kayry
VDOT vs VO2max 11/27/2010 10:40AM Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
Is VO2max near always higher than VDOT? I just had a VO2 max test done on a treadmill and it came out about 65 vs my racing VDOT is around 60-61 (long distances 10k - marathon). So I'm figuring I'm about 92% as efficient as the theoretical runner the VDOT charts represent. So what does VDOT mean relative to VO2max - is it that the average VO2max of people that run a VDOT 60ish is about 60ish (so there are as many 55ish VO2max as there are 65 VO2max people running 60 VDOT) or is it more like the theoretical best or near best possible - that I run 92% of near max potential of a perfectly effecient VO2max 65 person (and maybe have efficiency opportunities to close much of that gap).

I've read through Daniels Running Formula a few times but I can't figure out the basis of VDOT relative to VO2max.
The Stache
RE: VDOT vs VO2max 11/27/2010 10:55AM - in reply to kayry Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
Well, you need to go back to his original publications and to his first book (I think it was his first) called Oxygen Power to see the actual calculations.

You're partly right to assume that your running efficiency might be lower than the perfect runner. However, there are those out there whose VO2max measures lower than the VDOT that their race times would indicate. Does that mean they are 106% efficient? No.
A LOT goes into how those tables are devised. Keep in mind that VO2max and your vVO2max (velocity at VO2max) are important in short races, and maybe up to 5k if you're decently fast, but in longer races, other factors become more important - like the percentage of VO2max pace at which you start to accumulate large amounts of lactate. In other words, is your lactate threshold at 80% or 92% of vVO2max for example. For me, I had my actual VO2 max measured at a 74 twice after I was out of college and was 'fun running.' I was not racing at that level though. I was racing anywhere from 66ish in short races (1500, mile) down to 58ish in 10k and longer. For one thing, I was not putting in much mileage. For another, that same VO2max test showed my ventilatory threshold (which occurs at a similar point as a lactate threshold) to be about 80% of VO2max. So, not very high. This explains why my VDOT scores dropped off fairly sharply the longer distances I ran.

Do not equate VDOT to VO2max. It is NOT VO2max. Also keep in mind VO2max is actually a fairly poor indicator of race times among fit people. Many many factors go into racing, from lactate, to cardiac output, to psychological abilities to push one's self, to stride mechanics, to carbohydrate storage and fat utilization, etc, etc, etc, etc. You get the point.

Use VDOT for a framework for training and it can truly help you attain goals. But it is not meant to be VO2max.
kartelite
RE: VDOT vs VO2max 11/27/2010 11:11AM - in reply to kayry Reply | Return to Index | Report Post

kayry wrote:

blah blah blah, blah blah blah blah.




VO2max is a physiological measurement, essentially based on your maximal oxygen uptake and your body weight.

VDOT is a measure of how fast you are, it doesn't care how much you weigh or how much oxygen you take in.

Stop acting like the two should magically match up somehow. It's like trying to compare your vertical leap to your blood pressure.
rekrunner
RE: VDOT vs VO2max 11/27/2010 5:25PM - in reply to kayry Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
kartelite is right. One measures oxygen, and the other velocity.

Your VDOT can be higher or lower than your VO2max, and vice-versa.

The relation between VO2max and VDOT is called economy. Daniels and Gilbert created a "generic" economy curve, which represented a kind of average of the subjects tested, not a maximum. Both VO2max and economy can vary widely for the same performance. By combining them, you factor out the variability, and get a steady metric called VDOT.
kayry
RE: VDOT vs VO2max 11/27/2010 9:58PM - in reply to rekrunner Reply | Return to Index | Report Post

rekrunner wrote:The relation between VO2max and VDOT is called economy. Daniels and Gilbert created a "generic" economy curve, which represented a kind of average of the subjects tested, not a maximum.


So as I said in the OP - does this mean there are as many 55 VO2max guys as there are 65 VO2max guys like me running at my VDOT 60 speed for it to average out? That just seems unlikely. I know there are examples of low VO2max people running high VDOT races - for example Frank Shorter VO2max was 71 and PR VDOT was 78 - but I sure was under the impression this is a small minority of the runners - I though most everyone ran lower VDOT then their VO2max.

Is it possible the VDOT is based on averaging of a group of highly economical runners rather than the average of the general population? More like a 90th percentile of the general population or something.
kayry
RE: VDOT vs VO2max 11/27/2010 10:07PM - in reply to The Stache Reply | Return to Index | Report Post

The Stache wrote:

Well, you need to go back to his original publications and to his first book (I think it was his first) called Oxygen Power to see the actual calculations........

You are partly right to assume that your running efficiency might be lower than the perfect runner. However, there are those out there whose VO2max measures lower than the VDOT that their race times would indicate. Does that mean they are 106% efficient? No.
A LOT goes into how those tables are devised. Keep in mind that VO2max and your vVO2max (velocity at VO2max) are important in short races, and maybe up to 5k if you are decently fast, but in longer races, other factors become more important - like the percentage of VO2max pace at which you start to accumulate large amounts of lactate. In other words, is your lactate threshold at 80% or 92% of vVO2max for example.


Thanks for the reference - I will see if I can find this original publication somewhere. What I am really trying to figure out is if focus on running economy might be a big opportunity area for me - 8% faster for the same oxygen is a huge!

fwiw - I did happen to get blood lactate in the same test - looks like my BLa rises at around 85-87% of vVO2max - if that CAN be moved via training as high as 92% that would be another area of huge opportunity.
The Stache
RE: VDOT vs VO2max 11/27/2010 10:15PM - in reply to kayry Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
You might be able to raise your Lactate threshold to ~92% through training, and of course this will improve your performances. Training to do that might also improve your economy.

However, your vVO2max just might be slower than others. For example, at my VO2max of 74 days I mentioned above, I had a class mate who was a triathlete (great cyclist,, very good swimmer, not a very good runner but could run for a very long time). He used to challenge me all the time to races because his VO2max was measured by me and a couple others right at 78! That is very high and he was putting in lots of training time. The fact of the matter is though that his 10k PR was about a minute and half slower than mine. His vVO2max was just simply slower than mine, and even though his ventilatory threshold was significantly higher, percentage-wise, than mine, his velocity at ventilatory threshold was much slower.

My running economy was never great, and at that time my training was poor. But his running economy was apparently terrible!
kayry
RE: VDOT vs VO2max 11/27/2010 10:52PM - in reply to kayry Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
Ok - I found this reference:

http://www.simpsonassociatesinc.com/runningmath8.htm

Near the bottom it says: "Daniels and Gilbert, with their "drop dead" equation forced every runner into the same running economy category as that of an elite athlete. Few people have that type of profile in reality."

So the economy is based on the running economy of an elite athlete - that makes more sense - and so based on my VDOT/VO2max - I am 92% as economical as an elite athlete.
cabana
RE: VDOT vs VO2max 11/29/2010 9:18AM - in reply to kayry Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
Vdot causes more confusion than in actually helps in my opinion.

If you want to improve, concentrate on increasing your stride power. That is the real difference in ability between elites and ordinary runners.
rekrunner
RE: VDOT vs VO2max 11/29/2010 4:14PM - in reply to kayry Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
That's a question I can't answer. I don't know anything about the subjects Daniels and Gilbert used. I guess they included a lot of university runners, which could include both average and elite athletes. In fact, I can't imagine that Daniels had access to more than a couple dozen elite athletes.

Since Daniels published the tables from VDOT 30 to VDOT 85, it could be that the profiles are different for the VDOT 40 athlete (with low VO2max and low economy), and the VDOT 70 athlete (with higher VO2max and economy), depending on how representative the original subjects were over the whole spectrum.

I'm inclined to say the "generic" economy is an average, but I guess that begs the question, the average of which kind of population. We should also decide if by "general population" you mean everyone, or just the small minority who run.

No one can look at a VDOT score, and a VO2max measurement, and conclude anything about performance potential. For example, I can not rule out a low VDOT due to poor racing, e.g. due to bad peaking, bad pacing strategy, or lack of willpower.

Nevertheless, long after your VO2max "maxes out", and you've pushed your LT as high as it can go, you can still make improvements in economy.


kayry wrote:

So as I said in the OP - does this mean there are as many 55 VO2max guys as there are 65 VO2max guys like me running at my VDOT 60 speed for it to average out? That just seems unlikely. I know there are examples of low VO2max people running high VDOT races - for example Frank Shorter VO2max was 71 and PR VDOT was 78 - but I sure was under the impression this is a small minority of the runners - I though most everyone ran lower VDOT then their VO2max.

Is it possible the VDOT is based on averaging of a group of highly economical runners rather than the average of the general population? More like a 90th percentile of the general population or something.
Guy9
RE: VDOT vs VO2max 11/29/2010 4:19PM - in reply to rekrunner Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
Which just goes to show that kartelite was right VDOT is not VO2Max but merely a performance index. Daniels has said the same thing on this forum