Archive for February, 2009

Thanks for your donations

February 19th, 2009

Last night I gave a presentation on the K2 tragedy at St. Olaf College. A total of $396 was collected for the families of the four porters who died. Thanks for donating! Along with your generosity and the contributions of teammates Chris Warner (AUS) and Fredrick Strang (SWE), each family will receive over $600. In countries where the per-capita income is only a few hundred dollars, this is a significant amount of money.

I would also like the thank St. Olaf College; the departments of Biology, Exercise Science, and Environmental Studies; The Science and the Liberal Arts Year Theme; and Henry Kermott, who holds the Marie M. Meyer Distinguished Professorship and who provided the refreshments.

This event would not have been possible without the help of my wife, Kathy Shea (Biology) who did most of the initial organization and Tory Borovsky, who handled the details. Thanks to all.


Posted in 2008 International K2 Expedition | Comments (0)

You are unique: more interesting research

February 8th, 2009

If you’ve read my book, you know that I talk a lot about your uniqueness, and how that affects your response to altitude, training, etc. Here’s another study which confirms this.

Researchers at Tufts University published a study that examined differences among people’s glycemic index (GI) for white bread. Recall that the GI measures the degree to which a food changes blood sugar levels. Low GI foods (most fruits, pasta) have little effect on your blood sugar, while high GI foods (potatoes, carrots) cause a spike in blood sugar.

While white bread has a published GI of 72, the fourteen test subjects had average GI values that ranged between 44 and 132! And, the measured GI of white bread varied a lot within some individuals (they measured GI three times in each person).

So your response to a food might be quite different than you would expect, based on the published values. Knowing how your body responds to food, dehydration, altitude, etc. will allow you to tune your approach for better performance.

Citation: Vega-Lopez, S., L. M. Ausman, et al. (2007). Interindividual variability and intra-individual reproducibility of glycemic index values for commercial white bread. Diabetes Care 30(6): 1412-7

Posted in Altitude science | Comments (0)