I write these words from an altitude of 15,360 ft. The air is thin here. I am well above the tree line. I find myself taking a few deep breaths to keep my head clear. This is, by far, the highest altitude my body has ever experienced without the assistance of a pressurized, oxygenated, airline cabin.
My oxygen saturation right now is 94%…a safe enough level to continue this crazy experiment. My son, Jalen, smiles at me through the clear plastic of my tent. He is fascinated by the things his daddy does…but he is well accustomed to the ways of his “Endurance Family.” I share this experience with you from the safety and comfort of my basement here in Colorado.
Over the next few months, I will be sleeping in a Hypoxico Alitude Tent. This incredible technology will allow me to sleep in a limited oxygen environment, simulating high altitude. In response, my body will produce additional red blood cells, and allow me to tolerate high altitude environments better than ever before. Last night, I slept at 9,000ft. I will gradually increase my sleeping altitude to 15,000ft or higher. My race goals are lofty, and personal. I eat, sleep, and dream ultrarunning…Leadville is my key event for 2012.
My name is Jerry Armstrong… I am a mountain ultramarathoner. The race takes place in August, about 3 months from now. I am currently at peak fitness, running 90-150 miles per week with 10-20,000ft vertical gain. My body weight (142 lbs) is 10lbs lower than previous years, giving me an indication that my training has been excellent in the past few months. With the assistance of Hypoxico Altitude Systems, I plan to take my fitness to the next level.
I will be sharing this unique experience with you in a series of posts at Trail and Ultrarunning . I will share the personal view, the science, the challenges, and hopefully the evidence of success in using Hypoxico Altitude Systems to compliment endurance training and achieve increased athletic endurance. This, of course, is something you can do by purchasing or renting through Hypoxico I will also be conducting an interview with Dr. Krista Austin, a sports physiologist/nutritionist, and consultant to elite athletes and Olympians. She will be helping me use the Hypoxico equipment for my training and sharing insight into the Hypoxico methodology for athletes like us.
To be fair to our readers, I will share that I am a customer of Hypoxico Altitude Systems. They offered me a sponsorship through the Leadville 100, which discounted the cost of using the Hypoxico Altitude System. In exchange, I will share my experience openly through our website in a series of articles and videos. Hypoxico is excited to have me share this story with you…in part, because so many elite athletes use their system without giving credit where it is due.
From professional boxers to cyclists at the Tour de France, top athletes crawl inside these tents all the time. It’s time to see what this is all about. I look forward to sharing this experience with you. Please ask any questions in the comments section, or by email. I will use your inquiries to guide my articles and seek the information for all of us. Be awesome!