Run Performance Testing

Using The Latest Technology To Optimize Your Running Form

Some people love running, and some people don't.
I'm fairly certain that those that love running also want to run free from discomfort and injury. It can be challenging to know if starting a running program could give you injuries when you first start it. I'm going to point out some of the issues that can arise from starting a running program without proper coaching, and then show how technology is the best solution to running at your best, injury free!

Poor Form and Going Too Hard Lead To Injury

For a novice runner, connecting with a running coach is a great idea. You'll want some hands on experience learning about proper form. A coach can educate you about gait cycle, foot strike, and cadence to feel confident in running and to be able to handle running distances. Learning to manage your aerobic abilities is a profoundly human quality, which I believe is a joy to harness.
Another potential factor affecting novice runners is awareness of metabolic demand, and how pushing to hard could result some short to long term injuries. Some of the consequences of over-exertion are weakened heart rate recovery, which impacts both cardiac and skeletal muscle and lowering cortisol levels in the body. Simply put - it weakens your heart muscle, depletes the energy storage in your muscles (which can cause fatigue and cramps), and puts you at risk for shock. The body should be able able to recover on its own, and swifter recovery is a good measure of fitness.

Measuring Your Metabolic Static State Prevents Injury

Most coaches will ask you to monitor your heart rate to stay in your "safe zone" while running. They use algorithms like age minus 220 to measure your upper limit of heart rate, have you take your heart rate first thing in the morning to measure your resting heart rate, and likely will talk about using sixty percent of your "heart rate reserve" as your optimal workout zone. This strategy is relatively effective at keeping you going for a while, but it won't explain those bumps you'll hit in your running journey or potential injuries. The best measure of performance is knowing your heat rate at your metabolic static state, or the place in which your body is able to convert sugar in energy and replenish spent energy back into the muscle without running out of energy reserves. This equilibrium exists in different places in each person, and is not directly connected to heart rate at all. Instead, it tells you how fit you are because you are able to manage your aerobic capacity to keep running in almost total perpetuity. 

Performing a Lactate Threshold Test for Accurate Data

At Rockville Personal Training, we use lactate threshold testing to measure the blood lactate level at regular increments of intensity and monitor heart rate to find the point when heart rate and the optimal performance level coincide. Read my article about the testing in a local periodical, or contact me to get the full protocol for lactate threshold tests. After the test is completed, we will know at which heart rates it is safest for you to run endurance races.

Run Test With Batch Data To Monitor Running Form

We also have a sensor to collect data on an endurance run to monitor your form during an endurance workout. We can collect large amounts of data over the course of many miles to see if there are any changes to run form along the way, and look to correct any issues found at any point along the run. The data is processed to recognize asymmetry in your running progressions, identify when they begin to occur, how wide a gap in performance is occurring, and where in the body it occurs. We then analyze this data to build an appropriate strength program targeting areas of weakness identified by our sensor and program.

Give us a call or send us a text to discuss your running program 240-630-0298