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altitude training (train high, live low)

Jun 20, 2009
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I need some clarification please.
i have access to an altitude/hypoxico machine. however i would only be able to use it on the basis of a train high, live low concept. I also only have access to it 2-3 times a week for 2 hrs each session. Much research has gone in to proving that train low, live high is effective but i need to know if the opposite is going to have any significant advantages or not. please help me.

cheers
 
Jun 16, 2009
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gogo419 said:
I need some clarification please.
i have access to an altitude/hypoxico machine. however i would only be able to use it on the basis of a train high, live low concept. I also only have access to it 2-3 times a week for 2 hrs each session. Much research has gone in to proving that train low, live high is effective but i need to know if the opposite is going to have any significant advantages or not. please help me.

cheers

Gosh is someone making you a Guinea Pig, you can only train in the chamber?
well my personal experience was , training high does limit how hard you can train. As i lived high my main drop was a loss of power.
If you live low and can't train as hard because you are at altitude i can't see the benefit. maybe there is i don't know i am just going by my personal experience training at altitude
 
Mar 18, 2009
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I posted this in another thread, but pertains to your questions:

Studies of performance enhancement in hypobaric chambers, which result in much lower oxygen levels than altitude tents, show minimal to no improvements. With acute hypoxia, EPO is only increased during the period of hypoxia, not immediately afterwards or in the long term. With chronic hypoxic episodes (90 minutes at 5500 m, three times a week for 3 weeks), there was a significant increase in hematocrit from 42.5% to 45.0% which persisted for 2 weeks after the end of the hypoxic treatment. (See Rodriguez et al: Erythropoietin acute reaction and haematological adaptations to short, intermittent hypobaric hypoxia. Eur J Appl Physiol, 2000).

But there are other mechanisms, such as tolerance to lactate and improved anaerobic metabolism, which improve performance following altitude training. However, this is quite controversial in the scientific literature, with other researchers claiming no or little benefit to altitude training:

"While living at altitude but training near sea level may be optimal for enhancing the performance of competitive cyclists, much further research is required to confirm its benefit. If this benefit does exist, it probably varies between individuals and averages little more than 1%." (From Hahn & Gore: The effect of altitude on cycling performance: a challenge to traditional concepts. Sports Med, 2001)

And "In general, altitude training has been shown to improve performance at altitude, whereas no unequivocal evidence exists to support the claim that performance at sea level is improved." (From Bailey and Davies: Physiological implications of altitude training for endurance performance at sea level: a review. Br J Sports Med, 1997)

Moreover, there are dangers, as there is to doping, with training at altitude including "decreases in absolute training intensity, decreased plasma volume, depression of haemopoiesis and increased haemolysis, increases in sympathetically mediated glycogen depletion at altitude, and increased respiratory muscle work after return to sea level...The possible implications of changes in immune function at altitude have also been largely ignored, despite accumulating evidence of hypoxia mediated immunosuppression." (From Bailey and Davies: Physiological implications of altitude training for endurance performance at sea level: a review. Br J Sports Med, 1997)
 
Mar 18, 2009
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Good question with no good answer. I lived at altitude for two years and had no deleterious effects, but this was 5000 feet and not the 18000 feet (or 5500 m) reported in this paper, and I didn't ride with a power meter then. There is a lot of controversy in the literature which raises doubts about its efficacy, but very few talk about complications. So it may came down to it may not do any good, but doesn't seem to do any harm.
 
Dec 5, 2009
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elapid said:
I posted this in another thread, but pertains to your questions:

Studies of performance enhancement in hypobaric chambers, which result in much lower oxygen levels than altitude tents,

Wow, impressive answer.

Mind a question? I was thinking of using one of those hypobaric system to aclimate for a ski trip (I am prone to AMS) - think these things work by reducing o2 at normal air pressure. Issue at altitude is the partial pressures dont allow for o2 absorption.

so I wouldn't think hypobaric systems would help. Thoughts?

Len