Have you ever thought about running at a higher altitude? Most people don’t even consider altitude when running because they more than likely run at the same place all the time. But if you try to go somewhere else with a higher altitude, you will see that is has become a lot harder to get the same workout that has become a regular routine to your life. So why is that? The reason is lack of oxygen. As altitude increases, the amount of oxygen in the atmosphere declines. But the bodies need for oxygen remains the same. So you will have to work a lot harder to run two miles in Colorado then it would in California. But is this a good thing if you are training to become a better runner/athlete? My answer is a definite yes!
Think about it, you go running at a place with higher altitude, you will be greatly rewarded if you go back to your home and participate a run there, you will do a lot better because you will be accustomed to taking in a lot more
oxygen than you were used to. So you can run a lot longer and not have to suffer as much as side aches. You will take in around twice the oxygen as you normally would just going above two-thousand miles above sea level. The amount of blood that the heart pumps is also larger when someone first arrives at a high altitude. But after a few days it will seem like you have gone back to normal. But that’s just your blood taking in more oxygen than it usually does to help your heart pumping back to normal.
Back when I was in high school, my Cross Country coach would take us to Brian Head, about twelve thousand miles above sea level and a lot higher than what we were used to. We only ran about 5 miles (which was half of what we usually ran) and it was a lot harder than I was expecting it to be. But after doing that for at least once a week I soon found out that I could run a lot longer and a lot easier back at home because of it. I had a lot more oxygen in me when I was running and I was used to breathing more when I would run so when I ran somewhere that didn’t require as much oxygen I would feel great about it and I improved my running by about a minute just on the next race on a course I had timed myself before on.
If you ever get the chance, I highly recommend try running at a higher altitude than you are used to. It’s going to help you a lot physically and you will be in better shape and more prepared to take on a race that you are preparing for. If you really try hard you can shed some good time off your PR and everyone would love for that to happen. Just remember to stay focused on your goals and you will be able to accomplish it! Just always be on the lookout for ways to make yourself better.