This week, Team Action Wipes headed to the hills. "Hills” is actually an understatement for mountain town of
Breckenridge, Colorado where the town itself is nestled into a valley at almost
2 miles in elevation (9,600 feet). It is
summertime here and we have been using every opportunity to put our sports wipes
to test by hiking, biking and even Glissading
here in the high country. But at higher
altitudes you need a lot more than some body wipes to keep the body cool and
functioning so we thought we would talk about preparing yourself for a trip to
the mountains and minimizing any effects of altitude sickness.
Even though we are not extreme mountaineers like Action
Wipes supported Polar Explorer, Eric
Larsen, the higher altitude has clearly shown its effects. At the simplest
level, your body must adjust to the lower oxygen levels at altitude thru a
process called acclimatization. Unless
you are a conditioned athlete, you can expect to feel shortness of breath, trouble
sleeping and even noticeable dryness of skin and eyes.
When hiking, backpacking, cycling or just walking around
town, the thinner air manifests itself very quickly, making your normal pace or
endurance a lot more difficult. For most people, a day or two of
acclimatization is normal but its always a good idea to pace yourself in the
beginning so you don’t overdo it and overstress your body. So what can you do? The single most important
factor to help your body is to hydrate yourself with lots of water and
minimizing caffeine and alcohol. The irony is that while an icy cold beer may
be what you crave most after a long ride or hike, it
can also affect your hydration, sleep and energy levels.
Also, you're more likely to get sunburned as you're closer to the sun than you are at sea level. Packing extra sunscreen and moisturizer
(remember to reapply after using a body wipe if you are still outside) is a
mandatory checklist item, but you can also help yourself by taking extra
Omega 3’s like flax or fish oils can
help your skin and eye moisture. Great
info from our friends at Little Swan have some tips as well.
While this trip has been fun, we can't wait to get to Lake Tahoe next, where we will be better acclimated to the lower altitude.