Knowing how hard you can push yourself has benefits way beyond the finish line. By working at different percentages of your maximum effort, you can tailor cardio sessions specifically to your goals. That’s where your VO2 max comes in.
The best measure of how hard you can train is your VO2 max, and the pace at which you reach it. This is the maximum amount of oxygen you use during intense exercise. It’s the ideal benchmark for your aerobic endurance and cardiovascular fitness.
Find your magic number and cross-reference your personal goal with the set percentages, to ensure you’re getting the most out of your cardio training.
Work Out Your V02 Max Pace
Use a treadmill and the Bruce Protocol method. This will determine your VO2 max pace.
To calculate your VO2 max: 2.94 x run time in minutes + 7.65
Step 1: Warm up for 5-10min, then stop
Step 2: Restart the treadmill at 2.5kmph, to an incline of 10%. Start running
Step 3: Every 3 minutes increase the speed by 1.5kmph and the incline by 2%
Step 4: When you can run no more, stop and record your speed (VO2 max pace) and time.