Testing testing 123 – Are you ready to be measured?

Testing testing 123. Are you ready to be tested? It’s almost the start of a new training block…… Which can mean only one thing – baseline tests! The word test evokes memories of school exams, pressure and discomfort which is why for many years after leaving uni, I probably avoided any form of testing for as long as possible.

But if you want to better yourself, move forward and progress at work or in a hobby, then you need to see where you are at and be accountable to someone or something. As a triathlete, that means testing 3 key measurements; FTP for cycling, CSS for swimming and LTHR for running.

Today was running and the LTHR test – lactate threshold heart rate. This is a method that allows you to calculate the exercise intensity where the blood concentration of lactic acid begins to increase exponentially. This information then allows you to set specific training zones for specific workouts, for specific purposes.

This morning it meant running flat out for 10 mins and then continuing to run flat out for a further 20 mins whilst measuring the average heart rate of the latter. Difficult to do as it’s gut wrenchingly horrible…… but far better than the full 60 minute test! My result was 171 bpm (99% of predicted max for my age) Will check but think this needs down grading by 2% to adjust for it being a 20 minute test rather than the full 60; different schools of thought on this. If I do I would come out at 168 bpm.

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