5-4-3 Hill Training Workout

Team FVT completed the San Fran Spartan Super last weekend:

And I’m not going to lie – it was HARD!!

Not so much the distance … 8.5 miles of running / hiking / walking is challenging, don’t get me wrong … but if you are in condition for it, very do-able …

Not so much the obstacles … though they were varied and challenging, we were pretty well prepared for them …

The course and the conditions are what made this one so brutal.

There were 4 mile or mile and a half hills that were just KILLER.  SUPER steep – almost everyone was slowed to a walk.  The carry obstacles – carrying a sandbag and carrying a bucket of gravel – were on the final two hills, which seemed especially mean :)  It was hot – between 90-100 degrees – with very little shade … and the water stations, surprisingly, were few and far between.

But hey – we all felt GREAT the next day for having accomplished such a feat.

And the reason I am telling you about this in such detail is because I have a killer hill workout for you to try today.

This will help you train for doing something like the Spartan Race, if you are so inclined …

Or you can just use it to get into awesome shape.

It’s from from the Metabolic Monsters workout collection – and it’ll get ya! ;)

Check it out:


5-4-3 Hill Training Workout
by Nick Nilsson, creator, Metabolic Monsters

Naturally, you’re going to need access to a hill for this circuit. The hill that I use is about 30 degrees incline and about 50-60 meters or so of distance straight up.

Round 1 – Speed/Power Training 

– 5 rounds of 95% speed sprints
– Your rest is how long it takes to walk back down
– By 95%, I mean not full-out sprints. Perform them just slightly under max speed.
– Rest 3-4 minutes before going to Round 2 or until you get relatively complete recovery.

Round 2 – Power/Explosive Training 

– 4 total rounds of kettlebell swing throws up the hill.  You’re going to alternate between two different types of swing/throws.
– First, you’ll do single-arm swing-throws with a smaller kettlebell (I used a 25 lb kettlebell).  After you heave it, run to the landing spot and repeat (start running before it hits the ground).  Do this all the way to the top then walk back down, carrying the kettlebell. That’s your rest.
– Second, do two-arm swing-throws with a heavier kettlebell (I used a 53 lb kettlebell for this). Walk to the landing spot because honestly, it’s bloody impossible to run at that point in the workout. Repeat this all the way to the top then walk back down, carrying the kettlebell. That’s your rest.
– Go back to the first one-arm swing/throws, then finish with another round of twoarm swing/throws. Rest 3-4 minutes before going to Round 3 or until you get relatively complete recovery.

Round 3 – Strength/Endurance Training 

– 3 times up and down the hill without stopping (just turn around and head straight back up) wearing an 85 lb weight vest and two 20-lb ankle weights (to hit the hip flexors). Total extra weight 125 lbs.
– If you don’t have a weight vest or ankle weights, you can do a Farmers Walk carry instead (though you may find your grip gives out partway through…in that case, take a brief rest and continue once you’re able).


WOOO doggy – that’s gonna be TOUGH!!

Enjoy ;)

And for dozens and dozens more workouts like this one, check out Metabolic Monsters by clicking here.

Thanks for reading, have a great day –

– Forest Vance
Certified Personal Trainer
Master of Science, Human Movement

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