Category: Athletic Performance

  • Posted By:

    Kelly Parcell

  • Category:

    Athletic Performance

Hydration is a key element in performance and recovery for athletes. The total percent of water in the human body is affected by how much body fat you have, as well as your age, gender, and health. However, on average the human body is about 45-70% water, which amounts to 40-45 liters of water in the body (165 x 8-ounce glasses of water!). There are two compartments that house this water, one is intracellular, inside cells where 62-65% of the water is found, and the other is extracellular, outside cells such as the blood and GI tract where 35-38% is found. Whether it is hot or cold out, when you exercise you lose water through breathing, muscle contraction, blood circulating, and sweating. Most people know that lack of fluids and lots of physical training can cause dehydration, but did you know that traveling also causes dehydration? Why traveling causes dehydration: People drink less water with the limitations around fluids and flying Anxiety and stress cause sweating and there is more body water loss The recirculated air on airplanes has 20-30% less moisture in it Air conditioning and sitting actually cause body temperature to rise, and people sweat more but the cool...

  • Posted By:

    Steve Parcell

  • Category:

    Athletic Performance

It is more common now for the over forty crowd to get a coronary artery calcium scan as part of cardiovascular risk assessment. Because of this, more athletes over forty are discovering that they have coronary artery disease. Deciding what to do with this information and producing a customized treatment plan is the main focus of my practice. I have been practicing preventive cardiology for twenty years and, being based in Boulder, CO, have had the privilege of seeing a large number of elite masters age athletes who have made this anxiety producing discovery while in my care. In the last ten years there has been an uptick on articles in medical literature reporting arterial plaque (atherosclerosis) in experienced male endurance athletes.  Women get coronary calcium too, but it happens about seven to ten years later than in men and for this reason there is not as much data. Unfortunately, women may catch right up to men at an accelerated pace after menopause. It’s worth mentioning that more women die of heart attacks than breast cancer. CAC Tests Show Male Endurance Athletes May Have More Arterial Plaque Male endurance athletes may have more arterial plaque as determined by a coronary artery calcium (CAC)...

  • Posted By:

    Steve Parcell

  • Category:

    Athletic Performance

I have been practicing preventive, integrative and naturopathic medicine for over 20 years. I currently specialize in men’s health and preventive cardiology including all aspects of blood pressure control, cholesterol management as well as aggressive early detection and treatment of cardiovascular disease. I also work with athletes, both old and young, and as a competitive endurance athlete myself, I have a lot of personal experience. How do Nutrients Affect Exercise Performance? For optimal performance, we need our system to be firing on all 8 cylinders. To do this we need adequate vitamins, minerals and amino acids for biochemical reactions to take place. For example, macro and micro nutrients such as fat, amino acids, carbohydrates, CoQ10, lipoic acid, selenium, glutathione and carnitine are needed for the Krebs cycle. The Krebs cycle makes ATP, which is critical for muscle contraction and cellular function, within the mitochondria. Think of mitochondria as the powerhouse of the cell and ATP as the energy currency. A nutrient deficiency may affect ATP production or cause a decoupling reaction. The Importance of Nutritional Testing Do you follow a vegetarian or plant-based diet? Is your conventional diet well balanced? Are you getting all the blood work needed for optimum...

  • Posted By:

    Kelly Parcell

  • Category:

    Athletic Performance

Athletes are always seeking to find the key to go faster, longer, and stronger! They may have the food and sports nutrition down pat. They also do the massage, stretching and compression boots. Maybe even the sauna training and cryotherapy and float tanks, but it is not enough. They want more and so do I! I want to go faster and feel strong with every session. There is nothing worse than the mind feeling fresh but the body does not go. Or, you are motivated but the body slows down and feels weak. Many factors go into optimal performance. Remember that athletes are putting their bodies through stress and strain above and beyond normal function. Your age, stage and gender also impact how much focus needs to be on supporting the body through athletic performance. There are 7 foundational essentials to optimizing performance above and beyond pills and potions to optimize your performance. 7 Foundational Essentials to Optimizing Performance Food Hydration Quality sleep Stretching Rest/recovery cycles Massage/compression Correcting underlying health conditions Once these 7 items are practiced and ingrained, there are plenty of nutrients and potions with all kinds of claims to make a person go faster! Multi Vitamins, B12,...

  • Posted By:

    Steve Parcell

  • Category:

    Athletic Performance

Gain the Skiers Edge by Eating Right in the Mountains The aim of this article is to discuss how physical activities at high altitude can potentially affect nutritional requirements. Medium altitude is defined as (1500-2500m) at this altitude oxygen saturation remains above 90% but altitude illness is possible. At high altitude (2500-5300m) oxygen saturation falls below 90%, altitude illness is common and acclimatization is necessary. As a point of reference oxygen saturation in Boulder, Colorado (5400 ft) is approximately 94%. Alpine skiing in the North American and Canadian Rockies commonly occurs at or above 3000 meters (9842 ft). Skiers who live in ski country are subject to decreased performance but those that fly in from sea level suffer even more. Maintain Hydration: It is easy to become dehydrated in high-altitude environments. Dehydration increases the risk of frost bite and worsens the fatigue, impaired judgment and apathy of hypoxia. The body's requirement for fluids is very high at altitude; often exceeding 4 liters of water per day. Altitude increases water losses from the lungs due to the cold, dry air. There is also increased urinary loss of water because altitude and cold have diuretic affect. Sweating adds to the water loss....