Lactate Testing

Dramatically improve your race performance...
...with the Gold-Standard fitness test
for endurance training!

    Lactate Testing
  • Gain the competitive edge against the opposition!
  • Accurately predict potential race performance!
  • Determine effectively if the training hours are paying off!
  • Pinpoint exact training speeds for maximal progress!
  • Adapt training to target underdeveloped areas!
  • Eliminate the guesswork from program design!
  • Minimise the risk of overtraining!
  • Radically improve your tolerance to lactic acid!

James Cracknell Kinetic Personal Training Endorsement

‘Lactate Testing’ is the Gold-Standard test in objectively measuring fitness for endurance. It offers the most accurate means of identifying the precise training speeds needed for improving endurance fitness in the quickest time frame possible and thus eliminates the guesswork involved with endurance program design.

Kinetic Personal Training is one of just a select-few training establishments in the UK to offer this elite testing scheme. Conventionally, this type of testing is usually only available at university-based research facilities to elite professional athletes; at Kinetic Personal Training it is now available for the amateur athlete too!

‘Lactate Testing’ with Kinetic Personal Training will give you the training support you need to reach peak performance - in record time!

Tracey Lasan“Lactate Testing with Kinetic Personal Training has seen me demolish my course-best race times - at the age of 51! I‘m astonished at how effective it has proved in helping me achieve my true fitness potential!”

Tracey Lasan - UK elite senior-veteran distance runner and Winner of Senior-Veteran (50+) category at the 2009 Reading Half-Marathon.

Click here to read our detailed case study on Tracey's success!

'Lactate Testing' FAQs

1.  What is ‘Lactate Testing’?

Lactate Testing is an essential fitness-testing scheme for endurance athletes looking to gain the most effective results from their training. The test looks at the amount of ‘Lactate’ produced by your body at progressively increasing training speeds or intensities.

Actual Lactate Testing ChartThe data produced from the Lactate test enables us to objectively demonstrate your full fitness profile, indicating which fitness areas or ‘energy systems’ are fit and which are in need of improvement. From this data we can then provide detailed training guidelines or design a training program with individualised training speeds and ‘zones’ that will allow you to optimally progress with your endurance in the fastest time frame possible.

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2. How is the test performed?

Rating of Perceived ExertionThe test measures the amount of ‘Lactate’ produced in the bloodstream via a relatively painless prick of the finger. The testing is performed on a treadmill for runners. A warm-up is performed before the test commences. You then begin a progressive test involving fixed time periods of increasing speeds or intensities. The time spent at each level is typically 4-5 minutes and the blood 'Lactate' is measured at the end of each level. We also measure heart rate and your rating of perceived exertion after each stage.

Lactate SamplingThe test typically takes 35-45 minutes to complete (although far shorter tests are performed for sprint endurance athletes e.g. 400m runners). When the test is complete you receive a full interpretation of results, including a complete graphical representation of your test.

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3. What sports do you offer 'Lactate Testing' for?

At Kinetic Personal Training we currently offer Lactate Testing for Running covering all events including 5K, 10K, Duathlon, Triathlon, Half-marathon and Marathon.

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4. What is ‘Lactate’?

‘Lactate’ (and Lactic acid) is a unique metabolic product produced by the body in response to exercise that indicates your capability for elite athletic performance. During exercise muscles use glucose as a fuel source - this glucose molecule is converted to another molecule known as ‘pyruvate’ which, when combined with oxygen, acts as an energy source in the muscles.

As exercise intensity increases the amount of oxygen available to the muscles decreases and some ‘pyruvate’ is converted to ‘Lactate’ instead. At first the rest of the body is able to buffer this Lactate, preventing the accumulation of lactic acid and the onset of rapid fatigue; however as exercise intensity increases the body’s ability to remove the Lactate and lactic acid is overwhelmed and an increase in the blood Lactate level occurs. Lactate testing enables us to precisely determine at what range or ‘zone’ of exercise speeds that this phenomena begins to occur - this is known as the ‘Lactate Threshold Zone’.

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5. Why is the ‘Lactate Threshold Zone‘ important?

  • The ‘Lactate Threshold Zone‘ offers a good determination of the maximum exercise speed that an endurance athlete can sustain for a long period of time (typically greater than 20-30 minutes). Training that is specifically tailored to increase this ‘Lactate Threshold zone’ will thus result in faster race times.
  • 'Before and After' Lactate Threshold ComparisonThe ‘Lactate Threshold Zone’ is also the single best indicator of endurance performance known. Generally an athlete whose ‘Lactate Threshold’ occurs at a higher speed will be faster in an endurance event. Thus, increases in the ‘Lactate Threshold Zone’ are almost always accompanied by improvements in race performance for endurance events.

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6. How will ‘Lactate Testing’ benefit me?

‘Lactate Testing’ ensures that you train optimally and spend your training time profitably. A ‘Lactate’ Profile will tell you where your current fitness lies, how you must train to move forwards optimally in the quickest time frame possible, and where you need to place your focus before a major event.

‘Lactate Testing’ is the most efficient means of evaluating whether all those hours of training are paying off. It will ensure you perform the correct volume of training at the correct intensity, so you avoid costly over-training or under-training. As the Lactate ‘Training Zones’ we calculate are specific to you as an individual, you will also target undeveloped fitness areas as efficiently as possible, without overstressing already well-developed fitness areas.

With ‘Lactate Testing’ you can predict potential race times, pinpoint your exact training speeds and optimise your training effectiveness to ensure you reach peak performance, in record time!

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7. What are ‘Training Speed Zones’ and why is the 'Lactate Test' essential for calculating them?

‘Training Speed Zones’ are individualised training speeds or intensities calculated from the results of the Lactate Test that enable you to optimally develop your complete fitness profile. They provide the most efficient means of ensuring your training time is spent profitably, and not wasted.

Lactate Training ZonesThe ‘Training Zones’ we calculate from your Lactate data enable us to precisely determine your optimal training paces for the many different types of training you may perform such as ‘long-slow distance’, ‘medium-distance’,‘race-pace’ and ‘interval’ or ‘overspeed’ training. This completely takes the guesswork out of your endurance training and ensures that you train at the appropriate level for you, without risking overtraining. You will thus reach peak performance in a much faster timeframe.

Without the results obtained from ‘Lactate Testing’, how can you be absolutely certain that your training speeds are absolutely correct for you as an individual? With Lactate Testing you can be sure that you will progress as quickly and efficiently as possible with your fitness.

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8. What are 'Energy Systems' and how will 'Lactate Testing' influence them?

Energy Systems used in Lactate Test ‘Energy Systems’ are the unique metabolic processes our bodies’ use to fuel endurance sports. They are typically classified as either ‘Aerobic’, which uses oxygen to help provide fuel and is vital in longer distance endurance events or ‘Anaerobic’, which chiefly powers the shorter duration distance events and produces ‘Lactate’ and ‘Lactic acid’. The relative contribution of each ‘Energy System’ to endurance events varies widely for differing disciplines and it is the fine-tuning or balancing of these ‘Energy Systems’ that controls your ability to achieve peak performance. We measure this balance during the ‘Lactate Test’ itself.

With this key information we are then able to develop your ‘Energy Systems’ optimally with the highest precision possible so you achieve peak speed and performance throughout your endurance races.

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9. What is the difference between a 'VO2 Max Test' and a 'Lactate Test'?

A 'VO2 Max Test' gives a simple picture of your cardiovascular fitness because it is a test that measures your ability to utilise oxygen – referred to as an ‘aerobic’ energy-system test. A ‘Lactate Test’, on the other hand, gives a far more comprehensive picture of your overall fitness specific to your event as it measures both your muscular endurance and your ability to use all the energy systems your body uses during an endurance event (see FAQ no. 8).

Results from a ‘VO2 Test’ can also be misleading as two endurance athletes can present with identical ‘VO2 Test’ results yet one athlete can be substantially faster in a race than the other. This is often reflects a number of phenomena including a far greater efficiency of movement by the faster athlete and an ability to sustain a much higher percentage of their ‘VO2 Max’ intensity throughout an endurance race. Lactate testing enables us to identify the contribution of these factors within the test itself so we can ensure that you develop you overall fitness profile further, as quickly and as efficiently as possible.

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10. How often do you recommend ‘Lactate Testing’ be performed?

This can vary according to the training experience of the individual but typically we recommend repeat Lactate Testing every 6-8 weeks. This offers the most efficient timeframe to measure improvements from individualised ‘Lactate Training Zone’ programs and also serves as the best indicator of potential race performance for endurance events.

Frequent retesting serves as a ‘training compass’, guiding you in the right direction and enabling us to identify the new ‘Training Speed Zones’ so we may continue to guide your progress further as your fitness profile improves. This will avoid you reaching a stagnant level or plateau in your response to training and you will thus maintain optimal performance throughout your training cycle.

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11. Why are ‘Lactate Training Zones’ so much more effective than ‘Heart Rate Training Zones’?

Lactate Training Zones’ are training speeds or intensities calculated from the results of the Lactate Test itself whereas ‘Heart Rate Training Zones’ are training speeds determined using percentages of maximum heart rate. The use of ‘Lactate Training Zones’ is far more accurate than ‘Heart Rate Training’ – which reflects a general body response to stress and doesn’t necessarily reflect what is happening within the muscles or the ‘energy systems’.

Because heart rate is an individual response, heart rate training zones are better determined by actual measurement of all the physiological variables that affect heart rate – such as those we measure during the ‘Lactate Test‘ and not simply those set by the mathematical formulas used to calculate the heart rate zones. Heart rate will also differ widely with differing exercise intensities for different endurance sports: heart rates for running will not be the same as heart rates for cycling for any given intensity.

‘Lactate Testing’ enables you to determine your training intensity accurately for you as an individual, without the haphazard guesswork involved with ‘Heart Rate Training Zones’.

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12. Will ‘Lactate Testing’ help me if I train in a club setting?

Absolutely! ‘Lactate Testing’ enables you to determine the precise individual training speeds that will allow you to make progress in the most efficient timeframe. Without this ‘Lactate Test’ information, it is extremely difficult to be certain whether simply following the training speed of similar standard athletes is absolutely correct for you.

In fact, athletes of similar race speeds often need very different training speeds as no two ‘Lactate Test’ profiles are the same: muscular endurance, movement efficiency and ‘energy system’ balance all develop at uniquely different rates for different athletes - ‘Lactate Testing’ ensures you will develop your overall fitness profile further in the most efficient timeframe possible for you. You can therefore attain the competitive edge over your rivals!

We have liased extensively with club coaches throughout our work to date with elite athletes and we are more than happy to supply Lactate data to your coach so they can optimise your program design.

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13. What are the costs of your ‘Lactate Testing’ Packages?

We offer the following competitively-priced packages for 'Lactate Testing' with Kinetic Personal Training. Please contact us for full pricing details.

'Lactate Testing' Package What is Included
BASIC TESTING PACKAGE Complete 'Lactate Test, Determination of ‘Training Speed Zones’, General Training Guidelines
ADVANCED PROGRAM PACKAGE Complete 'Lactate Test, Determination of ‘Training Speed Zones’, Day-to-day Training Program Plan for minimum of 8 weeks, comprehensive Lactate Testing Report with detailed training guidelines uniquely tailored to individual requirements

We offer discounted rates for students. Please contact us for details.

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14. How have Kinetic Personal Training’s clients benefited from Lactate Testing?

We have an excellent track record in achieving winning results with our ‘Lactate Testing’ clients. Just check out our case study of 51 year-old senior-veteran distance-runner Tracey Lasan!

Click here to read our detailed case study on Tracey's success!

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