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  1. #1
    DrLime's Avatar
    DrLime is offline Junior Member
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    Exclamation Primal at High Altitudes

    Hey there!

    In less than a month, I'll be traveling to Cusco, Peru for six weeks. It's nearly two miles above sea level, so I'm a bit worried about my initial adaption to the altitude. From what I've read online, drinking extra water and consuming high carbohydrate foods are good ways to overcome altitude sickness. Thankfully, Peru is the homeland of the potato and I'm trying to gain weight, so I'm not too adverse to upping my carb intake in a sensible [and anti-inflammatory] way.

    However, I was wondering if anyone had any advice about nutritional and/or exercise regimes that might be beneficial to adopt for the upcoming weeks before my departure. There are a lot of exciting hikes to archaeological sites that I'd like to do in my VFFs, without feeling like I'm dying.

  2. #2
    AmyMac703's Avatar
    AmyMac703 is offline Senior Member
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    In my experience climbing in the Ecuadorian Andes, it was better to stay mostly primal, only slightly increasing my carbs (as I might before any extreme endurance activity anyway). I think it is more important to fuel your body with what it's used to being fueled with, because if you've been primal/low-carb for a while and all of a sudden ramp up the carbs, your body is going to be like "wtf man?" Drinking lots of extra water is essential and very helpful with acclimatization, but extreme diet changes are unnecessary, in my opinion. Take it easy the first few days until your body adjusts, and depending on your travel itinerary, try not to make extreme elevation changes (beyond the initial change of just going there) too quickly.
    Also, unless you're going to be at really high altitudes (16,000 ft or higher), I wouldn't worry too much about having serious altitude sickness problems.

    Try cuy if you get the chance
    Subduction leads to orogeny

    My blog that I don't update as often as I should: http://primalclimber.blogspot.com/

  3. #3
    DrLime's Avatar
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    It's on my list of things to try. Your advice makes a lot of sense, thank you!

    A couple of friends have suggested that I increase my aerobic exercise before I leave. Thoughts?

  4. #4
    AmyMac703's Avatar
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    Training... depends on the specific (physical) nature of your trip. I went to Ecuador for the express purpose of climbing big mountains (19k ft) so I trained like hell in the months before my trip.
    If you're going to be doing a lot of hiking and walking around, I'd recommend it. If you have detailed information about the archaeological hikes (distances and vertical gain) you're planning to do, tailor your training regimen to those. It probably won't help with the acclimatization process itself, but the hikes will be easier if you're in shape for them, because then all your body has to do is adjust to the lower O2 levels.
    Subduction leads to orogeny

    My blog that I don't update as often as I should: http://primalclimber.blogspot.com/

  5. #5
    fidelity's Avatar
    fidelity is offline Junior Member
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    I'll be going to Cusco as well! I'd really appreciate any information you got on hiking there besides the Inca Trail. Primal in the Andes!

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