Threshold Test Results
Getting data is one thing. Understanding what it means is how to turn your data into actionable training plans is another. This guide is designed to help you better understand the power behind your individual data, what it all means and ultimately how it impacts your training.
We live to dig into the nitty gritty of training data so if you have questions, please ask!
Our data analysis starts as soon as your raw breathing signal is picked up from the expansion and contraction of your chest while wearing the SmartShirt + Pod. The number of times/minute we detect a breath gives us your breathing rate (BR) and the depth of each breath gives us the amplitude, also known as Tidal Volume (VT).
The total volume of air going in and out of your lungs is what we use to index the amount of work you’re performing at any given moment, and how efficiently that work is performed. It’s crucial to know the BR and the VT in order to determine your minute ventilation (VE). VE serves as an indicator that accurately reflects the metabolic work being performed.
Once VE is determined, it’s time to leverage it into actionable data to inform training, namely, ventilatory thresholds 1 and 2 (VT1 & VT2). The most important indicator of whether endurance training will be effective or not is if the athlete has accurate threshold information at their disposal. No matter what training protocol they subscribe to, they won’t receive the full benefits of that protocol without accurate data telling them at what effort level/pace to focus their training time.
The most accurate way to determine individual thresholds is by performing a threshold test. During a threshold test the athlete will systematically ramp up their effort starting with a very easy effort until they reach an effort that is no longer sustainable. From that test we can observe a nice, linear increase in power and other metrics such as heart rate (HR). VE however increases non-linearly and it’s at these inflection points that an athlete’s thresholds occur.
VT1 indicates the effort level at which the athlete is burning their highest ratio of fat compared to carbs making it the most efficient effort level they can train at to improve fat oxidation and mitochondrial growth.
VT2 indicates a point where the athlete can no longer sustainably utilize lactate as an energy source and it starts to accumulate in their blood. Training at this effort level can improve the ability to utilize lactate as an energy source and increase time until exhaustion while at a medium-high intensity.
Graph showing VE in time series with power stages overlaid to give reference to the ramp profile.