No time to exercise today, alas, due to late rising plus complicated work commitments - but I did have a very interesting session yesterday at the cardiopulmonary clinic doing the CPET. The technician was lovely & printed me out all the results, though most of the tables are too complex for me to interpret - I will have a consultation with the doctor next week once he has had time to peruse them.
It seemed complimentary that the doctor was using one graph to explain to the technician that this particular fall-off pattern is seen in elite athletes!
Most of the data I have are not really keyed to exercise physiology needs per se (I rode the cycle ergometer for 17 minutes, the peak work rate was 210 watts at 171bpm [not bad but it can be much higher than that with more training!], the maximum oxygen uptake or VO2 peak was 3.607L/min.). But the technician took a look at all the numbers and gave me what I really needed, and what will be very useful to me for Ironman training this summer, as this sort of endurance training is almost certainly best done using the HR zone system.
I have been casual about implementing such a thing, and mostly exercise on perceived effort with the HR monitor as an additional aid - but really I'm going to get serious about HR monitor training this summer!
So I can sub in this test for the tests I would have had to do on my own to get approximate cycle-specific anaerobic threshold - the guy said I could use 160bpm (I can't remember now if he said what wattage was there - 180?). This fits with the much clearer subjective sense I have of my running numbers - I have been using 167bpm as LT for running.
(These numbers are sport-specific, though they will be broadly correlated - it is common to have a gap of 10bpm or so between cycling and running LT, for instance. You don't need to work the numbers this way for swimming because the pace clock is such an excellent training tool! I'm going to do Gale Bernhardt's swim pace test sometime in the next couple weeks - that definitely needs to be repeated every six weeks or so in hopes of improvements in speed...)
So here are my numbers for this season's training (I might retest in 6-8 weeks, but I would think these are good enough to use for this year & unlikely to move much in the short term - how often do you guys retest over the season, and do the numbers change significantly, or do you find they basically settle in around a predictable set of numbers?):
Zone 1 (recovery): 105-129
Zone 2 (aerobic): 130-143
Zone 3 (tempo): 144-148
Zone 4 (sub-threshold): 149-159
Zone 5a (super-threshold): 160-163
Zone 5b (aerobic capacity): 164-169
Zone 5c (anaerobic capacity): 170-175
Zone 1 (recovery): 111-141
Zone 2 (extensive endurance): 142-152
Zone 3 (intensive endurance): 153-159
Zone 4 (sub-threshold): 160-166
Zone 5a (super-threshold): 167-170
Zone 5b (anaerobic endurance): 171-177
Zone 5c (power): 178-185