Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Training at Altitude

The High Altitude Colorado Cycling Camp is underway. As a "helper/ride guide" of the camp, I have learned many things. Mostly, riding and training at high altitude requires a different thought process and mind set to training. A process not many people or coaches really understand.

Most people understand that yes, there is less oxygen at 6,000ft and yes, the air is dry at 8,000ft. But what does all that mean to your training as an athlete? How does riding at elevation help you improve? How does sleeping at altitude make you faster?

I grew up at 8,000ft in the Fraser Valley, Colorado. Before I started bike racing, I took the high altitude for granted. But now, after years of bike racing and training at sea level, at 4,000ft, and at 9,00ft, I have learned MANY lessons. These lessons I am happy to share at camp with the campers. The campers are tired, but riding strong (isn't that what a camp is all about?), and they are looking forward to each day and the new route they will explore in the Rocky Mountains.

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