Nepal - Everest Marathon - November 2005

Monday, November 07, 2005

Gizzmos and gadgets

On this trip I have brought a number of toys with me, which keep me entertained. Amongst the most useful to date are my husband Robin's Sunto watch which has an altimeter on it. It's scary to see just how quickly we ascend on our treks. From Phakding to Namche yesterday morning we ascended 900m, and today another 300m to the outskirts of Namche to get my first view of Everest. It has clouded over a little, so I couldn't see the summit clearly, but am assured we will see lots of it in the next 2 weeks. The waiter who served our drinks turned out to be a fellow runner. He was a Nepalese man, competing this year, hoping to do it in 4hrs!!
He came 9th in 2000, and runs in cheap running shoes, because kosher kit just isn't available here even if he could afford it. Thet reckon, for most westerners, double your best ever marathon time to get some idea how long it would take you to do this marathon, for me that would be 8hrs!!
My other gadgets include a solar powered Ipod charger, which one of the lads in my group are trying out today. I also have access to a pulse oximeter, a cube shaped box which sits on the end of your finger and measure your arterial oxygen saturation (the higher the better), and also your pulse. With increasing altitude, generally your pulse rate rises and your sats fall until you have acclimatised. At sea level my sats are 99%, at 2430m, 95%, and yesterday at 3,420m, 90%.
This accounts for mild breathlessness and headaches which are bothering me a wee bit. Reassuringly, most others in our group are equally suffering. I feel much better today for a rest, and plenty of fluids, back to normal almost.
No internet availability now for two weeks till I get back after the race. Photos to follow soon.
Fina

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