As previously documented, here at MCKEP HQ, we don’t believe in hill training. It forms no part of the Elite Project training ethos, and frankly, we’d rather be running faster and on the flat.
Yet recent performances, are in fact showing an increasing dominance of the hills.
At Stratford AC’s annual “Not The Roman Nine” (NTRIX) event, the McCarkiss Elite Project duo of Simkiss an McCarthy tucked into the lead group until around the 2mi mark, where the pace at the front dipped ever so slightly, and McCarthy seized the opportunity and took to the front with wingman Simkiss shadowing him perfectly. The pair worked strongly up the lengthy incline to open a convincing gap which ultimately saw a victorious 1,2 finish for MCKEP.
In addition, the weekends Midlands Regional Cross Country Championship saw three ascents (and descents) of Beacon Hill – a sharp climb which has historically been a weak point of the Newbold Comyn course for Simkiss, where he would often lose ground to his rivals, having to work hard on the equally steep descent in order to stay in contention. This weekend was different though, and with no specific training for hills, Simkiss found himself closing ground on and passing many of his close rivals on every lap of the course, simply unheard of in recent history.
So what does this tell us? Absolutely nothing… however such a pleasant co-incidence could (or rather should) be extrapolated into the notion that avoiding hill training has made MCKEP athletes better at racing up hills.