Matt and I are excited about rolling out our new 2021 Edition Run plans. They will be announced in our next newsletter. These have been completely overhauled from the ground up. A part of these new plans includes updated documentation and a new testing protocol: the Talk Test.
We’d love you feedback on this new test, which we feel is incredibly accurate and not nearly as severe as the 30-minute TT.
To try it, visit our updated Intensity Guidelines for Running document and scroll down to the Talk Test section. Enter your results in the respective Talk Test field at the Zone Calculator and compare the results with your current zones. How close are they? Maybe even try using the 80/20 zones identified by the Talk Test for a few weeks and see if they more accurately reflect the intensities you can maintain.
Note that we don’t yet have the Talk Test field in the calculator for Pace. This is coming soon. However, you can still complete the Talk Test protocol and reverse-engineer the Threshold Pace field by entering values until the top of Zone 2 equals your result from the Talk Test.
In the talk test, there is one big subjective factor – talking comfortably. I have no idea what is comfortable for vast majority or what comfortable should be even for me. Is it talking without taking any big gasps of air or how would you describe it?
That’s the brilliance of the design of this particular protocol. As explained in the instructions, if you’re not sure whether you are able to speak comfortably, that counts as no, plain and simple. Your VT1 aligns with the highest pace/power/heart rate at which you are SURE you’re able to speak comfortably. And don’t tell me you’re never sure! Say something out loud right now. Were you able to to so comfortably? Are you sure? I’ll answer for you: yes and yes. You can do this!