No, this time it isn’t staying there. I have been in Las Vegas for the past couple of days and thought there might be some value in sharing a few of the details of my trip with you. Certainly the exercise part.
First and foremost, I am not able to ride 20 miles a day on my bike. So, my body is not going to get its usual super cardio workout. I am staying at the Paris Hotel which offers health club facilities so I have been using that. Guess what, although I am a seasoned bike rider, 20 minutes on the exercise bike here wears me out. How can that be? Is it the extra helpings of goodies at the buffet, or the late nights at Jersey Boys taking their toll?
No. My first instinct was to feel guilty about having fun and over indulging which was damaging my conditioning.
Although there are no signs posted anywhere in the health club, or in the city for that matter, no one mentions the fact that Las Vegas is 2000 feet above sea level. The air is thinner. Air compresses under pressure. At sea level there is greater pressure than there is 2000 feet above, so while there is the same amount of oxygen in the air, the molecules are farther apart and you get less oxygen when you breathe.
Basketball fans know about this regarding the Denver Nuggets who play in Mile High Stadium. It is harder for visiting teams to keep up with the home team because of the elevation. While Las Vegas is only about 40 percent as high as Denver, there is more oxygen available, but less than we are used to at sea level. The effect is more subtle and more unexpected.
As you can imagine I was gratified to learn this elevation fact, as I thought my body had begun going to seed after only one night of overindulgence. The second and third mornings I did the treadmill instead of the bike to get some weight-bearing work, too.
You need to drink more water in the higher altitude and pay attention to alcohol consumption as drinks pack more wallop higher up. Just what you need in Las Vegas, right?
So, it is possible to exercise and eat well without losing your conditioning. You just need to be alert and not overdo it on either end of the spectrum.