Want to know how you stack up to some of the world’s top trail runners, but didn’t get into the Western States Lottery or won’t be running Speedgoat or Rocky Raccoon 100. The Uphill Challenge is a good way to see where you stack up and it is one heck of a workout. Running companies will often have top runners do the Uphill Challenge at trade shows or events and it is a lot of fun to see what some of these top runners can do. Though some of them I’m not sure whether or not they are giving an all out effort or not.
What is the Uphill Challenge? You simply run for 15 minutes on a treadmill at 15% incline and see how far you can go. A few fellow runners have participated in this over the past few weeks and I guess my curiosity got the best of me so I decided to give it a go.
First of all I do want to warn people that this is an extremely difficult and intense 15 minutes and if you are not careful you can very easily hurt yourself. This can also be very hard on your ankles and knees if you haven’t been doing any strength training or hill work you will definitely want to be careful.
When I attempted my Uphill Challenge I found it to be much tougher than I thought it was going to be. First of all just running on a treadmill at this incline is not easy and you feel like you are going to fall off a lot unless you were at the very front, but then you would hit your arms on the handles in front. Second, this will stress your cardio like crazy and it felt like I was having a heart attack pretty much after 1 minute. Lastly, this is obviously a killer on the legs too. I was in pretty good shape when I attempted this but I had not done any hill work or strength training for the past 2-3 months so my legs limited me more so than my cardio, but not by much.
I don’t know if I’ll do another Uphill Challenge in the near future or at least until I am done with my marathon training but it is definitely a good way to measure your fitness and work on your cardio and lower body strength in a short period of time.
Below are some results from some local Minnesota runners and some top trail runners from around the US along with some videos as well. Enjoy and if you’ve done the Uphill Challenge post your results in the comments.
Brandy Erholtz (New Balance) – 1.32
Anna Frost (Salomon) – 1.29
Megan Kimmel (Asics) – 1.26
Sage Canaday- 1.99
Max King (Montrail) – 1.64
Luke Nelson (Patagonia) – 1.51
Anton Krupicka (New Balance) – 1.50
BJ Knight- 1.50