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Development Team Member
Posts: 28
I'm going to make my first Step tests in few days and would welcome any advice on following options:
1) Is it better to do 5 minute increasing tests or 5-1-5 test?
5min increasing tests looks like similar to lactate tests that I was doing in the past.
5-1-5 seems like better option, but could take much longer time (1h+) - I have read that its recommended to take equal steps in speed, but is it possible to do first 10mins of warm-up at low intensity (6:00min/km) and then jump to something like 5:00min/km and then do something like 4:30, 4:15, 4:00, 3:50, 3:40?
2) I have 3 options where to do tests and all with Pros and Cons:
* Treadmill allows to use constant speed, but availability of fresh air is limited and usually that starts to affect performance on sub 4:00min/km speed or prolonged runs. I know from my training on treadmill that running on it does not reflect speed/HR profile of outdoor running.
* Outdoor running provides best fresh air, but maintaining constant speed is usually affected by road profile/wind/temperature this time of year.
* Athletic arena is kind of in the middle - it has adequate fresh air and I could easily maintain given speed.

With this is mind I was planning to do first 5min increasing step test on treadmill and then after few days perform 5-1-1 in athletic arena.

What do you think?

Thanks in advance!
Stuart percival

Development Team Member
Posts: 79
Hi Klortas

i will be starting some run tests soon so it would be good to get discussions active on here plus data and interpretation.

For me I was going to perhaps try one outdoors to begin with.
On a running track or similar

5-1-5 as the rest part gives lots of data to begin pinpointing limiters

I have a run power meter which I will use too but GPS and pace to control steps of test protocol initially with power a nice data set to analyse afterwards 


Development Team Member
Posts: 1,501
Start  with a  5min step assessment .
 D not  warm up   use the first 2  - 3 steps  as a  natural warm up .
 Now  first 5 min just calibration  standing on a sport. than start  with  5 min calibration. First  step 5.30  and than increase by 15 seconds every  5 min  till you  think that.s  it.
 We  need HR  and  if  you can RF  and NIRS on  your leg  and if you have a second moxy on an arm delta pars  acomialis.
 After the last step re calibrate  for  5 min.
 Bets o would be if  you can do it outside on a  flat stretch  somewhere in and out  for example or on a soccer field or  track.. The respiration is  easy to count as you simply count  your  steps  and how many breath per steps in and out  as one breath. Speed  over GPS.
 I f not  available  do it on a treadmill but  not as great  but as we  do not test  your  performance but rather assess   to  find your individual training intensities it really  does not matter that  much. 
Hope this helps. Than  sent  the csv  files  and HR.  Either  you can show it here or sent it  to and we  can discuss the  information on here  for all to see.

Development Team Member
Posts: 178
klortas, if you want to make the treadmill test more similar to outdoors make sure you have an incline of 1% as this helps adjust for the lack of air resistance.

Remember, as Juerg said, you are not trying for a Max VO2. You are trying to see what happens to your SmO2 and tHb at different levels, find performance limiters, etc. From day to day your SmO2 readings will be different depending on many factors. So you cannot assume that you will get the same results from day to day. However, a 5-1-5 test will give you an idea of how high your SmO2 can go and trends on what happens as you work at higher intensities. It will give you a possible zoning that will need to be adjusted from day to day depending on how you respond to training the day(s) prior.

Development Team Member
Posts: 1,501
Craig  thanks  for the  help  and here  a  small  inside look , why I  suggested some speeds.
 The idea is biased on the moxy datas  we got  from his run.
 Here a  closer look  on what I was looking for
first  the overalls picture and  explanation  what he mainly did in the sections,

grpah  of  different section of  wokrout.jpg 

Above   all MOXY datas So lets look  first  the reaction in his legs  created  by  his stretching section.

bias  stretch.jpg 

We  do not know  what  he did as  stretching ideas or  what  the goal of  the  type of stretching he  did was.
 What we see  in his   leg  reaction  is that he reduced   blood flow  and O2Hb  and  finally moved back  to base line

 The  next section biased  was his  6 min pace  section

bias  6 min pace.jpg

e have  the  normal expected  drop in O2Hb  and tHb  due  to  the not  yet sufficient  delivery over  CO  and VE  and the  immediate  min pace muscle  contraction  and therefor compression overrules  the   low CO.
Than after about +-  1 min  he starts  to reverse  the deoxygenation trend  ( more O2  used  than could be delivered  [wink] and no starts  to delivery more  than he uses and moves  up pretty much after  10 min  to base line +-

Than  he  shifts  to 5 min 15  pace. see below

bias 5 15.jpg

gain  but minimal deoxygenation section due to a  short time lag of  delivery  and higher O2  than delivered  but very  soon he  still shows  a higher delivery in this pace  than utilization  as well a nice increase in tHb. So  this is  still what we  would consider   in the OXY intensity. So  slightly  slower 5.30  pace  was my point   and I hope we  can see this  as he  would be 10 min   for sure in OXY intensity   5.30    for  5 min and  5.15  for  5 min and perhaps longer  but   we would have 2  steps in  OXY  . 
haha  Hope it works . as  we may have to chnage the theory  if not.


Development Team Member
Posts: 28
Thank you a lot for all the information!

I would do 5min increasing step test at first and then would see if I need new 5min test or 5-1-5 later.
Would start with 5:45min, so have enough time stretching muscles - then would increase it 15sec every 15min.

Track is probably not an option anymore - already have snow/ice there in the morning, but would check later this week again.
Probably would do run on treadmill with open window.

Thanks for 1% incline reminder.

Development Team Member
Posts: 1,501
A few more interesting points.
 The  1 %  idea and wind.
 1.There are many  fun  papers done on this starti8ng back to the early  1980 . It seems that in  is a point of discussion once you react a  speed  of  4.30 min/ kg. Any thing slower seem to have minimal impact.
 2. An incline in a treadmill can change the  way somebody  runs  form heel  to mid  foot or  forefoot  runner. due to the incline. On a treadmill as the " ground " moves  towards  you you more likely to  be  a mid foot runner as  a heel strike  would create more impact.

Now  more  fun  for me  is as I am not concerned  about  performance in any assessment  is  the idea, that you have  a hint of  speed  and HR  but sue  NIRS  daily  to  reassess and move  the   training goal into   the  intensity   we may choose.

Last  critical  point.
 a  Why  would you stretch before a  run  and what  is the goal  of stretching. As you can see on your  run you reduce    what ever you do blood flow  to your leg muscles. Is  that the goal ?

Development Team Member
Posts: 28
Yes - I have same view on 1% incline on treadmill. Per my calculations I put it to 1% if I'm running faster than 4:40min/km.

As for stretching - I do Lunge Matrix ( before each run for last 3 years. Mostly to warm up different muscles before the run.

Development Team Member
Posts: 1,501
Next time  you do the " warm up "  as per you tube  fix  the MOXY on our  gluteal  muscle or hamstrings.
 As you an see the   thB in the   quadriceps  did not really  confirm an increase in tHb  at all even not after the   warm up  5    exercises..As  warm up is  often a  systolic reaction you can fix  a MOXY  in an upper body muscle and see what is going on there. 
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