Ever wondered why some training programmes work for some athletes and not for others? Why some people are genetically gifted athletes? Why there is a fixed set of intervals for all athletes? Why certain drugs work for some and not others? Do compression socks work? What the hell does a VO2 max test tell you, is it just useless information? Is lactate friend or foe? I delve into the sport science world and try to find the answers to train smarter and hopefully become a better athlete. This page is written in my own thoughts and words with a cross-pollination from several other sites and links to the original articles. Some of it might sound like a rant but it is written to make you think. So if you read it without a open mind then your in the wrong place. Enjoy and open your mind.

Friday, April 29, 2011

FaCT testing

I recently had some FaCT testing done to find my weaknesses. Here are some pictures to give a idea of how versatile and portable the equipment is. 

It can not be seen in this picture but under my shirt I have EKG pads that have a wireless link to the  computer next to me. On my right thigh under the cycling short is a phone size device (NIRS) that gives the tissue saturation information which is also transmitted via a wireless live transfer to the computer next to me.

On the left computer screen is the live hemodynamic feedback, middle computer screen is live blood flow and tissue saturation information, the orange grey box leads to the mask on my face which gives live respiratory info, and finally the small blue device is for lactate info.

Testing is done where ever you want to do it.

The mobile sports laboratory, doing a roller ski to compare treadmill and road results. The equipment has enough range to pick up live blood flow and hemodynamic info from the car following close behind.

The respiratory info needs to be carried in a back pack and can be analysed later.

Here some screen shots from some of the testing where all the information is looked at as a whole, and a better understanding of how each of the systems influences each other. Instead of traditional testing where conclusions are sometimes made based on one system only. 

The aim is to find the Limiter which we can then train so that there is a performance improvement where as traditional testing tends to look at how good you are, comparing VO2 and statistics to other athletes, how much wattage you can push  or testing running economy, all the traditional type test which help you very little in training and finding your weakest system.

From this one FaCT test I now have a much clearer idea of what my body is doing and how to train it than any of the previous traditional tests done over the last 13 years.

I was tested by Duncan Clarke who does level V testing, contact information for him and other test centers can be found on the FaCT Canada website.