running uphill

7 benefits of running uphill that will surprise you

7 benefits of running uphill that will surprise you

Surely you have realized that running is not only based on running a certain number of kilometers. There are different types of workouts that will allow us to perform better in a safer way. One of them is hill training.

If you are one of those who like outdoor exercise and are looking for new challenges, we encourage you to start training on slopes. Next, we are going to tell you a series of benefits of running on slopes that will surprise you.



Why run uphill?

Thanks to the ascents, there is a greater strengthening of the calves and soleus , because they work eccentrically.

In addition, the Achilles tendon is also strengthened and we will achieve greater propulsion on the flat surface.

Why run downhill?

If we run downhill, there is a greater force in the quadriceps, since they are the muscles that support most of our weight while we go down.

Through this improvement, we will also be able to increase our endurance in cross-country events such as a marathon or half marathon.

Of course, you should be careful and not do many hill sessions. Both ascending and descending slopes can damage the knees due to the stress they are subjected to. As always, do not abuse and plan your training sessions correctly.

7 benefits of running uphill


1. You work fundamental muscles

Running on slopes, whether on an outdoor hill or on a treadmill, is a perfect form of training. Work on endurance and mold the muscles of the legs, quadriceps, glutes and core. Also, running uphill strengthens those areas more than running on flat ground . It also helps prepare the hip flexors and Achilles tendons.

2. It frees you from the gym

For those who do not want to do circuit or strength training. Running on hills is a natural way to build our muscles through running. Instead of spending time under machines and weights at the gym. The muscles we use for hill running are the same as those used for running. What’s the score? Very easy. We improve strength at a higher speed.

3. Help you reach your limits

The running uphill is an excellent exercise to improve our speed, strength, confidence and mental strength. It allows you to get closer to your limits. For some, finding their maximum speed and highest power threshold in training is tricky. A good way to reach that effort limit for 100 or 200 meters is to find a slope with these characteristics. Once you find it, it is very simple. You can alternate more and more reps , jogging down, making an active recovery.

4. It’s more fun

Runners often get bored running on a completely flat course. The add ups and downs workout routines can help prevent boredom, both mental and physical, and increase your motivation every day.

5. Greater efficiency of training time

We will prevent the body from getting used to running on the flat and thus obtain much faster and more visible results. Furthermore, reaching the top can be seen as a small triumph and the perfect icing on a good training session. Also, nothing is more enjoyable than ending up emulating Rocky Balboa with a good view from the top of a hill.

6. Helps reduce injuries

As we strengthen our muscles through the benefits of hill running, we can reduce the risk of running- related injuries . The goal is to train the muscles to work at different levels of incline. In this way, when challenged, they are better prepared for physical activity.

7. Helps strengthen the upper body

Running uphill forces us to handle our arms with more force than when we run on flat ground. This will improve upper body strength . If we don’t have easy access to the hills in the open air or on a treadmill at the gym, we can achieve similar benefits through stair training.

When to start training on slopes

To start training on slopes it is necessary to have a minimum of preparation . Before you start doing it, you should do some work to strengthen your ankles , knees, legs and core .

If you are a beginner, choose a not very high incline and gradually increase it. Also start with only one hill session a week and don’t overdo the number of repetitions. For example, you can do 8 ascents recovering in the descent at a jog.

How to run on hills

Finally, we provide you with a series of recommendations to run correctly on slopes :

  • Pay attention to having good running technique so as not to injure yourself.
  • On an upward slope, raise your knees, keep your back straight and look straight ahead. If it is very long, run with short steps and help yourself with the movement of your arms.
  • Do not maintain tension in shoulders and neck.
  • On a downward slope, take advantage to recover.
  • Don’t go down too fast as your body could lean forward. In addition, if you do not control the descents, you could also fall and suffer an injury.

The training on slopes Large bring benefits both physically and psychologically, and that will make our workout routine is more varied.

Mainly it will allow us to run faster safely, improve strength and endurance , and delay fatigue .

We recommend combining long and short hill sessions , since both provide different advantages. Of course, keep in mind the recommendations that we have provided so as not to injure yourself and do not overuse these sessions during the week.

Go ahead and train on slopes and become a better runner!

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