BB17 Week 6: Taking on Casey Middle School Hill and running at altitude

The last highest point on the BolderBOULDER course is the dreaded Casey Middle School Hill at 5,391 feet above sea level.

BolderBOULDER co-founder and Olympic Gold Medalist Frank Shorter offers the following tips for making it up the hill and running at altitude:

  • Shorten your stride
  • Lean into the hill
  • Work your arms more

Frank says there comes a point of “diminishing effort” on Casey Hill. That’s the point where putting more effort into your run isn’t gaining you any more speed. When you feel yourself reaching that point, you can ease up a little without losing any time.

If you don’t normally run an altitude, Frank says there is nothing you can really do to prepare yourself for the BolderBOULDER course. In fact, if you’re coming to Boulder from out of state, or have relatives flying in to join you for the race, Frank suggests they arrive about five days before the race or not until the Saturday before.

  • There is fatigue associated with suddenly being at altitude. If you’re at altitude for about five days you can get passed that fatigue period.
  • If you arrive just before the race, your body won’t have time to adjust, so you won’t experience the fatigue until after the race.


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