Thursday, January 29, 2009

VO2 Maxing to the Max

Making pain is the name of the game: a morning at the Boulder Center For Sports Medicine in Boulder, Colorado.

Usually we push ourselves into that zone, for whatever reason, to tag onto a passing wheel, to bridge the gap, to reach the city limit sign first, to crest the summit ahead of the pack. But to do it because someone tells you to – well that’s just plain craziness. Yet here is Vic’s Espresso teammate Christy Orris voluntarily getting ready to follow instructions to go into the pain zone. Christy is at the Boulder Center for Sports Medicine having her LT/VO2 max levels tested.

Why you ask, to place a numerical value on pain. To make it real and measurable. To gain knowledge and become a better cyclist. To create a history and aid in creating a detailed training plan for her cycling year ahead. We are lucky enough as cyclists to have expert physiology testing available to us nearby at the well known Boulder Center for Sports Medicine. The staff at BCSM are highly trained, the equipment state of the art, and the facility professional.

I dropped in this morning as Christy was receiving a Lactate Threshold (LT) test, a measure of a maintainable “hour of power” as our teammate Neal Henderson, who is also the Sports Science Manager at the Center, had taught us to think of it. Tagged onto that test was the daunting VO2 max (maximum oxygen uptake) test, both were administered by Clinical Exercise Physiologist, Paul Kammermeier who offered guidance and monitoring throughout the tests.

Christy offered these comments after the testing, “just did my lactate/VO2Max test today. I did not meet with Neal yet so I have no idea how I did. I do know my finger hurts after getting pricked 10 times. It was hard to be motivated for the VO2 Max. You can bring your own music to play. I recommend putting in a song that pumps you up for the test. I think it would have helped me.”

Goes to show you a rider can enter that zone when personally motivated or by happenstance when going too hard, but getting there when someone tells you to – well that’s just plain craziness.

For more information on LT/VO2 testing from the best visit the Boulder Center for Sports Medicine it will make you a better cyclist. Read more about LT/VO2 Tests and Sports Physiology.

1 comment:

Brad Wallace said...

Wait a minute!!! Who smiles during a VO2 max test?
Why is that I think Christy had some off chart results?
You all are under 30 and professional "guy ass kickers" to boot
Oh man, What does my summer hold in store?
:) Brad