had mini steps at two points. This was where I went all out to finish things off and by the end of the third and final repeat, I could not have run another centimetre! Job done. 

Next Training

Arghhh I have my first triathlon in ten days and I still haven’t ridden my new bike, or indeed any bike in around five years! So running may have to make way for some cross training activities with a short ride tonight, followed by a swim tomorrow evening. Then Parkrun on Saturday and the Littledown 5 mile race on Sunday (a Dorset Road Running League race).

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