VO2 Max Test for Free?

I am in the midst of convincing myself that I am becoming serious in my training now because I’m one step further to booking a Test Cardio-Respiratoire, or a V02 Max test. I’ll bet some of you have done this and I’ll equally wager that some of you have thought it’d be cool to do.

Sylvain Chavanel getting his yearly ‘bilan’ done in Poitiers

It turns out that Nimes has a center dedicated to sports testing in the general hospital and the test costs €200 unless you have a prescription. Yes, that’s right, according to my bike shop owner (an ex-pro cyclist), you can ask your doctor to write a prescription to get this done because it can be considered a kind of medical check.

I’m getting shots in my knee tomorrow at the sports doctor’s office, so I’ll ask him if he can whip up a prescription. How many of you have done this type of thing?

14 thoughts on “VO2 Max Test for Free?

  1. I did one years ago, way before I had a power meter. Helped me understand training zones and HR much better but didn’t make it any easier to cycle 🤣

    I’d say it may not be worth €200 but I’d definitely get it done if it was free. Like FTP testing though I think it’s most beneficial if done regularly.

  2. School me on this.

    Is your max something that changes with training? I’ll assume that it does, and that that’s the point. If so, then wouldn’t you want to do it once early in your regime and then again much later, to measure the effectiveness of your workouts?

    Or is this all about understanding some immutable baseline that your innate physiology dictates, so you can work around it or with it?

    In any case, just as you wouldn’t go on stage after a dog or a little kid, don’t go get your test right after Chavanel.

    • Those are wise words at the end there, Tony!

      I think that V02 Max is trainable, but not like power is. I hope to have an explanation of all this soon and I hope that I understand it. If I do, I’ll definitely be reporting back here.

  3. Did one in September with a prescription. This includes lactate and vo2 measurements, plus a cardiogramme. My doctor prefers I do this every 3 years. The particular doctor’s office in Antibes has been doing this for at least 20 years. I’ve probably done 5 or 6 of there

  4. I have a handy gadget to blow into when my breathing is poor. It has a chart which comes with it to help me interpret the results. I have yet to reach as low as the red line which tells you that you are dead. That is quite enough testing for me.

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