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Training Periodisation During LHTH at Various Altitudes Improves Performance in Elite Runners: 946 Board #125 May 31 200 PM - 330 PM

Sharma, Avish P.1; Lewis, Laura A.1; Clark, Brad2; Gore, Christopher J. FACSM1; Saunders, Philo U.1; Thompson, Kevin G. FACSM2

Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: May 2017 - Volume 49 - Issue 5S - p 251
doi: 10.1249/01.mss.0000517540.91908.4c
B-63 Free Communication/Poster - Altitude/Hypoxia Wednesday, May 31, 2017, 1:00 PM - 6:00 PM Room: Hall F
Free

1Australian Institute of Sport, Canberra, Australia. 2University of Canberra, Canberra, Australia. (Sponsor: Kevin G. Thompson, FACSM)

Email: avish.sharma@ausport.gov.au

(No relationships reported)

Previous studies have reported improved sea level performance and increased haemoglobin mass (Hbmass) following hypoxic doses of varying magnitude. Less research has focused on the periodisation of training during hypoxic exposure which may influence subsequent performance.

PURPOSE: To determine the effect of intensified training and tapering during different doses of Live High Train High (LHTH) altitude on sea level performance and Hbmass in elite runners.

METHODS: Twenty one runners completed one of three LHTH altitude camps following 4 weeks of sea level training; 22 days at 1720 m (MOD22; n = 7; VO2 max = 71 ± 4 mL.min.kg-1), 22 days at 2100 m (HI22; n = 4; 67 ± 3 mL.min.kg-1) or 30 days at 2100 m (HI30; n = 10; 70 ± 4 mL.min.kg-1). Hbmass was assessed via CO rebreathing immediately pre and post LHTH, and sea level performance was measured in competitive races completed pre and within 2 weeks post. For each training session, Training Load (TL) was calculated using the session RPE method. Training Stress Balance (TSB) was calculated as the ratio between 7 and 28 day exponentially weighted moving averages. Differences between groups were assessed using one-way ANOVA, with the Kruskal-Wallis test used when assumptions were violated (TSB).

RESULTS: Race performance improved by 0.6 ± 1.5 % overall, with similar improvements in HI22 (0.9 ± 0.5 %) and HI30 (0.9 ± 0.9 %); however these were not significantly different to MOD22 (0.1 ± 2.3 %). Performance improvements were achieved by all 4 participants in HI22, 9 of 10 in HI30 and 4 of 7 in MOD22 (4, 7 and 3 lifetime bests respectively). Hbmass was increased from baseline in all groups (MOD22 = 4.4 ± 4.6 %; HI22 = 6.0 ± 2.1 %; HI30 = 4.0 ± 3.1 %). Weekly TL during the first 2 weeks of LHTH was similarly increased in all groups compared to preceding sea level training (range 58 ± 13 % to 72 ± 27 %). TSB at the start of LHTH in MOD22 (132 ± 21) was significantly higher (p < 0.03) than HI22 (94 ± 11) but not HI30 (95 ± 11; p = 0.10). TL for the final week of LHTH was reduced significantly less (p ≤ 0.03) from weeks 1 and 2 in MOD22 (23 ± 13 %) than in HI22 (44 ± 5 %) or HI30 (41 ± 10 %).

CONCLUSIONS: Lifetime best sea level performances were achieved following various doses of LHTH. Substantial increases in training load were observed within the first 2 weeks at altitude, and tapering concluding LHTH appeared beneficial for optimal performance.

© 2017 American College of Sports Medicine