Destination races are a wonderful aspect of triathlon. But aside from the usual hazards associated with travel, there are some important health risks to be aware of.
HAZARD: Environment adjustment. One of the first things to consider is how the destination’s environment differs from your home. If you live in a coastal area and are planning a race in the mountains, you’re going to face some challenges related to the altitude. Racing in a hot and humid destination when you normally race and train in a dry, cool environment could have important consequences—and not just on performance.
AVOID IT: Allow time for acclimation. The longer you can be in the environment before your race, the better your ability to perform will be. When I travel to a race, I try to arrange it so that the race is at the end of the trip. Note: If you have a preexisting health issue that doesn’t pose any problems when racing at home, don’t assume the same will be true at a remote event. Consult your physician to be sure.