Is Ryan Hall a Victim of Prolonged High Altitude Training?

This week Ryan Hall had announced his departure from the Mammoth Lakes Track Club and Coach Terrence Mahon. Hall decided to leave the club and coach due to recent poor performance at the Philadelphia Half-Marathon (14th place) and extreme fatigue. This is very shocking to hear since Hall is a such great runner. He has set the American record for the half-marathon (59:43) and has the second fastest marathon time by and American (2:06:17). But, what could be the actual cause for Hall’s poor performances and fatigue? In July this blog had reported prolonged altitude training could reduce endurance. According to the study: an extended stay at altitude can bring a loss of the muscle’s ability to use oxygen to carry out work. The number of mitochondria, the oxygen-using powerhouses of the cell, falls with a prolonged stay at high altitude. Is Hall a victim of prolonged high altitude training? It’s a possibility. Hall rays he will be spending less time at the high altitude Mammoth Lakes: “Though we do intend to spend time training in our home, Mammoth Lakes, this change will allow us greater flexibility in both our day to day training and in our location. Sara and I will plan to train in a variety of locations at both sea level and at altitude, whatever makes most sense for the time period as I prepare for a spring marathon. We will likely not be training in Mammoth until the spring or summer due to the long winter. I believe this flexibility will give us a greater capacity to maximize our training.” Let’s hope for the best for Ryan Hall. The London 2012 Olympics are right around the corner.

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