Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Training & Nutrition
Reload this Page >

Increase Ventilatory Anaerobic Threshold how?

Notices
Training & Nutrition Learn how to develop a training schedule that's good for you. What should you eat and drink on your ride? Learn everything you need to know about training and nutrition here.

Increase Ventilatory Anaerobic Threshold how?

Old 08-11-13, 07:32 AM
  #1  
GeorgeBMac
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
GeorgeBMac's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 2,061

Bikes: 2012 Trek DS 8.5 all weather hybrid, 2008 LeMond Poprad cyclocross, 1992 Cannondale R500 roadbike

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Increase Ventilatory Anaerobic Threshold how?

I started cycling about 15 months ago and have come a long way since that first 3 mile ride that darn near killed me. During that time my goal has been to simply ride 20-30 miles a day without pushing myself. When I felt tired, winded or over heated I stopped.

Doing that I've logged over 5,000 miles (100-150 miles a week spread over usually 5 or 6 days a week) -- but I still have significant limitations such as "Long" (over 35 mile) rides and hills -- as well as a general lack of energy. After riding I am just worn out.

A few weeks back I had a complete cardiac 'workup' and asked them about my lack of energy. Their response was that I had no physical limitations to worry about (everything looked good) but that to increase my energy I had to increase my "Ventilatory Anaerobic Threshold" because it was below normal. The numbers they gave me were:

Ventilatory Anaerobic Threshold (VAT):
18.9 ml/kg/min which occurs at 114 BPM
Ventilatory Max (PKVO2): 38.1 ml/kg/min which occurs at 138BPM
Max Heart rate: 161 (my calculated max using the 220 minus age formula is 157)

I have been averaging 112 BPM on my rides -- which ties in well with my VAT of 114.

They told me that my VAT is only 50% of my PKVO2 and the average is 60% -- but they like to see it at 70%.

After I got home I realized that they told me two slightly different things:
1) I should exercise "for longer period of time at or just above VAT"
2) "Increase your average heart rate to 120BPM. You can take the heart rate up as high as 138".

Since then I have been trying to get my average heart rate above 120BPM. But it's been hard -- partly because I have to work harder but mainly because I have to go faster than I feel safe on the crushed limestone trails that I ride (dodging kids, dogs, and other riders as well as avoiding ruts, snakes, rocks & gravel as well as soft spots).

So:
Is 120 "slightly above" my VAT of 114? (it sounds like more than slightly to me).
How do I get my heart rate up? It's no trouble on the uphill 1-2% grades -- I get my rate up into the 120's, 130's and 140's easily. But on the downhills it drops to the low 100's -- which negates the work going up.

On a harder, more intense recent ride I did:

Below ( < 59): 0:00 min -
Zone 1 (59-114) 9:48 min
Zone 2 (114-120) 12:39 min
Zone 3 (120-132) 19:09 min
Zone 4 (132-144) 20:17 min
Zone 5 (144-161) 20:00 min
Above (> 161) 0:00 -

On a more typical ride I did:
Below (< 59) 0:00 min
Zone 1 (59-114) 37:44 min
Zone 2 (114-120) 17:12 min
Zone 3 (120-132) 37:48 min
Zone 4 (132-144) 16:01 min
Zone 5 (144-161) 0:00 min
Above (> 161) 0:00 min
GeorgeBMac is offline  
Old 08-11-13, 01:06 PM
  #2  
gregf83 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 9,003
Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1057 Post(s)
Liked 181 Times in 109 Posts
Have you read any training books such as Friel's training bible? If you are riding 5-6 days/wk at the same intensity every ride it will be difficult to improve. You need to have some harder days and easier days. The tried and true method of raising your threshold power is to do intervals. Typical interval sessions could be two 20 minute efforts with 5 min rest in between (2x20). You can also do shorter, more intense, efforts intended to raise your VO2Max. These would typically be 3-5 min in length but significantly harder, i.e. 10-20% of your threshold power.

You can't do these efforts every day though so on easier days you might mix it up by going for a longer ride in your zone 2. One or two days a week could be recovery days where you ride very easy only in zone 1.

If you don't have some easy days you won't be able to go hard enough on your hard days and your progress will stagnate. Also as you get older you need more recovery and won't be able to do as many hard days in a row or during the week. You might start with 2 hard days per week.

Also, you need to find a better place to ride where you don't have to worry about kids and other obstacles. Can you ride on the road?
gregf83 is offline  
Likes For gregf83:
Old 08-11-13, 01:16 PM
  #3  
NealH
Senior Member
 
NealH's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Triangle, NC
Posts: 1,479

Bikes: S-Works Tarmac

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 182 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by gregf83 View Post
Have you read any training books such as Friel's training bible? If you are riding 5-6 days/wk at the same intensity every ride it will be difficult to improve. You need to have some harder days and easier days. The tried and true method of raising your threshold power is to do intervals. Typical interval sessions could be two 20 minute efforts with 5 min rest in between (2x20). You can also do shorter, more intense, efforts intended to raise your VO2Max. These would typically be 3-5 min in length but significantly harder, i.e. 10-20% of your threshold power.

You can't do these efforts every day though so on easier days you might mix it up by going for a longer ride in your zone 2. One or two days a week could be recovery days where you ride very easy only in zone 1.

If you don't have some easy days you won't be able to go hard enough on your hard days and your progress will stagnate. Also as you get older you need more recovery and won't be able to do as many hard days in a row or during the week. You might start with 2 hard days per week.

Also, you need to find a better place to ride where you don't have to worry about kids and other obstacles. Can you ride on the road?

Very well stated. And Pittsburgh has many hills (paved roads) so I recommend riding on roads. Excellent training ground.
NealH is offline  
Old 08-11-13, 02:37 PM
  #4  
Looigi
Senior Member
 
Looigi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 8,950
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 5 Times in 4 Posts
Friel's Cyclist's Training Bible is excellent. Carmichael's Time Crunched Cyclists is sort of a condensed version as well as a condensed training plan. Here's a pretty decent overview on the web : https://www.cptips.com/xtocdet.htm#trntips

You might look at the following to start with: https://www.cptips.com/trnoptn.htm
Looigi is offline  
Old 08-11-13, 02:49 PM
  #5  
GeorgeBMac
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
GeorgeBMac's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 2,061

Bikes: 2012 Trek DS 8.5 all weather hybrid, 2008 LeMond Poprad cyclocross, 1992 Cannondale R500 roadbike

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by gregf83 View Post
Have you read any training books such as Friel's training bible? If you are riding 5-6 days/wk at the same intensity every ride it will be difficult to improve. You need to have some harder days and easier days. The tried and true method of raising your threshold power is to do intervals. Typical interval sessions could be two 20 minute efforts with 5 min rest in between (2x20). You can also do shorter, more intense, efforts intended to raise your VO2Max. These would typically be 3-5 min in length but significantly harder, i.e. 10-20% of your threshold power.

You can't do these efforts every day though so on easier days you might mix it up by going for a longer ride in your zone 2. One or two days a week could be recovery days where you ride very easy only in zone 1.

If you don't have some easy days you won't be able to go hard enough on your hard days and your progress will stagnate. Also as you get older you need more recovery and won't be able to do as many hard days in a row or during the week. You might start with 2 hard days per week.

Also, you need to find a better place to ride where you don't have to worry about kids and other obstacles. Can you ride on the road?
Thanks -- I have heard variations of that before. But never stated that clearly. I will need to get a copy of Friel's book.

I guess I have been hesitating to delve into the hardcore training stuff because, frankly, I am not too overly concerned about my performance. I am mostly concerned about my overall health and well being -- so from that perspective, the question comes up whether I am better off riding at a moderate pace everyday vs fewer, harder days designed to build performance.

But, effectively, the cardiologist pretty much took the lid off and told me to go for it because he doesn't see anything stopping me except my fitness (which in medical speak is called "Ventilatory Anerobic Threshold").

I do know that since I've stepped up the pace I feel better. And I can now cut my whole (hilly) lawn without a break and walk up the steep hill to my house without getting out of breath. I haven't been able to do either of those things for many years.
... So, maybe it's time to give the Friel book a try... Thank you!

And, NealH: Yes you are right that Pittsburgh roads do have some nice hills. But, without getting out into the country it is hard to find a safe road to ride on. Most of the roads are busy and quite narrow without any birm and, too many Pittsburgh drivers do not think that they should have to share the road... So, for the most part it takes a pretty strong rider who is braver than I am.

... But I am seriously considering starting to ride the residential streets around my neighborhood to compliment the trails. I think that could be done more safely... Thanks for the suggestion.
GeorgeBMac is offline  
Old 08-11-13, 03:41 PM
  #6  
ericm979
Senior Member
 
ericm979's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Santa Cruz Mountains
Posts: 6,169
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Friel is kind of advanced for the OP's purposes. It's for racers. I'd suggest Tom Chapple's Base Building book.

Unless you have some sort of heart disease, which your cardiologist seems to have discounted, you can go as hard as you can stand. Your heart is not going to explode if you exceed a certain HR. If that's how it worked humans would not have survived long enough to invent the heart rate monitor.

For finding safe roads, try looking to the local cycling commute organizations or maps produced by city or county that show bike routes. And then you just need to get out and try it. Often what looks unsafe from the perspective of a driver who is not used to riding around cars is not that bad when you're actually riding it.
ericm979 is offline  
Old 08-11-13, 06:34 PM
  #7  
GeorgeBMac
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
GeorgeBMac's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 2,061

Bikes: 2012 Trek DS 8.5 all weather hybrid, 2008 LeMond Poprad cyclocross, 1992 Cannondale R500 roadbike

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Looigi View Post
Friel's Cyclist's Training Bible is excellent. Carmichael's Time Crunched Cyclists is sort of a condensed version as well as a condensed training plan. Here's a pretty decent overview on the web : https://www.cptips.com/xtocdet.htm#trntips

You might look at the following to start with: https://www.cptips.com/trnoptn.htm
Looigi, Thank You! The cptips article is excellent! It really takes this stuff out of voo-doo medicine and explains it in a way that is both understandable and logical... Once I understand something I can usually run with it -- so this is helpful!
GeorgeBMac is offline  
Old 08-27-13, 06:47 AM
  #8  
GeorgeBMac
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
GeorgeBMac's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 2,061

Bikes: 2012 Trek DS 8.5 all weather hybrid, 2008 LeMond Poprad cyclocross, 1992 Cannondale R500 roadbike

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Just a (happy) follow-up to this thread:

In a nutshell, in my original post I reported that, despite a lack of energy and climbing ability, a complete cardiac workup showed that everything (except my Ventilatory Anaerobic Threshold which occurred at a heart of 114BPM) was in good shape.

As a result, the exercise physiologist recommended that I increase my average heart rate on ride from 112 to above 120. And, the cardiologist suggested that I might consider taking 200mg of CoQ10 each day.

I started by increasing my heart rate and, after month I can honestly say that I feel better and stronger. The results were more apparent when I walked up the hill to my house and, for the first time in years I was not out of breath.

Then, after a month, I added CoQ10 200mg twice a day -- and the result was like a turbo charger kicking in! I discovered that my muscles no longer felt weak and tired and I was no longer exhausted after an hour and half ride. In addition, I found that I was going faster at a higher heart rate without even trying...

After doing some research, this all makes sense:

CoQ10 is a necessary component of aerobic metabolism by the mitochondria. If you have enough everything is fine. If you don't, aerobic metabolism is impaired. And Quantities of CoQ10 tends to be reduced in people who: exercise, take statin drugs and who are elderly. And, at 63 years old, riding 1 1/2 hours a day and taking Crestor, I fall into all three of those categories...

So, while I still have a long way to go to recover from 45 years of 60-70 hour work weeks sitting behind a desk, I am doing a lot better. The improvement went in 3 major jumps:
1) when I first started riding 18 months ago and made it about 3 miles before almost falling off the bike from exhaustion. That was followed by a long, slow improvement up to average rides of 20-25 miles a day.
2) Increasing the intensity about a month ago into the 120-130bpm range.
3) Adding the CoQ10 and everything feels a LOT better!
GeorgeBMac is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
shmy333
Training & Nutrition
31
07-16-19 07:00 PM
inspclouseau
Training & Nutrition
9
07-03-16 02:50 PM
scplus5
Road Cycling
54
10-04-15 02:37 AM
Campag4life
Road Cycling
79
05-18-14 08:49 PM
bents
Training & Nutrition
2
11-14-13 09:27 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.