I ran 4 miles with the Solepepper group this morning. Easy jogging, my first in a week. I took Benny in the babyjogger and chatted with people.
I also drove up to OUR NEW HOUSE to just look around the area a bit more. Amazing trails that are close, views of the Continental Divide, a huge lake close by.. our closing date is ~Dec. 17th. Once were there my jogging is going to take an extreme turn, for the better I think. There's very little flatness to anything. I think outside of my workouts in Boulder, most of what I have learned about the marathon in the past will not be applicable to the training I'll be doing. I'll need to reinvent my own training and pay strict attention to how my body breaks down- then doesn't recover from running huge hills daily at 8000-9000 ft. elevation. As I've said in the past- Boulder elevation isn't considered true altitude. 8000ft (our house is at 8200ft) is considered "high altitude" and the point at which physiological adaptations take a significant uptick. Higher than that and things happen for real.
The percentage of oxygen in the atmosphere at sea level is about 21% and the barometric pressure is around 760 mmHg. As altitude increases, the percentage remains the same but the number of oxygen molecules per breath is reduced. At 3,600 meters (12,000 feet) the barometric pressure is only about 480 mmHg, so there are roughly 40% fewer oxygen molecules per breath so the body must adjust to having less oxygen. I'll be somewhere in the 30% less oxygen range which will inhibit my bodies ability to rejuvinate.
Another huge thing that happens is that the body doesn't store CHO (carbohydrate) nearly as effectively as it does at lower elevations. This is partly why a sudden change in elevation for longer periods often stimulates rapid weight loss. Mostly fat- so I won't be so tubby.
CHO use will be hugely determined by my Vo2 Max.. of which I've never had tested. This also applies to lower elevations but it's more profound at high elevations where Vo2 can be cut by ~30% at extreme altitudes. Once you start working at a higher percentage of your Vo2 then fuel consumption shifts towards CHO. So for example, 7:00 pace in Boulder is.. lets say 60% of my Vo2. Once I am running at 8200ft though my Vo2 is lowered... so the same 7:00 mile may put me at.. lets say 68% of Vo2. It may not be that extreme but I'm just making a point. So 7:00 pace at high altitude means I am working much closer to my Vo2 max (which has been diminished) thereby shifting from fat burning and more towards glycogen burning.
I've always had a very efficient metabolism and can run a lot with little fuel, if that's true then my adjustment might not be a shock.