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Lowlander wanting to walk 50K at high elevation (Read 60 times)

Stevepf


    I'm thinking of doing a 50K trail race ranging from 7,000 to 9,000 feet.

    Don't care about performance; just want to complete it by walking.

    I am mostly concerned about potential health issues such as altitude sickness.

    I live and train at 300 feet.

    Recently walked a marathon at 5,000 to 6,000 feet with no issues, but this one is a good bit higher.

    Thanks!

    rlopez


      If you can walk a marathon at 6k, you'll be fine.

       

      For 10+ years, I lived in Seattle a few blocks from Puget Sound. So, basically at an elevation of probably 20 feet. I ran in the mountains all the time.

      You won't PR. You'll be fine.

        I agree.  If you did ok at 5000-6000 you'll be ok at 7 to 9.  You really don't get a serious hit until 10000'.  Yeah, don't expect PRs if you are not acclimated.  Take Tums with you.  It can help if you get nauseated.  And make sure you stay hydrated and wear lots of sunscreen.

        "Shut up Legs!" Jens Voigt

        wcrunner2


        Are we there, yet?

          I live at about 500 ft, and while it's been a while since I've taken a mountain vacation, I've hiked in the Rockies, Sierras, and Alps at elevations up to 11,000 ft.  I've had a few headaches at altitude, probably from not being well hydrated, but only once had a mild episode of nausea crossing a 9,000 ft pass in the Alps. That quickly disappeared as soon as I descended a short way.  From what I remember about exercise at altitude is to arrive as close as possible to race day if you can't get there 4-5 days before to acclimate. Apparently arriving 2 days before is about the worst time to arrive.

           2023 Races:

                On IR for now

               

          Teresadfp


          One day at a time

            I live at about 500 ft, and while it's been a while since I've taken a mountain vacation, I've hiked in the Rockies, Sierras, and Alps at elevations up to 11,000 ft.  I've had a few headaches at altitude, probably from not being well hydrated, but only once had a mild episode of nausea crossing a 9,000 ft pass in the Alps. That quickly disappeared as soon as I descended a short way.  From what I remember about exercise at altitude is to arrive as close as possible to race day if you can't get there 4-5 days before to acclimate. Apparently arriving 2 days before is about the worst time to arrive.

             

            That's interesting about it being bad to arrive two days early.  I think that's what happened when I skied at Beaver Creek one year.  I definitely got altitude sickness.  Coming down a simple hill, I felt like I was moving through quicksand.  It was awful.  If I were going to do anything strenuous at high elevations again, I think I would get there 4 or 5 days early and drink water like crazy.  I'd be nervous to get there at the last minute and try it.

            GatsbyBird


              I live 78 feet above sea level, and have done races as high as 10,000 with no problem aside from some shortness of breath.  Altitude can affect people differently, of course, but I always do what WC said: arrive the day before the event so that my body isn't in the throes of trying to adapt.

              2/18/23 North Marin Ridge Run, 20 miler, Lagunitas, CA

              4/16/23 Napa Valley 50k, Calistoga, CA

              4/23/23 Philadelphia Trail Marathon, Philly, PA

              8/26/23 Oregon Cascades 100, Bend, OR

                I have a bit of altitude experience; grew up at about 5000', lived at 10,000' for a while, ran on trails up to 14,000'.

                 

                As mentioned above, people react differently. Even living at sea level, I didn't notice effects until at least 6-7000' when visiting. I did get headaches and stuff going to 14k two days after leaving sea level once, but other times I did not.

                 

                If at all possible, try to get there a few days early and stay at 5000' or higher. It's the overnight that counts, not just going up for a few hours and coming back down.

                 

                I'm facing a similar situation if I decide to do the Flagstaff to Grand Canyon 100 miler later this year; about 7-9k, and I live at sea level.

                60-64 age group  -  University of Oregon alumni  -  Irreverent and Annoying

                JMac11


                RIP Milkman

                  .  From what I remember about exercise at altitude is to arrive as close as possible to race day if you can't get there 4-5 days before to acclimate. Apparently arriving 2 days before is about the worst time to arrive.

                   

                  I'd be interested to hear more about this if you have any sources on this. I've never heard this. I've only heard something similar when going down in altitude, i.e. you begin to lose acclimation fairly quickly so if you train at altitude and race at sea level, don't arrive too early. But most of what I've experience when traveling to the Rockies is that the first night is always the roughest, and then I'm usually good to go by day 3.

                  5K: 16:37 (11/20)  |  10K: 34:49 (10/19)  |  HM: 1:14:57 (5/22)  |  FM: 2:36:31 (12/19) 

                   

                   

                  wcrunner2


                  Are we there, yet?

                     

                    I'd be interested to hear more about this if you have any sources on this. I've never heard this. I've only heard something similar when going down in altitude, i.e. you begin to lose acclimation fairly quickly so if you train at altitude and race at sea level, don't arrive too early. But most of what I've experience when traveling to the Rockies is that the first night is always the roughest, and then I'm usually good to go by day 3.

                     

                    This has a good explanation of what's going on with altitude acclimation.  Be sure to at least scroll all the way to the bottom for conclusions if you don;t have the patience or desire to read the entire article.
                    https://www.irunfar.com/into-thin-air-the-science-of-altitude-acclimation

                     2023 Races:

                          On IR for now

                         

                    DavePNW


                      I live in Seattle 

                       

                      shortness of breath. 

                       

                      Flagstaff to Grand Canyon

                       

                      Pulling these together. The only time I can specifically recall running at any significant altitude was while on vacation in GC & Flagstaff. I did an easy run and it was fine, just a bit slow, then the next day I tried a tempo workout I had scheduled. Derived the equation: Tempo effort + 7500 feet = Marathon pace + asthma attack. So if you do have any pre-existing lung issues, I’d be careful.

                      Dave

                      berylrunner


                      Rick

                        Does the race have cutoffs?  Expect to be slower than you think.  Not just because of the altitude, you have trail conditions and elevation changes to consider.   Most mountain trail ultras you need to be able to run some to make cutoffs.

                        12-22  Last One Standing  - dnf 37 miles

                        1-23 Sun Marathon - 3:53

                        4-23 Zion 100

                         

                         

                        clamb90


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