There are pros and cons to staying in one place all season to train. If you stay home, you get consistent, quality training without the stress of travel or finding new training locations. However, you can also get bored from doing the same workouts in the same places, which can sometimes lead to feeling 'flat.' As an athlete living at sea level, it also prevents you from learning to train/race at altitude and v.v. an altitude athlete might lack speed and fast twitch muscles if they never visit sea level. Two weeks ago, my SMS teammate, Lina Sutro, and I traveled out to her hometown of Carbondale, CO for a mini altitude training camp.
Enjoying the hard work, even at 6,500 feet.
Getting my mountain fix in.
When Lina and I weren't training, we put our feet up to watch the Olympics, work on our computers and visit with friends. We also lucked out and were in town during Carbondale's Mountain Fair, a collection of local musicians, artists and foodies coming together for one of the first big gatherings I've been to in over 16 months! It was so fun to spend time in the Roaring Fork Valley and I'm so appreciative of the Sutro family for being such welcoming hosts so I could have a fun and productive work trip.
This year, US Nationals are at altitude in Soldier Hollow, Utah, which is why I think this trip was extremely important for me to travel out west to practice working hard with little oxygen. Even though it wasn't long enough of a camp to get an 'altitude boost' I still found a lot of value in feeling how hard I could push myself at altitude without blowing up. This is something I've struggled a lot with in the past, having always lived and trained at sea level. I've never been super comfortable training or racing at altitude, but I'm thinking little camps like this are a great step in the right direction for me and feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to make it work!