I’ve never been a big fan of running stairs. I seek hills, but I have very little tolerance for running stairs. The two are fundamentally different. If I had to describe what it felt like to run stairs, I’d say it’s like running a Cooper Test entirely uphill.
You don’t really ease in to it and you can quickly skim the surface of your max HR if you haven’t trained much on it. Actually, if you have very little tolerance for spending any time at all at your red zone, you’d probably really hate running stairs.
There’s no gray area: you’re either running it one-step or two-steps, you walk at some point, or you jog all the way. Today, I watched the winning runner silently sprint past four men, over six flights of stairs, and then proceeded to continue sprinting up two steps at a time with about 300 more steps to go. That guy was a monster. I was not.
Although, I did finish at the top of my age group again.
This is, perhaps, the only time I could call an 11 min 50 sec 1.32 km run as a personal best.
Timely post. I’ve been running short on time to train lately due to work responsibilities and have been considering doing quick strength workouts using our apartment stairwell. Seems like you can get some nice intensity going very quickly that way, plus I’ll be ready for the next stairway race, which seem to be in vogue right now.
I took a quick look around for staircase training workouts before this race and I came across this article from Greatist – http://greatist.com/fitness/ultimate-staircase-workout (it was pretty much the top search result). I didn’t have the time to integrate it into my usual training, but I bet it could help add a little structure when tackling your apartment stairwell!