Last Thursday I made the trip into Calgary to TCR Labs where I had my body comp. test and then the VO2 max test. Having dropped almost 10 lbs since last year at this time, I was very curious to see what my body comp. would be, and it turns out that I lost a few pounds in muscle, and am now down to 4.4% body fat from last year's 5.6%. I'm pretty happy with these numbers and the decrease in weight was evident in my VO2 max test which followed this one. The VO2 max test is to see how efficient the body is at using the oxygen that you inhale during exercise. So to do this, I wore this interesting piece of headware that made me breath through a tube, which measured the amount of oxygen that I was inhaling and exhaling, and had my nose plugged so that I could only breath through my mouth. I then got on a treadmill and ran at a 1% grade at speeds that increased every 2 minutes until I reached my threshold (basically until I started breathing very heavy and was getting tired). Then the speed was decreased by 1 mph and I started into the climbing phase of the test. This is the last part of the test where you run for as long as you possibly can while the incline increases by 3% every minute.
This was an amazing test for me, as it showed that I have improved my VO2 max over last year's 66.5 ml/kg/min to this year's 70 ml/kg/min. The test also showed that my heartrates are considerably lower this year than last year when moving at the same speed, which is a good sign that my training is paying off. And finally, the test showed me that I am stronger mentally than I thought I was, and I can take more pain than I thought I could, which is possibly the most beneficial knowledge that I got from the whole test.
Two days later, I completed the double pole test here in Canmore. Having been just on the verge of getting sick when I this test in June, I was definitely expecting to beat that time, and my goal was to set a new PB (which I set last year at just over 5 minutes). I ended up setting a new PB pretty handily at a time of 4:49, so I was very pleased about that. That afternoon was my last test, the sprint prologue test (skate rollerskiing). Having never done this test before, I didn't really know what to expect, and came out with a time of 3:33. Being my first time doing this test, I didn't really learn anything about my fitness level, but it was still a good hard effort.
I am now enjoying some much needed days off to recover from this past training block and prepare for the next one, which I have been told is going to be a very hard one. And I am very happy to say that today, Oct. 18th, was my first on snow ski of the year up at the Nordic Centre where they have a very nice, 1km-ish loop open.
Tomorrow morning I will be getting on a plane bright and early in Calgary and heading first to Guelph to spend some time with Jacquelyn and a few other friends who are going to school there. Then on Friday night I'll be heading back to Penetang for a 5 day visit with my friends and family. Can't wait!!
That's all for now, cheers!