Progressing on a hilly trail run - in 6 weeks

Intermediate 6 weeks 4x/week
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To follow this programme, you must have already completed several trail runs.

This progressive plan involving 4 training sessions a week includes 5 weeks of work followed by one light training week before the trail run.
Ideally, in order to spread out sessions as much as possible, you will train on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday.

You need to have Decathlon Coach application to launch this program !

Week 1 - Hill training

For slope work, try and find a steady slope where you can exert yourself without fits and starts for the full duration of the climb.

Ideally, the percentage should be between 5 and 7% to avoid getting tired too quickly and disrupting your stride pattern.

Choose steady slopes with a good surface (tarmac road or trail with few stones) in order to ensure optimum grip with every stride – and those free from or with very few motor vehicles: it is preferable to be able to focus on the quality of your effort without being bothered constantly by other users of the trail.
If there are no hills available, you can do this session on a treadmill by adjusting the incline.

  • 01. 12 x 30s of hill training
  • 02. 1 hour of jogging on hilly terrain
  • 03. 3 x (6min - 2min) at 85% of HRmax
  • 04. 1h15min of jogging on hilly terrain

Week 2 - pace work.

Even if you have easy access to hills, your "hill training" sessions should be on terrain on which you can run for most of the session.

  • 05. VO2max 12x (1min - 45s)
  • 06. 1 hour of jogging on hilly terrain
  • 07. 4 x (6min - 2min) at 85% of HRmax
  • 08. 1 hour 30 minutes of jogging on hilly terrain

Week 3 - Ramping up the hill training workload

For slope work, try and find a steady slope where you can exert yourself without fits and starts for the full duration of the climb.

Ideally, the percentage should be between 5 and 7% to avoid getting tired too quickly and disrupting your stride pattern.

Choose steady slopes with a good surface (tarmac road or trail with few stones) in order to ensure optimum grip with every stride – and those free from or with very few motor vehicles: it is preferable to be able to focus on the quality of your effort without being bothered constantly by other users of the trail.
If there are no hills available, you can do this session on a treadmill by adjusting the incline.

  • 09. 4 x 1min + 4 x 45s + 4 x 30s on a slope
  • 10. 1 hour of jogging on hilly terrain
  • 11. 5 x (5min - 2 min)
  • 12. 1h45min long run on hilly terrain

Week 4 - Ramping up the trail running workload

Given the sequence of sessions and efforts made, a little fatigue may set in.

Take care of yourself, change into some dry clothes after running, follow our nutritional advice, maintain a healthy lifestyle and everything will be fine!

  • 13. VO2max 6 x (1min - 40s) + 6 x (40s - 30s)
  • 14. 1h15min of jogging on hilly terrain
  • 15. 4 x (8min - 2min) at 85% of HRmax
  • 16. 2h jog on hilly terrain

Week 5 - slight decrease in the training workload

As you get nearer the event, the intensity of the training drops slightly so that the body can absorb the work done over the previous weeks.

  • 17. 3 x (3min + 2min + 1min of hill training)
  • 18. 1h15min of jogging on hilly terrain
  • 19. 5 x (6min - 2min) at 85% of HRmax
  • 20. 1h15min of jogging on hilly terrain

Week 6 - Regeneration and competition

The workload drops so that you feel fresh for the start of the race.

  • 21. VO2max 12x (30 sec - 30 sec)
  • 22. 45 minutes of jogging
  • 23. rest
  • 24. warming up for the day of the race

Coach advice

"If you have some good experience of trail running and would like to perform well in an event of less than 20 km, this plan is made for you!"
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