Training with Power!

Optimized training programs require several forms of feedback.  First, subjective feedback in which we listen to cues from our body and perceived exertion to tell us when we need to rest, or train harder or when an injury is developing.  It helps us organize our training, gives us motivation and helps us develop a race strategy and race pace efforts. Subjective feedback in association with objective feedback allows us to develop the best training programs for each individual athlete.

At Critical Performance, we believe in utilizing as many forms of feedback as possible, without overextending the athlete and their resources.  Research has shown that athletes that use objective feedback tend to improve faster than athletes who do the same amount of training but do not put numbers to their training. Most cyclists are familiar with using speed, time and distance and even pace; plus over the last 15-20 years heart rate monitoring has been the choice of many athletes for monitoring their training.  During the last 8 years, Blood lactate monitoring has become a very important method of training athletes.  The procedure needs to be performed by an experienced exercise physiologist, in order to correctly analyze the data and to develop training zones.  The latest method of objective feedback is Power, this method has become very popular with cyclists and triathletes and as the price and technology improves will become more important to serious athletes.

Inergrating power and heart rate has many advantages.  While heart rate is an indirect measure of training intensity and is actually a measure of the physiological response to work, power gives a accurate quantifiable measurement of your workload, unaffected by physiology or external forces. Power meters are the perfect cycling training device.  Popular Brands of Power meters include Power2Max, Stages, CycleOps Power Tap, SRM, Ergomo, Polar and iBike and indoor training systems include CycleOps 300PT, Takx and Computrainer.

The first thing to do once you have a power meter is to perform a test to determine where you are currently in your fitness and training.  This is best done by a Critical Performance physiologist, using the “gold standard” of power testing equipment, the Computrainer by RacerMate.  During the testing procedures , the physiologist can measure and test other physiological parameters including blood lactate, ventilation, heart rate, perceived exertion and more.  After the testing is completed, we will then formulate your target power ranges to optimize your training, at the same time Heart Rate zones and perceived exertion zones will be formulated to allow you the athlete the best possible training situations.

Critical Performance Power Tests include heart rate and blood lactate monitoring

**COST:  $100 plus GST