The data derived from understanding and assessing your baseline physiology and overall health gives us parameters to develop training, dietary, and rest and recovery solutions for you. Biometric outputs measured include VO2 max, anaerobic threshold, heart rate variability, active heart rate, SpO2, EEG and brain wave activity.
The VO2 Max test is the gold standard to determine your fitness level and is the best data driven indicator of your ability to exert yourself physically. Your VO2 max looks at the amount of blood your heart pumps out per heart-beat and the amount of oxygen that goes into and out of your muscles. Simply put, the VO2 max tests how big your body’s engine or the cardiorespiratory system is.
You will be put through a progressive-intensity exercise stimulus to provide an integrated analysis of the physiologic responses required by the cardiovascular and respiratory systems to meet the metabolic demands of your muscles. The VO2 max test will allow us to determine your precise heart rate zones to optimize each level of exercise and maximize your results.
How Does It Work?
- You should not eat, drink or smoke for 4 hours before your test.
- Wear comfortable sneakers or running shoes and workout clothes
- A heart rate chest strap and face mask that is connected to a hose will be attached to you
- You will begin exercise on a treadmill, cycle or stepper. Our trainers and fitness nurse will instruct you to gradually increase your intensity until you are fatigued.
- The entire test will take 15-20 minutes to complete.
- When you are finished, you will be given a simple and insightful report that we use to develop exercise and fitness protocols for you.
While the VO2 Max Test determines how big your body’s engine is, when we test for anaerobic or lactate threshold, we are looking at how efficient your fitness level is. Anaerobic threshold is defined as the intensity of exercise at which lactate begins to accumulate in the blood at a faster rate than it can be removed.
The quicker the lactate from muscles is eliminated from your blood, the longer you can perform at peak levels.
This is why the increase in intensity makes one feel the effects and fatigue. The idea behind anaerobic threshold training is to get your body to work at a higher intensity for a longer time before lactate levels become intolerable. Your anaerobic threshold is calculated during a VO2 Max test and will also be included in your VO2 Max report
Metabolism is the process of converting food (calories) into energy. The efficiency with which your body does this is referred to as your metabolic rate. Many factors affect a person’s metabolic rate: weight, age, body composition, hormone levels, and gender making it a highly unique number.
To assess your metabolism, we use a test called RESTING METABOLIC RATE or RMR. Understanding your body’s unique metabolic rate will allow us to customize your weight loss or maintenance program around your needs.
How Does It Work?
- The measurements from the RMR test will allow our dieticians to carefully design a personalized weekly diet plan to meet your diet and fitness goals. No more guesswork in developing diet plans
- It can screen for a slowed metabolism that may explain frustrated attempts to lose weight in the past
- It can reveal changes in your metabolism during the weight loss process that can help trouble shoot a frustrating plateau
- Once you reach your goal, an RMR measurement can give you the precise caloric prescription for maintenance to help you sustain that goal weight.
How does RMR test work?
Because every calorie a person consumes requires a fixed amount of oxygen to be converted to energy, we measure the oxygen you consume to calculate calories burned. All of the air you exhale must be collected to measure oxygen consumption.
- Avoid eating 4 hours before the test.
- Avoid exercising prior to the test.
- Avoid the use of stimulants such as caffeine.
During and after the test
During the test you will be invited to sit or recline in a comfortable position. You will be given a mouthpiece to breathe in to. You will be breathing in air from the room, but the gas that you breathe out will go into the metabolic analyzer to measure your metabolic rate.
- You will be sitting down during the test.
- Keep lips sealed lightly around the mouthpiece. It is important that all the air you breathe out is analyzed.
- The test is over in 15 minutes
3D BODY SCAN
Using a noninvasive infrared 3-dimensional body scan, we can create interactive 3D visuals to identify visceral and subcutaneous fat, muscle and bone density. The scan takes 15 seconds and an automated report is generated with details on how each biometric is changing with time. This valuable information will provide you with a baseline to track your progress and also allow our clinical and fitness teams analytic information to continue customizing and individualizing your exercise and diet program.
How Does 3D SCAN Work?
- Wear leggings, shorts and form fitting clothing
- Stand on our rotating platform and an infrared light will scan you
- Entire test takes 15 seconds and you will be given an insightful analytic report on your bone, fat and muscle density plus changes in your biometrics over time.
HEART RATE VARIABILITY
Heart rate variability (HRV) is a noninvasive electrocardiographic (EKG) method that can be used to measure your body’s adaption to stress. HRV measures the variation in length of time between each heartbeat (interbeat intervals), and these variations are controlled by your autonomic nervous system (ANS).
How Does It Work?
The ANS regulates many physiological processes such as heart rate, blood pressure, digestion, and respiration. The ANS is subdivided into two systems: the sympathetic nervous system (SNS) and parasympathetic nervous systems (PNS). Both branches control the same organs but have opposite effects to maintain equilibrium in your body during any stress or stimuli.
This push and pull between the SNS and PNS create a healthy nervous system that is able to respond and adapt to any stress on your body and physiology. However, if these stresses continue and are persistent, then the variability of each heartbeat will be decreased (monotonously regular heart beat), indicating that the SNS is in ‘overdrive’ and the PNS is being suppressed.
So Why Measure HRV?
Research has shown a strong correlation between low HRV values and increase risk for diabetes, coronary disease, depression, and anxiety. Low HRV scores are also associated with impaired regulatory and homeostatic ANS functions that reduce the body’s ability to cope with internal and external stressors. Higher HRV scores usually correlate with increased in human peak performance, fitness levels, and improved rest and recovery.
Recovery is more complicated than an isolated measurement and looking at daily HRV values does not indicate your level of recovery or how well you handle stress. It is difficult to determine how you are responding to stress and adaptation just by looking at individual HRV values. So it is important to first establish baseline HRV values over a minimum of one week to understand how your body responds to stress and other stimuli. Once we have established your baseline HRV, we develop training protocols and exercise prescriptions using HRV as a biomarker to aid in training loads, manage fatigue, sports anxiety and injury prevention.
How to Improve HRV Values?
There is significant research currently ongoing on ways to improve HRV scores, such as the effects of biofeedback, increased sleep quantity, massage therapy, yoga, and cold-water immersion.
At ECA Wellness, we are also interested in further understanding HRV and are currently using neurofeedback monitoring, guided meditation, pneumatic compression, zero gravity suspension and other treatments to study their influences on HRV.