Good idea to buy training mask?

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by 34KING18, Mar 16, 2016.

  1. 34KING18

    34KING18 Member

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  2. AFrpaso

    AFrpaso USAFA '17

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    Don't waste the money. We know you will be feeling the effects of elevation upon your arrival. Yes it will be slightly uncomfortable and you will have to breathe a little bit harder/faster. Everyone acclimates within a few weeks, just be sure you drink plenty of water.
     
  3. Joos

    Joos Member

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    Seems unnecessary to me. People on here often say that USAFA has their program of getting their basics acclimated to the elevation all fine tuned.

    If you do get the mask, be ready. I've worn one for long distance training before and those things, or at least the one I wore, are no joke. Start slow.
     
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  4. No1Fanof2

    No1Fanof2 Member

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    I would suggest going to Colorado about 3 to 4 days before. Do a little hiking . When we go up to Colorado for tournaments during the summer we always try to get a few days in for the team. Definitely seen some kids get a little sick and some with no problems. We are in the south so the dryness, evening temp, and elevation can be a big change.
     
  5. flieger83

    flieger83 Super Moderator Moderator

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    It will take your body @ 20-ish days to build up enough red blood cells to compensate for the lower atmospheric pressure (that's what the physicians told us during training). You can't do a thing to change that...it's biology. And the people that setup the BCT program know this, and while they'll push you, they will also make allowances for physiology.

    Steve
    USAFA ALO
    USAFA '83
     
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  6. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    To go along with what Flieger said. I've had many candidates throughout the years bring up this concern. I tell them all the same exact thing.

    "You are NOT the first person to attend the academy, NOT from the Rocky Mountain States". The academy has been recruiting classes for more than 55 years. The academy has figured out how to ensure cadets can acclimate and succeed. If you think you can find a way to get around the difficulties or think you know better than the academy's 55 years of experience; you are wasting your time.

    As Flieger mentioned, the only way to beat the altitude issue, is "Biologically". That's not with breathing masks, or blood doping, or anything similar. Talk your family into taking a "Going Away" family vacation for 3 weeks. Travel through Wyoming to Yellowstone and the grand tetons; work your way through camping Roosevelt National Forest in Northern Colorado; and Work your way down to Pike's Peak to end your vacation. That's the only way you'll adapt to the elevation.

    ANYTHING else you do; OTHER than extreme cardio training between now and "I-Day"; meaning lots of swimming and running (MANY MILES PER DAY), is a waste of your time and money. People from Florida, New Jersey, Texas, etc. get to the academy each year and do quite well. Between now and I-Day, run a few miles every morning; swim in the afternoon, and run a couple more miles after dinner. Do that every day (Skip swimming if you don't have a pool at school), and you'll be quite fine at the academy. Hang out with your friends, watch tv, and play X-box, and you'll probably feel it come I-day. Best of luck.
     
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  7. KTMDad

    KTMDad Member

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    We are from basically sea level, our DS arrived the day before I Day, and he survived. Just arrive in very, very good shape as that will make it more bearable. The basic cadets that weren't if good physical shape struggled much more. They will adjust to the altitude.
     
  8. Padre101

    Padre101 Parent

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    Studies have shown that those masks don't work. In order to be effective, you would have to wear that thing 24 hours a day for months, and even then, there is no certainty of its effectiveness.
     
  9. Brawny77

    Brawny77 Member

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    We are from Texas at about 700 ft elevation. We visited USAFA last week. DS wanted to try running there and see how it was. He is in excellent shape. The first run he went a little over 2 miles. He said he felt fine physically but it was kind of like he had already run a mile when he started. He got a minimal headache. Then he had a great nights sleep and ran again the next day. He did about 3.4 miles in about 30 minutes. Said he felt it just a bit but he did fine. Bottom line- be in good shape.
    Side note- DS did not realize that the running trail that started near our hotel went to the edge of USAFA property. He was running along and right over his head come several planes pulling gliders up! It was a really cool thing for him to see. It put some spring in his step
     
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  10. parentalunit2

    parentalunit2 Parent

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    Yep, what everyone above has already said. Candidates, you are young and you will adapt to the altitude in due time. For families coming out for short visits, drink lots of water while you are at elevation. You may still feel a constant dull headache that will not dissipate over just a weekend, but consuming lots of water often helps.
     
  11. buffalo

    buffalo USAFA 2013

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    Since the "no" answer has been pretty well established, I would just like to add how awesome it would be if you bought the training mask, and then wore it on I-Day. Legendary.
     
  12. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    Not sure if anyone watched the superbowl. It was funny to see some Denver Broncos, who are use to the altitude, with oxygen masks on at the sidelines of the game. And that was definitely not at altitude. As others have said, be in shape and you'll be fine. Loaf for the next 3 months and you you'll feel like an elephant is sitting on your chest for the first few days.
     
  13. abby2015

    abby2015 Member

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    Congrats ct appointee!
    My ds is 2019 from connecticut and we got out day before i day last june and did fine - drink lots of water starting days before..we joked that we were on a mission to drink water, have water and find sources of water all over the springs for our day off together as a family before iday
    It'll be one of those funny memories
    Just dont run up stairs at your hotel first day
     
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  14. fencersmother

    fencersmother Founding Member

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    My sons redoubled their run distances and tried to do it in just 1-1/2 times their regular time. So, super pushed themselves for the 3 weeks before they went to CO. Worked like a charm for one guy, the other was still bothered by some nausea and dehydration. However, please note that twin 2: didn't bother to drink that darned water, like he was told... a million times.
     
  15. CivilAirPatrolCadet

    CivilAirPatrolCadet AFROTC Non-Tech Scholarship Recipient

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    I am lucky and work at a ski resort 4,000+ MSL at the base. Never noticed until I was jogging between buildings and got a little out of breath, so I looked up the stats... Altitude can bug some and not others. It just depends.
     

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