During strenuous activity as snowboarding can be , it’s tempting to take long breaks to regain energy. A better strategy, however, is to rest for only 5 minutes at a time. In that first 5 minutes your muscles will regain approximately one-third of their lost energy. In the next 5 minutes, though, your muscles recharge only about 5% more, yet will begin to stiffen. The best strategy of all is take in a lot of carbohydrates and set a steady, resonable pace - a pace that allows your muscles to renew energy at the same rate that they fatigue.
Another key to your efficiency is hydration. Your body needs fluid replenishment at regular intervals. If you wait until you’re thirsty or hungry before you drink or eat, it can be too late to prevent “bonking,” an energy malaise that sometimes afflicts people that snowboard.
Cold Weather Injuries
Princeton's web site on hypothermia
There are 2 kinds of energy emitted by the sun, UV-A and UV-B light. UV-A light is the kind that tanning salons use. It penetrates deeper into the skin and causes burns and premature aging. UV-B causes DNA damage and cancer. However, there is a large amount of evidence that indicates tanning beds and sun lamps cause cancer also. Of course, the body does need sun light to produce vitamin D.
The higher the number of SPF (Skin Protection Factor) the better the level of protection it offers. The SPF number how much longer that you can stay in the sun before you burn. A block with SPF 8 means that you can be exposed to UV light 8 times longer than with no protection before burning. A white cotton t-shirt offers a SPF of about 4, while new denim blue jeans have an SPF of about 1000. Typically SPF 15 or higher is recommended. Due to the intensity of conditions on a mountain I would go with an SPF rating of 30 or better. Apply sun screen at least once every 2 hours, or after your face has been smeared across the snow. Don't forget lip balm with a good SPF rating also.
Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS)
AMS usually affects people at 9,000 feet, although there have cases documented at elevations as low as 5,000 feet. AMS is caused by atmospheric pressure and the lack of oxygen at higher elevations.
Symptoms: Light-headedness, dizziness, loss of appetite, nausea, fatigue, irritability, headaches, insomnia, swelling in the face, hands and feet. These symtoms may appear within a few hours at altitude.
Treatment: Mild AMS can be overcome by remaining at altitude for a few days without stranous activity. If conditions do not improve or become worse descend and seek medical treatment. Acetazolamide has been used to to prevent or lessen AMS symptoms. Dexamethasone may help severely ill persons until medical help can be reached. These drugs have known side affects, consult your physician before taking them.
Other altitude related problems:
High Altitude Pulmonary Edema (HAPE) 72-96 hours after arriving at high altitude fluids can accumulate in the lungs. Symptoms are blueing of the lips and/or nails, shortness of breath, blurry vision, poor judgement, confusion, or lapse of consciousness. HAPE can result in death. Males, people with lung or heart problems, and people under physical or emotional stess are particularly at risk. Descend and seek medical help as soon as possible.
High Altitude Cerebral Edema (HACE) 72-96 hours after arriving at high altitude fluids can accumulate in the brain. Symptoms are Symtoms are blueing of the lips and/or nails, shortness of breath, blurry vision, poor judgement, confusion, or lapse of consciousness. HACE can result in coma or death. Males, people with lung or heart problems, and people under physical or emotional stess are particularly at risk. Descend and seek medical help as soon as possible.
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