is the gold standard of fitness evaluation and has been for decades. Aside from determining levels of fitness, a VO2 max test provides a wealth of pertinent information associated with training concerns.
For years, professional athletes have depended on the results from these tests to establish their training protocols for endurance, speed, power and weight management.
So what exactly is a VO2 max? As the term implies, a persons VO2 max represents the maximum amount of oxygen the body is able to process in milliliters per minute relative to body mass measured in kilo’s (a kilo is equal to 2.2 pounds). The equation is depicted like this: VO2/Mils/Kg/Min.
Why is this important? The more oxygen that your body can consume, the more energy it is able to liberate to perform work. A key point to consider is that energy from fat is released in the presence of oxygen. This is why endurance athletes seek this information. An average person stores in excess of 70,000 calories from fat energy but less than 2500 calories from sugar energy. As exercise intensity increases an untrained athlete will shift from an “oxidative” state (aerobic – in the presence of oxygen) to a hypoxic state (anaerobic – in the absence of oxygen). In the absence of oxygen, the body reverts to its sugar stores for energy. In the example of a marathon, efforts that extend beyond a few hours, an athlete that is inappropriately trained can easily run out of energy and forced to walk, or quit!
How is the test performed? We perform what is referred to as a direct gas analysis marked with heart rate. The test typically takes less than 15 minutes to perform; is painless other than temporary discomfort associated with brief relatively high intensity exercise.
Do I need to get into shape before I take the test? Our response is simply this; the reason you take the test is to determine what to do moving forward with your training not to confirm that you are already in shape! If you feel out of shape now, you are going to bring that out of shape body into training, it’s best to know how to treat it. A VO2 max test provides you with the information you need to get the most out of your training regardless of your current state of fitness.
A VO2 max test is best performed in a task specific modality. If you are a runner, you should be tested running, if you are a cyclist, you should be tested on your own bike. If you are a triathlete, you should be tested on both the run and the bike as information between the efforts may by quite a margin.
An RMR (a measure of your resting metabolic rate) determines how much energy you should consume to: Manage your weight without sacrificing lean muscle, improve your energy for work and help you to shed excess body fat.
What is a Resting Metabolic Rate Assessment (RMR)? Much like the VO2 max test, the difference is, the test is conducted while you rest, generally in a fasted state in the early part of the day. The amount of oxygen your body draws in relative to the amount of CO2 your body releases. The test reports how many calories your body requires at rest and the percentage of fat vs. sugar your body relies on in a rested state. We use this information to develop nutritional meal plans. Depending on your specific needs, we may create a manageable caloric debt to successfully drop body fat. Or meals that ensure that you get the energy your body needs to perform at optimal levels in your training and racing.
As a result of testing athletes for nearly 2 decades, we learned that it is not so much what we know, but more what we can teach you. After every assessment we begin deciphering the data. We answer questions and make sense of the information gained from the assessment. We also explain how to set up a heart rate based training program, which is included in our price. Our goal is to make sure that once you leave you are excited about putting your new found information to work. Get ready to train and race!
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