John 8:32 "Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free." NIV

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Hills. Hills. More hiLLS.

I know I have mentioned that my neighborhood has hiLLS. Well, since my run yesterday was with the baby jogger plus the baby (not that I would ever push the stroller without the baby), I decided to bring my camera along and take pictures of all of the hiLLS. Remember, I have run over 6 miles in my neighborhood and my friend told me that her husband ran 10 miles in our neighborhood (definitely with some street repeats).

Disclaimer: I did not take a picture of every hiLL. I only took pictures of the hiLLS worth mentioning. I did not take pictures of the flat areas. We have those too, but those are not worth documenting. Click any picture to see it larger.

Let the hiLLS begin:

This hiLL is about 3/4 of a mile from my house. This is the hiLL that I "raced" that guy at the beginning of my long run last Satruday. The picture really does not do it justice. It is a long hiLL with a slow incline. I like this hiLL because it is long. It allows me to slowly build up my speed and concentrate on using my arms to really push me up it.

As you come down hiLL #1 and make a left, you have a very tiny straight away and then hiLL #2 (left pic). It is not as fun as hiLL #1 because it is not gradual and you really have to work those arms. It ends at a cul-de-sac and then you are back down it and after another very short flat area, you are ready for hiLL #3 (right pic). Again not fun as it is even steeper than hiLL #2, but you definitely gather speed coming down to a nice flat recovery 1/2 mile.

After relaxing for a nice 1/2 mile or so, you have hiLL #4 (left pic). Not as long, but definitely steep. I would say one of the hardest hills. The only thing that really gets me going fast up this hill (of course without the jogging stroller and baby), is that the next mile is flat. It is what I keep repeating over and over again in my head, like the Little Engine that Could, "I know I can, I know I can!" I am definitely breathing hard and ready for my nice flat mile. It is hard because I really want to run this mile faster, but my legs are feeling the hiLLS that I have conquered and my heart know there are more hiLLS to come. During this mile, I try to focus on longer strides and slowing down my breathing. I usually try to sing a song so I can slow my breathing down. Yesterday it was, "Love Lifted Me".

As my breathing cools, I get to run down hiLL #5, around a cul-de-sac, and then up it. I think the picture looks accurant. It is awful. I have a friend who lives at the bottom of this hiLL and cannot imagine starting my run off every day with this hiLL. Not only is this hiLL very steep, it is long. You think you are done and realize that you have to keep going. I haven't made it up without walking with the baby jogging stroller. I do not stop when I am by myself, but pushing that jogging stroller while trying to run, I feel like I am standing still. And this isn't even the worst hiLL in the neighborhood. At this point I am a little over 3 miles.

hiLL #6 also stinks. It is curvy (which is bad when the traffic is heavy), it is long and probably one of the steepest incline in the neighborhood. About 4 years ago, several moms and I pushed our double strollers about 3 miles around the neighborhood. We always ended at the top of this hiLL for two reasons:

  1. The tot-lot (playground) was at the top and that was a reward to our children if they behaved during our walk.

  2. It made us realy feel like we worked hard and if we slacked along our walk, there was NO WAY to slack going up this hiLL pushing a Graco double stroller - of course with 2 kids in it who each weighed at least 20 lbs.

The last hiLL, I call the hiLL of death. It is long, it is steep and did I mention it is long. It goes on FOREVER. This picture definitely DOES NOT do it justice. This is also the hiLL that I do my hiLL workouts on. I cannot even fit the whole hiLL in this picture. It just keeps going. And pushing the jogging stroller... you just collaspe literally at the top (hopefully, after you put the brake lock on for the stroller or it gives "Bye, bye, Baby" a new meaning.

If you are ever in the need to do a hiLL workout because you live in the dessert with flat streets and you are near Rockville, MD, give me a call. I will be happy to have you run this with me. If you run faster than me, I will just praise God for your ability and have faith that I too, one day, will be faster.

BTW: I did all but the last 12 minutes of the P90X Yoga X (1 hr and 37 minute) DVD last night. That is a HUGE accomplishment for me. I just got bored and could not concentrate with the kids continually saying, "Are you done, yet?"

Happy Thursday running!


Ewa said...

Oh, with those hills you will be strong.
I have a love/hate relationship with hills in my neighborhood. I know they are 'good for me' but sometimes I need to have a flat run and that means I have to drive somewhere.Why do I need a flat run? Well, I am noticing that when I keep on running hills my legs actually get tired on longer runs that are flat.
You have a lot of snow there. Good the streets are clean though.

MCM Mama said...

Hills are good for you! At least that's what I tell myself as I'm running around my very hilly area. I am glad that I don't have to run with a baby stroller any more!

ShirleyPerly said...

Believe it or not, I am JEALOUS of your hills!! The nearest to me are about an hour away which is too far to go to on a regular basis (I'm lazy and just want to run from my doorstep). But you can keep your snow ;-)

Kelly said...

Thanks for your comment on my blog! Your's looks fantastic and so inspiring. I will definitely add you to my blog roll!!

Marlene said...

You're not kidding about the hills! Looks like a nice neighborhood, though! :)

Pam F. said...

I haven't made it through the yoga DVD yet either. It's soooooooooooo booooooooooring! I hate yoga.

shellyrm aka jogging stroller mama said...

Nice hiLL report! When I was running this morning I thought of taking a picture of the first hill that I turn around at the bottom of during my morning (don't have enough time) runs. You may have started a trend of hiLL posts! ;-)

I have run some races near Rockville. We have a TH in Gambrills....and maybe moving to VA. It in the talking about it phase. I love PA and being near my birth family. But we will see what windows God opens next.

Great jog on the P90x. I am still jealous!

April said...

Wow!! Good for you!! We have a ton of hills around us...and I avoid them at ALL cost.
Kudos to you for tackling all those hills with kids and stroller. Yikes!
I really should start incorporating hills into my runs...I think I did one time by accident...;)

H Love said...

Hello Buns of Steel! Hills Hills Hills! You are getting stronger everyday! Way to go!

Weddings With The Cricut said...

Ummmmm, ow??? Those look killer, but good job to you for finishing :)



I hate hills! I give you major credit for running on them. Especially with a stroller!

ajh said...

You do have a lot of hills. Think of the training you are getting! Wow!

Molly said...

ooof, those are a lotta hills. And with a jogging stroller to boot? You're getting a heck of a workout!

Meg said...

This is SO funny because I ran a ton of hills yesterday and I had the desire to take pictures too! However, I DID NOT take a baby jogger. Oh my gosh, the last time I ran with my grandson in the jogger, I died. You are TOUGH. Yes...moms are tough! Great job and I do love your hill pictures!

Linda said...

Hills - got to love them. You are getting so strong by running with the baby and jogger. You will clearly see the gains when you run without.

Way to go. Keep it up.

Hope you have some good running this weekend

momof3 said...

my grandparents lived in Severna Park up until my G'father passed away. When helping my Grandma move out, I went there for a weekend and TRIED to squeeze in a run. About that...
Feel you on the hills. AND wind + Baby Jogger is like pushing a small sailboat on a run, so NO WAY! You're not wimpy, you're avoiding an injury...