There is a hill not far from me and its name is Nemesis… No doubt it is not anyone else’s name for it, probably more mundane like “the hill on the way to Stuartfield” but to me it’s Nemesis and is so called because in the two and a half years that I have lived in Clola, I have never managed to reach the top and still be running. Otherwise I can run miles without (much) complaint and all other hills around are conquered… This one however eludes me. Even as I write about it, I look at the distances between each segment and think… “Nah, must be longer than that”
Don’t let the pictures fool you here, yes it’s long and yes it goes up but i don’t think you can appreciate it unless you are at the bottom and looking up and then try to run it..
There are four waves of despair to this hill, the first lulls me into a false sense of belief in my ability as I start the climb with a modest 5m climb over 130m up to a farm road junction. Here I am still feeling quite confident that this is the day, this time I am actually going to do it… I can reach the top… The Mantra starts… I can do it, I CAN DO IT!
The next 165m is a 15m climb up to a passing place sign.. This climb kick starts the self doubt in the mind as I try to remember every piece of advice on hill climbing I have ever read in those glossy magazines with that picture of the effortless runner on the front (who i always imagine have never been running in their life, I mean have you ever seen a glamorous runner? – but I digress). It doesn’t help, by the time I’m half way up that evil hill my legs are starting to burn.
I start to look towards the next bit which looks like it’s a lesser climb which takes me to the long driveway of a house. However the next 165m is still a deceptive 10m climb over this distance and that last bit knackered me enough so it feels twice as hard to get through it. The lungs at this point submit a request for more air. That request is declined, manage on the resources you have (bit like work really).
Here’s the worst bit, the last bit goes round a corner and just when you think you are at the top, IT CARRIES ON!!! it’s just not fair I tell you and it’s the longest part of the hill, 229m with a (modest) 9m height climb. This is the bit that gets me every single time and where I fail and never get to the top at run. I’ve done all this climbing, I’ve done my bit and now you want me to do more? Well no, not this time it would seem.
Next time i’ll get you Nemesis, Next time….
Summary of the climb
Bottom of the hill: 55m above sea level
Climb part 1: 0.1262km 5m climb to 60m
Climb part 2: 0.1656km 15m climb to 75m
Climb part 3: 0.1645km 10m climb to 85m
Final part: 0.2295km 9m climb to 94m