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Stephen A. Ingham, Barry W. Fudge, and Jamie S. Pringle

This case study observed the training delivered by a 1500-m runner and the physiological and performance change during a 2-y period. A male international 1500-m runner (personal best 3:38.9 min:s, age 26 y, height 1.86 m, body mass 76 kg) completed 6 laboratory tests and 14 monitored training sessions, during 2 training years. Training distribution and volume was ascertained from training diary and spot-check monitoring of heart rate and accelerometry measurements. Testing and training information were discussed with coach and athlete from which training changes were made. In the first training year, low-intensity training was found to be performed above the prescribed level, which was adjusted with training and coach support in y 2 (training zone < 80% of vVO2max, y 1 = 20%; y 2 = 55%). “Tempo” training was also performed at an excessively high intensity (Δ [blood lactate] 5–25 min of tempo run, y 1 = Δ6.7 mM, y 2 = Δ2.5 mM). From y 1 to 2, there was a concomitant increase in the proportion of training in the high-intensity zone of 100 to 130% vVO2max from 7 to 10%. Values for VO2max increased from 72 to 79 mL · kg−1 · min, economy improved from 210 to 206 mL · kg−1 · min, and 1500-m performance time improved from 3:38.9 to 3:32.4 min:s from the beginning of y 1 to the end of y 2. This case shows a modification in training methodology that was coincident with a greater improvement in physiological capability and furtherance in performance improvement.

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Stephen A. Ingham, Jamie S. Pringle, Sarah L. Hardman, Barry W. Fudge, and Victoria L. Richmond

Purpose:

This study examined parameters derived from both an incremental step-wise and a ramp-wise graded rowing exercise test in relation to rowing performance.

Methods:

Discontinuous step-wise incremental rowing to exhaustion established lactate threshold (LT), maximum oxygen consumption (VO2maxSTEP), and power associated with VO2max (W VO2max). A further continuous ramp-wise test was undertaken to derive ventilatory threshold (VT), maximum oxygen consumption (VO2maxRAMP), and maximum minute power (MMW). Results were compared with maximal 2000-m ergometer time-trial power.

Results:

The strongest correlation with 2000-m power was observed for MMW (r = .98, P < .001), followed by W VO2max (r = .96; P < .001). The difference between MMW and W VO2max compared with the mean of MMW/W VO2max showed a widening bias with a greater difference coincident with greater power. However, this bias was reduced when expressed as a ratio term and when a baseline VO2 was accounted for. There were no differences (P = .85) between measures of VO2maxSTEP and VO2maxRAMP; rather, the measures showed strong association (r = .97, P < .001, limits of agreement = −0.43 to 0.33 L/min). The power at LT and VT did not differ (P = .6), and a significant association was observed (r = .73, P = .001, limits of agreement = −54.3 to 20.2 W, SEE = 26.1).

Conclusions:

This study indicates that MMW demonstrates a strong association with ergometer rowing performance and thus may have potential as an influential monitoring tool for rowing athletes.

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Stephen A. Ingham, Barry W. Fudge, Jamie S. Pringle, and Andrew M. Jones

Prior high-intensity exercise increases the oxidative energy contribution to subsequent exercise and may enhance exercise tolerance. The potential impact of a high-intensity warm-up on competitive performance, however, has not been investigated.

Purpose:

To test the hypothesis that a high-intensity warm-up would speed VO2 kinetics and enhance 800-m running performance in well-trained athletes.

Methods:

Eleven highly trained middle-distance runners completed two 800-m time trials on separate days on an indoor track, preceded by 2 different warm-up procedures. The 800-m time trials were preceded by a 10-min self-paced jog and standardized mobility drills, followed by either 6 × 50-m strides (control [CON]) or 2 × 50-m strides and a continuous high-intensity 200-m run (HWU) at race pace. Blood [La] was measured before the time trials, and VO2 was measured breath by breath throughout exercise.

Results:

800-m time-trial performance was significantly faster after HWU (124.5 ± 8.3 vs CON, 125.7 ± 8.7 s, P < .05). Blood [La] was greater after HWU (3.6 ± 1.9 vs CON, 1.7 ± 0.8 mM; P < .01). The mean response time for VO2 was not different between conditions (HWU, 27 ± 6 vs CON, 28 ± 7 s), but total O2 consumed (HWU, 119 ± 18 vs CON, 109 ± 28 ml/kg, P = .05) and peak VO2 attained (HWU, 4.21 ± 0.85 vs CON, 3.91 ± 0.63 L/min; P = .08) tended to be greater after HWU.

Conclusions:

These data indicate that a sustained high-intensity warm-up enhances 800-m time-trial performance in trained athletes.