Is that a threshold?

  • Creator
  • #44610

    pre-story: I bought both uphill-athlete-training-books and work through the 2nd right now. Wondering if and how much I suffer from ADS …

    I still haven’t found the time and motivation to do the specific tests you suggest, and in no way I think that they won’t deliver the requested results 😉

    Yesterday I did some fast (in my world) mountain tour: around 20kms in sum, with 1600m up, up to UIAA II … basically a mix of some more or less flat run in the beginning, then a hefty ascent of maybe 40 minutes (steep walk), then the easy climbing to the top (another ~40mins) … then descend and up to a 2nd peak …

    I did that in a rather fast mode. No pauses until 1st peak aside from putting the poles away and catching breath. So I assume I mostly moved at or around my lactate threshold when ascending, right?

    Somewhere (Friel) I read that cyclists use time trials over 5 or 10k for determining that threshold, is that appliable to the described workout as well?

    Additional info:

    My Garmin F6 (used with chest strap) tells me these times in zones (for the described run):

    Z5 11%
    Z4 17%
    Z3 14%
    Z2 22%
    Z1 30%

    yes, these zones are still only calculated around a lactate threshold of 156 bpm. I am unsure if the Garmin software took that out of my training history or however that came into the game. Tried their own test lately, with every 4min running faster .. came up into the range of 165-175bpm … slowed down and the watch couldn’t determine the threshold … oh my.

    Maybe I should mention and/or repeat: male, 46, RHR around 40 (some days I also saw 38), max HR around 175 (approximately, to be updated some day).

    Thanks for any feedback, today I try hard to not do too much and take it easy 😉

  • Participant
    Rachel on #44612

    it’s way easier if you do their Aet and AnT tests (instructions are on this site). AnT is an effort that you can sustain for 30-60 minutes (depending on your fitness, how long you’ve been training, etc.). Most of us do the 30 minute test I think. If you went hard for 80 minutes or more it was probably under your anaerobic threshhold.

    sgw on #44625

    thanks a lot @rachelp, you might be right that I could take an easier path here 😉
    Will try and report back soon.

    Anonymous on #44934

    Also, it’s too many different movement types to make any conclusions. Take the time to do a specific test.

    The quick and dirty approach is to do a 30′ time trial to find AnT HR. You can then assume, until proven otherwise, that AeT is <= 83%. That will feel so easy, that you will motivate to test it to find out.

    Anonymous on #44935

    Also, generic calculations from watches, apps, etc are a waste of time. Those are based on averages for a huge population that likely don’t apply to any one individual. Do a test.

    rich.b on #44953

    sgw – a bit of tangent from the question involved, but I would be curious what HR levels you sustained on the longer climb and on average? I am curious simply because most of the HR data others show in UA and elsewhere are very different from mine (such as thresholds beyond my max HR), and for once I see resting and max HR in line with mine. Resting for me is 40±2 and max is (probably) upper-160s now at 57 (tested at 172 in 2017), but upper-170s 10 years ago. Although these numbers are completely within the published ranges for long-term, well-trained masters runners, I have always found my HR to be 10-15 beats lower than other runners I know – a difference not age or training related. Obviously, HR is individual; hence why we need to assess our own values to be useful.
    On a steady uphill run with a final 1.2 km hands-on-knees steeper section done at good, but not all-out effort, I maintain a steady 140-149 average per km over 40 min (with max values in the steep section of 150-157). With similar conditions for a section of a race, I can sustain a bit higher average values 149-153 (also for periods as long as 40 min). By comparison for a flat run, I don’t break 100 until around 5:30/km, 115 at 5:00 (8 min/mi), and won’t hit the limit defined by Maffetone (180-age+5=128) until getting down to 4:16/km (most find they have to slow way down to stay below this level); these values were similar 10 years ago, so at least these HR vs pace values have not changed with ageing (although RPE is higher now at the faster end).
    Coming back to the initial curiousity question, do you experience similar HR ranges?
    And as Scott wrote, I don’t find Garmin’s algorithms to mean much. But I will admit I rely mainly on RPE anyway.

    sgw on #45089

    Thanks, Scott, I understand and will do.

    Currently I am on vacation and although I do quite some volume of hiking here (time, distance, ascent) the Garmin logic tells me that I am in recovery. Maybe.

    As far as I understand I am doing Z1/2 training right now 😉

    Maybe an hour of more anaerobic uphill later this afternoon, after 5 days of rather low intensity.

    Always a bit disappointing to learn that I have trusted some marketing speech (Garmin’s algorithms etc). But sure: they can only give some statistical range or so, nothing too individual (although they learn from my data).

    sgw on #45093

    I had edited my former posting, but that edit “disappeared” somehow.
    So I reply once more instead.

    @rich.b : thanks for your reply, a bit too much detail for me right now, I try to reread later and answer some of your questions.

    I also added my experience, that I already have the impression that my aerobic base seems to (have) improve(d): over the last days my HR mostly stays quite low while ascending. OK: more of a guiding situation -> waiting for the slower partner often. Anyway, feels better already (started low HR runs a few weeks already).

    sgw on #45429

    I tried a flat hour of running today as another try to do the AeT test.
    I was too fast, I know. The garmin app “Cardio Drift” also told me that the drift was more around 9%. So I will have to repeat that run at a slower pace.

    May I share that run with you guys, maybe someone can tell me something useful when looking at it:


    sgw on #45465

    I think I will do those 30min time trial asap. I already know the hill 😉
    Before that: back exercises, somehow managed to hurt my back a bit yesterday (or maybe it was too cold on the bike).

    Anonymous on #45524

    Hard to tell with the Garmin link. Other options:

    * Post a link to a Training Peaks session (which makes it easy to manually calculate); or
    * Split the Garmin file into only two 30′ laps.

    sgw on #45565


    here :

    I am surprised that Pa:Hr is only 5.18% there.

    I’d love to do another test asap, but currently I have to do more rest to let my back recover some more. Thanks for any feedback.

    EDIT: I am not as fit as usual these days, some personal issues lead to stress and bad sleep etc / that’s why that run might look even more stressful than it should be.

    sgw on #45569

    And another one from today:

    This was more of a time trial uphill exercise: ~30 minutes up, as far as I understand at around my anaerobic threshold HR, right?

    Anonymous on #45598

    Did you warm up first for both tests?

    AeT: There wasn’t much gain en route, but your HR dips several times. It’s probably a good estimate as is, but I’d be tempted to use a different course that didn’t cause the dips.

    AnT: HR rises steadily throughout. That’s good from a pacing perspective, but it would be ideal to see somewhat of a flatter plateau in the last 20′ at least. Similar to the AeT test, it’s probably close enough for now. (It’s good to test these things on an ongoing basis because they change.)

    sgw on #45613

    No real warmup, right. Just started slower …
    I will redo that flat run in the next days and try to follow your suggestions.

    So can you tell me numbers for the thresholds to use now?

    I have the next hike from today 😉

    thanks a lot

    sgw on #45675

    did another hike/run today:

    No time trial or high intensity, more of a nice sunday activity.

    As I was awake at 3am already I was dead tired at ~6am when I “wanted” to go for a bigger trip, then the weather was great, so I just went for the above round from home.

    I am always unsure if I over- or under-train. Maybe you guys laugh at my rather small volumes and slow pace 😉 but maybe not. Help welcome. I even consider buying (and following) a training plan in the near future.

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