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  1. #1
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    Eldora Escape question

    I guess this a general elevation question but I wanna know if I'm gonna be screwed or not. I live in Boulder, but I have to go to sea level the entire week before the race on Aug 24. I am physically fit, have been training, and plan on racing Sport. Is the elevation change before the race going to be a big/noticeable problem?
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  2. #2
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    just blood dope with some ned hippies, you'll be fine...

    real fine

  3. #3
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    Caveat: I'm not an expert in the study of pulmonary etiology (lung and oxygen stuff) but I do know a bit about the biology of respiration, hypoxia (oxygen deprivation) and related issues. Not to be too much of a geek.

    The short answer is you should be fine. The biological constraints that kick in, most notably the reduced production of 2,3 Bisphosphoglycerate that mediates oxygen / hemoglobin affinity, won't be affected in such a short time. This is assuming you are not B-12 deficient, your bone marrow functions properly (producing RBC's), you haven't had a spenectomy (spleen removed), you have normal Iron levels in the blood, and you don't have an allelic deficiency in the production of Hemoglobin, or any other genes involved in the respiratory oxidative pathway. I would eat Iron rich foods, leafy green stuff like spinach, to maintain a high affinity for O2 binding and take a B12 supplement, or eat a lot of red meat.
    I do this all the time not just for endurance training.

    Good Luck!

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    Ah, my head hurts. A lot of info there, although thats exactly what I was looking for...thanks for the breakdown.

    If the iron-rich foods and b12 thing doesn't pan out, I may resort to hippie blood though.
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  5. #5
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    just to add to mouse jockey's comments (which are pretty spot on):
    more of a problem is what you do training wise to keep your form: keep your intensity high, but cut back on volume. this is a good rule before racing anyhow, but if you create some exercise induced hypoxia that should counter the negatives of being at sea level. the most important rest day is two days before the race, but otherwise keep your intensity up to keep your legs in form. in other words, spend a lot of your training time near your lactate threshold, maybe some criss-cross intervals, not much harder, but don't ride long. luckily, this type of workout is easy to do in a gym, if that's all you have access to. usually, it's people's sedentary lifestyle that kills them when they go down to sea level for a week.

  6. #6
    i can't type the letter s
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whambat
    just to add to mouse jockey's comments (which are pretty spot on):
    more of a problem is what you do training wise to keep your form: keep your intensity high, but cut back on volume. this is a good rule before racing anyhow, but if you create some exercise induced hypoxia that should counter the negatives of being at sea level. the most important rest day is two days before the race, but otherwise keep your intensity up to keep your legs in form. in other words, spend a lot of your training time near your lactate threshold, maybe some criss-cross intervals, not much harder, but don't ride long. luckily, this type of workout is easy to do in a gym, if that's all you have access to. usually, it's people's sedentary lifestyle that kills them when they go down to sea level for a week.
    Alright! I love talking bio geek! I hang out in the Turner forum a lot and I don’t know nuthin’ about leverage ratios, pivot placements, or rocker nuances and I can’t feel the pea in the mattress stack, but I can breathe this rarified air (subtle pun)

    Exactly Whambat. I didn't mention artificially induced hypoxic conditioning because I don’t believe it’s practical in this case, but I do know of a few athletes that train in San Diego, who routinely inhale O2 with a reduced partial pressure to acclimate their bodies to the reduced PP at altitude. Ambient Partial Pressure O2 at sea level is 159 Torr or mm Hg and at 5280 feet it's 133, while at 14,000 it’s about 94; that’s over 40% less available O2 which is reduced further when CO2 and vapor pressure of water are considered in the act of respiration.

    The benefits of this type of training are controversial and haven’t shown to be of any performance advantage that I’m aware of. WADA wants to place it on the prohibited list but a cadre of physicians and experts have weighed in and stated that artificial induced hypoxia acclimatization known as “passive conditioning” is distinct from “active conditioning” but this distinction is not enough to warrant the activity being placed on WADA’s “Prohibited List”. Yaayy, let's get our oxygen tents and go to sleep!
    Last edited by mouse jockey; 08-07-2008 at 12:35 PM.

  7. #7
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    I disagree

    Mad respect on the bio-lung-heart-intevals-sodium-good sleep on ambien what not> but I live at 10,000 feet and find that I do better by drinking my ass off until 2am with the promoter, usually Dale's Old Chub cause its free, makes me feel funny and I cant remember a damn thing from the night before while I'm standing at the start line! Sorry, that was a run-on sentence. But it has worked well for me all season, so thats my .02
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    Some real diversity here, I guess I'll have to play around with what works best...I do have some old chub in the fridge already, and it does sound the most scientific... sooo I think I might go that route

    On a related/unrelated note, anyone doing this race and/or know what the course is like?
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  9. #9
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    did it last year, first and only race ever.

    there a good climb for about three miles topped off by some rooty sections, followed by a fun DH, then some flat fast bits, repeat 3 times and you done.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by breckseth
    Mad respect on the bio-lung-heart-intevals-sodium-good sleep on ambien what not> but I live at 10,000 feet and find that I do better by drinking my ass off until 2am with the promoter, usually Dale's Old Chub cause its free, makes me feel funny and I cant remember a damn thing from the night before while I'm standing at the start line! Sorry, that was a run-on sentence. But it has worked well for me all season, so thats my .02
    I like your solution best. LOL.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrcxu
    Some real diversity here, I guess I'll have to play around with what works best...I do have some old chub in the fridge already, and it does sound the most scientific... sooo I think I might go that route

    On a related/unrelated note, anyone doing this race and/or know what the course is like?
    You can ride the course the day before the race.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by nOOby
    did it last year, first and only race ever.

    there a good climb for about three miles topped off by some rooty sections, followed by a fun DH, then some flat fast bits, repeat 3 times and you done.
    Do you know how much vertical per lap? I was thinking it would be a good race to do since those trails are illegal the rest of the year, but the only bike I have that I would consider racing on is my single speed and the course length is 4 laps for a total of over 25 miles.

    I'm good for only about 3K vertical at race pace, and that's probably an optimist talking.

    _MK

  13. #13
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    maybe a 1000' each lap.

    You can ride the course the day before. I might do that just to ride it again. Not sure if you need to enter the race or if they checked last year.
    Last edited by nOOby; 08-08-2008 at 01:42 PM.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by nOOby
    maybe a 1000' each.

    You can ride the course the day before. I might do that just to ride it again. Not sure if you need to enter the race or if they checked last year.
    OK, thanks, that's good news.

    _MK

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by mouse jockey
    Alright! I love talking bio geek! I hang out in the Turner forum a lot and I don’t know nuthin’ about leverage ratios, pivot placements, or rocker nuances and I can’t feel the pea in the mattress stack, but I can breathe this rarified air (subtle pun)

    Exactly Whambat. I didn't mention artificially induced hypoxic conditioning because I don’t believe it’s practical in this case, but I do know of a few athletes that train in San Diego, who routinely inhale O2 with a reduced partial pressure to acclimate their bodies to the reduced PP at altitude. Ambient Partial Pressure O2 at sea level is 159 Torr or mm Hg and at 5280 feet it's 133, while at 14,000 it’s about 94; that’s over 40% less available O2 which is reduced further when CO2 and vapor pressure of water are considered in the act of respiration.

    The benefits of this type of training are controversial and haven’t shown to be of any performance advantage that I’m aware of. WADA wants to place it on the prohibited list but a cadre of physicians and experts have weighed in and stated that artificial induced hypoxia acclimatization known as “passive conditioning” is distinct from “active conditioning” but this distinction is not enough to warrant the activity being placed on WADA’s “Prohibited List”. Yaayy, let's get our oxygen tents and go to sleep!
    Whoa, I was trying to get that techy. Just talking about the temporary hypoxic state from intense exercise, not partial pressures and stuff, let alone artificial altitude simulations. And I really don't want to dust off my old exercise physiology textbook, it's really dusty. Now my brain hurts...

    But back to OP question: while not ideal, one week at sea level will not be enough to significantly reduce your performance, provided you train enough to keep your form up.

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