The strangeness of hills.

Can anyone (Rig maybe?) explain why I feel great if I climb a really steep hill (my run a couple of weeks ago had 150 MTs of elevation) but just exhausted when I run on the gently undulating slopes of my normal runs?


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16 Replies

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  • Oooh yes, I would be interested in any reply to this too ....

  • No idea. Maybe the effort required sets off production of endorphins for pain relief, which leads to euphoria? I wish I could feel great running up hills. As they say in the film "When Harry Met Sally", "I'll have what she's having". :D

  • That could well be it! I feel I'm turning into a masochist...

  • It could be the fact that when you run on a steady incline - even if steep - you get into a regular pace - while on the ondulating course it's a constant change (I know that too well... on my ondulating course that averages 65 mt of gentle elevation!)

    It's like at the start of every run - it takes a bit of time to get into the pace, and I find the same happens when hill-walking


  • That might have something to do with it, the shallower ones just feel like a slog don't they?

  • That makes no sense to me at all Curly!! :-) As far as I'm concerned the steeper the hill, the more gurgling agony I'm in at the top!

  • CG - the answer is quite simple really. When the hill is steep, you can quite happily get away with doing your Julie Andrews impression when you get to the top ;)

    If it's merely an undulation, flinging your arms out wide, spinning round and belting out that song at the top of your voice can feel a bit embarrassing, don't you think? Besides, they are already struggling to find enough orchestras to have one at the top of every hill waiting for you, just in case you arrive and burst into song. How are they ever going to find sufficient for all the undulations as well?

  • Yes indeed. The hills ARE alive. Lol! Not to mention "climb every mountain".

  • Ha ha ! That is funny, Adam ,snort, Tee Hee ! :-D xxx

  • Could it be adrenalin, Curly? We all get a frisson on adrenalin when we're about to embark on a B I G hill that helps us push through, but when we see a long steady gentle incline, we just think Oh no!! xx

  • Some of the undulations are not even long..

  • Same for me. I think it's just that a really hard effort for a short period of time us easier than having to sustain increased effort over a longer time even if the hill is less steep.

  • Most of the steep ones are longer than the shallower ones, I guess I didn't make that clear x

  • It could simply be that you are - just - well - weird??? :)

  • Ha ha, that's funny coming from you XX

  • I find that on a steep hill I really start pumping my arms. That really helps with momentum for some reason. I don't bother with smaller hills. Could that be a factor?

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