Hill running interval training offers a lot of physical benefits. Not only does it boost muscle strength and endurance, but it is also great for your cardiovascular system. Additionally, it helps your body burn more calories than ever, helping you get even closer to your weight loss goals.

Like any exercise though, there are certain things that you should do if you are a beginner with this type of sport. Here are few tips that can make your hill running interval training more effective and you less injury-prone at the same time:

  • Warm up. Give your muscles time to get ready for the workout by doing some light walking.

  • Keep your hills small. While it may be tempting to hit as many big hills as you can, starting with smaller ones will help get your body used to this routine. Aim for hills with a gradient of less than eight percent, saving the bigger hills for later when you’re better able to handle them.

  • Use short intervals. A lot of interval training programs suggest that you do two to three minutes of low to moderate activity followed by 10 seconds of high intensity movements. Keeping your more intense intervals shorter like this is a great way to ease into this type of training regimen. You can always lengthen your high intensity intervals to 20 or 30 seconds and lower your low intensity intervals to 45 to 60 seconds as you get fitter.

  • Do fewer intervals. If you feel as if your intervals are too much, do fewer of them until you can master the hill running on its own. For instance, you might want to only do three short intervals the first time you do it, increasing the number of intervals weekly until you’re able to do them every minute or so.

  • Cool down. Just as your muscles need to warm up to work properly, they also need to cool down to recover. Therefore, you’ll want to end your session with some light walking as well.

Follow these guidelines and you’ll be a hill running interval master in no time!