Living in Colorado Springs, means you'll have to deal with altitude. Depending on Where you live in Colorado Springs, you could be anywhere from 5,000 to 7,000 feet -give or take a few. Besides some heavy breathing, it doesn't seem to have much effect on you at all, but you will learn over the time of your stay that some things will help you and make your life easier.
If you don't know anything about it, you'll be surprised to hear about some obvious and not-so obvious effects it has on your life.
- Breathing. You'll get out of breath faster and breath heavier with more strenuous activities. This will get easier with time, just be aware - everything is fine, most likely it's not YOU, but the elevation. However, if your breathing problems seem unusually heavy, or you have a pre-existing condition, then a check up with your physician might be a good idea.
- Dehydration. We all know that we need to drink a certain amount of fluids a day but in high altitude, where the air is even dryer, the temperatures are not that hot, you can be fooled. Take a bottle of water everywhere, even if you just go shopping
- Watch for signs of dehydration:
- Lack of perspiration
- Shortness of breath
- Exhaustion. Coming from a lower altitude you will have less red blood cells carrying oxygen in your body, you will be out of breath faster (see above) and you will also tire quicker. It's not a big deal but until your body has completely adjusted to the elevation you could be 4 to 6 months into your stay. Rest, take brakes maybe even a nap may be in order?
- Sunburn. Don't be surprised just HOW easily you burn here even in the foothills. Even at 6,000 feet the sun is much stronger, less filtered through the atmosphere, to fry your skin. Wear a hat, wear sunscreen, keep your skin protected. Spring is especially 'dangerous' since most likely you have spent more time inside during that time, and your skin has not seen the sun in awhile.
- Eye Protection. Besides the obvious advantages of sunglasses like cutting down on glare and light intensity, the suns rays up high are so much stronger, it's good to wear sunglasses to keep from having eye problems down the road.