Anyone who has ever been in the mountains at higher altitudes knows it: the feeling that the air is getting thinner. Breath and heart rate rise, even not so heavy physical activities feel heavier and drive the sweat on the forehead. These are the first reactions of the body to the changed external conditions at altitude. Our organism acclimatizes. Athletes use this mechanism in altitude training to improve their performance.
The oxygen content in the air is 20.9% and remains roughly constant even at different altitudes. With increasing height, however, the air pressure decreases and with it also the oxygen partial pressure, i.e. the oxygen content of the air decreases with altitude and less oxygen gets into the blood via the lungs and finally into the tissue. Accordingly, our performance decreases and, especially on the first day at altitude, physical activities feel more intense than normal (e.g. at sea level).
On the light oxygen deficiency, also called hypoxia, our organism reacts with increased release of the endogenous hormone erythropoietin (EPO), which leads to an increase of red blood cells (erythrocytes). Due to the increased number of erythrocytes in the blood, more oxygen is transported in order to ensure a sufficient supply of our body with oxygen.
Back at sea level, this has a performance-enhancing effect, which is mainly used by competitive athletes. However, basically any athlete can benefit from altitude training (hypoxia training), especially endurance athletes.
Altitude training camps in Colombia
Altitude training centers are usually located at an altitude of about 2,000 meters. Our hotel, which is the base of our training camps, is located at almost 2,100 meters. Unlike in high-altitude training centers in Europe, with us you train all year round in summery temperatures and wonderful weather. No matter if in January, April, August or November!
An altitude training camp can help to boost your performance on the road bike or bring the hard-earned form over the winter months. And even if you do not have any ambitious goals and just want to spend a fantastic cycling holiday, at Elite Cycling Colombia you’ll get the high-altitude training effect for free!