Saturday, July 23, 2011
Altitude and Attitude Training in Telluride
I am spending the week in Telluride, Colorado to get a taste of thin air before heading off to conquer Africa's highest peak -- Mount Kilimanjaro.
I am here with Stacey Pratt, who is also hiking Kilimanjaro for Global Alliance for Africa, and Sydney Clover, who is helping me document my journey. My 3-year-old daughter also joined us and is attending day camp while I'm hiking way up high but it is a wonderful way for us to spend quality time before I take off for two weeks to Africa.
Our home away from home is an amazing condo at Mountain Lodge in Mountain Village. We sleep at about 10,000 feet. Just being here is altitude and attitude training. There is 73 percent as much oxygen here compared to home. (At the top of Kilimanjaro there will be half as much as home!)We often wake up with a smidge of a headache and a dry mouth. The key is to stay hydrated. I've been downing at least four liters of water each day to stay ahead of altitude sickness.
Each day we hike -- often trying to reach 12,000 feet. That will give us a head start before taking on Kilimanjaro's 19,343 feet. Our ulitmate goal while in town is to conquer Ajax Peak.
I am also using this week as a wellness retreat. BistoMD was kind enough to provide our healthy meals (ranging from 1,100 to 1,400 calories a day)so we could stay on track and could focus on our training. They are so easy to prepare, just a few minutes in the microwave and diner is served. So far, my favorites have been the Shrimp Burrito Bowl and the Chicken Breast Stuffed with Broccoli & Cheddar.
There is a little relaxation built in here... Yesterday we headed to Moab to visit Arches National Park (only 1.5 miles of hiking because of the 108 degree heat). I am heading to a Monsoon Yoga Class on Wednesday at Telluride Yoga Center and will hit Mountain Lodge's tub as often as possible to keep my legs feeling happy for the big challenge ahead. (We will summit Kilimanjaro two weeks from today!)