These days, with limits on public transportation and daily protests, cyclists dominate cities around the country. Here’s how to become one. It’s the summer of Covid, and bikes are everywhere – in parks, at protests, speeding across bridges and locked up outside.
HEAD FOR THE MOUNTAINS!
“Head for the mountains” is both a call to ambitious mountain trail runners & a classic Busch Beer advertising slogan.
Our mountain culture often encourages extreme behavior (total immersion?), from athletic endeavors to night-time socializing in local watering holes.
Sometimes these activities converge over a single weekend. Traditionally the second weekend of September is the last hurrah of Summer before Fall equinox when the nights start to be longer than the days.
So of course, we mark this transition with a hearty combination of high-altitude running races & beer drinking festivals over the September 13 – 15 weekend in both Telluride, CO and Taos Ski Valley, NM.
Bootdoctors has advice and essential gear to help you have the best experience whether you are tipping back a stein or on your tiptoes running up the mountains.
First the advice. (For details on the weekend’s frivolities, skip to the bottom.)
Whether you are hammering the trail or getting hammered at a bar, altitude does indeed affect your performance.
To help you survive your efforts when raising a stein or racing against time, we have assembled some tips for high altitude running and funning.
First, let’s bust a couple myths:
Myth #1 – “There is less percentage of oxygen in high altitude air molecules.” Truth: The percentage of oxygen is the same: 21%. The problem is that due to 30% lower air pressure, molecules are farther apart. Thinner air means less oxygen in each breath.
Myth # 2 – “High altitude makes one drunker.” Truth: One’s BAC is the same as at lower altitude with the same ingestion of alcohol. However, the effects of altitude include dizziness, lightheadedness, unbalance, nausea and headache. Not surprisingly these symptoms feel a lot like intoxication effects.
So, how does one offset the effects of altitude on one’s performance from trail head to bar stool?
- Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate.
You often hear this from locals, whether in the context of exercise or imbibing, “Chug water before, during and after a workout and between every glass of alcohol.” Dry air at altitude causes sweat to dry quickly and reduces your body’s normal urge to drink. Use electrolytes to ensure assimilation of the water.
- Take it slow.
Everyone’s body reacts to altitude differently. Your body acclimates by making more red blood cells. This can take 3-4 days. Postpone running or alcohol for a few days if possible. Pace yourself. Walk before you run. Try a leisurely paced walk or run first. (even if you are trying to get to the head of the beer line!)
- Increase carbohydrate intake.
Indulge in your favorite snacks! Higher metabolism at higher altitude means your body needs more fat. So, go ahead, munch on those pretzels!
Slowly move uphill. They recommend 1,000 feet increase in altitude per day which is hard to do in a running race or when vacationing for sure. Your body will acclimatize naturally but be aware one rarely achieves the same physical or mental fitness one has at sea level. So, go ahead – blame the altitude for your memory lapses!
- Feeling low? Go lower.
One thing doctors, coaches and drinking team leaders agree on – the number one antidote to altitude sickness is going to a lower altitude. So, take time to drop 2,238 ft. to visit the historic town of Taos if the Taos Ski Valley thin air at 9,207 feet (2,806 m) is kicking your butt. Or check out the valley in Ridgway, CO, 1,765 feet below Telluride’s 8,750 feet (2,129 m.)
Need more ideas? Visit Bootdoctors.
Our knowledgeable staff can show you the latest hydration pack, personal water bottle, sunscreen, weather resistant clothing and running or hiking shoes. Custom footbeds in your running and walking shoes will help reduce muscle fatigue.
How to completely avoid negative effects of alcohol on your system? It’s simple! Don’t drink! Experts advise folks to forgo any alcohol to avoid exacerbating effects of altitude. Every individual is completely unique in their body’s response to exercise or alcohol in general, especially at altitude, so be smart, listen to your own body and breath deep while enjoying the magnificent view!
Ready, Set, Go!
In Telluride, since 1994 Blues and Brews Festival has hosted legendary musical artists and today features 56 of the best craft breweries in America. Bootdoctors partners with the Telluride Blues Society sponsoring the Blisters and Brews 5K Race to raise funds for Telluride Adaptive Sports Program Saturday September 14th. Who wouldn’t run for free beer? Register at https://www.tellurideblues.com/blisters-brews-5k.
Taos Ski Valley hosts Bull of the Woods Trail Races with a half marathon and Kachina Peak Marathon September 14th. Register at https://www.bullofthewoodsrun.com/.
Rather blow froth off a stein than froth at the mouth in a marathon? How about showing off your polka moves at Taos Oktoberfest? Authentic Schuplatter band, German beer and food, activities and crafts for kids, stein holding contests and so much more.
Get your collector stein online before they run out! https://www.taosskivalley.com/event/oktoberfest-celebration
NOTE: Anyone experiencing severe symptoms of altitude sickness should immediately seek medical attention.
 “after an individual has been exposed to altitude for long periods of time, they will have 30 percent to 50 percent more red blood cells than an individual at sea level, according to Rick Curtis, director of the Outdoor Action Program at Princeton University. The body also creates more capillaries to match the production of new red blood cells. Extra capillaries decrease the distance between the cell and capillary, making it easier to transport oxygen throughout the body.” https://www.livestrong.com/article/455572-what-effects-do-high-altitudes-have-on-the-body/
We did and we stayed.
From epic waterfalls cascading down the pinnacle of the box canyon to a cacophony of wildflowers exploding along the trail to couloirs of Colorado champagne powder draping down thousands of feet of vertical, this gem of a town sparkles with positive energy in every season.
We opened our biggest Bootdoctors store in Telluride, Colorado in 1998 and have been loving it ever since.
What is it about Telluride?
Is it the variety of ski runs from mellow cruisers leading to high altitude restaurants featuring delicious chili or varietals of wine? or the breath-taking steep descents down slim couloirs that challenge the hardiest of snow riding adventurers?
Is it the ever-changing weekly menu of Summer festivals, opening our minds with ideas, our hearts with inspiration, filling our ears and souls with music, stretching our bodies in new yoga poses or surprising our palates with unique preparations of wild mushrooms, locally grown greens and a burst of fermented grapes in a stemmed glass?
Is it the trails we travel on foot, on bikes, on snowshoes, on snowmobiles, or on skis to discover hidden magic environs deep in wilderness?
Is it the fantastic soaring views that reward us for our efforts of trekking up to the beckoning mountaintops that surround us?
Or is it the warm smile of a local stopping on the “sunny side” of main street just to share a hello?
We just can’t decide. Perhaps it’s some mysterious recipe whose ingredients we try to identify, classify and prioritize, when in fact, it is one authentic experience containing all the ingredients of an insolvable mystery.
We invite you to collect your own ingredients for your recipe for joy in our little box canyon. Then let’s meet at the Buck* so we can share tales of discovery.
For ideas for your Summer trip to Telluride, visit our on-line guide to adventure.
Telluride is a mecca for mountain bikers and road bicyclists. We have a huge fleet of top bikes from Specialized, Pivot and Yeti plus kids’ bikes and kids’ trailers so the whole family can go together!
Telluride’s new bike trails are poised to open soon. Get your pass today on-line.
Feeling the altitude? How about an electric pedal assist for your first high alpine ride? You can cruise the bike path along the Valley Floor to the brewery and back without strain! Reserve your E-bike here.
There is no better way to experience the serenity of a high alpine lake than on a Stand Up Paddle Board.
We offer ½ day and full day SUP Tours that are perfect for all ages. Prefer to go on your own? Rent a SUP and head to the water!
Reserve on-line ahead to ensure your SUP is available when you want to go!
Book a half day rafting adventure for your family and friends.
Take a Hike
Explore the multitude of trails that weave throughout the area. Stop in to Bootdoctors on Main street to pick up a trail map, water bottle, sunscreen. Be wise don’t hike or bike in flip flops! We have a variety of hiking, biking and trail running shoes and America’s Best Bootfitters poised to make you custom footbeds that will improve your walking, cycling and running experience guaranteed!
Want to know more about the history of this magical box canyon? We offer hiking tours with local historians who will share details from the Native American Utes residency up through the mining era, the 60s hippy take-over to the ski town renaissance.
Which plants are native? Which have medicinal properties? Our experts on flora and fauna take you on guided hikes exploring the unique plant life that thrives above 8,000 feet. Discover flowers that only grow above 9,000 feet!
We invite you to get creative with your own personal recipe for Summer fun. We hope to become your No. 1 choice of small town to visit this Summer!
Author Penelope Gleason has been cooking up fun times in Telluride for over 21 years.
She may be found paddling, peddling or backpacking or sometimes just kicking back enjoying a smoothie in an outdoor café on Main street. She looks forward to meeting up with you on the trail!
Contrary to the lyrics of Nancy Sinatra’s iconic song, these boots were not made for walking; they were made to fly.
The heart of our business since 1986 has been to custom form ski boots to each individual’s foot and skiing style. Millions of feet later, we know ski boots inside and out and love to learn about every skier’s passion and aspirations.
We live for the smile on the face of a skier whose custom fitted boots have given them wings to fly down the mountain with ease and skill.
You know what this ritual feels like: You loosen every buckle on your ski boots, pull your sock up, and mentally armor yourself for the next few seconds. You slide the toes of one foot into the top of your boot, breathe in, maybe make a funny face, and shove your foot through a padded 90-degree turn as you yank up on the boot liner.
Bootdoctors is in 100% in support of America’s Public Land Act. Public lands and the diverse uses allowed on them are important to our American heritage. Whether it’s hiking, biking or skiing in the wilderness or fishing in a high mountain lake, we are all public land owners that have a vested interest in the future access and management of public lands. Passage of the Americas Public Land Act would ensure that millions of Americans will continue to be able to use and enjoy public lands for generations to come.
Thank you to Colorado Congressional Delegation members @SenBennetCO and @RepPerlmutter for cosponsoring America’s Public Land Act! As a Colorado business, we appreciate your work to protect and love of our public lands.
LEARN MORE BELOW, VOTE & GET INVOLVED:
Today U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) and Representative Alan Lowenthal (D-CA47) introduced legislation reaffirming that America’s shared public lands, including national parks and monuments, wildlife refuges, and national forests are irreplaceable treasures that should remain in public hands.
THE SUCCESSFUL BLUEPRINT FOR ACHIEVING HAPPINESS, EVERYDAY:
Ahhh, the Great Outdoors. For some of us, it’s a place we dabble in on the weekends, hitting a few local trails or taking a scenic drive; for others it’s overnight trips sleeping in the wild, climbing mountains, riding waves at any chance we get; and for a few, it’s an all-out obsession, and every spare moment is spent under big skies and wide open vistas.