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WOW: Steep Climb

Posted By Mark Sisson On August 15, 2011 @ 8:46 am In Workout of the Week (WOW) | 24 Comments

Complete 10 cycles for time, using 10 meters of the steepest hill you can find:

Sprint
Grok Crawl Up and Down

How-to:

Warmup: 30 second Grok Squat [7], lateral, forward, and backward leg swings (10 each leg). Three light sprints up the hill at 60% intensity.

This one is quick and dirty, but it does require a very specific piece of equipment: the steepest hill you can find. I’m talking something with a grade between 25-30 degrees, or more if you can find it. Go as steep as you can, because you’re not running for distance here. You’re only doing ten meters at a time. These are all out sprints, both running and crawling.

You know how to Grok crawl [8], I’m sure. Just be careful on the way down and go deliberately. Since your shoulders will be accepting the brunt of the force, if you have existing shoulder injuries, I would advise that you simply walk to back, rather than crawl it back.

A few things to remember:

  • You may find yourself going slowly even as you push as hard as you can. This is normal when running steep hills.
  • Stay upright. Try not to lean forward when running uphill. Keep that tall torso.
  • Grok crawl [8] sprints are most effective when you keep those hips low. Don’t form an upside down V with the ground and try to be conscious of using your arms (pulling yourself as well as pushing), along with your legs. Don’t make it all legs, which is often the instinct. Keep it balanced.

Variations:

  • Even better than a steep hill? A steep sand dune. Here’s a video [9] of the Pepperdine University men’s basketball team doing sand dune sprints on a hill just a few miles from my home. It’s steeper (and tougher) than it looks.
  • If you can’t find a steep enough hill, double the distance to make up for the lost gradient.

What Are WOWs?

  • Workouts of the Week (WOWs) are an optional component of Primal Blueprint Fitness [10] that add a fractal and often fun and playful quality to the basic PBF protocol.
  • In most cases WOWs should only be completed by those that have mastered Level 4 of each Lift Heavy Things Essential Movement. Also, it’s recommended that WOWs replace one or both Lift Heavy Things workouts or the Sprint workout (depending on the WOW) each week instead of being done in addition to the Lift Heavy Things and Sprint workouts.
  • Learn more about WOWs and Primal Blueprint Fitness by getting the free eBook [10]. And access all Workouts of the Week in the WOW Archive [11].

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