The DOs and DON’Ts of the Pikes Peak Ascent and Marathon

What others have learned from training and racing on the mountain

Add your tips at the bottom of the page...

Rock line

DO the marathon. If you go up, why not come back down?
DON’T take it lightly. This race is no joke.
Chris Justice — Boulder, CO

DO set your alarm to wake up in time to register!
DON’T think this is just another marathon!
Billy Krause — Colorado Springs, CO

DO run the Ascent with your spouse or significant other.
DON’T expect to finish together.
Jim Schwindt — Colorado Springs, CO

DO use the treadmill at high grades and high speeds.
DON’T worry about putting in mileage.
Bob Paley — Denver, CO
(Note from Matt: If you are not going to put in the mileage - put in the time!)

DO respect and savor the mountain.
DON’T allow yourself to get oxygen deficient.
Johnny Mitchum — Little Rock, Arkansas

DO pass everyone you catch up to.
DON’T try to stay ahead of anyone who catches you.
Bob Whiteley — Woodland Park, CO

DO run the 'Double.'
DON’T think that you can't run the 'Double.' If I can do it, then so can you!
Eliot W. Collins — Raritan, New Jersey

DO Talk and learn from others who have been there.
DON’T Shout "runner" when going uphill above tree line, everyone can see and hear.
Mike Ashar — Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada
(Note from Matt: I have to disagree with Mike’s don’t. Most people I run into
(literally) are just not paying attention and need a verbal clue!)

DO use a clean pair of socks on Sunday if running the Double.
DON’T wear the same pair of socks on Sunday that you wore on Saturday.
Steve Kanters — Sequim, WA

DO the trail before the race (if possible)...
DON’T assume there is another just like it.
Sammy Eng — Colorado Springs, CO

DO sign up early.
DON’T wait until 1800 others have.
John Cassidy — Colorado Springs, CO

DO drink gatorade to replenish lost sodium.
DON’T drink too much water.
Daiva Cooper — Colorado Springs, CO

DO keep moving!
DON’T sit down on rocks above treeline!
Dave Reily — Colorado Springs, CO

DO pick UP your feet on the way down.
DON’T forget that rocks and roots are hidden in the shadows.
Paul Batura — Colorado Springs, CO

DO train at high elevation and on steep never-ending hills!
DON’T change shoes during training or risk the rath of blisters during training and on race day!
Heather Stites — Colorado Springs, CO

DO pack a HEAVY winter coat for the top.
DON’T forget to stop and look at the view.
Dave Clark — Colorado Springs, CO

DO learn the hog call and have fun with the Arkansas crew!!!!
DON’T look up at the trail above the tree line; it can be discouraging.
Susan Tooley — Ft. Smith, Arkansas

DO get married at the start of the marathon — 1993
DON’T get married at the summit... altitude may cause confusion.
Fred & Wanda Hancock — Sault Ste. Marie, MI

DO enjoy the experience, at your own pace.
DON’T try to impress anyone on race day, You’ve done it by being there!
Jann Martin — Clinton, IL

DO listen for the party at the summit.
DON’T think you’re ready to party when you hear the music!
Chad Herzog — Stamford, Connecticut

DO it! Even if you’re a “flatlander”
DON’T let any flatlander talk you out of it.
Nick Neakrase — Fairfax, VA

DO both races every year.
DON’T think about Sunday on Saturday.
Pedro Gracia Garmendia — Caracas, Venezuela

DO regularly train on a treadmill with the highest grade possible/LARGE,LONG hills if a flatlander!
DON’T sell yourself short, mental toughness and discipline count for more than you may realize.
Colleen Janner — Overland Park, KS

DO wear sunscreen.
DON’T ignore rocks in your shoes.
Kendall Pierson — Albuquerque, New Mexico

DO use GU as your source of nutrition.
DON’T worry about it being too crowded to pass.
Senthil Kumar — Colorado Springs, CO

DO enjoy your self and remember all the hard work you have put yourself through, Finish strong!
DON’T think about the hills, think about the getting to the top!
Matt Moscoso — Colorado Springs, CO

DO hydrate and eat.
DON’T drop your trash on the trail!
George Bell — Boulder, CO

DO enjoy your run and scenery.
DON’T look up after treeline,distance is deceiving.
Scott Regier — Bethany, OK

DO prepare for ANY/ALL weather.
DON’T forget to look at the forecast.
Tony Eckel — Colorado Springs, CO

DO use the port-o-potty and TP before the race.
DON’T forget.
Jeremy Jost — Hillsboro, KS

DO yield to all downhill runners.
DON’T expect all uphill runners to yield to you.
Bill Coffelt — Fort Smith, Arkansas

DO seek encouragement from other runners.
DON’T forget what your goals were. Giving up isn’t one of them.
Al Herrera — Amarillo, Texas

DO set a realistic goal.
DON’T go out too hard.
Dan Vega — Colorado Springs

DO try!
DON’T wonder if you could have.
Jeff Cowling — Brentwood, CA

DO eat everything that you brought.
DON’T eat everything you are offered.
Tim Erickson — Highlands Ranch, Colorado

DO start off slowly but...
DON’T start off TOO slowly or you’ll get caught behind a line of walkers.
Mike Kolesnik — Fort Collins, Colorado

DO start racing at the tree-line.
DON’T start racing ’til the tree-line.
Raul Najera — Austin, Texas

DO train up high.
DON’T PR at Barr Camp.
Yvonne Franceschini — Manitou Springs, Colorado

DO drink early and drink often.
DON’T wear new shoes in the race.
Matt Carpenter — Manitou Springs, Colorado

Rock line

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