Follow a realistic and progressive training schedule, working up to 26.2 miles several weeks before a march.
- When training, wear the boots or shoes and carry the equipment you intend to use on the march. This is particularly important if participating in one of the HEAVY categories.
The following recommendations are based on the observations of doctors, nurses, and medics who assist along the march route. This is a rigorous and demanding event. You should be in good health to participate.
- If you have a medical condition such as diabetes, asthma, or heart disease; if you are on regular medications or if you have medication allergies, please legibly write down this information, place it in a ziplock bag and pin the bag to your marching outfit. That way if you pass out on the route, the medics will have a better idea of how to care for you.
- Since the march begins before sunup, the temperature will be cool at the start of the day. By 9 a.m., it will begin getting warmer and be relatively hot by noon. Light, layered clothing is a good idea. We highly recommend wearing a hat which provides shade to your head and neck, such as a “boonie” hat. Bring and use sunscreen. Your face, neck and shoulders are especially vulnerable. Sweating will wash the sunscreen off, so reapply it frequently.
- Plan for the possibility of high winds with blowing dust. Include a bandana and eye protection in your pack.
- Those with a history of reactive airway disease or pulmonary dysfunction should consult their physician before this event. Blowing dust may, in some cases, trigger acute respiratory events.
- Make sure to keep any prescribed medications needed in case of such an attack with you during the march.
- It’s a good idea to wear sunglasses.
- It is also a good idea to bring a pair of flip flops for after the event as you may not be able to put your shoes back on.
- Those who are driving to White Sands Missile Range by themselves, it is recommended you have a plan in the event you are medically evacuated on how you will get back to the Missile Range to pick up your vehicle. It is recommended that marchers plan on staying the night after the march as exhaustion will increase safety risks-falling asleep while driving, cramps while driving, blisters on the feet, etc.
- If you come upon a disabled marcher in the trail, note the location and report this information to personnel at the next water point or to a roving patrol so we can send a vehicle to retrieve them.
- We will have emergency vehicles at each aid station and an air ambulance at the White Sands medical clinic.
- Persons needing hospitalization will be taken either to Memorial Medical Center in Las Cruces, or to William Beaumont Army Medical Center in El Paso.
- If you have questions regarding your health and participation in this event, consult your physician.