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Squats and achilles usage

My achilles problem, despite walking and biking, didn't seem to be an issue for those activities.

But I've continued squating through whole injury time, thinking that's not it.

Asked a trainer at gym if he thought it could be, and he said if ankle mobility is bad, it could be aggravating an injury, even though calf engagement isn't much. Well, both ankles have been twisted so many times through the years, besides the triple broke ankle, that I don't get much flexion from them. So it may not only be aggravating, but perhaps the cause too. As the bad left achilles one can flex slightly more, perhaps weight shifts over there on last foot of downward drop though I always looked balanced in mirror side to side.

Never could squat down with heels on floor like others, unless legs wide stance with toes really pointing out. Always thought, and it probably does, it had to do with longer thighs which are great for biking. But I did squats to work the quads, not for weight, so never did that wide stance nor toes pointing out that much.

Finally tested with just squating down no weight, and with max flex to ankle, I cannot get thighs parallel unless I'm holding on to something to keep from falling back. Now you put enough weight on my back, and while it may appear I'm still centered over foot, something is giving way to accomplish that.

So it appears my solution is merely to spread the stance and point the knees out more, which does allow me to go to parallel.

Or if quads is really my focus, get intent on not going all the way down and enhance quad use even more.

Or as I've seen, put a short block under the heel with forefoot on ground, allowing maybe enough range of motion to keep doing what I was doing. Why does that sound like a balance nightmare and potential AFV winner?

I'll have to see if wide stance feels like enough quad usage, but I doubt it. I don't think I've ever pulled back from not going depth, this is going to feel strange. 

Thought I'd share since some have asked how it was going. If that is indeed it, still have 6 weeks to train for half-marathon. Perhaps doable. With care. Keep me honest folks! 


Testing HRmax & VO2max with .... max treadmill test!

Got a race coming up and want to train smarter, not harder? Want to take your training to a new level, not just increasing mileage? Want to allow proper recovery from intervals and lifting without impacting the healing process but aiding it? Want to confirm your intervals are hard enough to be useful?

Perhaps you have been doing cardio for long enough you need a more serious test than this. 

And you want best stats for your better HRM that actually allows you to see and change them. 

So most of the good HRM's will allow you to put in your own HRmax, which is then used to figure out some zones for you, and possibly more important to eating enough to fuel a strong workout, to calculate calorie burn as decently as possible. 
Even if the HRM doesn't allow changing the HRmax manually, you can lie about your age to get it to change. And HRmax effects calorie calculation more than age. 
If nicer HRM, should even have stat for VO2max. Even the Polar's that estimate that figure from resting HR test, can be confirmed or improved upon by a real max test. 

So this is a standard maximal effort puke test (maybe puke, I don't). You should check with a Dr if you have any concerns. If you have been running for a year and can get up to max effort within 10-20 minutes or sprint up hills, this test is likely for you. If not, use the link above, or these links for sub-maximal tests.


This is a test that some gym treadmill's can handle. Some of them don't go high enough in % grade to handle it, but most can get up to 14%, which will be fine if your VO2max is up to 30 males and 35 female. If up to 20%, then fine up to VO2max 66 & 74. Or if not, you can increase pace to at least discover the HRmax stat.

So below is the site for the Bruce treadmill test, which is great for adjusting your training zones better. Because you can effect your VO2 max to some degree though genetics plays strong role, once you are a tad fit, you can't adjust your genetically set MHR, though you can keep it from lowering with age nearly as much.

For study stats or accuracy potential, see the Bruce tests here. There is a link after test info for getting your results. 

So you need a treadmill that will go up at least by 2% grade increments (NOT degrees, like 45, but % grade). Speed that can be set to 0.1 mph increments. 
An assistant will be needed that can adjust the speed & grade for you fast when needed, run a stop watch, and offer encouragement (or find a treadmill where you can enter in your own interval workout. A certain StarTrac model will do this). 
And of course a HRM, hopefully one that logs maxHR seen during a workout. 
Suggest testing the treadmill to confirm max grade, and which changes faster, grade or speed, since both need to increase pretty fast. Many won't do both at same time, so do quicker one first, which is usually incline since just 2%.

Then you do the following after a rest day when totally rested. If you don't do running, this will be limited usefulness. If you are not use to the inclines, perhaps spend some weeks walking/jogging them so it doesn't totally freak you out doing this the first time.

This test requires the person to run up to 21 minutes on a treadmill whose speed and slope increases at timed intervals. (21! should be simple, right?!)

The person warms up for 10 minutes walking level 3 mph. 
Then with person standing off treadmill, setup as follows. 
The grade of the treadmill is set to 10% and speed at 1.7 mph (2.7 kmph). 
The assistant gives the command “GO”, starts the stopwatch and the athlete steps on and commences the test. 
The assistant adjusts the treadmill grade and speed at the end of 3 min intervals as follows (total potential time 21 min): 
Speed mph- 2.5, 3.4, 4.2, 5.0, 5.5, 6.0 (kmph 4.0, 5.5, 6.8, 8.0, 8.9, 9.7) 
Grade % - 10, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22. 
The assistant stops the stopwatch when the athlete is unable to continue and records the time to the second. HRM should have the HRmax as a stat if a decent one, if not then look fast at what it is. 
Cool down walk for 10 min, stretch as needed, that incline is killer. 

So the table, if this formats right, would look like this. 

At Min___Speed mph___Grade_____Speed kmph 








21________nothing - congrats 

If the treadmill maxed out on grade before you maxed out your HR, you can still get your HRmax by increasing speed to next level, but the VO2max can't be calculated then.

Take your time to this link to get your results. You just did the Bruce treadmill test. 

Make a record of the date, weight, time to failure, and VO2max, and HRmax. You'll want to compare down the road.
Input your new info into your HRM. 

Even if your fitness level as measured by VO2 doesn't increase with training, as your weight lowers it actually goes up, because that figure is mL / kg / min. 

So as you put new stats in your HRM like new lower weight, you'll need to increase the VO2max stat, or do another test, which is only useful every 6 months. But you can lose a decent amount of weight in that time.

To normalize VO2max mL/kg/min to a non-weight based VO2 L/min, do the following and record with your results: 

VO2max you got as result x weight in lb's x 0.0004536 = VO2 L/min. 

When you lose weight, merely take that VO2 L/min / 0.0004536 / current weight in lb's = new VO2max mL/kg/min to put in HRM. 

VO2max you got as result x weight in kg's / 1000 = VO2 L/min. 

When you lose weight, merely take VO2 L/min x 1000 / current weight in kg's = new VO2 max to put in HRM. 

If you have the spreadsheet, you can also do this on the HRM tab, top right side. Tested VO2max and weight, current weight in HRM stats section, and new VO2max figure is shown. Now, what if you are doing cardio endurance, or want to maximize intervals, then you'll want to train to HR zones, and while having a tested HRmax is good, it's better to use the Heart Rate Reserve Zone method, which uses resting HR along with it.

This can help in doing Active Recovery HR zone for any cardio using the same muscles as what you lifted with day before, get blood flow but add no additional load, sadly called Fat-burning zone in table above. Proper HIIT would be in Max zone for 15-45 seconds, and recover in fat-burning zone for 3 x as long 45-135 seconds. Other intervals could be in Anaerobic zone for 1 min, with recovery in lower Aerobic for 1 min.

Next step to improvement would be figuring out your Lactate Threshold by field test and training to HR zones based on that best method. That's the next blog. Then after that, perhaps combining the 2 for your own personalized formula for better calorie burn estimate, needing just avgHR and time of a workout.


Reduced metabolism/TDEE beyond expected from weight loss

So several studies have pointed to this effect of adaptive thermogenesis, some of which is expected. But found a nice recent one that covered several effects at once nicely.

First, the totally expected part. I'll try not to use the term metabolism as an all day type thing including all activities when that is really TDEE. Metabolism is mainly the lower level functions, some base and required though can be slowed down, some higher level functions like cell replacement for skin, hair, nail, muscle growth which can really be slowed down or skipped, and even higher level stuff like processing foods which probably shouldn't be considered metabolism normally, but some do ("kick start your metabolism by eating breakfast" misunderstanding).

Your TDEE is composed of your BMR (Basal metabolism) + NEAT (Non-Exercise activity) + TEF (energy burned processing food eaten) + EAT (Exercise activity).

If you eat less, your TEF burn (usually about 10% of what you eat) goes down, so TDEE goes down. So eating 2000 TEF is 200 of that, go to eating 1600 TEF is 160, so loss of 40 calories to TDEE, not much.

As you start to weigh less, NEAT and EAT (if pace & intensity kept the same) go down since you are moving less mass around, so TDEE goes down. What may happen though is you move more since you weigh less, and exercise harder. So perhaps no adjustment to TDEE, but probably lowering.

As there is less body mass for functions, the BMR will go down slightly. If mainly fat mass lost, not that bad since it didn't require much energy anyway (2 cal/lb a day). But muscle mass lost, while resting energy use isn't much (6 cal/lb a day), that lost muscle being used daily could impact TDEE badly. Along with less mass is perhaps less LBM which includes blood volume, less muscle is also less glucose stores (with water), and water management is a decent calorie burn too. So as weight goes down, BMR goes down somewhat depending on what is lost, and therefore TDEE will lower too.

So outside all those known and expected reasons for your metabolism and TDEE to burn less as you diet and lose weight, there is the one that could be avoided, and perhaps you want to avoid it to make maintenance easier.

And that is a drop in TDEE unrelated to any of the above, and is just the body getting more efficient with BMR, TEF, NEAT, and EAT altogether, metabolic adaptation is what it's usually called. Sometimes called metabolic damage, if you consider lower than what it was and could be damage, or merely the body doing what it has to do.

Here's the 6 month study in full if you want to dig in to it, I thought I'd point out some tidbits.

Participants had to be between BMI 25-30, overweight category, but healthy otherwise. They were excluded if they smoked, exercised more than twice a week, were pregnant, lactating or post-menopausal, had a history of obesity (BMI>32), diabetes, cardiovascular disease, eating disorders, psychological disorders, substance abuse or regularly used medications except for birth control. So that may have a bearing in comparison.

Diet was 55 / 15 / 30 for C / P / F. 

CR (Calorie Restriction) was 25% deficit from TDEE, so not massive.

CR + EX (EXercise) was 12.5% deficit plus 12.5% calories burned in cardio exercise 5 x week, each session being 403-569 calories for 45-53 min (women and men difference).

LCD (Low Calorie Diet) was 890 cal/day until 15% of weight was loss, then back to maintenance calories by month 3, whatever it was then. That's a tad massive

DEXA scans for body composition of LBM (Fat Free Mass (FFM)) and Fat Mass (FM). Sedentary TDEE measurements in a metabolic chamber for 23 hrs. SMR (Sleeping Metabolic Rate (BMR)) measured chunk of night no movement.

Several formulas related to measured Sedentary TDEE at baseline based on all available stats, to compare down the road when stats changed.

At 3 month check, sedentary TDEE had dropped by the following amounts, below what the formulas would have indicated for new measured LBM and FM, and SMR. In other words, it lowered the expected amount, and an additional...

CR - 371

CREX - 2

LCD -  496

At 6 month check, there was some recovery to be had, and reminder the LCD was at maintenance this entire time from 3-6 months...

CR - 209

CREX - 129 over expected

LCD -  275

So notice that even after 3 months maintenence level eating, the initial LCD group still had a TDEE 275 below what was expected for their current LBM and FM. Perhaps more time at maintenance it would have recovered?

The CR group slightly recovered, but still 209 lower than expected. 

The CR+EX group actually had an increased TDEE.

Now that was Sedentary TDEE in the lab that was compared.

Daily TDEE with all activity was also compared to their SMR, TDEE/SMR for physical activity rate (PAR).

At month 3, CR and LCD had significant drops in PAR below what would have been expected for their current LBM and FM, by CR 350 and LCD 497, with CR-EX having none. At month 6, CR 215 and LCD 241, so again some recovery.

So the NEAT part of their day decreased as expected because of lower weight, but even more than expected because of less movement, resulting in lowered figures above.

So, that is how much their TDEE dropped along with their lower eating level and weight.

Now imagine during your weight loss, is your TDEE being lower going to help or hinder you for sticking to an eating level? May depend on how little you really want to eat.

They lost in total CR - 8.3, CR-EX - 8.4, LCD - 11.2.

So while the LCD did lose the most (in 3 months too compared to 6), their TDEE had only recovered from 496 to 275 below what it could be, perhaps more recovery was coming. So no wonder the first few months of maintenance could be the hardest, you have the most suppressed metabolism then.

And notice that even the great results of the CR-EX group, still meant 8.4 lbs in 6 months of dieting, with a 25% deficit in essence, 12.5 created by diet, with additional 12.5 by extra exercise. But no loss of TDEE, in fact increase, and mere decent level of cardio.

Other point to keep in mind - no more than 2 x exercise a week was being done prior - so they had a lot of room for improvement. No weight loss prior, so full burning metabolism. And in overweight range, not obese where these effects might not be so bad.

Thought it was interesting info to know. So when you are talking about metabolism slowing down, it's more correctly your TDEE slowing down with all the components of it to some degree, beyond what was going to happen anyway. And recovery to expected levels could be well over 3 months when at maintenance. They reference another study where it took 6 years to.

HBO documentary Weight of the Nation discussing similar study, and the hormones causing the above effect. 

Here is another study reference alot like the one above, this one trying to come up with a formula to take in to account this more than expected downgrade in metabolism/TDEE. 

Gobbler Grind Marathon followup

Love when they have free course photographer. Of course you have to find yourself, but you find many other things too.

How cold was it?

Start 12 F and got up to 22 F by 12:30 pm with sun shining. Of course in shade of trees on bike/hike path in creek valleys, it was usually cooler than that. 

The cold had several bad effects the race director wasn't prepared for I think. Either volunteers were short anyway, or they didn't come when it was that cold. Combined with frozen water at aid stations made for waiting in line for water. My total weight time all along the route, some was getting my own water out of container, was 8 min. Also most of the cups filled by shaking hands was 1/4 to 1/2 full, not nearly enough every 2 miles for still sweating as I was. And not nearly enough for the energy gels I was taking that need water with them. Those started about 1.5 hrs. And lack of heat in belly and no digestion set up some bad intestinial issues later on. Suggestion, don't wait to find the PP hoping it will go away - it won't and you'll just be going slower than needed for longer. Of course that slower pace probably helped with fact I had no replacement sugar, and didn't hit the wall or cramp up anywhere. Half-ironman was worse than that.

There was a police officer doing his 52nd marathon in 52 weeks for supporting Sunflower House. They said look for his number, of course 52. So many people, and figured he'd be way out in front, I'd never see him, wondered why kind of recovery must be needed to do that week after week. Never saw that number on the 2 out-and-back sections that totaled 13 miles, though spaced out several times. Well, in looking at how long the free photographer stuck around, I found him.

Interesting how efficient I look, like I'm not even moving. Which is almost the case. -;0

Well, there I am, and no, not 9 hrs, 4 hrs. Don't know if that's temperature issue, or designer never looked at a calculator to know how to make a 4, the 1's are screwed up too. Bob above came in just a tad behind me.

Marathon Results - 4:15:25 - 82nd out of 163 total. 65 out of 101 males. 12 out of 21 45-49 age group.

Now to dig through and see how many younger one I did better than. I know I passed about 5 on the road that must have gone out too quick and where walking. 

Marathon training program with reduced time

Short marathon training - 6 weeks if you include the taper week, which isn't really much training that week.
Considering I did a half-marathon at the end of a half-ironman triathlon Sep 3, not totally out of shape.
Kicker is focus has been on a Century bike ride that happened 10/13.
Training schedule for Gobbler Grind Marathon 11/24.

2 rest days per week. Swimming is extra rest day for lower body if I can do it.
Active Recovery HR zone is used for workouts following a hard effort. 
Aerobic HR zone used for efforts with rest day following.
Weekend run is distance based, weekday runs are time based.

1 24 period with 24 miles running, 3x 8 miles.
1 feet-time workout with expected marathon time spent on the feet.

17 - Run 1 hr 6 m aerobic
20 - Run 9 m aerobic 1.5 hr & Bike 1 hr
Total hours - run 2.5, bike 1 hr
Total miles - run 15
21 - Lift upper body
23 - Run 1 hr aerobic 6 m
24 - Hill sprints 1 hr 4.5 m
26 - Bike 1 hr
27 - Run 12 m aerobic 2 hr & Bike 2 hr
Total hours - run 4, bike 3
Total miles - run 22.5
28 - Lift upper body
30 - Run 1 hr aerobic 6 m
31 - Hill sprints 1 hr 4.5 m
2 - Bike 1 hr
3 - Feet-time 22 m aerobic 4.25 hr
40 min walk
1:10 run 7 m
35 min walk
1:10 run 7 m
40 min walk
Total hrs - run 6.25, bike 1
Total miles - run 22.5
4 - Lift upper body
6 - Run 8 m tempo 1.25 hr
7 - Run 8 + 8 m tempo 1.25 + 1.25 hr
9 -  Bike 1 hr
10 - Run 15 m aerobic 2.5 hr & Bike 1 hr
Total hrs - run 5.25, bike 2 hr
Total miles - run 39
11 - Lift upper body
13 - Run 1 hr aerobic 6 m
14 - Hill sprints 1 hr 4.5 m
16 - Bike 1 hr
17 - Run 18 m aerobic 3 hr & Bike 1 hr
Total hrs - run 5, bike 2
Total miles - run 28.5
18 - Lift upper body
20 - Spin 30 min recovery & Swim 30 min
21 - Spin 30 min recovery & Swim 30 min
24 - Gobbler Grind Marathon 26m 4hr
Total hrs - run 5
Total miles - run 32

27-29 - camping trip

Updated spreadsheet - Q & A

To explain how the Activity Calc improved, I'll need to explain how it used to work. And any general questions can be answered too.

Simple Setup tab Activity Calculator was totally based on method found in several studies that found much better accuracy over the 5 level TDEE table. Just as that table is based on BMR x activity factor, these studies also used BMR x activity factor x minutes.

You've perhaps seen the site, or the site that used radio dials, or couple others, you deal with minutes per day, trying to figure out if you are picking a standard day to get a TDEE figure on. And those used 5 different levels of activity type, from sleep to heavy activity. Rather detailed, plus 1 day rarely equaled the other days in a week.

For the spreadsheet I picked a sedentary with no exercise foundation to build upon, with activity factor 1.25 x BMR. I then let you enter in hours per week for increased work activity, and minutes per week for exercise activity. The different levels had different activity factors x BMR. The week averaged back to daily.

But I did not stick with the study's activity factors for exercise, which were based on healthy weight folks, and therefore lower BMR. Which was not correct when you weighed more and underestimated more as weight went up. So I took 2 extreme examples of low (1000) and high (2400) BMR, looked at how much they burned actually doing the stated walking speeds for the levels I used, and of course had to take an average of everything to get a BMR activity factor. But it scaled much better using same method as study did. But the farther away from average BMR yours was, the worse the inaccuracy. Lower BMR, over-estimated calorie burn, higher BMR, under-estimated calorie burn. Only talking 80 calories/hr either direction at high cardio at highest and lowest BMR. But lots of activity could make it worse over a week.

The other problem with the old method, if you were able to retain LBM and mainly lose just fat mass, your Katch BMR would actually stay the same. But if you weigh less, you actually burn less moving the same pace. So the whole goal of the spreadsheet, maintaining muscle mass and LBM, starting giving over-estimated calorie burn the closer you got to goal weight while maintaining LBM, and under-estimated when over weight. Again not talking a great amount, unless you had a lot of activity weekly.

So how does the Activity Calculator work now?

So the same foundation of sedentary desk job is still built on top of with increased daily work activity, and exercise activity. Still a weeks worth of activity averaged back out to daily level.

Studies, and now FitBit and BodyMedia and others, show that sitting and standing time is best represented by your BMR, actually RMR if awake (some of them don't do it right). So the increased work activity with standing/moving slightly is RMR x 0.5. The very active work day is based on walking about 2mph, which is what the study BMR activity factor matched.

The exercise levels are now based on your current weight. So if you have a lower than expected Katch BMR because of low LBM from bad past diets, but actually a high weight, you do burn more and this new method will correctly show burning more. Also means if you lost weight but maintained or increased your LBM, you get less calorie burn then you used to. May not be much, could be a lot, just depends on how much exercise and what type.

Weight lifting is also weight based now, with what some studies showed for direct calorimetry measurements of strength training. 

To emphasize getting the right activity level for exercise if you have a variety, suggest testing treadmill speeds at  walking 4 mph with HRM if you have exercise that might be between medium and high cardio. If your normal workout's average HR is higher or lower than that, you know what exercise level it is.

Those cardio levels were picked because each is almost double the calorie burn of the lower level, so major hops. 

The TDEG recommendation is still based on studies and what should help maintain muscle mass, along with protein recommendation. Strength training is of course recommended.

Any questions on above or at all, let me know below, or in the wall posting for this blog.

2nd Annual HeyBales Half-Ironman Triathlon - Sep 2

So I was hoping to get another triathlon in this season, but alas the only semi-local half-ironman (70.3) was the same weekend I already had unchangable plans.

So just going to do it myself.

This event is not sanction by Triathlon USA organization, it has no chip timing, it has no support, no t-shirts, no finishing medals, no aid stations.

Timing and distance confirmation are provided by a Garmin 310XT and having done the route several times in training and last year.

Monday Sep 2 is the last day the public pools are open so at least the swim can be done in 25 meter pool, rather than gym's 50 ft pool. It is also a holiday, so no work. If it's raining, there will be a postponement, which is one positive of a self-done race. 

The swim start is about 1pm, and is an out-and-back course basically, done 39 times though, for 1.211 mile.
There is a bathroom on the way to the transition area - which is the back of car.
The bike route is a big loop with one section double looped, for 56 miles. There is a convience store at about mile 26 & 40.
Transition area is again back of car.
The run route is 3 loops, for 13.1 miles. There is a convience store at about miles 3 & 7 & 11 for water bottle refill.
End of race assistance is several fast food places on the way home, probably Fazolia's Classic Sampler for the carbs.
Course closes when last person comes in, hopefully in about 6.5 hrs, by 7:30 pm.

Map links.

If you can think of suitable way to have a t-shirt or better yet a medal, let me know.

Any are welcome to join, or create your own challenge to reach out for.

Long Distance Triathlon 7 week training program

Mainly for my own reference, but might find it useful too.

Training schedule for Lawrence Triathlon 7/21 - International Course Swim 0.93, Bike 24.8, Run 6.2 (1.5 / 40 / 10 K).

I don't think this is overduing anything. Hardest will be Tue am swim, and Wed ride but I can do Spin bike if it rains. 

Side goal, lose the 10 lbs from 2 bulking months. Be at lighter weight this year than last. Still going to attempt eating at sedentary TDEE (which I am without exercise) and let exercise create deficit. But I don't think it'll be enough, so lifting days may have added cardio. 

Sat & Sun may be reversed due to weather or other activity.

27 - Full body lifting
28 - Swim 33 laps, Run 3 miles recovery
29 - Bike 60 min
30 - Upper lifting, hill sprints
31 - rest
1 - rest
2 - Run 60 min aerobic
Total hrs - bike 1, run 2.25, swim 0.5
Total miles - bike 17, run 13, swim .62
3 - Upper lifting, hill sprints
4 - Swim 33 laps
5 - Bike 60 min
6 - Swim 60 min
7 - rest
8 - Bike 40 miles
9 - Run 60 min aerobic
Total hrs - bike 3.5, run 1.75, swim 1.5
Total miles - bike 57, run 10, swim 1.8
10 - Full body lifting
11 - Swim 33 laps, Run 3 miles recovery
12 - Bike 60 min
13 - Swim 60 min
14 - rest
15 - Bike 40 miles
16 - Run 60 min aerobic
Total hrs - bike 3.5, run 1.5, swim 1.5
Total miles - bike 57, run 9, swim 1.8
17 - Upper lifting, hill sprints
18 - Swim 33 laps
19 - Bike 60 min
20 - Swim 60 min
21 - rest
22 - Bike 40 miles
23 - Run 60 min aerobic
Total hrs - bike 3.5, run 1.75, swim 1.5
Total miles - bike 57, run 10, swim 1.8
24 - Full body lifting
25 - Swim 33 laps, Run 3 miles recovery
26 - Bike 60 min
27 - Swim 60 min
28 - rest
29 - Bike 40 miles
30 - Run 60 min aerobic
Total hrs - bike 3.5, run 1.5, swim 1.5
Total miles - bike 57, run 9, swim 1.8
1 - Upper lifting, hill sprints
2 - Swim 33 laps
3 - Bike 60 min
4 - Swim 60 min
5 - rest
6 - Bike 40 miles
7 - Run 60 min aerobic
Total hrs - bike 3.5, run 1.75, swim 1.5
Total miles - bike 57, run 10, swim 1.8
Mon - taper week, eat at TDEE
8 - Full body lifting
9 - Swim 33 laps, Run 3 miles recovery
10 - Bike 60 min
11 - Swim 30 min
12 - rest
13 - Walk
14 - SMT - S 0.62, B 18, R 4.5
Total hrs - bike 2, run 1.25, swim 1
Total miles - bike 34, run 7.5, swim 1.2
15-17 - walk only 
So above schedule was for another Tri, and I changed to a longer one a week later, so that taper week was later, repeated other week.
Didn't meet all the goals, but finished strong and walked normal the next day.
Bike 19 mph avg, run 8:30/mile avg. 

Accepting lowered BMR, RMR, and TDEE, bummer less eating

Well, I'm finally willing to admit defeat or acceptance that my metabolism is indeed lower than expected.

Part of my VO2max test back in 7-11-12 was a base line reading sitting for 5 min, so not even a true Resting MR test for 15 min, but I figure I'll at least go for that.

Prior to that I had based my BMR on Katch and measured Bodpod reading for LBM and BF.

So at the time that BMR was 1799, and TDEE and eating goal based on that number.

But the actual lowest reading sitting there was 1.22 cal/min based on measured usage of O2 to burn the fuel I was burning, or RMR of 1757, which means BMR is even lower.

So took the RMR / LBM at that time, and took that x current LBM from another recent Bodpod, since I increased LBM during weight lifting month.

RMR still only 1781, meaning a BMR of 1628.

My TDEE and eating goal has still been based on LBM with Katch BMR of 1820.

Almost 200 inflated from what I really know it is. And hence would explain why with only a 12% deficit on about 2700 avg TDEE is actually not giving me much or any real deficit from better estimated TDEE.

So to confirm, prior to the RMR test, I was eating at level based on higher estimate, so no problem eating enough at that time, though my lower than reality exercise burns left me so hungry and I ate more.

And this actually can be expected if you get yourself very cardiovascularly fit, which I do very easily.

So now to eat about 200 less daily. Bummer.

So glad the skipping breakfast usually works. My own poor attempt at IF.

My VO2max test - what, why, how, HRM related info

Finally going to report on my VO2max test July '12, and provide some insight either for deciding if useful to you, or what can be gotten from it. Read as far down as you desire, details get better, or worse. Bottom section on HRM's might be interesting, though math is involved.

What it is.
So this is the treadmill or cycle ergometer test with electrodes for your heart and face mask for your breathing.
The results of the test vary by what they will tell you and push you to. Most will give you info on your baseline resting sitting level stats, the HR bpm point you cross lactate/anaerobic threshold (LT/AT, producing more lactic acid than clearing out causing "the burn"), the HR bpm point you reached VO2max and what it was, and if pushed your HRmax, then usually your voluntary lung ventilation capacity and what was reached during the workout.
They measure the expired gases, and of course the air is calibrated for what is in it going in. By seeing how much O2 and CO2 came back out, you can tell how much fat or carbs were burned by the oxygen used, therefore how many calories in that process.

Why it might be useful to do.
You are doing endurance training for anything that lasts longer than 90 min at a strong intensity, and want to improve performance. Specifically knowing your LT/AT level allows training to improve that point before too much lactate acid is going to shut you down. It also allows seeing from your VO2max HR what level your aerobic zone should be for endurance and to improve that. Both AT and VO2max can be improved quickly if coming from no cardio exercise, but after that initial improvement, gains can be hard to come by and require details to do it right.
For Garmin HRM's too, calorie burn info specific to you can be used on it.

How it is done and tips to good test.
When you find a place that does it, confirm you'll receive at minimum the following stats - AT HR, VO2max & HR, MaxHR.
At best ask if they can provide the following raw data in 20 sec or better increments - time, HR, VO2, VCO2.
Find out if they do a baseline reading sitting for 5 min, and what it would take to increase that to 10 min to really get calm and resting. That would give you an included RMR test if you can receive above raw data for it too.
Find out if you get choice of treadmill or cycle ergometer, and what is the ramping protocol. My first test was total walking, no running allowed, just getting up to 22% incline at 3.7 mph at end, with changes to speed and incline every 10 seconds. Second test allowed running so 22% at 4.9 mph, still changes every 10 seconds. Those are high or fast ramping protocols, trying to get to HRmax before you just plain get tired. There are some low or slow ramping ones, warmup walk, and then straight to walking fast or jogging, and every 3 min speed and incline go up constantly. Jumps are major, and you get to same point of failure. Hard to get useful HR data out of this method because of the jumps in effort.
Same alternate methods used on the bike.
The reason for finding out is so you can practice that type of workout to improve body's ability to handle it. My first test, I'd done no walking at 22% incline, and my achilles cramped up before I reached HRmax, even though legs had no problem yet. I later did my own slow ramping running test and found my HRmax on my own. They may limit the pedaling on cycle to 80 rpm, and you are used to 95 rpm, so better get used to it for more valid test.
Do NOT workout for 2 days before. My first test I worked out night before, second test triathlon 3 days before. Both prevented me from reaching HRmax, but the other figures were valid so it didn't matter that much to me. Also wearing headgear and wires may prevent reaching max.
Do NOT eat before the test, so schedule it in the morning. Metabolising food will skew the VO2/VCO2 stats invalidating the test.
And confirm you'd like the full test results and raw data mailed to you.

My results:
So my first test in Feb '11 - 203 lbs with clothes. This was 7 months after my triple ankle break, with 4 months of using it again and doing spin bike cardio during the first 3 months in a boot, so kept some fitness.
Max voluntary ventilation 140 L/min, peak during exercise 93 L/min (so lungs were not limiting factor, had spare air)
Anaerobic Threshold @ 171.
VO2max @ 178.
HRmax @ 178.
VO2max 44.3 mL/kg/min (adjusted for true tested HRmax of 194) 48.2

My second test in Jul '12 - 180 lbs with clothes. This was 3 days after Long course triathlon, so I knew too tired to reach HRmax, but it was the other stats I was after.
Max ventilation 180 L/min, peak during exercise 106 L/min.
AT @ 177.
VO2max @ 180.
HRmax @ 180.
VO2max 52.2 mL/kg/min (adjusted for true tested HRmax of 194) 57.0.

So lung function improved 29% voluntary forced breathing test, and 14% during exercise. So lungs are not limiting factor to getting enough oxygen.
AT improved 4%. Considering it was already 88% of HRmax, there wasn't much room for improvement, but got up to 91% HRmax now. Avg is 80-85% of HRmax.
HRmax didn't change in reality though I couldn't hit it in the test, but that usually doesn't change anyway except for dropping lower if unfit and getting older.
VO2max improved 18%, but that is not adjusted for weight. If I maintained and only dropped weight, the old VO2max of 48.2 mL/kg/min would become 54.4 at recent testing weight, so really only improved 5%.

Calorie burn info. (math)
So calories burned is totally related to the amount of oxygen used, so the data that can hopefully be obtained from the test can share some interesting results.
So the amount of O2 and CO2 in the air is already known, and machine calibrated to that. What you expire is measured and once subtracted from what was available, becomes the stats inhaled VO2 and exhaled VC02 (Volume in L / min). More CO2 than what is normally in the air indicates along with how much O2 came back out, shows how much O2 was used to metabolize carbs and fat.

So here is my own sample data near the top of my aerobic range, 89% of AT (177).
HR 157 - VO2 3.054 L/min - VC02 2.791 L/min.
If you divide VCO2 / VO2 you get Respiratory Exchange Ratio (RER), so 0.914. (0.707 is 100% fat burn, 1.0 is 100% carb burn)
The amount of calories burned per L of O2 is 3.8151 + 1.2318 * RER, so 4.941 Cal/L O2 in this case.
Since I used 3.054 L/min of O2, that means 4.941 * 3.054 = 15.09 cal/min.
Also from that RER, it is known what % of carbs was burned - RER^2 * -87.0843 + RER * 489.7265 - 302.6869 = 72% carbs.
Leaving 28% fat calories burned.
So this is how I measure my calorie burns for my workouts and report them (except lifting). The HRM is merely telling me my avgHR for the session.

Now, interesting point in that math - did you see age, gender, or weight as a factor at all? No, it's not. As long as that fitness level is maintained, no matter my weight, if I hit 157 HR, I burn 15.09 cal/min.
So where does weight come into play? If I wore a 10 lb vest, my pace would have to slow down to stay at 157 HR, right?
That's where weight comes into play. If I tried to maintain the same pace with more weight, my HR would of course be higher, and O2 usage would be higher, and calories and % carbs burned would be higher. If older, then probably harder to maintain pace too at same HR.
Now, it's almost a straight line if you graphed it, from lowest HR below light exercise, to highest HR at AT/LT point, the increase in VO2 and VCO2, and therefore basically calories/min burned.
HRM calorie burn principles. (worse math)
So what is a HRM trying to do to get to same cal/min burned?
First, for those HRM's with no VO2max stat, they are calculating your BMI from height and weight. There is research giving formula's for estimated VO2max based on BMI with slight improvements if age and gendor is factored in. If HRM doesn't get those stats, they are using other research formula to estimate VO2max. 

So now with an estimated or calculated or manually entered VO2max figure of say 57 mL/kg/min at HRmax, the HRM is calculating that HRmax or allowing manual input at 220-age, so it would get 176 in my case if not corrected.
But the straight line for calorie burn is only to AT HR. So that is assumed to be about 80-85% of HRmax, though a HRM may adjust that based on other derived info.
So 80% HRmax is 141 in this example, calculated AT threshold.
Other experimental data shows a relation between 63-92% of HRmax corresponds to VO2max between 40-85%. %VO2max = (%MHR-37.182) / 0.6463
So 141 being 80% of HRmax, would equal 66% of VO2max.
66% of VO2max 57 is 37.6.
Now you can get to VO2 L/min by dividing out weight, say 65 kg the HRM knows about.
So 37.6 * 65 / 1000 = 2.444 L/min VO2, and the RER at the upper end is 1.
So the HRM now has a calculated line upper HR of 141 and that is 2.444 L/min of VO2 and RER of 1. That means 5.047 cal/L O2, which is 2.444 L/min, or 12.33 cal/min. So HR 141 = 12.33 cal/min.

So now the calculated line lower HR is called the FlexHR point, and on avg is about 90, though knowing gender tightens that up better.
So HR 90 is 51% HRmax, which is calculated to be 21.4% VO2max, or 12.2 mL/kg/min.
So again get the weight out, 12.2 * 65 / 1000 = 0.793 L/min VO2, and the RER at the lower end is estimated to be 0.75. That means 4.739 cal/L O2, with 0.793 L/min VO2, means 3.76 cal/min. So HR 90 = 3.76 cal/min.

Now you just get a slope equation on that line, HR 90 & 3.76 cal/min, with HR 141 & 2.33 cal/min. y=mx+b
calories = (HR - 67.6242) / 5.9510
Test - HR 141  = 12.33 cal/min
Compare to actual - HR 157 = 15.02 cal/min. My actual VO2 test measured one was 15.09. Different weight and HRmax values though.

So, that was with HRmax being way off in the HRM (real 194, calculated 176), but using real VO2max stat, and the weight being different between the two also. Would have been pretty off if VO2max had been estimated at normal 45.

So that is what a HRM is trying to do. You'll notice a bunch of assumptions in there that can really start throwing things off.
VO2max calculated from BMI, assuming bad BMI, bad fitness level.
HRmax calculated.
AT point assumed to be 80-85%, or whatever they use.
FlexHR point assumed to be around 90, or whatever they use.
Conversion from %HRmax to %VO2max assumed to be the same.

So that's why HRM's can be so far off on calorie burn estimates if you start becoming fit, and go by the defaults.

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