Find a hill for your hill repeats that is approximately 500-600 feet long. You want the hill to be steep enough that you are tested – but you want to be able to maintain proper form as you climb.
You want to make sure that you are warming up before you start your hill repeats. A nice slow and easy 1½ miles is a good warm-up before you get to your hill. You want to speed up slightly as you start up the hill – a good rule of thumb is your 5K pace. Push yourself, but make sure that you are keeping proper running form.
Make sure that you are not looking at your feet – concentrate on 10-15 feet ahead of you. This keeps you focused your hill. It is also important to make sure that you keep your shoulders relaxed – don’t tense up. As you pump your arms, keep them low and swinging front to back. Some runners cross them side to side in front of them – and this will hamper you in getting up the hill. Keeping your arms pumping lower and your stride will shorten and quicken – which will also help propel you up the hill.
As you reach the top of the hill – don’t stop – keep running through the crest of the hill. Slow down and jog slowly down the hill for your recovery. Then, do the hill again. After your repeats, make sure that you do an easy mile or so for a cool down.
To begin, you only should do 2-3 repeats during a workout. Then, you can add 1 repeat a week. Most advanced runners will run between 8-10 repeats in their workout. Also, you only need to do hill repeats once a week. You may also want to do different hills for your workouts – trying steeper hills one week and a longer hill another week.
Running hill repeats really can help you to become a stronger runner. They will hurt a little in the beginning, but after a while you will definitely see how they are helping you with your overall running.