Authors:M Kjertakov, M Dalip, R Hristovski and Y Epstein
This study aimed to examine the validity of the modified Conconi test (CT) to predict lactate threshold (LT) during running. Twelve distance runners randomly performed the modified CT and the incremental test in which LT was determined directly by measuring blood lactate (BLa). Mean values of heart rate (HR) and running speed (RS) at heart rate deflection point (HRDP) obtained through the modified CT were compared with those at LT. Subsequently, the runners who showed a HRDP in the modified CT performed a 30-min prolonged exercise test (PET) at a RS corresponding to HRDP. During this test, the kinetics of BLa and HR were analyzed to determine whether a steady state in these variables could be attained. We succeeded in identifying HRDP in nine of our runners, whereas the remaining three runners showed entirely linear HR response. In those nine runners, no significant difference was found between HR and RS at HRDP and those at LT. Significant correlation was found between HR at HRDP and HR at LT (r = 0.84, p = 0.005), but RS at HRDP was not significantly correlated with RS at LT (r = 0.63, p = 0.07). All nine runners were able to complete the PET with steady state conditions being achieved for both BLa and HR. In conclusion, these findings indicate that the modified CT has a potential to be used as an alternative method for assessment of LT in distance runners presenting a HRDP.