October 16, 2016 at 2:51 am #12563
Celeste the bestMember
Hello! I'm new to running. I'm not sure where this idea of training for a half marathon came from, but I'm 8 weeks into a couch to half marathon training and it's going well. Well, it was until I sprained my ankle 2 weeks ago. Recovering well. I'm not discouraged. My question has always been this: I live in western New York, between Rochester and Buffalo. The race is in February in Glendale, AZ. The general elevation is in Glendale is about 500 feet higher than here, so I'm not concerned about that. My concern is 1. Training in the cold here then performing in a race in 70 degrees, and 2. Compensating for 10% average humidity there and 60% average humidity here. Last time I went there, after about 4 hours, I could feel my skin shriveling from the moisture being evaporated from it at a rapid rate. Lol I'm not concerned with my skin, per se, but rather breathing that dry air and moving through that dry air. Will it be different? Maybe I'm concerned over nothing, but I don't want to go all that way and have my sister beat me across that line! (I recruited her into this crazy thing but she lives there).
October 18, 2016 at 12:21 am #32812
I'll try to address your concerns in order. First, though, make sure you take good care of that ankle. You don't want an ankle problem nagging you all the way to the half marathon.
As for the elevation, you're right to not be concerned. You shouldn't even notice a difference.
As for the actual concerns you list:
1. This is the one to be worried about. You need to do what you can to be prepared for the heat while training through the New York winter. How to do this? First, overdress. It sounds crazy to wear even more than necessary in winter but it's unfortunately one of the best ways we have to heat train. Second, if you have access to a treadmill, use it once or twice a week and don't take it easy on yourself by using a fan or turning down the heat. If possible at least, make it a sweat fest. Again, it may not seem fun but it will help you be ready for the Arizona heat.
2. I wouldn't be too worried about the humidity. The relative humidity in Arizona may be lower but the actual amount of moisture in the air will actually be similar to New York in the winter. As a point of reference, you can play around with this calculator. 10% humidity at 70 degrees suggests an 11 degree dew point, the same as 60% humidity at 23 degrees. The one thing I would suggest you prepare for is making sure you're hydrated. That means being well hydrated before starting the race and making sure you drink enough on the course. You don't have to go to extremes and doing so can actually be more hazardous than being moderately dehydrated but make sure you are prepared to at least take advantage of what is offered at the aid stations.
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