For men over 44, women over 54, and anyone with a personal or family history of cardiac disease or risk factors for cardiac disease (hypertension, family history, smoking, diabetes, etc), a 12-lead EKG is mandatory during your test. There is an extra $65.00 charge for this test to cover the cost of interpretation by our Medical Director.
Note: If, within the last two years, you had an EKG at BCSM during an exercise test, another one may not be required.
If you've recently been evaluated by your doctor for cardiac disease and they believe the EKG would be unnecessary, tell us a.s.a.p. and we will give you a waiver that you can ask your doctor to sign. Please keep in mind that this can take time, and there is no guarantee that your doctor will be willing to sign the waiver.
Feel free to contact the Sport Science staff at the Boulder Center for Sports Medicine if you have any questions. 303-441-0539
Rest and Pre-test Training
To get accurate information from your test it is very important that you come well rested. You should not exercise at all on the day of the test. We also recommend that you have a very light workout, if any, the day before the test. You may need to rest longer if you’ve built up a lot of fatigue from training, or especially if you’ve recently raced. (e.g., for runners: one day of rest per mile raced.) Do not do any kind of resistance training--upper or lower body--for three days before your test.
You should have been exercising regularly for at least 3-4 weeks before your test. This exercise should be mostly in the mode of exercise (e.g. running, cycling) in which you will be doing your test. You do not have to exercise hard, but do exercise consistently.
Food and Medication
If you are doing a VO2max test, you should eat beforehand, but do not eat or drink calories for one hour before your appointment. (This includes coffee and sports drinks.)
If you are doing a FUEL test, you should eat beforehand, but do not eat or drink calories for two hours before your appointment. (This includes coffee and sports drinks.)
If you are doing ONLY a lactate profile test and not VO2max or FUEL, it is not necessary to fast. You can follow your normal pre-exercise food regimen.
For all tests:
In order to achieve your best performance, do not do a long or overnight fast; you’ll need to have energy to do the test. Make sure you drink enough water so you are normally hydrated for your test.
Also, do not use acetaminophen before your test.
Equipment to Bring
Come prepared with the the clothes you normally wear for exercise. A locker room is available for showering and changing. Cyclists should bring pedals and shoes in addition to cycling clothing. You do not need to bring your own bicycle. You may bring your own heart rate monitor (coded straps only), but we will have extras if you do not have one. You may also bring your own iPOD (but no headphones please).
Enter the Boulder Center for Sports Medicine at the north entrance of the Mapleton facility, from Maxwell Street.
Check in at the front desk 15 minutes before your appointment. You will need this time to do some paperwork, change clothes, etc. Ask for a key to a locker for your belongings. (To avoid clutter, belongings are not allowed in the lab.)
Your appointment will last about two and one half hours; about 30 minutes longer for FUEL or VO2max. This includes a consultation time, where you will learn what your results are, what they mean and how to use them in a training program to meet your goals. Your test will involve a 10-15 minute warm-up, about eight, four-minute stages of gradually increasing intensity, and a cool-down. All tests involve finger stick blood draws. You will not reach a maximal effort during a lactate profile or FUEL test. You will be asked to reach maximal effort for a VO2max test.