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The hell of the west


from Galway City Harriers I have done the half marathon now three times and I can definitely say the “hell of the west” gets tougher each time. First off you get the preview on route to Leenane. You can’t help but hear the newbie’s exclaim and you start to remember that hill. You think god it looks steeper than last year – is that possible? It is amazing how joggers/runners tend to forget the fine details but I guess that keeps us coming back for more The race starts and straight away you are climbing and you know that “hell of the west” is yet to come. You try and conserve as much energy as possible or put it to the back of your mind. The water station at its base is so welcome, a handful of jelly babies and you are off. You dare not look up to see the winding band of runners crawl their way to the top; instead you fixate on that blue t-shirt in front of you.

Slowly but surely you climb. The spectators cheer you on. “Come on New York” I kept hearing (it must have been written on that blue t-shirt). There are lots of sheep staring at us strangely and I could not help but think that one in particular was laughing at me. Sheep can be really evil you know! They have a mind of their own and are clever than people think. How often have you seen a sheep run up that hill?

Eventually the top arrives. Oh the relief! But oh crap the club photographers are out. You try and muster a smile or wave and keep pushing on to the finish. The hill is conquered for another year!

beep beep GCH