Aerobic fitness is a combination of a variety of attributes that allow an athlete to sustain a relatively high level of work output over an extended period of time.
During long-distance events, aerobic capacity or aerobic endurance becomes more important for maintaining speed as the end of the race approaches and lactic acid begins to accumulate in the working muscles. If those muscles are not able to adequately buffer this accumulation, athletes will experience a dramatic decline in speed as lactic acid levels increase and muscle pH is lowered.
Physical fitness tests can play an important role in a coach’s training program by gaging the development of various aspects of fitness and, more importantly, providing feedback for training progress. As an athlete becomes more fit, certain measures of performance will improve while others might not.
If the tests are valid, then it makes little sense to compare athletes on any absolute scale because you could be comparing two athletes with two separates levels of fitness. It would be better if athletes were compared relative to their own previous scores so that a coach could make a reasonable assessment of the athlete’s progress.
One type of test that is perhaps more valuable when used with middle-distance athletes is the anaerobic running capacity test. This test measures the maximum amount of work that can be carried out in a certain period, and it has been closely studied by distance runners over the years.
The results can be expressed in a number of ways, but one of the most common is known as the anaerobic running velocity (ARV), which is determined by taking the speed at the point when you reach your maximum heart rate and subtracting it from your test time.
For example, if you ran 800m in 2:10, you reached your maximum heart rate 20 seconds into the run. If your maximum heart rate is 180 beats per minute, then subtracting 20 from 2:10 will give an aerobic running velocity of 1:58/200m as a general guideline. This number should be reduced by 30% to account for additional time needed to recover before doing the test again.
The ARV can be used as a comparison between athletes, but it must be remembered that the test is only valid if an athlete is running or sprinting at their maximum capacity with no energy left in reserve. If they are not giving top effort on every repetition of the test, then the results will not be indicative of their true capacity. It’s also important to note that the ARV test is very stressful and should only be used every few weeks at most.
The 800m Run Anaerobic Test is an aerobic test assessing both the aerobic and anaerobic energy producing systems. It requires maximal effort for 800 meters, or half of a 1 mile run. It can be used to assess fitness gains after training as well as to determine VO2max .
Providing adequate recovery after each round is important to reduce fatigue and allow for maximal performance in subsequent rounds.
It is recommended that the test administrator have the individual run on a 400m track so that there are markers at 200m intervals to aid in pace judgement . It is important to shoot for consistent running times from one round to another, as this will impact the accuracy of the results. A stopwatch and clipboard should be used to record splits, times, and heart rates during the test.
i made him do this on a treadmill for accuracy, his treadmill is at .8 speed. after 800 meters he was at 13.2 mph…so with the 3 miles at 5mph i got his speed up to 16.2mph for the last 800 meters which is pretty darn fast considering how long it took him to run that far at 13mph..
his max heart rate was 161 bpm remember, this test will take lots of recovery time before repeating! have fun and good luck!! after doing this test my husband said his legs felt heavy and sore for days after.