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Juerg Feldmann

Fortiori Design LLC
Posts: 1,530

One of the most  common questions I am getting now is the " reasoning" of the TIP  ( 5/1/5 ) or in other words:
 The 5/1/5  is a far too long test  and  many athletes  are not ready top  do in season a  test length like that.
I  try  to replay each single  mail  individually but I am getting overwhelmed  for the moment so I like to try to  get some  information here    and hope  the questions will be back on here as well.

 1. TIP or  5/1/5  stands  for  Training intensity profile.

TIP is NOT a test at all  it is  an assessment.
We  are not at all interested in predicting or  assessing an absolute performance  at all. ( You can do that if you like  but  for  what we look for  it is NOT needed.
You can shorten the TIP  to a  simple 5 min step test  with or  without  1 min rest in between.

The reason  we  do a 5/1/5  is  just  grown out of  many years of  testing  and the   understanding that physiological reactions  to be able to show  up  may need some time.
Simple example.
  You do a  all out  sprint.
 You  will have to quit  as your body will stop you. But you barely  will have started  to create  an optimal cardiac  out put  nor  do you barely have reached a  full developed  and efficient  VE. In fact  you will see, that your VE  may be  much higher after the  sprint  than  during the sprint ??
 Why ?
If you look in the same  case  ( sprint ) metabolic  reactions and how we   assessed  them , than it is even more extreme.

Here the dilemma  we  face , when we look at discussion with  lactate  and  actual value   we may have intracellular  and what we actually test in the finger  test or  ear lobe  test.
lactate post.jpg
Above is  an old  great  study done in the late  1980  showing the dilemma  when using lactate   in interval workouts   but as well in short step tests.
 What you see is the lactate trend  after 300 and 600 m   all out runs and lactate is  taken immediately after the run  and than  you have the horizontal time axis  with  1 2 3  and more minutes.. As you can see, that  lactate values  as well as the dynamic  of the lactate curve    after  a load is  very individual  and  hard to get a  grip on.
 There  is a huge  variation in time lag  and    when lactate shows  up in the  test equipment. Besides the loss of   lactate  during the  release in the working muscles  and the  time  we  actually may  see something in the  test area.
  Using NIRS  shows a very different pictures  , as  SmO2  drops  during the load  but as soon we  stop   we have  an increase    immediately.
 There is not  a time  delay in the f feedback of  SmO2  but rather  a time information, when we  are  re  oxygenated  and as  such  an indirect feedback on the situation of  CrP  refueling.
 So in many cases  like the above, when we have the highest lactate level like  the number 22 mmol after  about  10 min   shows in real live, that this athlete is  more  than ready to  load again, despite the highest  lactate level.
  Now when we  just look at step length , than  we know that 3  min  and even  5 min step length    are too short  for some physiological systems to be able  to  develop the  full ability  to be a part of a  team work  for  an optimal  physiological performance.
 So here one more interesting picture.

 Above  three  lactate test  with the same  athlete  but different protocols. ( 3 min, 5  min  and  a  5/1/5). What is the  "right "  protocol"  and  why  would we be able to argue  3  is better than  5  and so on.? True    we will be able in all three cases  to  create  an algorithm  or any statistic  and  calculate and  create a  LT  or  LT  1  and Lt 2  and so on.
We  than  have to make  the next " religious"  decision  and  use the  LT theory  from the   at least 25  " accepted "  LT  ideas  and believe  we have the right  theory  for us.
 Is that  exercise physiological science  or it it  a  desperate  attempt  to  defend  and or maintain a n idea  we are  stuck with, which changed  the behavior  of the bad  and ugly  and   destructive lactic  acid in our  body  to a  very great  and effective energy substance  and shuttle   device ?
 How  come that in  any  discussion I have daily  more an more people   immediately  agree, that lactate is  really great  as  an energy source, but   a  few minutes later they still design  lactate tolerance  training  and  try to  cool down to get rid  of lactate , even  argue  that at least lactate  will be a  direct feedback on the situation of the pH in the body ???

 Help   why is  that  for me  so   hard to  understand.
 At least   I hope you can see,  why it makes  for me  little  sense to try to force   information we gather with any NIRS  equipment back into  an ill defined  and at the time   interesting  concept of  lactate threshold.
 What is  wrong  to a perhaps review this idea  and  perhaps  at least  start to  carefully  assess the ideas we are all  pushed into  to believe  and to repeat. ?

 That is  why we  do a 5/1/5
  Here  another   interesting direct  reasoning.  see below.

2 test differetn MOXY information.jpg 

 Above is a  portamon trace  ( Courtesy  to  a great  out of the box thinking group   from Santa Monica  Ca) information and even if you are not  used  to look at this traces   you very easy can see, that there where 2  "organized" loads  during this data collection.
  One  was a step test  with a  longer step duration followed by the same step test  but shorter  step duration.
 Now  try to imagine if you are used  with lactate  what the lactate curve   would look like   in  the first  compared to the second  step test. ???

5/1 5/ is  for sure  not the gospel. It is  for us  for  now  a  nice way to  look at  the   reactions in the physiological systems  and  be  relative happy with the time  we give to the system  to see, whether they can still  react  and help  as a compensator  or  reach their  own limitation.
  The  1 min  stop  can be perhaps  short  or  longer . Why  one minute.?
 Because it is easy to look at the clock  and see,when the  break is over. We  do not have a decent  clear physiological  justification why  we choose  1 min. It is  just easier to  run an assessment.
 In fact  4/1/4  would be  even easier  as  you  can change  every 5  min the next  step.
 By  5/1/5  you have to concentrate a little bit more..
 So same weakness  as in  any   classical test protocol   we as well in a 5/1/5  assessment  use  time  and  the  time set  due to   organisational  points  and not due to physiological justification.
 The  1 min  stop  has   2 big purposes. 
 a)  If  we   move  for  5 min a  stable o load  e hope that the  different physiological system  had time enough to be a part of the delivery  and or  utilization process  of the team  (physiological body ).
 So HR  is up  ( CO  = HR x SV)    and RF   better VE is  up  to a level  needed  or demanded  to sustain  an optimal efficient  delivery of  O2  and   reduction or release  of CO2. We hope the   BP  and the vasodilatation effect  has  balanced in with the muscular compression effect  and so on.
. So  we run  an optimal  delivery or possible optimal delivery system    and we  run an optimal or   needed  utilization process.
. Now the sudden stop  will eliminate  immediately the   need  for O2  from the  before working muscles. but is  does not immediately  stop the   now  good running delivery systems.
 That means the NIRS reaction will show   how much we delivery ion O2  ( SmO2  goes up  and how much  muscle compression reduced  blood flow  when we  suddenly get rid  of  O2 consuming locomotion  muscles  and  muscular  compression.
 This sudden spike  can give a lot  of information.
  Now   after 1 min rest (  possibly to short )  we  now  have a  reduction in delivery CO  and  VE   and BP  and the sudden  start  again  has the  advantage, that we  need  now immediately  energy  ( O2  ) but we do not  have anymore a great  optimal CO  and VE  and we see, what the missing optimal delivery  has  for  a  reaction in tHb  and SmO2    at the sudden start of   demand or  O2  again.

 This reactions  give us  a lot  of feedback on  the  limitation and or the compensation of the delivery systems    and the  utilization  reactions..
 If  I than  repeat this 2  times  after the same load  I  get even more feedback out of  it as many readers by know  have picked  up.
 Summary .
5/1/5  is a start  into a new generation of physiological assessment  and  even small parts  of the 5/1/5  information can be used  daily when  we look , whether we may have recovered  from a workout  or a race we did yesterday. But  any  change  and constructive  suggestion  has  to flow into  an idea like this  to avoid    to  get suck now in  the new  directions of live  physiological workouts.

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