So when I saw the runner trotting up Newtimber Hill on the South Downs on Sunday, I noticed he was zigzagging his way up the hill.
Curious. I’ve heard of zigzagging down a step hill to save your knees. I’ve heard of cyclists using this method on a really steep incline, but also in running?
I am more than happy to ask anyone and everyone who knows more than me, about technique. I tend to use the experience of having an epic fail happen to me in one form or another, in order to learn. I tell myself it makes me stronger. Ha.
I tried the zig zag approach today on my hill reps, east side of the Brighton Marina. A 200 metre or so path leading from the sea to the cliff top. Surprisingly nasty in the legs.
I alternated each rep between run straight up and run in a wide-angle zig zag.
Each time I used the zig zag method my time on average was 9 seconds faster. Over 200 metres, I think that’s quite a lot. The intensity in my legs felt less as well. Quite amazed.
If anyone wants to give me the low down on whether this is a tried and tested technique please feel free to drop me a line. I appreciate in some trail paths you just couldn’t do this, but on wider more grass inclines, you could.
Aptly named ‘Hamburger Hill’ because McDonald’s is just round the corner in the Marina,the pics are of the ramp that I’ve press ganged quite a few like-minded runners into joining me on training sessions.They love me for it.