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Saturday, July 21, 2007

Walter Payton's Hill (twice) in Hearty Blackwell Workout

6.0 miles?
Wind: N at 5 mph
Humidity: 90%
course: Blackwell

Wind: N at 9 mph
Humidity: 57%
The official workout (I did an adjusted version of it)
  • 13 m's wu (minutes warm-up, my code)
  • 18-28 m's tempo run, at DMP pace (Dave Martin pace)
  • 5 m's slow to the hill
  • 2-4 hills, but guessing 3x as it is Mt. Hoy (865' high - you can see the Sear's Tower 28 miles away)
  • 5 m's jog back to the trails
  • 3x1 m's f(1) fartlek back to where the cars are parked
  • a few m's warm-down
Jim brought together a few groups. His usual JSRC crowd, which today included Rudi, Lee, Frank, Jeff, John, Brian, Sue and myself. Rich rode in to say hello. Jim himself ran with us. First time since I have been running there. There was a group from the north side who I think he used to coach years back. And, a good bunch of high school kids, all very good. 25-30 in all.

Rudi brought bagels.

Hard saying how far I ran. I might need to adjust the distance. We started with roughly a mile warm up. Felt relaxed. I think I ran it at 7:45-8:00 pace. Describing the rest of the work is impossible, as it was a lot of little things.

While the Chicago Bears were doing the Superbowl Shuffle, Walter Payton was training tough. Anyone in Chicago knows well of a video of his workouts, including the famous hill he would arduously run up. Looked hard. It is hard. I ran it twice.

You see the picture above. We ran up the other side. The view from the top was tremendous.

My first time up the hill was 2:28, then in 2:22. I can do better, but, by the end, my legs were slogging. Jim started the second one just after me, but gracefully worked his way up past me, apparently not so tired. For a guy who is not competing, or training heavily, he still has something in the tank.

It was a good, unpressured run, not as bound by time.

As a run, it reminded me of my old Swallow Cliff runs. I miss those days.
According to The Chicago Area's 10 Best Trails

Blackwell Forest Preserve, Warrenville
Directions: I-88 to I-355 north to Rt. 56 (Butterfield Rd.) west. Go 8.5 miles to the west entrance on the right side of the road.
The Route: The first thing you might notice is the imposing Mt. Hoy towering above you--a retired landfill (sometimes the smell gives it away) and a popular location for hill training. Approximately 10 miles of crushed limestone and mowed grass trails loop around the 1,312-acre preserve. A link to the Illinois Prairie path can be found at the intersection of Winfield and Butterfield Rds.


David Dane said...

Oh sure, you can run up a hill. Let's see you run on top of that water. Just having fun with ya...

Resilient Hawk said...

If I only could, but that job is better left to Jesus.

I'll be hitting the hill again. Maybe this week. I'm not sure yet, but soon, and often. I want to learn to run hard all the way up, to find those legs again. Loved hills when I was young.

allaroundrunner said...

Walter Payton's hill is in Arlington Heights. They renamed it to "Payton's Hill" after he died in '99 and put a plaque to commemorate his work there.

Blackwell is still a bad ass workout though.

Tony said...

Just spoke with the DuPage County Forest Preseve people. You guys are completely right. No Payton. Sweetness may or may not have trained here, but it is not "Walter Payton's Hill." I'm disappointed.

This week I published a silly tale about Mount Hoy.

Bluster County Blues: The Sound and Fury of An Elephant's Graveyard