Running in Mexico City (or not)

After Brazil, it was off to Mexico City, which comes with its separate set of challenges. The main challenge is the elevation, but there’s the pesky safety issue as well. Mexico city is 7,347 ft above sea level which makes it hard to breath because at that elevation you inhale less oxygen.

When I first started to run in Mexico city, I had about 3 half marathons under my belt, but I couldn’t complete one mile of running on a treadmill and I couldn’t figure out why until someone reminded me of the altitude-duh! But I will say that my next race after that visit was a fast one for me. There’s some science behind that and I’ll explain at a later time.

This time, I was prepared. I took it easy and did some cross training on the elliptical. I added intensity as the days went on and I became more acclimated to the altitude. When I returned home, I felt stronger and ran a few training runs with little effort.

Every city is a running city right? Mexico City is no exception, every morning on my way to meetings no matter the direction, I saw people running. I good friend of mine who lives in Mexico CIty is also a runner, and he shared some of his running tips for the city. Unfortunately, he is retired from running, for now, so I didn’t get the chance to run with him. Perhaps on my next visit I can convince him to go on a short run with me. It sucks having to run in the hotel, but I value safety over training.

There are several safe and secure places to run in Mexico City, but I haven’t worked up the nerve to try any of them alone, I think that would violate a few security protocols for my work anyway.

Some places to run in Mexico City include Bosque de Tlalpan which has an established running community. But I see most people running in Chapultepec Park, which is a beautiful park and again, while stuck in traffic I was tempted to make a run for it through the park.

I’ll some day work up the guts to run on the streets there or maybe arrive in time for a race there. That would be such a treat!


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