The 2022 World Ironman Triathlon Championship in St George Utah: What happens when racing at modest altitude?

In this blog, I am going to discuss a topic that has always been of interest to exercise physiologists and those involved in endurance sport: altitude. As I’m sure you are aware, altitude has the potential for profound effects on endurance sport performance. This is certainly an area of interest with the Ironman World Championships this year being held in Utah; with many of my professional and Endure IQ Training Squad athletes competing. Utah sits at a modest altitude of ~1000 m, but is this enough to have an effect on our performance? And is any specific preparation required?

I will do my best to break down the basics of altitude for you, although I should acknowledge that altitude is such a big topic within our field that I cannot possibly include everything in one blog, but let’s give it a go! :).

 A physiological look at altitude

Okay, so first, why – physiologically speaking – is altitude so important? At sea level, the atmospheric...

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