Randy Wilbur, Ph.D. is the senior sport physiologist at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, where he oversees operations in the Athlete Performance Laboratory. Wilbur knows about the effects of altitude on cyclists not only from scientific studies but from personal experience. He has completed the Leadville Trail 100 Mountain Bike Race -- 100 miles on rocky jeep trails, most over 10,000 feet above sea level. Coach Fred Matheny shares his comments on altitude training.
I live in the foothills above Denver (about 7,000 feet elevation), but my job means I travel to sea level for three or four nights each week. I do one or two shorts rides while traveling and don't get a chance to do much training at elevation except on weekends.
With this schedule, I don't feel like I'm getting acclimated for my goal: Colorado's 120-mile Triple Bypass that goes to almost 12,000 feet. What do you think?