[WotD] Friday, January 30 (Part I)

So, this week’s rampant senility continues; this time, in the form of walking out of the house without either my pedometer or my Polar F6 heart rate monitor (read: my damned wristwatch).


Precor’s EFX 556i Elliptical trainer (I’m not linking to it for reasons that will become obvious shortly) offers a “fitness test” mode, where you tell it your age, weight, and gender, and it, based on a variation of this test, tells you your approximate VO2max.

So, off we go; three minutes at 90-160 steps per minute (I settled in at a fairly boring 120 spm) to warm up, at which point, it began to ramp up the resistance every minute or two (not getting any further instructions from the machine, as it didn’t say how fast one ought to be going). At the 16 minute mark, I was bopping along at about 8.5 mets, and pulse solidly into the middle third of my cardio range (145bpm), and had just started to break a sweat, when the test ended, entering a cool-down phase, before reporting its findings.

It gave my VO2max as 31mg/dl.

Followed that up with some cable rows (10x each arm @ 75#) and a dozen chin-ups.

I’m going to do something a little more scientific (Rockport Step Test, Oxford Step Test, cast runes, disembowel a chicken) this evening, because I am fairly sure that 31mg/dl figure isn’t quite right (I’d go so far as to say “ridiculously inaccurate,” but that might just be my ego speaking louder than usual).

Either that, or I’m the strongest, fastest, leanest, most tireless couch potato you’ve ever fucking seen.



  1. Actually… I’d do the Ross Submaximal Treadmill Protocol, the Rockport test is usually best for deconditioned people, which you aren’t and may not have the accuracy you’re looking for, also, using your own heart rate monitor instead of the one on the treadmill would be best… If you can’t find the info for the Ross test, let me know I have little cards written out to proctor it, calculate etc. etc. left over from when I was studying for my cert.

  2. The HRM on the treadmill picks up the pulse from the Polar monitor, so those report the same. I’m not having much google-fu looking up the RSTP’s methodology or scoring at the moment.

    It was mostly a point of interest to see where I’m at as far as VO2 goes, but now I have a bee in my bonnet.

  3. You can also use a race to predict VO2 Max. http://www.runningforfitness.org/calc/vo2.php

    Of course, these are imperfect — best way is a test run by an exercise physiologist.

  4. That seems a lot more plausible/palatable, at 42 and change (still, not where I want to be, but at least it seems closer to the ballpark). Thanks!

  5. Hi Hon,
    Found you, damn you do work out like a crazy man :) Good luck finding out your VO2.

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