Approached confidently, varying the terrain on which you train actually helps you become more efficient and reduces your chances of injury by breaking up the repetition of the same motions. The more precise coordination required to accelerate down a hill or to sustain a steady rhythm up to the top of a mountain pass when combined with the corresponding changes in cadence and habitual stride patterns serve to alleviate the repetitive-stress (and aches and pains) of running the same pace mile after mile on the flats.
Before the London Marathon in April, Eliud Kipchoge promised a “beautiful race.” He delivered, as he always does. What I love about Eliud (besides his magnanimous smile) is that he clearly understands the importance of trunk training: he uses almost all pelvic rhythm to quicken his leg rate, like revolutions per minute. He runs from the belly, which tapers the muscular effort in his legs and feet. It's something to see.
The fifties were an incredible period for pioneering feats of physical excellence, a time when the four-minute mile became a household phrase. The official four-minute barrier had daunted runners for generations and was spoken of by some as an insurmountable barrier that was physiologically impossible. Roger had high hopes of breaking through it, with the eyes of the world watching, so that others might follow.
February has come, mid-winter doldrums have set in, and you're running resolutions are starting to slide. Sound about right? Take heart! The days ARE getting longer. (Spring is just seven weeks away!)
Temporal milestones like New Year's Day often serve to make us more introspective and inspire us to review our life progress and to decide how to proceed. But experts suggest that folks are more likely to persevere and prosper if they launch goals at a time that is personally meaningful to them.