Metabolic Conditioning Glossary
Pukie & Greg Glassman
I want to help with some of the basic terminology of metabolic conditioning, so here’s Pukie’s guide to easy bioenergetics complete with commentary
V02 max: Maximum amount of oxygen that can be used continuously divided by body mass. Long the gold standard of aerobic fitness, the slight advantage that endurance athletes have over anaerobic athletes in V02 max can be attributable to the low body mass of endur- ance athletes. I can use a similar definition of strength – by dividing lifts by weight – to show that little guys are stronger than big guys.
Aerobic: Low powered, low intensity, long duration – more than several minutes. This is the easy stuff. Introduced to real efforts these guys crumble!
Anaerobic: Higher-powered, higher intensity, shorter duration efforts– those less than several minutes. Anaerobic is Greek for “worth while.” Pukie wants to know why there are 1 million recreational traiathletes but only 7 recreational 800 meter athletes.
Lactate Threshold: The point as work intensity increases where lactic acid levels in the blood rise faster than can be controlled. Lactic acid is a waste product of anaerobic work. Also known as “anaerobic threshold”, the lactate threshold marks the point in intensity where work has become largely anaerobic. This is also the “Wimp rest-stop.”
Interval training: Exercise protocol of set periods of high intensity rest and work. This is how anaerobic athletes develop tremendous levels of aerobic fitness – through intervals. I want to meet the scientist who invented this. How else could you do high intensity work?
Heart rate monitor: It’s all about the performance. Forget heart rate. The heart rate monitor is a fun toy, though. Mix dehydration, beer, steep hill, bicycle, hot humid day and see who can get the highest number. I’ve seen seven people over 200 at once on the same hill. What can you and your friends do?
Greg Glassman is the founder (with Lauren Glassman) of CrossFit, Inc. and CrossFit Santa Cruz and is the publisher of the CrossFit Journal. He is a former competitive gymnast and has been a fitness trainer and conditioning coach since the early 1980s.
2 min max rep double-unders
1 min rest
1 min max rep pushups
1 min rest
2 min max rep power cleans 135/95