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"Breaking away" -- the effect of non-uniform pacing on power output and RPE growth

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Cohen, Jacob
Doberstein, Scott; Wright, Glenn; Foster, Carl
MS, Clinical Exercise Physiology
May 06, 2010
Fatigue; Cycling -- Physiological aspects
The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of a short burst in power output midway through a 10 km cycle time trial and its relationship to RPE growth. We hypothesized that a break-away effort in non-normal pacing will cause a disruption in normal pacing strategy. However, a return to the cyclists pre-determined template would occur prior to completion of the time trial. Ten subjects performed a maximal incremental cycling test followed by a total of four 10 km cycling time trials. The first two trials were to habituate the subjects and to establish a baseline performance. The final two trials were randomized and consisted of a spontaneously paced 10 km cycling time trial and a 10 km cycling time trial during which subjects were required to increase velocity (maximum effort) for 1 km. The results of the study indicate that a burst in power output during a 10 km time trial does have an effect on overall power output and RPE growth. During a breakaway effort, power output was significantly increased compared to the no burst time trial. RPE growth was significantly faster during the burst time trial compared to the no burst time trial.
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