July 17, 2012
High Altitude Tips
By: Donna Culpepper
We are the the heart of summer and a few of you have asked us for advise in terms of altitude. Our recommendations are always – slow and steady wins the race and water, water, water. Here are some more helpful tips for you and your guests this summer:
Before your trip to Colorado, and while you are here, drinking plenty of water is the number one way to help your body adjust easily to our higher altitude. The low humidity in Colorado keeps the air dry, like the desert, so you need about twice as much water here as you would drink at home.
Monitor Your Alcohol Intake
In Winter Park’s rarified air, golf balls go ten percent farther… and so do cocktails. Alcoholic drinks pack more of a wallop than at sea level. It is recommended that you go easy on the alcohol in the mountains as its effects will feel stronger here.
Eat Foods High in Potassium
Foods such as broccoli, bananas, avocado, cantaloupe, celery, greens, bran, chocolate, granola, dates, dried fruit, potatoes and tomatoes will help you replenish electrolytes by balancing salt intake.
Watch Your Physical Activity
The effects of exercise are more intense here. If you normally run 10 miles a day at home, you might try 6 miles in Colorado.
Pack for Sun
With less water vapor in the air at this altitude, the sky really is bluer in Colorado. But there’s 25 percent less protection from the sun, so sunscreen is a must. Denver receives over 300 days of sunshine each year (more than San Diego or Miami). Bring sunglasses, sunscreen, lip balm… even in winter.
Dress in Layers
Two days before your trip, check the weather and use this information to pack appropriately. Because Colorado is closer to the sun, it can feel much warmer than the actual temperature during the daytime, but then become very chilly after sundown, even in the summer It is best to layer your clothing and always bring pack a raincoat, a jacket and a wrap
Don’t let anything you hear about the mile-high altitude scare you. The air is just thinner and dryer. In fact, many people with respiratory problems move to Denver for the benefits of the dry air. Just follow these simple tips and you will very likely not even notice the difference.