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2012-10-07 09:00:00 GMT+01:00

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Sunday, 2 September 2012

Training at altitude

TIP from RunningDutch:
Tips for running at altitude:
  • Eat more;
  • Drink more;
  • Sleep more;
  • Watch you iron intake.
other tips
Maybe this article is better suited for the beginning of the summer season with people heading of for the Alps or the Tatra or any other high mountains suitable for a summer holiday. This post contains some facts/tips on training at altitude.
  • Due to less oxygen your boy will produce more of the hormone EPO (the natural way) and increase the production of red blood cells that transport oxygen in your blood. For this your body needs iron which you can get from meat, fish, poultry, broccoli, cauliflower, pumpkin, tomatoes or citrus-fruits;
  • With these extra red blood cells you can transport more oxygen and perform at the same level as on lower attitudes. Back at sea level you can even perform better for some time before your blood levels return to their usual values;
  • 3 or 4 days to bring the production of red cells up to speed;
  • It takes some 10 days before your body is used to the altitude, having enough extra red blood cells and the stress on your body of adapting to altitude has worn off;
  • This 'stress' due to this adaptation usually sets in between 48 hours to 7 days after arriving at altitude;
  • After some 30 days your blood levels are at the levels that match the altitude you are staying at. This means the useful effect is still their but no longer increases. 
Giewont in the Polish Tatra
Can you prepare yourself for a stay at high altitude?
You can if you mind the following tips:
  1. Increase your iron intake. This is a important building block for red blood cells;
  2. Take extra antioxidants: The lack of oxygen at the will produce more free radicals during exercise. Vitamin C is an antioxidant;
  3. Eat enough!: Your appetite will decrease at altitude but your body needs more energy! Nice for loosing weight but no so nice for your (training)results.
Now some tips for during your training at altitude;
  1. Adapt: Try not to maintain your normal pace-training levels but check out your heart rate. Pay no attention to speed or pace per kilometre. This goes for intervals, tempo runs and duration runs;
  2. With intervals: take longer periods for recovery. Would you usually run 2 minutes and recover 1. Change this around while at altitude;
  3. Get extra sleep: You give your body more time to recover and adapt to the altitude;
  4. Drink extra: You will breath more frequent and more shallow losing more moisture. Next to this effect is the air at altitude dryer. Both effect makes you loose your fluids faster!
This article is a summary of an article on running competitor.

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