Tuesday, September 2, 2014

La Rosière Training. Ketosis Breathalyser Tested!

The first training ride after a hard ride or event is always a “recovery ride” – whether you want it to be or not. Chris keeps pointing out that “active recovery” is required to get circulation going for repairs – so it’s better to get straight back out on the bike for an easy session than to rest up completely. For me it’s early getting back on the bike with only one day’s rest! Although I felt keen there was no strength in the legs and I could feel that this was made worse by the ketosis. Once warmed up I could keep a reasonable pace despite the tiredness and lack of sugar driven energy.  It was hard work though – mentally more than physically. Unfortunately I’d chosen a 22 km climb up to La Rosière for an “easy” recovery session.

My 9 € digital breathalyser arrived from China today  I tried it before lunch and was pleasantly surprised. If the police used the same technology I'd be arrested for drunk driving in every country in Europe except the UK. My reading was 0.5 g/l or 0.05% BAC(Blood  Alcohol Concentration). Only in the UK is the legal limit above that at 0.08%.  In other terms this is measured in mmol/l which is equivalent to  g/l. Between 0.5 mmol/l and 3 mmol/l is the level required to be considered in "nutritional ketosis".

Semiconductor based breathalyser units can't distinguish between acetone and ethanol (alcohol).

Now I'm pretty sure that I'm in ketosis. What will be important is to watch the trend - whether or not there is accuracy is irrelevant to some extent - precision in following trends is more important - as when weighing oneself on the bathroom scales.

The system can be fooled if someone is eating a lot of carbs because that also causes a release of acetone in the breath - but you know if you are eating carbs or not. Also, an athlete can burn all his ketones and measure very low as a result - so that has to be considered too - but is not likely to be an issue pre-exercise. Also – anything causing increased breathing can probably affect it. Shame I don’t drink alcohol because I could train myself to fool police breathalysers.

After this  2 hour session I was very tired and fell asleep early – getting up still dopy in the morning. One coffee and the world was new and shiny once again!

View from La Rosière along the Tarantaise valley towards Les Menuires / Val Thorens


Views towards Les Cinq Lacs


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