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  1. #1
    Blue Light Special kmart's Avatar
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    1 mile walk test: correlation to cycling VO2max?

    I did the Rockport 1 mile test recently and scored 55 ml/kg/min, which is apparently on the Uber-elite end of the scale for that test. I have been road riding regularly for 9 months and my endurance is much better than when I started, but my speed and power is still horrible, so I am probably on the low end of the "trained" range, which is usually quoted around 50-65 ml/kg/min.

    I've read that this test is too easy for anybody who actually does any exercise, and is designed mostly for untrained sedentary individuals. Being a walk test, it is more appropriate for runners than cyclists.

    I've also read somewhere (can't find the link now) that since cyclists generally do not use their upper body muscles and don't have to support all their weight like runners, an estimate of running VO2max will be lower (~90%?) than the cycling VO2max for the same person.

    Does this mean that I can take the "running/walking" VO2max estimate and divide by 0.9 to get my "cycling" VO2max estimate? Has anybody compared the 1 mile walk test results to results from a submaximal ergometer or complete exhaustion type of "cycling" VO2max test?
    Last edited by kmart; 03-05-07 at 09:35 PM.

  2. #2
    Videre non videri
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    I've estimated my VO2max using several of those different methods ("run as far as possible in x minutes" and others...). I invariably end up at around 35 no matter which method I use. 35 being, of course, pretty poor for a male. And since I'm one of the slowest cyclists I know, I would be inclined to believe those tests are pretty accurate.

  3. #3
    Blue Light Special kmart's Avatar
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    Anyone else? I'm still curious about this.

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    OK...I'm game...what where and how does one do this test???? and being slightly asthmatic??? In the summer, the heat & humidity here make me suck on my inhaler periodically...otherwise I scare people when I wheeze up by them and say on your left! But seriously, I've got some "big" (for me!) plans for rides this summer and want to be in the best shape possible...Thanks, k

  5. #5
    Blue Light Special kmart's Avatar
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    All the info is here. It helps to have a hear rate monitor and a stop watch but you can count your pulse with your fingers too.

    http://www.brianmac.demon.co.uk/rockport.htm

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    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kmart
    I've also read somewhere (can't find the link now) that since cyclists generally do not use their upper body muscles and don't have to support all their weight like runners, an estimate of running VO2max will be lower (~90%?) than the cycling VO2max for the same person.

    Does this mean that I can take the "running/walking" VO2max estimate and divide by 0.9 to get my "cycling" VO2max estimate? Has anybody compared the 1 mile walk test results to results from a submaximal ergometer or complete exhaustion type of "cycling" VO2max test?
    Actually, VO2max absolute and relative, are measurements of the aerobic system's maximum oxygen delivery. How your body uses that oxygen is completely independent of the activity. Running requires higher peak muscle-forces for shorter durations (20% or so) than cycling. Which is a smoother, more continuous application of muscle (40-60%) at lower peak forces.

    Since the muscles are pushed to a lower percentage of their maximum in cycling, they're operating more efficiently than in running. So at the SAME VO2-max delivery, you'll generate more power for the oxygen-consumed than with running. How to measure it is a completely different question altogether. Obviously measuring oxygen-delivered and extracted while exercising is the only accurate way to measure VO2-max. However, there are some on-the-road methods that can approximate it close enough for training, especially if you use the same test to gauge progress months later.

    What you'll notice is that VO2-max absolute won't change much with training, about +10-20%. However, power-generated at VO2-max or LT will have increased tremendously with training. Something along the lines of +50-100% isn't uncommon with increases in muscular efficiency (making more power with same oxygen delivery).

    David Holt - VO2-max interval basics - VO2 max, or Maximum Oxygen Uptake Capacity, to use its formal name, is the amount of oxygen we can absorb into our cells in one minute while working at full capacity. It�s a measure of fitness expressed in milliliters per kilogram per minute.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by kmart
    All the info is here. It helps to have a hear rate monitor and a stop watch but you can count your pulse with your fingers too.

    http://www.brianmac.demon.co.uk/rockport.htm
    Only problem is finding a windless day and a track. Neither of which is available where I live. Well, it could happen that there's no wind for a few hours a couple of days a year. Can't recall when it last happened, though.

  8. #8
    Blue Light Special kmart's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannoXYZ
    Actually, VO2max absolute and relative, are measurements of the aerobic system's maximum oxygen delivery. How your body uses that oxygen is completely independent of the activity. Running requires higher peak muscle-forces for shorter durations (20% or so) than cycling. Which is a smoother, more continuous application of muscle (40-60%) at lower peak forces.

    Since the muscles are pushed to a lower percentage of their maximum in cycling, they're operating more efficiently than in running. So at the SAME VO2-max delivery, you'll generate more power for the oxygen-consumed than with running. How to measure it is a completely different question altogether. Obviously measuring oxygen-delivered and extracted while exercising is the only accurate way to measure VO2-max. However, there are some on-the-road methods that can approximate it close enough for training, especially if you use the same test to gauge progress months later.

    What you'll notice is that VO2-max absolute won't change much with training, about +10-20%. However, power-generated at VO2-max or LT will have increased tremendously with training. Something along the lines of +50-100% isn't uncommon with increases in muscular efficiency (making more power with same oxygen delivery).

    David Holt - VO2-max interval basics - VO2 max, or Maximum Oxygen Uptake Capacity, to use its formal name, is the amount of oxygen we can absorb into our cells in one minute while working at full capacity. It�s a measure of fitness expressed in milliliters per kilogram per minute.
    Thanks for clearing that up. I've realized that I should not be counting to see a 10% VO2max increase anytime soon (that would take years of training in the mountains or air tents I think) and instead focus on increasing my LT.

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