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The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2014 October;54(5):553-8

language: English

OBLA is a better predictor of performance than Dmax in long and middle-distance well-trained runners

Santos-Concejero J. 1, 2, Granados C. 2, Irazusta J. 3, Bidaurrazaga-Letona I. 2, Zabala-Lili J. 2, Tam N. 1, Gil S. M. 2

1 UCT/MRC Research Unit for Exercise, Science and Sports Medicine, Department of Human Biology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa
2 Department of Physical Education and Sport, Faculty of Physical Activity and Sport, University of the Basque Country UPV/EHU, Vitoria-Gasteiz, Spain;
3 Department of Physiology, Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, University of the Basque Country UPV/EHU, Leioa, Spain


AIM: The main purpose of this study was to investigate if the lactate threshold estimated by the maximal deviation method (LTDmax) and the onset of blood lactate accumulation speed (LTOBLA) are good correlates of middle- and long-distance running performance in well-trained endurance runners.
METHODS: Eleven long- and eleven middle-distance runners participated in this study. All participants completed a maximal incremental running test on a treadmill to determine maximal physiological variables and velocities corresponding to LTDmax and LTOBLA (4 mmol·L-1 of lactate concentration). The relationships between LTDmax, LTOBLA and the best 10-km (S10km) and 3-km (S3km) race pace were analyzed in the long- and middle distance runners, respectively.
RESULTS: The velocities for LTDmax and LTOBLA were 17.0±0.7 km·h-1 and 17.5±1.3 km·h-1 for the long-distance runners and 16.9±1.1 km·h-1 and 17.4±1.3 km·h-1 for the middle-distance runners. A positive linear relationship was found between LTDmax and S10km (r=0.873, P<0.001), as well as between LTOBLA and S10km (r=0.919, P<0.001) in the long-distance runners. Similarly, LTDmax and LTOBLA were significantly correlated with S3km in the middle-distance runners (r=0.825, P<0.01 and r=0.849, P<0.001, respectively).
CONCLUSION: These results indicate that both LTOBLA and LTDmax are highly associated to running performance according to S10km and S3km in well-trained long- and middle-distance runners. Thus, we conclude that competitive middle- and long-distance athletes may find these measures useful to monitor running performance within 3 weeks of laboratory testing.

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