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Calculating VO2Max from race performances

I've googled for a bit - but not come up with anything interesting....

There has been lots of research on working out VO2 Max from running performances, a good online resource is


But does anyone know of a similar body of research that gets your your cycling VO2Max from TT times?

And, for completeness, I guess swimming.

I'm just really after a way of comparing my relative performances at running with cycling etc - thinking that VO2Max would be pretty constant across the two disciplines - I have a feeling that I am far better a pushing myself when running, than when cycling.

Alternatively, I good set a suitable resistance on the turbo, and have a go for 5 mins, then work out my power to weight ratio and do something like:

VO2max = 12 * (w / kg) + 3.3

where "w" is the watts that I've averaged over the five minutes, and kg is my weight in kilos.

Not quite sure what sort of resistance to go for though...


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    Jack HughesJack Hughes Posts: 1,262
    Changed my approach a bit. After all, the only reason why I got the Tacx Flow is for all the telemetry!

    OK. On the tacx web site is the "Astrandtest". This is a way of calculating your VO2Max from power, weight, age and heart rate (I expect age is to moderate the values of heart rate), so it is a function of power to weight ratio and heart rate aka exertion. I.e. the difference between effort in and power out.

    The big grip I have with the flow is the poor quality manual. It has all the appearance of a google translation between Dutch and English. A first this was funny. But once you actually want to set it up to get something sensible out, then it starts to get annoying. This follows through to the english on the web site. So it took after 30 minutes to work out quite what the test is about, and 6 minutes to do the test.

    To start with, I'm either a lot fitter than I thought or that these machines are designed for fat dutch people who've never seen a hill in their life. I went for the parameters for the "well trained cyclist". This doesn't mean that you got over 96% in your cycling proficiency test, but that you are fit. This is the fittest option. I choose a target power of 200 (the choice was from 200-225). This seems mighty low.. as I trundle along at about 230 usually... and I've seen someone in the willy-waving^Wwhat training have you done today thread bragging about doing a session at 500+ watts, so I've assumed that 230 is granny level.

    Any way, you keep a constant cadence (82) and a constant power (200). Do this for six minutes, and take your average heart rate over the last minute. Firstly, I had to choose a really low gear on my bike to be able to keep down to 200 watts at 80 rpm, so the heart rate was pretty flat all the way through - at 130 bpm - I hardly start to sweat at this rate.

    Anyway, I've pumped the data into the system at it comes out at a VO2 Max of 58. Which I do not believe for a start (my running VO2 max is 50, which I have a lot more confidence in - again, done using the calculate VO2 max from performance, rather than in a lab).

    I will have another go at 250 watts, and see what happens to the formula.

    (The purpose of this exercise is to work out suitable values for training at - i.e. around the LV thresholds - i.e. I'm try to convert Jack Daniels methods into cycling - but rather than doing it with speed (because you have gears on the bike!), I'm trying to do it with watts - so I want a range of watts to train at. I'm sure this has all been done elsewhere, but it is tipping down so I can't train outside, so I'm playing with the turbo. And having a nice time.

    Then I'll go back to the formula I mentioned in the first post, as I think I can see how I can translate it to the turbo (the original article talked about going up a hill for five minutes to get the measurements).

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    Jack HughesJack Hughes Posts: 1,262
    OK. This time the HR got up to 150 and a power of 250.

    This gives a VO2 Max of 56 or 57 (depending on whether I use my weight at the time of the test, or my "empty" weight, first thing in the morning - i.e. either 75 or 76 kgs.

    Again, this is suspiciously high. According to the 12 * PWR + 3.3 formula, I should be able to push 300 watts for 5 mins.

    At least I'm sweating all over the keyboard.

    I'm just going to use 300w as my VO2 Max level, then set values accordingly (i.e. % of VO2max power) to get some training paces. Dunno if it makes sense to do it that way.. but...

    I really ought to go and read Mr Friel's book, and see what he says - but I've got so many to work my way through, and what will training... I've still not even finished Conehead's penny dreadful. The second one will be out before I get through it.
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