Correlation between Cardiopulmonary Indices and Running Performance in a 14.5 km Endurance Running Event.

Tomovic M; Toliopoulos A; Koutlianos N; Dalkiranis A; Bubanj S; Deligiannis A; Kouidi E;

International journal of environmental research and public health [Int J Environ Res Public Health] 2022 Sep 27; Vol. 19 (19).
Date of Electronic Publication: 2022 Sep 27.

Background: Running is a common recreational activity, and the number of long-distance-race participants is continuously growing. It is well-established that regular physical activity can prevent and manage non-communicable diseases and benefit public health. Training for a long-distance race requires development of specific aerobic abilities and should generate the desired race performance. The purpose of this study was to support the training design and motivation of recreational endurance runners, by investigating whether a 14.5 km race performance of long-distance runners correlates with their cardiopulmonary indices measured in the laboratory.
Methods: To examine the relationships of a 14.5 km running performance with the cardiopulmonary parameters of amateur runners, a cross-sectional study design was applied. Fifteen (eleven men and four women) recreational long-distance runners (aged 41.3 ± 9.2 years) from Northern Greece were included in the study and were evaluated in the laboratory within one week before an endurance running race-the 14.5 km Philip Road race, in Greece. The laboratory-based examinations of the athletes consisted of a comprehensive medical pre-participation screening and maximal cardiopulmonary exercise testing.
Results: The results showed that the 14.5 km race performance time (73.8 ± 9.7 min) significantly correlated with the cardiopulmonary-exercise-testing speed-related indices at specific submaximal and maximal workloads ( p < 0.01, p < 0.05), while the cardiopulmonary indices of oxygen uptake did not reliably predict race running time ( p > 0.05).
Conclusions: There is a better correlation of the 14.5 km running performance of recreational long-distance runners with the cardiopulmonary-exercise-testing speed-related indices at specific workloads than with the indices of oxygen uptake, running economy or respiratory economy. When preparing a training strategy, amateur long-distance runners should mostly rely on specific running-speed-related laboratory data rather than on oxygen-uptake values.