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Old 09-12-2007, 06:57 PM   #1
Tim Donahey
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Training @ sea level for a marathon @ altitude

I know this isn't the ideal place to ask this, but if anyone has any insight in how to prepare and/or acclimate when training at 900ft. (Columbus, Ohio) for a marathon at 7400ft. (Mexico City) I will gladly split my prize money with you50/50.

Thanks!

(jk about the prize money, dems mine!)

Last edited by Tim Donahey; 09-12-2007 at 07:06 PM..
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Old 09-12-2007, 07:31 PM   #2
Matt DeMinico
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Re: Training @ sea level for a marathon @ altitude

Um... move to salt lake city

At least that's what I want to do for speedskating...

One thing that you might want to look into (although highly expensive I think) is, they advocate "living high, training low" which basically means you live in a high altitude (or simulated high altitude) but train at a low altitude. Presumably this allows you to get the most out of your training, while still getting the benefits of high altitude. They sell "rooms" for it, look them up online. The cheap types sell for a couple grand.
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Old 09-13-2007, 02:26 PM   #3
Susie Rosenberg
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Re: Training @ sea level for a marathon @ altitude

All you read about today is the opposite of what you need to do!--the "live-high/train low" programs.

I can tell you what a climber friend of mine does to prepare for a high-altitude expedition. He runs (and climbs locally) with increasing loads. He uses both weighted vests and packs heavier than the gear with which he climbs.

There's nothing you can do to increase the limits of your genetics with regard to oxygen utilization, but you can train up to your limits, which will stand you in good stead at high altitude.

The second thing you can do is go to your race elevation prior to your event. The longer time you can spend adjusting, the better.

As an herbalist, I can tell you that Gingko Balboa has been recommended to high-altitude travelers, though I have never prescribed it for that purpose myself. As always, don't try something new in the days or hours leading to your race.

I've seen Dexamethasone, a synthetic corticosteroid, prescribed for altitude sickness. It mimics the action of cortisol in the body.

That's about all I've got in the data banks. (Funny, sometimes I pull up a data card, and I know it once had a lot of information on it, but time has erased it.)

Susie
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Old 09-13-2007, 07:40 PM   #4
Matt DeMinico
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Re: Training @ sea level for a marathon @ altitude

Quote:
Originally Posted by Susie Rosenberg View Post
All you read about today is the opposite of what you need to do!--the "live-high/train low" programs.

I can tell you what a climber friend of mine does to prepare for a high-altitude expedition. He runs (and climbs locally) with increasing loads. He uses both weighted vests and packs heavier than the gear with which he climbs.

There's nothing you can do to increase the limits of your genetics with regard to oxygen utilization, but you can train up to your limits, which will stand you in good stead at high altitude.

The second thing you can do is go to your race elevation prior to your event. The longer time you can spend adjusting, the better.

As an herbalist, I can tell you that Gingko Balboa has been recommended to high-altitude travelers, though I have never prescribed it for that purpose myself. As always, don't try something new in the days or hours leading to your race.

I've seen Dexamethasone, a synthetic corticosteroid, prescribed for altitude sickness. It mimics the action of cortisol in the body.

That's about all I've got in the data banks. (Funny, sometimes I pull up a data card, and I know it once had a lot of information on it, but time has erased it.)

Susie
Susie, do you have any data to back that up? I've seen both scientific laboratory data showing increased oxygen capacity in the blood (more platelets I think it was? I forget), and real-world support in US Speedskating's success with their long track program, which used the altitude rooms, and saw a measurable increase in performance when they were implemented.

Now, it's not the miracle cure, but it could help.
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Old 09-13-2007, 07:55 PM   #5
Steven Low
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Re: Training @ sea level for a marathon @ altitude

Your body does increase erythrocyte (red blood cells) production at higher altitudes to keep up with oxygen demand.

Other than that, what Susie said.
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Old 09-14-2007, 04:51 AM   #6
Susie Rosenberg
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Re: Training @ sea level for a marathon @ altitude

I just poked around online a little and found a couple of good articles on issues pertinent to high altitude exericise.

Here's a link to a very good article that explains how oxygen saturation works.

http://health.howstuffworks.com/sports-physiology10.htm (w/f safe)

And here's a great article about high altitude exercise:

http://www.howstuffworks.com/framed....cor/index.html (safe)

I'd never heard of "blood doping" before.

Susie
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Old 09-14-2007, 05:25 AM   #7
Steven Low
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Re: Training @ sea level for a marathon @ altitude

Some cyclists "blood dope" a bit to increase hematocrit counts above normal (increasing erythrocyte/red blood cell counts)... it is testable and you're not allow to have over a certain limit otherwise you're suspicious. heh heh
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Old 09-14-2007, 05:58 AM   #8
Tim Donahey
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Re: Training @ sea level for a marathon @ altitude

I'd like to thank you all for the help; I can always count on xfitrs for... alternative approaches.

hehe, just kidding.

From what I've found on some running forums the consensus is that there's not much that can be done; that your highest performance at sea level will never match your highest performance at altitude, given all other factors are equal. It's not a huge detriment either though, I'd basically just need to run slower.

There's a really cool tool here (WFS): http://www.runworks.com/calculator.html
It predicts finishing times given that different variables are introduced. According to it if I run a marathon at 900ft. @ 4:00:00 I'll run the same distance at 7400ft @ about 4:16:00.

It takes prolly a month to acclimitize, with the worst being a week in. So either running within a day or two of arrival (before your body reacts to the change) or after a month (once your body acclimitizes) is best.
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