With the Boardman Performance Centre now open and bookings being taken for our BikeFit and Physiology services Chris Barnett, Boardman Sales Manager took the opportunity to experience what a Physiology session entailed and to find out how it might benefit him as a rider and athlete. After he'd recovered, we asked him a few questions to see how he found the experience and if he felt the information gained would be helpful in achieving his personal goals.
Q / Can you give us a bit of background on yourself
A / I'm a 28-year-old Triathlete, from predominantly a long distance running background. I'm currently riding a Boardman SLR Endurance Disc 9.2 and a TTE 9.8.
Q / What events if any have you taken part in?
A / I completed the Barcelona Marathon in March, an Ultramarathon in May and am currently training for my 2nd Ironman, Challenge Almere-Amsterdam Ironman later this year.
Q /Do you have any previous experience with physiology testing?
A / I've never undertaken any similar testing of this sort and have always been intrigued about putting some numbers against my performance and capabilities.
Q / How have you measured your performance in the past?
A / Despite training regularly and exercising predominantly for enjoyment, I have only ever used a heart rate monitor and my weight as a gauge for fitness. I would say I've got a reasonably good understanding of my base fitness, but I certainly couldn't document that in terms of data. Regularly training alone makes it trickier to monitor my progress.
Q / As you haven't done anything like this before how did you find the experience?
A / The thought of undertaking some of the tests on offer had excited me from the very early conceptual stages of the Performance Centre. Having briefed Lee on my discipline, target events and limited experience of testing before my arrival, Lee then suggested what he thought would be achievable and of greatest benefit to me within the session. The experience began with a clear brief about the variety of tests we would be undertaking and more importantly from my perspective what the results would be able to show. The session was hugely interactive throughout and watching Lee analyse all of the test data in real time really demonstrated his expertise, unlike many lab tests where the results are presented to you as a pre-analysed report after the session. I'm naturally inquisitive, so the chance to ask questions about the specific tests that I was particularly interested in was fascinating. Lee had a wealth of knowledge yet had the ability to present it in a manner that was engaging and relevant based on my limited Physiological understanding was excellent. I undertook a full range of tests from BMI, FTP through to Lactic Threshold, Step and Ramp tests. We covered an awful lot of ground, and there was plenty of information to take on board all within 3 hours, which went by in a flash.
Q / What did you take away from the session?
A / The debriefing at the end was an incredibly valuable way to end the session. Despite being told all of the information would be wrapped up in a takeaway package, part of me was trying to remember all of the numbers, stats and graphs during the session. The debrief allowed me to ask further questions and begin to digest the data that this facility can provide. In the three hours I spent in the lab, I genuinely learnt more about my performance and potential than all my previous years working on a personal training plan combined. Without a doubt, the session left me wanting to know even more and relishing the opportunity to train under similar conditions again to explore my potential.
Q / How will you use the information?
A / The session has given me the opportunity to not only benchmark my current performance but given me further motivation to train, with not only my race goal but also my physiological make-up in mind.
Chris's Strava Profile: https://www.strava.com/athletes/1759320
For more information about the Boardman Performance Centre or to experience our BikeFit or Physiology services for yourself head over to our booking page to check pricing and availability.