La relación entre el rendimiento de la carrera de maratón y los índices de la potencia aeróbica durante el período de la competencia
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La relación entre el rendimiento de la carrera de maratón y los índices de la potencia aeróbica durante el período de la competencia

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  • 1. This article was downloaded by: [Universidad de los Andes] On: 07 August 2012, At: 19:40 Publisher: Taylor & Francis Informa Ltd Registered in England and Wales Registered Number: 1072954 Registered office: Mortimer House, 37-41 Mortimer Street, London W1T 3JH, UK Sports Medicine, Training and Rehabilitation Publication details, including instructions for authors and subscription information: The relationship between marathon running performance and indices of aerobic power during the competition period Ants Nurmekivi a , Harry Lemberg b , Üllar Kaljumäe c & Jaak Maaroos c a Institute of Sport Pedagogy, University of Tartu, Ülikooli 18, Tartu, 51014, Estonia Phone: 372–7‐434–186 Fax: 372–7‐434–186 b Institute of Sport Pedagogy, University of Tartu, Ülikooli 18, Tartu, 51014, Estonia c Department of Sport Medicine and Rehabilitation, University of Tartu, Ülikooli 18, Tartu, 51014, Estonia Version of record first published: 08 Jul 2009 To cite this article: Ants Nurmekivi, Harry Lemberg, Üllar Kaljumäe & Jaak Maaroos (2000): The relationship between marathon running performance and indices of aerobic power during the competition period, Sports Medicine, Training and Rehabilitation, 9:4, 253-261 To link to this article: PLEASE SCROLL DOWN FOR ARTICLE Full terms and conditions of use: This article may be used for research, teaching, and private study purposes. Any substantial or systematic reproduction, redistribution, reselling, loan, sub-licensing, systematic supply, or distribution in any form to anyone is expressly forbidden. The publisher does not give any warranty express or implied or make any representation that the contents will be complete or accurate or up to date. The accuracy of any instructions, formulae, and drug doses should be independently verified with primary sources. The publisher shall not be liable for any loss, actions, claims, proceedings, demand, or costs or damages whatsoever or howsoever caused arising directly or indirectly in connection with or arising out of the use of this material.
  • 2. Sports Med., Trainingand Rehab., Vol. 9(4), pp. 253-261 Reprints available directly from the publisher Photocopying permitted by license only ©2000 OPA (Overseas Publishers Association) N.V. Published by license under the Harwood Academic Publishers imprint, part of The Gordon and Breach Publishing Group. Printed in Malaysia. THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN MARATHON RUNNING PERFORMANCE AND INDICES OF AEROBIC POWER DURING THE COMPETITION PERIOD ANTS NURMEKIVIa, *, HARRY LEMBERGa , ÜLLAR KALJUMÄEb and JAAK MAAROOSb a Institute of Sport Pedagogy, b Department of Sport Medicine and Rehabilitation, University of Tartu, Ülikooli 18, Tartu 51014, Estonia (Received 10 August 1999;Accepted 14 February 2000) The aim of the present research was to investigate: (1) the connections of marathon running competition results with aerobic power output indices immediately prior to a top competition; (2) whether the revealed relationship is compatible with training strategy logic preceding a competition. Five marathon runners of good training condition were examined. An incremental treadmill test to maximum was performed. VO2max, maximal test time, maximal heart rate, O2 uptake at the aerobic and anaerobic threshold level, aerobic and anaerobic threshold onset time and a marathon running competition result were recorded. Correlation analysis revealed a high relationship between the competition result and maximal test duration (r= —0.89) and anaero- bic threshold onset time (r = —0.95). The % of VO2max at the anaerobic threshold is also an important index of the competition result. The relation between the marathon run time and aerobic power output indices during the competition period proved that the preceding train- ing methods based on the principle of stimulating an anaerobic threshold increase, a greater aerobic power and greater aerobic efficiency, promotes an optimal racing condition at the time of competition. Keywords: VO2max; aerobic and anaerobic threshold; maximal treadmill test; marathon running performance *Corresponding author. Tel: 372-7-434-186. Fax: 372-7-375-362. 253 Downloadedby[UniversidaddelosAndes]at19:4007August2012
  • 3. 254 A. NURMEKIVI et al. INTRODUCTION Marathon running may be classified in the moderate intensity zone of power generation and is characterized by compatibility between a subject's Q2 uptake and the corresponding energetic need. Since aerobic metabolism pre- vails during marathon running both basic aerobic power output indices characterizing it, as well as the training principles producing it, are essential for development of a training strategy. Marathon performance depends on a runner's maximal O2 uptake, lactate threshold and economy of running (Costill et al, 1971; Joyner, 1991; Pate and Branch, 1992). Maximal Q2 uptake indicates the highest level of aerobic metabolism and aerobic power attained by a subject (Dobeln, 1956; Korobov and Volkov, 1983). This is an important criterion of a runner's aerobic potential. However, the VO2max level of performance can be maintained for only about lOmin. For this rea- son, there are useful indices characterizing a marathon performance to be determined from running tests at speeds less than at VQ2max. These indices include blood lactate threshold or anaerobic threshold and the economy of running, i.e. the Q2 cost to run at any given speed up to maximum. The role of the latter indices in predicting a running results has been observed in sev- eral studies (Conley and Krahenbuhl, 1980; Svedenhag and Sjodin, 1984; Daniels, 1985; Costill, 1986). The lactate threshold of the majority of mara- thon runners is in the range of 2-3mmol/l (Costill, 1970; Farrell et al, 1979). Thus the lactate threshold is localized between the aerobic and anaer- obic thresholds, usually being less than 4mmol/l (Sjodin and Jacobs, 1981). Top marathon runners are able to run a marathon at a speed requiring an O2 uptake of aproximately 85% VQ2max (Pollock, 1977; Farrell et al, 1979; Costill et al, 1986; Daniels and Daniels, 1992). Joyner (1991) considers it expedient to differentiate between a low, med- ium and high lactate threshold relating to an O2 uptake of 75%, 80% and 85% of VO2max, respectively. According to this author, the scale of low, medium and high economy may be applied to assessing a runner's economy. Running economy appears to interact with VO2max and blood lactate threshold to determine the actual running speed at the lactate threshold, which is generally a speed similar to or slightly slower than that sustained by individual runners in the marathon (Farrell et al, 1979). According to research conducted by Daniels and Daniels (1992) with a group of top ath- letes, a higher VO2max speed was a considerably better predictor of the run- ning result than VO2max or running economy taken separately. In an ideal case each marathon runner would have both a high VO2max and high econ- omy. Actually, most often these latter indices are inversely, not directly, Downloadedby[UniversidaddelosAndes]at19:4007August2012
  • 4. MARATHON PERFORMANCE AND INDICES OF AEROBIC POWER 255 connected. Classical examples of this are the world class marathon runners Clayton and Shorter who each possessed a modest VC^max index (69.7 and 71.3 ml • min"1 • kg"1 respectively) but possessed a high economy in running. From the viewpoint of training it is important that the anaerobic thresh- old and VC^max be improved independently of each other (Denis et al., 1982; Henritze et al., 1985). Consequently, their particular development at different preparation stages preceding a marathon competition is both pos- sible and justified. The quickest modification effected both by short term training or by training covering several years is that to VC^max, i.e. aerobic power, while a longer term of development is needed to increase the anaero- bic threshold running velocity (Volkov, 1986). The general principle of a prolonged adaptation being needed in some variables, is well described. At the beginning of an adaptation there is first a shift in the power generation then an increase in capacity occurs and lastly an improved efficiency of bioenergetic processes takes place. Aerobic capacity is defined as the ability to maintain maximal O2 uptake; aerobic efficiency describes the process of supplying the minimum aerobic energy, needed to perform the task during the performance of a specific workrate (Korobov and Volkov, 1983). An ability to increase the velocity of running at the anaerobic threshold indi- cates an improvement in aerobic efficiency. Development of different aerobic power components each at a different stage of preparation is an important feature in planning yearly training for top marathon runners of today (Lenzi, 1983; Krause, 1988; Smehnov, 1990; Vuorimaa, 1991). In the preparatory stage the main stress is on increasing a runner's strength endurance and aerobic threshold velocity, during special training stages the accent is on increasing aerobic efficiency, i.e. running ata a high velocity with minimum VO2 requirement. Specialized research (Velikorodnoh et al., 1986) has shown that excessive intensification of a marathon runners training immediately before final pre- paration for top competitions (an attempt for excessive development of aerobic power) leads to a deterioration in the competition result. In order to avoid this danger, the above authors recommended that specific training should be in the velocity zone corresponding to that estimated to be needed in a forthcoming competition. The aim of the present work is to: (1) establish the relationship between a marathon running competition result and aerobic power indices immediately prior to a top competition; (2) determine whether any revealed relationship is compatible with the logic of the structure of the training strategy preceding competition. Downloadedby[UniversidaddelosAndes]at19:4007August2012
  • 5. 256 A. NURMEKIVI et al. METHODS The subjects were 5 marathon runners in good training on whom labora- tory condition tests were made prior to their participation in a marathon competition. The final competition was preceded by specialized training. The mean (±SD) age of subjects was 27.4 ±4.7 years, body height 176.8 ±2.2 cm, body weight 66.54 ±2.1 kg, and mean marathon running result 2.27.30. Initial evaluation tests on the subjects were conducted in the Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation Clinic associated with the Institute of Sport Pedagogy the University of Tartu. A stepwise incremental running test was performed to volitional exhaustion on a treadmill LE 3000 (Germany) by each subject. The initial speed 8km/h was increased by 2km/h every 3min. until 14km/h and from that point by 1km/h to exhaustion. The treadmill gradient was 1° during the whole test. Respiratory gas exchange (RGE) was measured with a gas analyzer "Oxycon Record" (Germany). A sample of exhaled air was analyzed every 30 s. Q2 uptake was measured and the high- est value attained during the test was regarded as the VC^max index. The anaerobic threshold was determined to be the point where ventilatory equivalent for oxygen (VE/VO2) increased sharply while the ventilatory equivalent for CO2 (VE/VCO2) remained steady (Wasserman, 1973). The aerobic threshold was determined as the optimum level of aerobic metab- olism and it coincided with the work rate at which the lowest amount of O2 was found in the exhaled air (Anderson and Rhodes, 1989). The level of O2 uptake at the aerobic and anaerobic threshold work rate; the aerobic and anaerobic threshold onset time; and the % of VO2max at the anaerobic threshold were determined. Heart rate (HR) was con- tinuously recorded from an applied sport tester PE 3000 (Finland). Max- imal test time in minutes was recorded. Training preceding the tests was structured using ideas of modern training methodology for the marathon race (Lenzi, 1983; Vuorimaa, 1991). The main attention at the beginning of the preparatory period was paid to improving general muscular efficiency, running technique, flexibility and aerobic and anaerobic threshold running speeds. Continuous running at a progressively increasing pace was practiced. At the base training stage an emphasis was made on aerobic power (fast continuous running, fast pro- gressively increasing pace running, repetition and uphill running). The level of other important abilities - aerobic base endurance and muscular effi- ciency was maintained. The training methods most used in the specific train- ing cycle before an important competition were marathon pace runs and Downloadedby[UniversidaddelosAndes]at19:4007August2012
  • 6. MARATHON PERFORMANCE AND INDICES OF AEROBIC POWER 257 prolonged medium pace runs as the best drills to induce the necessary spe- cific adaption of the metabolism. Slow pace runs as exercise for recovery and regeneration and muscular efficiency exercise were used as maintenance training. Duration of the preparatory stage was two months. The mean and standard deviation as well as the correlation between different indices was established. RESULTS Results are presented in Tables I and II. The group mean marathon running competition result was 2.27.30, the best individual being 2.17.42 and the worst 2.45.30. The group mean O2 uptake per 1kg of body weight was 71.1 ±5.04ml-min"1 -kg"1 emphasizing the good aerobic power of the subjects. This latter was further confirmed by the subjects' • 1 1 individual differences in VC^max/kg (best 77.8ml-min~ -kg , worst 64.06ml-min"1 kg"1 ) being comparable with their difference in compe- tition results. The realization of a runner's potential, however, depends on TABLE I Marathon running competition results and aerobic power indices (X± SD) in marathon runners (n= 5) Index X SD 1. VO2max (ml • min""1 •kg"1 ) 2. Max test time (min) 3. Max HR 4. O2 uptake at anaerobic threshold level (ml-min"1 -kg"1 ) 5. Anaerobic threshold onset time (min) 6. % of VO2max at anaerobic threshold 7. O2 uptake at aerobic threshold level (ml-min"1 -kg"1 ) 8. Aerobic threshold onset time (min) 9. Marathon running competition result (min) TABLE II Correlations between a marathon running competition result and aerobic power indices (X± SD) in marathon runners (n= 5; for r > 0.85, p significant at p < 0.05 level) 71.1 23.6 186.6 61.5 18.0 86.4 55.5 13.7 147.3 ±5.04 ±3.21 ±10.9 ±5.6 ±3.0 ±2.5 ±6.1 ±2.3 ±11.1 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 0.27 -0.79 0.97 0.57 0.64 0.88 0.60 -0.54 1 0.06 0.44 0.93 0.79 -0.11 0.82 -0.93 2 -0.73 -0.27 -0.38 -0.71 -0.06 0.23 3 0.69 0.80 0.82 0.71 -0.70 4 0.85 0.16 0.84 -0.95 5 0.43 0.85 -0.96 6 0.38 -0.23 7 -0.89 8 Downloadedby[UniversidaddelosAndes]at19:4007August2012
  • 7. 258 A. NURMEKIVI et al. the quality of the training work. The subjects' % of VC^max at the anaero- bic threshold was also high at 86.4% ± 2.5. The difference in functional power between the marathon runner's with the best and the worst competition result was reflected in a runners respec- tive times to volitional exhaustion on the treadmill test - 27 and 19min respectively. The same contrast was observed in the time needed to attain the aerobic and anaerobic threshold respectively - a better prepared mara- thon runner attained a threshold level velocity considerably later in the test at a much higher velocity of running. Correlation analysis revealed a close connection of the competition result with maximal test time (r= —0.93), and also with the time of attaining the aerobic (r = —0.89) and anaerobic threshold (r = —0.95). A significant index predicting a marathon running competition result was the % of VC^max attained at the anaerobic threshold (r = —0.96). A statistically significant association between the competition result and VC^max (ml • min~~ •kg" ) was not established. DISCUSSION It is logical to presume that in order to attain top condition, the specific working power and capacity indices of a marathon runner have to be highly developed. Tests conducted during a preparatory stage may not yield objec- tive information on the attained power a few months hence. For this reason it is essential to assess aerobic power indices of a runner immediately prior each important competition. It is not necessary to cover a long distance in order to estimate the aerobic power of a marathon runner. The maximal test time serves as an objectives and significant index. This is confirmed by high correspondence between this index and marathon running result (r = —0.93). In the present study the results are compatible with earlier research (Noakes, 1988; 1991) proving the high predictive level of the treadmill test for marathon running performance. The present work has shown that during the competition period VC>2max (ml-min""1 kg"1 ) does not directly influence the competition result of a marathon runner (r = —0.54; p > 0.05). It appeared that a far more impor- tant index of possible competition success is the % VC^max value at the anaerobic threshold (r = —0.96). The importance of the aerobic and anaero- bic threshold velocity in influencing a marathon runner's competition result during the principal competition period is also demonstrated by the compe- tition result being highly correlated with the running velocity attained at the Downloadedby[UniversidaddelosAndes]at19:4007August2012
  • 8. MARATHON PERFORMANCE AND INDICES OF AEROBIC POWER 259 aerobic (r = —0.89) and anaerobic threshold (r= —0.95) respectively. Conse- quently, it is essential at the time of a principal competition period that both the runner's respective aerobic and anaerobic threshold running velocity is closely aligned with the typical marathon runner's running economy. The mentioned threshold velocities are closely connected to a marathon runner's economy. Joyner (1991) has presented a table on low, medium and high economy of a marathon runner based on the O2 uptake of a runner at the lactate thresh- old level and the corresponding results of the various runners of different quality. Since the subjects in the present research recorded both a competi- tion result as well as an anaerobic threshold O2 uptake level, Joyner's table could be used for determining a runner's economy - low, medium, or high. Knowing the aerobic power and running economy level of a given runner, it is possible to make training corrections and establish the most suitable strategic approach for future training of each individual. The results of the present study confirmed a staged accentuation of intense training was best for competition, a fact widely recognized now in a top marathon runner's training. This tactics is in good accordance with earlier research (Lenzi, 1983; Velikorodnoh et al., 1986; Vuorimaa, 1991) and guarantees optimal development in a specific sequence of aerobic power basics, i.e. strength endurance and delay in respiratory gas exchange onset threshold with increased running velocity leading to development of greater aerobic power, aerobic efficiency and finally high aerobic capacity. The highest level of the latter should be attained at the time of the principal com- petition period. Since four of the subjects in present study attained a per- sonal record at competition post-testing and one subject showed a result close to this, it can be maintained that the preceding training was correctly structured and guaranteed an individually high functional power and endur- ance at the time chosen for competition. CONCLUSIONS (1) The competition result of a marathon runner during a competition period was first influenced by developing aerobic efficiency the detailed criteria of which are a delay in reaching the respective anaerobic and aerobic thresholds during an incremental treadmill test to volitional exhaustion, attainment of the highest possible % of VC^max at the anaerobic threshold, and development of the highest running velocity at this level of oxygen uptake. Downloadedby[UniversidaddelosAndes]at19:4007August2012
  • 9. 260 A. NURMEKIVI et al. (2) It is shown that when the preceding training is structured on the princi- ple of creating training conditions for increasing the anaerobic thresh- old, then aerobic power and finally aerobic efficiency, in sequence, it guarantees that an optimal level of aerobic power/capacity for a mara- thon runner will be achieved at the planned time of competition. References Anderson, G.S. and Rhodes, E.C. A review of blood lactate and ventilatory methods of detec- ting transition thresholds. Sport Med. 8: 43-55, 1989. Conley, D.L. and Krahenbuhl, G.S. Running economy and distance running performance of highly trained athletes. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc. 12: 357-360, 1980. Costill, D.L. Metabolic responses during distance running. J. Appl. Physiol.28: 251-255, 1970. Costill, D.L., Branam, G., Eddy, D. and Sparks, K. Determinants of marathon running suc- cess. Int. Z. Angew. Physiol. 29: 249-254, 1971. Costill, D.L., Thomason, H. and Roberts, E. Fractional utilization of the aerobic capacity dur- ing distance running. Med. Sci. Sports, 5: 248-252, 1986. Costill, D.L. Inside Running: Basics Sports Physiology. Indianapolis, Benchmark, 1986. Daniels, J. A physiologist's view of running economy. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc. 17: 332-338, 1985. Daniels, J. and Daniels, N. Running economy of elite male and elite female runners. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc. 24(4): 483-489, 1992. Denis, C, Foquet, R., Poty, P., Geyssant, A. and Lacour, J.R. Effect of 40 weeks of endurance training on the anaerobic threshold. Int. J. Sports Med. 3: 208-214, 1982. Dobeln, W. Maximal oxygen uptake, body size and total hemoglobin in normal man. Acta Physiol. Scand. 38: 193-199, 1956. Farrell, P.A., Wilmore, J.H., Coyle, E.F., Billing, J.H. and Costill, D.L. Plasma lactate accumu- lation and distance running performance. Med. Sci. Sports, 11:338-344, 1979. Henritze, J., Weltman, A., Schurrer, R.L. and Barlow, K. Effects of training at and above the lactate threshold on the lactate threshold and maximal oxygen uptake. Eur. J. Appl. Phy- siol. 54: 84-88, 1985. Joyner, M.J. Modeling: optimal marathon performance on the basis of physiological factors. J. Appl. Physiol.70(2): 683-687, 1991. Korobov, A. and Volkov, N. Middle distance running. Factors of efficiency. Track andField Athletics 11:6-8, 1983 (in Russian). Krause, V. Readiness for marathon. Track andFieldAthletics 5: 12-14, 1988 (in Russian). Lenzi, G. The women's marathon: preparing for an important event in the season. In: Running. The JAAF Symposium on Middle and Long DistanceEvents. Development programme book, Vol. 3:pp. 59-66, 1983. Noakes, T.D. Implications of exercise testing for prediction of athletic performance: a con- temporary perspective. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc. 20: 319-330, 1988. Noakes, T.D. Lore of Running (3rd Edition). Leisure Press, Champaign, Illinois, 1991. Pate, R.R. and Branch, J.D. Training for endurance sport. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc. 24(9): 340-343, 1992. Pollock, M.L. Submaximal and maximal working capacity of elite distance runners. Part I. Cardiorespiratory aspects. Ann. NY Acad.Sci. 301:310-322, 1977. Sjodin, B. and Jacobs, I. Onset of blood lactate accumulation and marathon running perfor- mance. Int. J. Sports Med. 2: 23-26, 1981. Smehnov, V. Marathon preparation through health. Track and Field Athletics 8: 12-15, 1990 (in Russian). Svedenhag, J. and Sjodin, B. Maximal and submaximal oxygen uptakes and blood lactate levels in elite male middle - and long-distance runners. Int. J. Sports Med. 5: 255-261, 1984. Velikorodnôh, J., Kosmin, R., Konovalov, V. and Netshajev, V. Marathon running: preparing before competition. Track and Field Athletics 8: 11, 1986 (in Russian). Downloadedby[UniversidaddelosAndes]at19:4007August2012
  • 10. MARATHON PERFORMANCE AND INDICES OF AEROBIC POWER 261 Volkov, N. Principles of biochemical adaptation in sport training process. In: Biochemistry (Textbook for the institutes of physical culture), V. Menshikov and N. Volkov (Eds.). Moscow: pp. 347-383, 1986 (in Russian). Vuorimaa, T. Marathon rhythm. Success background of G. Bordin. Training and fitness 3: 44-47, 1991 (in Finnish). Wasserman, K., Whipp, B.J., Koyal, S.N. and Beaver, W.L. Anaerobic threshold and res- piratory gas exchange during exercise. /. Appl. Physiol. 35: 236-243, 1973. Downloadedby[UniversidaddelosAndes]at19:4007August2012