Tipping points. There are different tipping points in our world, for most of us the term is certainly associated with not very edifying future scenarios in connection with global warming. But there is also a tipping point in running, especially in steep mountain runs (at least that’s how I always refer to this shaky moment): is it still worth jogging, or is all that energy just wasted in a pointless and inefficient attempt to portray an image of a runner, while walking fast would be at least as fast and use even less energy at the same time?
The legs say “Leave it!”, the will says “Go for it!”, only the runner says nothing, because I simply lack the air for profound self-talk right now. I am on the way in the Rhone valley, more precisely on the way up to the small alpine hut Prabé, which lies picturesquely above Sion. The climb up there is quite a beast and could be a good candidate for a so-called vertical kilometer: a route as consistently steep as possible that is still runnable and overcomes 1000 meters of altitude in the shortest possible distance. The marked trail immediately gets serious and simply omits effort-saving switchbacks. Individual high steps over roots or stones do not even allow thoughts of a relaxed run-in and warming up to arise, but it goes straight to the point.