Calorie based Astrand Test
Vic Denwood provides an overview of how to monitor your fitness level (VO2 max) on an exercise bike or rowing machine based on the calories you have burned during the test.
If your bike or exercise machine does not have a work-load readout in watts, but provides a "calorie" reading, then this Calorie based test is for you.
The Nomogram below is used to evaluate your results. It has pulse rate readings, and work load and equivalent calorie count readings (in red numbers) for Male and Female.
Decide which sex you are then:
An example line, in blue, has been drawn on the Nonogram diagram below for a 35-year-old female with a pulse rate of 136, who consumed 11 Calories in 6 minutes. Her resulting VO2 max index is 48.
VO2Max Index Tables
Two tables are provided at the bottom of the Nomogram, one for Female results, the other for Male results. Choose the row appropriate to your age and see where your index number appears. The column title will tell you your overall level of fitness.
In our example given above our female 35-year-old with a VO2 max of 48 gains a fitness rating of "Superior"
Normative data (Heywood 2006) for Female (values in ml/kg/min)
Normative data (Heywood 2006) for Male (values in ml/kg/min)
Why 6 Minutes?
The original Astrand Bike test on which the Nomogram was used was for 6 minutes, so I saw no need to change it. The calorie count to workload equivalence (calories to watts) is a derived relationship and is totally dependent upon the duration of the exercise session.
For a 6-minute session there are 360 seconds so if you exercise at 100 watts, that produces 360 x 100 = 36,000 Joules. There are 4.184 Joules in a Calorie. I have rounded this to 4. So, 36,000 Joules divided by 4 = 9,000 calories or 9Kcal. Thus, for a 6-minute session we have 100 watts equating to 9 calories.
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About the Author
Vic Denwood is a retired RAF Engineer and IBM Business Analyst.
The following Sports Coach pages provide additional information on this topic: