I have been fortunate to be able to attend some fitness testing at the Sports Science Institute of SA in Newlands, Cape Town. I did this to be part of some sort of history in the making as well as to be able to get my hands on a lot of data for my own cycling performance. It has been a very nice experience with the people involved and the facility of which I hope there will be loads more! Had to bring my own bike and of course I came with the stiffest bike! My Velocite Magnus!
The tests are run to test certain products effects on the body and there are loads of different tests. The one I attended was for:
The Effect of Low or normal muscle glycogen concentration on endurance cycling performance and the perception of exertion.
Arrived and some normal measurements like weight, fat percentage etc was taken. Then in for a 15 min power test. Warmed up for 20 min. Then starting at 200w they increased power every couple of seconds to more power. Need to try and reach 400w at 15min. I reached 14 min at 380w. To put this into perspective the top cycling guys can do about 650watts like Chris Froome from Sky! Respect!
Then I did a 20km TT with an ave power output of 240w. Then 10 min cool down.
Depletion ride. This ride is to totally get rid of all glycogen levels in the legs! Man oh man this was hard!
20 x (330w x 2 min, 190w x 2 min)
8 x (300w x 2 min, 190w x 2 min)
4 x (260w x 2 min, 190w x 2 min)
Cadence always above 90.
Then to end:
2 x 1 min sprint at 330w at 120 cadence. (98km in total)
Needless to say, I was buggered!
But then they did not tell me not to ride until the final test. This was done on a Friday, on the Saturday I did a 70km ride with my wife and the group she is part of. Pushed hard back to keep the wind from everyone.
After depletion ride, they gave me 3 x 2L bottles filled with something (of which I still don’t know, will only tell me after all trials done) and following a low carb, high protein diet for 3 days.
I felt tired walking into the lab as I think I rode way to hard on the Saturday as well.
Muscle Biopsy done. Did not expect it as I did not remember what I signed! Took a piece of muscle to determine my muscle fibre. Basically get slow and fast twitch fiber. Fast for sprinters and slow for endurance athletes. Will know mine after all the tests but have a feeling its more on the fast side.
1 hour spin at 200 watts all while being connected to the lung machine and a needle in each arm to test and top up glucose as I did not eat 4 hrs before this test. Also having my lung capacity checked every 10 min by putting a mask on my face. Then 5 min rest and a 20km TT again with an ave of 250w.
Exhausted and sore! Its amazing even while having the biopsy done to be able to sustain high cadence and power afterwards. Was sore the next day though!
Now I go back in 1 week to do the depletion ride again, then the 3 day diet with another brand of substance to drink and then the biopsy etc again that I did on day 3.
I will be getting all my tests results once I have gone back for the second round. Looking forward to getting all those results!