In the past, many athletes thought that the heart rate was the most important when it comes to performance. Then the news broke about the lactic threshold, and a new king was born. What is a lactic threshold and how do you know when you’ve reached it, so you raise it and perfume better?
What is your lactic threshold?
When you are exercising e.g. cycling or running, your muscles produce acids, which build up in your legs and make you burn. The more you perform, the more acid builds up. But you could have been slowed down thanks to lactic, which acts as a neutralizing agent. However, you get to a point where your muscle produces more acid than lactic can neutralize so that the pains in your muscle forces you to slow down. The point where your muscle starts giving in to excess acid is known as the Lactic Threshold.
How do you know when you have reached Lactic threshold
One of the best ways to understand your lactic threshold is through a very simple DIY exercise. To start, mark a 3-mile route on which you will be running, or cycling without stopping at any point. Put on a heart monitor, warm up for about 20 minutes and then start your preferred activity, moving as fast as you can. Recover for about 15 – 20 minutes and ride back the same route – only this time do it with ease. Repeat the test and compare results. Your LT is the average heart rate for both efforts.
How to increase your LT
Everything that has to do with the body is usually affected and determined by genetics. However, that does not mean that you cannot train your body to become more efficient in clearing and neutralizing lactic acid. To prepare your body for LT, you must get involved with exercise routines that are geared towards helping you sustain riding or running with an adequate baseline and speed work.
One of the most effective methods to increase your LT is to practice the steady state technique. After warm up, ride or run for 10 minutes, keeping your heart rate below your standard LT heart rate. Recover for 10 minutes before you repeat. Next try, increase the time to 20 minutes and repeat as earlier, also making sure your LT heart rate is not exceeded. Continue to increase the time until 30 minutes.
Another method you can use is the LT tolerance intervals. This is when you train your body to the level where it can’t clear all the lactate. After a warm up, increase your effort to five times the value of your LT heart rate. Hold your effort for at least three minutes before you reduce it to about 80 seconds until you feel partially recovered. Get back into activity just before you feel you’re ready. Repeat this process three times.
Knowing your lactic threshold can go a long way in helping you perform better in your athletics. Once you know your LT, get involved with the training methods that can help train your body to increase it. You can only do better.
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