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Did the Hot Weather Take a Toll on Many of the Runners?

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This is the ninth consecutive time I have run the PPA.  It appeared to me that this was the warmest one from a weather perspective with high temperatures and minimum cloud cover until later in the afternoon.  I am one of the last starters, so I get a good perspective of how the race progresses for the slower runners.  This time I saw a lot of runners standing or sitting beside the trail as I passed by.  It started in the Ws and got progressively worse as the race progressed. 

A Quick look at the preliminary results shows 121 runners were DQ'd or missed the cutoffs.  That seems higher than in previous years.  It would be interesting to compare the average finish time this year as compared with previous years.

I thought the heat was going to affect me during the first few miles ... especially when the were not any cups of Gatorade at the first aid station.  But I just kept plugging along and drinking Gatorade wherever it was available.  There were a few cool breezes that helped as I went up.  I did have a little calf cramping several times, but luckily I was able to stop it by backing off just a little for a short time.  I think one of the previous two years felt hotter to me than this year.  I ended up doing better than I had expected.


While the weather overall was warmer than I would normally like for a race, I live in Austin, Texas and have training in 95+, high humidity weather all summer to prepare for the PPA.  In addition, I would wear a 4lb Camelbak to add to my training effort.  So for me, the weather was actually pretty pleasant!  Extra special were those cool breezes that came up  every now and then.

This was my first (and maybe last) PPA.  I was fine until the A Frame, then it was hot and I ran out of gas big time! I couldn't eat because I was gagging on the chews.  I don't live in the area. Most of my training runs top out at 10,000 ft but I did one in Ouray a couple weeks ago up to 12,500 and didn't have any problems. So I think it was the heat. I did finish but am disappointed that it took me an hour longer than I expected.

Roger Henderson:
It appears to me that the heat did take a toll. I was in better shape this year, paced myself better, and felt better the entire way. And I was two minutes slower this year than last. How I know the heat took its toll is that I finished in the top 55% this year vs. 61% in 2014. Unless I hear another explanation that makes sense, I'm going with the heat!


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