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  1. #1
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    VO2 testing results

    I had a VO2 max test performed at the National Institute For Fitness and Sports located here in Indianapolis. It was done on the bike.

    My Anabolic (oops, anaerobic-I don't know where I got anabolic, should have proofread) Threshold was at a heartrate of 125 beats per minute and VO2 (ml/min) was 1678 and VO2 (ml/kg/min) was 17. Max nunbers were 162/3062/32 respectively.

    Max heart rate was 162.

    Anaerobic Threshold was at 77% of max heart rate and 55% of VO2 max.

    These results put me in the upper 75% of the average range for a 49-year old. High, good, average, fair, and poor were the five categories.

    The resistance was increased in 25 watt increments and my instructions were to keep increasing the resistance as long as I thought I could go for at least one minute at the next highest level. I maxed at 275 watts ad might have been able to sustain one level higher but did not try since I was not sure. The wattage and heart rate numbers were very close to what I had recorded on my Kurt Kinetic trainer.

    I do not race nor do I intend to. I am a recreational cyclist wanting to get better so I can ride hills and centuries more confidently and comfortably.

    Can I use these heart rate numbers to train on the road? What would be the best range for me to train in on a flat 30-mile training ride? See fat burning question below?

    How much would losing 20 pounds change my numbers. I currently weigh 207 lbs. Is this my best shot at improvement since I have seemed to be average or below athletically all my life?

    My maximum fat burning zone was at 115-120 beats per minute. I was surprised at how narrow a range that significant fat was burned. Would this be a good range for me to trade in for conditioning and maximum fat loss? Would training in this range significantly hamper my effort to improve conditioning?

    Is there any reason for me to get tested again after riding and training during the summer and hopefully losing weight?
    Last edited by dekindy; 09-25-09 at 11:54 AM.
    What is better than getting your heart rate up and saddle time?

  2. #2
    Mmmmm Donuts! FatguyRacer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dekindy View Post
    Is there any reason for me to get tested again after riding and training during the summer and hopefully losing weight?

    Yes. with your AT at 77% max, your slightly above untrained. You'll make huge gains with the right training. You'll increase you VO2 a slight bit with weight loss. 17 seems kinda low. Were you a life long 2pack a day smoker? The biggest gains will be made shifting you AT closer to your max HR. A good training regime can get your AT to within 93% of Max HR. But since you dont plan on racing, its not necessary to push it that far. But it will help for climbing.

    I'm surpirsed the testing center didnt recommend a training protocol for you. Seems like you wasted your money if all they did was hand you a packet of numbers and no explaination as how to progress from there.

    Quote Originally Posted by dekindy View Post
    What is better than getting your heart rate up and saddle time?
    Nothing. No substitute for hard work. There are no short cuts, you have to put the time in to get better. You will be rewarded for your efforts.
    Last edited by FatguyRacer; 03-13-08 at 02:03 PM.
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  3. #3
    N71
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    Did they mention anything about your max heart rate? 162 seems low. Not trying to freak you out (I actually raced with a guy who had a larger than normal heart and a correspondenly low max. He's now a Cat 1) but the old 220 minus age puts you higher.

  4. #4
    Fattest Thin Man Az B's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by N71 View Post
    Did they mention anything about your max heart rate? 162 seems low. Not trying to freak you out (I actually raced with a guy who had a larger than normal heart and a correspondenly low max. He's now a Cat 1) but the old 220 minus age puts you higher.
    That equation is pretty useless. I'm older than the OP and my max is 192. Obviously, the range of differences in human anatomy are greater than that simple equation can account for.

    Az

  5. #5
    N71
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    Quote Originally Posted by Az B View Post
    That equation is pretty useless. I'm older than the OP and my max is 192. Obviously, the range of differences in human anatomy are greater than that simple equation can account for.

    Az
    Oh, I agree about the equation it doesn't work for me either but I thought they might have made mention of it since it was part of a comprehensive testing procedure. I can't go up a flight of stairs without hitting 150!

  6. #6
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    No, never smoked anything.

    I have always had a low resting heart rate. In college it was in the high 40's and is still in the high 50's/low 60's. Whenever I have done a fitness test my heart rate returns to normal at a very fast rate. Yet my stamina has always been below average.

    When I auditioned for grade school band I did not have enough wind to play a brass instrument so I was advised to play a woodwind instrument. Once in college when my buddy who was a trumpet player and a fairly good athlete each did the test where you blow into a vertical tube to raise the level, he was able to do twice or more the amount that I could. So with all these factors I am trying to determine what my limitation is and a reasonable goal that I might set for myself.

    I rode the 162 mile ride across Indiana last summer, did a couple of flat centuries, and rode 4,400 total miles for the year. I was able to increase my average speed on a flat 30-mile training ride from 16.5 to the high 18's/low 19's and hit a 20 mph average once in a burst of fitness increase from doing the ride across Indiana, then returned to the 18/19 range.

    They suggested that I do interval work to increase my conditioning. This winter I have been using a Kurt Kinetic Road Trainer and doing some upper body weight lifting which seems to have helped my overall strength and conditioning.

    I don't really want to go to the expense of a coach but can't help but wonder if some professional, personal guidance might not be a bad idea. Most of the people that I ride with are stronger than me, despite my improvements, and I want to feel confident that when I go out with them I am not going to hold them up or run out of gas. One thing that does seem to be helping is using Hammer Nutrition gel and perpetuem while I am riding to keep my energy levels up.
    What is better than getting your heart rate up and saddle time?

  7. #7
    Senior Member buddy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dekindy View Post
    I had a VO2 max test performed at the National Institute For Fitness and Sports located here in Indianapolis. It was done on the bike.

    My Anabolic Threshold was at a heartrate of 125 beats per minute and VO2 (ml/min) was 1678 and VO2 (ml/kg/min) was 17. Max nunbers were 162/3062/32 respectively.

    Max heart rate was 162.

    Anabolic Threshold was at 77% of max heart rate and 55% of VO2 max.

    These results put me in the upper 75% of the average range for a 49-year old. High, good, average, fair, and poor were the five categories.

    The resistance was increased in 25 watt increments and my instructions were to keep increasing the resistance as long as I thought I could go for at least one minute at the next highest level. I maxed at 275 watts ad might have been able to sustain one level higher but did not try since I was not sure. The wattage and heart rate numbers were very close to what I had recorded on my Kurt Kinetic trainer.

    I do not race nor do I intend to. I am a recreational cyclist wanting to get better so I can ride hills and centuries more confidently and comfortably.

    Can I use these heart rate numbers to train on the road? What would be the best range for me to train in on a flat 30-mile training ride? See fat burning question below?

    How much would losing 20 pounds change my numbers. I currently weigh 207 lbs. Is this my best shot at improvement since I have seemed to be average or below athletically all my life?

    My maximum fat burning zone was at 115-120 beats per minute. I was surprised at how narrow a range that significant fat was burned. Would this be a good range for me to trade in for conditioning and maximum fat loss? Would training in this range significantly hamper my effort to improve conditioning?

    Is there any reason for me to get tested again after riding and training during the summer and hopefully losing weight?
    I would like to be tested like this. How do you find a client that does this kind of testing?

    ~buddy

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by buddy View Post
    I would like to be tested like this. How do you find a client that does this kind of testing?

    ~buddy
    Google searches. Links on bicycle club websites. Asking participants on this forum.
    What is better than getting your heart rate up and saddle time?

  9. #9
    umd
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    I'm getting a V02 test done tomorrow. Should be interesting...

  10. #10
    umd
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    I took the OP and changed the numbers for my test...

    My Anabolic Threshold was at a heartrate of 162 beats per minute and VO2 (ml/min) was 3600 and VO2 (ml/kg/min) was 53. Max nunbers were 181/4340/66 respectively.

    The resistance was increased in 25 watt increments and my instructions were to keep increasing the resistance as long as I thought I could go for at least one minute at the next highest level. I maxed at 400 watts and may have been able to continue at the next level for a few seconds but not much more. These results put me in the "superior" fitness range.

    I also did an RMR test, my avg VO2 was 249, my VCO2 was 238, and my resting caloric expenditure was 1714.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by umd View Post
    I took the OP and changed the numbers for my test...

    My Anabolic Threshold was at a heartrate of 162 beats per minute and VO2 (ml/min) was 3600 and VO2 (ml/kg/min) was 53. Max nunbers were 181/4340/66 respectively.

    The resistance was increased in 25 watt increments and my instructions were to keep increasing the resistance as long as I thought I could go for at least one minute at the next highest level. I maxed at 400 watts and may have been able to continue at the next level for a few seconds but not much more. These results put me in the "superior" fitness range.

    I also did an RMR test, my avg VO2 was 249, my VCO2 was 238, and my resting caloric expenditure was 1714.
    I received a 6-page report labeled ACTIVE METABOLIC TRAINING PERFORMANCE provided by New Leaf - Real Results. True Health. Was yours the same or different?

    What is an RMR test? How old are you?
    What is better than getting your heart rate up and saddle time?

  12. #12
    umd
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    Quote Originally Posted by dekindy View Post
    I received a 6-page report labeled ACTIVE METABOLIC TRAINING PERFORMANCE provided by New Leaf - Real Results. True Health. Was yours the same or different?

    What is an RMR test? How old are you?
    Mine was different. An RMR test is resting metabolic rate. Similar test as to find the basal metabolic rate, except for that you had to be fasting for 12 hours and for this I was supposed eat approx 250 calories two hours before the test. The idea is to find the your body's RQ while not being active and not having just eaten, but not in as strict conditions as the BMR.

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    I had the same test performed again on 8/12/2009. Prior test was March 2008.

    Anaerobic Threshold improved from 125 to 139 beats per minute and VO2 (ml/min) increased from 1678 to 2342. Max heart rate this year was 157 versus 162 despite making every effort to get it higher this year. Last year I observed a high of 164 on the trainer and this year with a maximum effort I was able to observe a max of 169 which I am convinced is about my absolute max. That was achieved by standing up and cranking through a series of rolling hills as hard as I could. My max VO2 numbers were 3058 this year versus 3062 last year, which is unchanged as I believe is expected, so I would conclude that the two tests were done consistently enough for a comparison of the results to be relevant. Any thoughts?

    My average mile per hour that I can sustain on long recreational rides has probably increased about 1 mph.

    If I could improve this much next year I would be very happy.

    I found out that one of the guys my age that used to race averages 20 bpm more than I do during a 30-mile training ride. In fact, his average bpm on a training ride is near my maximum heart rate.

    The only thing that I did differently this year versus last year besides riding harder, was to do a High Intensity Training program indoors on the trainer during the winter instead of riding outdoors. It was this one and I think that is where I accomplished most of my gain.
    http://www.roadbikerider.com/hit_excerpt.htm

    I rode almost exactly the same on the road this year as last which is no formalized plan for improvement other than trying to ride harder.

    Quote Originally Posted by dekindy View Post
    I had a VO2 max test performed in March 2008 at the National Institute For Fitness and Sports located here in Indianapolis. It was done on the bike.

    My Anaerobic Threshold was at a heartrate of 125 beats per minute and VO2 (ml/min) was 1678 and VO2 (ml/kg/min) was 17. Max nunbers were 162/3062/32 respectively.

    Max heart rate was 162.
    What is better than getting your heart rate up and saddle time?

  14. #14
    Dan J chinarider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dekindy View Post
    I found out that one of the guys my age that used to race averages 20 bpm more than I do during a 30-mile training ride. In fact, his average bpm on a training ride is near my maximum heart rate.
    This is meaningless. MHR is an individual characteristic and has nothing to do with fitness or ability. You just have to know it if you're going to base your zones off MHR.

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  15. #15
    Senior Member Garfield Cat's Avatar
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    By the way, how much money does it cost to get the VO2 testing done?

  16. #16
    Senior Member Smallguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by umd View Post
    I took the OP and changed the numbers for my test...

    My Anabolic Threshold was at a heartrate of 162 beats per minute and VO2 (ml/min) was 3600 and VO2 (ml/kg/min) was 53. Max nunbers were 181/4340/66 respectively.

    The resistance was increased in 25 watt increments and my instructions were to keep increasing the resistance as long as I thought I could go for at least one minute at the next highest level. I maxed at 400 watts and may have been able to continue at the next level for a few seconds but not much more. These results put me in the "superior" fitness range.

    I also did an RMR test, my avg VO2 was 249, my VCO2 was 238, and my resting caloric expenditure was 1714.
    I know you do train with a quarq but do you also observe your HR on rides too ?

    do these numbers add up with how you feel when your monitoring your HR

    reason I ask is I'm wondering if the polar units or any commercially available HRM are very accurate ?

    I know max is not way to determine performance ability but I'm 29 and it is not uncommon for me to hit a high 180 HR off road on my MTB I hit 187 the other day hammering a climb and I tested mt LTHR to be 172 in the spring using Friel's TT test

  17. #17
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    The low max HR during the test could be due to several factors. Motivation is one of them; to actually measure VO2 max, you really do have to work very hard. We're talking higher RPE's than you're used to sustaining. So, a lot of these tests are self-terminated before maximal oxygen uptake is actually reached.

    To give an idea just how inaccurate the 220-age formula is: the standard deviation is +/- 10 beats. That means only 68% of people fall within 10 beats of 220-age. For the OP, if you've seen 169, we'll take that as your max (though it's probably higher). 220-age = 171. Fine and dandy, and 162 (which someone suggested was low) would even be within 1 standard deviation.

    One formula I've seen that is supposed to be better for older adults (this and 220-age) is 208-.7*age (r=-0.9). Your heart doesn't really drop off as fast as one bpm per year, and the two diverge as one passes age 40. It's always more meaningful to measure when possible. The estimations are really for use in estimating VO2 max.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Garfield Cat View Post
    By the way, how much money does it cost to get the VO2 testing done?
    At National Institute Fitness and Sport here in Indianapoolis it is $105 for nonmembers and $75 for subsequent tests if you bring in the mask that you purchased as part of the first test price. Member prices are cheaper.

    The local university charges $35 which covers lab fees for blood testing. Student labor is free since it is required for their course and they are looking for subjects. However I was not called to schedule an appointment for this Fall and will have to wait until Winter term. I don't know if it is first come, first served and they ran out of slots before they got to me or if the information that was forwarded to them by my guy at the bike shop just did not get there properly. He is checking.
    What is better than getting your heart rate up and saddle time?

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