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Peachtree Roadrace Training Update

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Okay, so over the weekend, I met the goal that I had originally scheduled for THANKSGIVING 2010! - ran 6.2 miles (10K) on the treadmill.

True, it took me 90 minutes to do it (I used to routinely run a 10K in under 55 minutes, back in the day), but I did it. And I'm really pleased about that.

That's the good news. I have now actually met all of the 2010 running goals I set back in January, when I could barely run for 60 seconds without stopping. And it's still early June! So that is a great success. Especially given my ongoing Achilles problems, which limit my training somewhat.

The bad news is that, based on the 'trials' I have conducted running outdoors in the heat, there is no way I will be able to run the entire 6.2 miles outside in the heat on July 4.

In the past week, I have run outside 3 times, and all three times, the heat did me in at about 3 miles. There is a loop I do in my neighborhood...and while I made the 3 miles okay, there is NO WAY I could do the same distance twice (which is what I'd need to do in the Peachtree) without passing out or getting sick from the heat. No way. Even doing 3 miles, during the last 10 minutes or so, I start to feel sort of 'out of it' and just want to get home and throw cold water on myself as quickly as possible.

If this race was being conducted in the winter months when it would be about 45 degrees instead of 95 degrees, I would be golden. I like running on the roads, and the hills are not an issue (there is a large one in my neighborhood, plus a couple of smaller uphills, and on a 3 mile run I do all three of them 3x each). But the heat is absolutely debilitating to this Alaskan. 15 years in Atlanta...and I still just wither. I feel great during the first half of the run...but during the second half I go downhill quickly...and the last half mile is just barely there and all I can think about is getting home as quickly as possible.

So I do not think I should chance forcing myself to try to run the entire distance of the Peachtree. If I do that, I fear I will end up in the medical tent - NOT because I can't run the distance (since I now already have), but because I can't take the heat and will end up with heat stroke.

I still want to do the race. But I'm not sure if I should just walk it, or do a jog/walk combination of some kind. I don't really know what to do, because I've never actually walked in a race. Should I jog as long as I can, and then just walk? Should I do X number of minutes running and then X number walking? Should I just walk for a while around water stations? Or should I just walk the whole way just for fun and take the pressure and concern about the heat completely off of myself? I don't know what to do.

In any event, I'll continue with my long runs of over 6 miles on the treadmill...and will do these outside once the weather gets cool. And I will do some of my short runs of 3 miles or so outside, even in summer, just for a change of scenery and the feel of the road.

But I guess I will just have to face the fact that I will never be a hot weather runner. Or a hot weather PERSON, for that matter!
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  • KARAGT01
    Good luck next weekend! I'll be running it too, and this heat has been brutal. My plan is to run a mile at a time and then walk some to pace myself. Like you, the distance is doable, but the heat can be overwhelming. I'm trying to run in the early evenings to get acclimated but it still kicks my butt. This is my first year, so i'm looking forwad to it and hope the newness will be distracting enough to keep me going. :) Stay hydrated and good luck!
    4010 days ago
    emoticon on meeting your 2010 goals, by early June, no less! That's awesome!

    If I were you, I wouldn't push it on July 4th. Better to be safe, than end up on a stretcher being treated for heatstroke. Jeff Galloway is a big proponent of run/walk intervals, so you might be able to find some good advice on his website, Might be worth checking out, to see how you can tackle the Peachtree without killing yourself.

    Drink lots of water, listen to your body, and you should be fine.

    4018 days ago
  • _UMAMI_
    emoticon Congrats on meeting all your 2010 running goals!

    As a never-wanted-to-be-a-Southerner-aga
    in, I can sympathize with your heat issues. After living up North for over a decade, I never readjusted to the heat here.

    One of my best friends did the Hotter n' Hell race ( could ask her for tips!

    I wish you luck, whatever you decide. I think you're doing a fabulous job. Give yourself a big pat on the back.
    4018 days ago
    I would play it by ear. See what it feels like when you start and listen to your body and see what it says. Completing is more important than winning.
    4019 days ago
    WooHoo! Congratulations on the run!

    Sorry the temperatures are outside your tolerance. For the race, do some research on what works for other folks and pick what you think will work for you.

    No matter what, YOU ARE A WINNER now!
    4019 days ago
    You are doing absolutly fantastic! Don't beat your self up for one minute!
    I would suggest trying to get the rest of your miles in outside to try to get used to the heat and drink lots of water and bring water with you on your run. just go there and do your best, trust your training. You will do great, despite the heat :)

    4019 days ago
    I'd try running until you start to feel the least bit out of it and then walk until you're ready to go again. Don't mess yourself up just to say you did it. You already know you can do it. Also, research ways to beat or mitigate the heat.

    Awesome job completing all of your running goals so soon! Wow, that is so impressive!
    4019 days ago
  • no profile photo CD4082898
    First - emoticon that's emoticon !!

    The two races I've done this year have been murder on my breathing. In March it was so cold and the air was so dry - I couldn't breathe so I race walked it.

    I had every intention of running this past Sunday. It was beautiful - 63 degrees but ugh the humidity. Every picture from that day looks like we are a smoke cloud. I race walked most of that one too.

    So don't worry if you don't run it the way you want to - I'd rather keep my breath than make a certain time. I walked off the starting line and jogged as I saw fit. When I couldn't breathe I slowed down and repeated the process. I was able to enjoy the course and the race - if I tried to push myself it would not have been as fun.

    Good for you for knowing yourself and not pushing for no reason - you'll know how to handle it when you get there. Trust yourself.
    4019 days ago
  • DS9KIE
    wow your doing great.

    what if you try out, when you run out side on your 3 miles, to run and walk and see how you feel. Then you can see if you can run and walk and how long.

    I don't blame you with the heat, I can't stand the heat either. I get hot doing my elliptical and its in the air conditioning. Even in the

    4019 days ago
    I am running Peachtree also. I have run it for the last 8 years or so. Maybe I'll see you there, among the throngs of runners and walkers.

    We have some of the same goals...
    improving sleep habits
    getting back to running (I had knee surgery this year)
    weight training

    Yup, hot hot hot it will be, or it just wouldn't be the Peachtree. Adjust to it and drink plenty of water, right?

    Best of Luck at the race. emoticon
    4019 days ago
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