Interview With Steve Magness
Living and coaching in Houston, we always get a lot of crap about it being hot and humid, which it is during the summer (but the winter it’s the best place to train!). Whenever I do coaching clinics, people always ask if it’s possible to train world-class distance runners in Houston. Of course it is. Jackie Areson ran a 5k PR of 15:12 doing all of her training in Houston. More recently, Becky Wade, coached by Jim Bevan, ran a 2:30 marathon doing all of her training in Houston. Frank Shorter used to a bulk of his training in Florida. I’m always amazed people think like that, but the reality is that heat/humidity is a great training tool just like altitude. So you can’t do longer work as fast in 90deg weather, well you can’t run as fast at 8’000 feet either. It’s a trade off. At 8k feet, you are taking in less oxygen. But in 90+ your body is shifting more of the blood flow from your muscles to cooling. So you get a huge bump in plasma volume if you do it right.