Acclimate yourself slowly to high-altitude racing

If you're planning a race at high altitude, avoid the lethargy, headache, nausea, and other consequences of thin air by taking some precautions. First, spend a few days at an intermediate altitude of 5,000 to 7,000 feet before ascending to loftier destinations. When you get to your final destination, slowly work up to your accustomed training level. Start with some easy walks and hikes before moving on to running.

Weight-loss wonder
Calcium may help you lose weight by thwarting your body's ability to store excess calories as fat, according to researchers from Purdue University, who studied the diets and body-fat levels of 54 women for two years. Women who took in 760 milligrams or more of calcium were able to hold their weight stable or lose weight, while those who took in less calcium gained weight. Of course, you must combine calcium with a healthy diet. If you overeat consistently, you'll still gain weight.

Good gulps
Here's a quick and easy guide to hydration. Instead of ounces, the folks from the Georgia Tech Sports Medicine and Performance Newsletter have calculated your optimum intake by the number of gulps:

  • Up to two hours before exercise: 12 to 16 gulps
  • Five to 10 minutes before exercise: four to eight gulps
  • During exercise: four to eight gulps every 15 to 20 minutes
  • After exercise: 16 gulps per pound of body weight lost

    Miss a Digest?

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    Exercise can protect the body from stress

    Faster turnover equals less shock

    Risk factors for runners

    Run about 12 hours before a high-fat meal

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