The Myth of


You heard about it before, Lactate Threshold, Ventilatory Threshold, Going over the Threshold.

What is a Threshold: a Threshold describes single point where a change in your body happens.

Threshold can be looked at a very global overview over your body's performance, however, the main problem is that a Threshold is very dynamic.

We are looking at our complex system „body“ with only one parameter without taking our other parameters into calculation. Since our body is so complex, it cannot simply be nailed down by only one single parameter.
When we are talking about threshold we are trying to take metabolic markers to describe what’s happening in the cardiac, muscular, metabolic, neurologic system. Then we are trying to draw a line and say „if we go over this point we go over our threshold“.

We can describe a Threshold as a oversimplified point in a specific protocol, such as a 5-1 test, where a physiological change happens. The single point however is more a moving target and is not always exactly at the point where we would expect it to be.

Our brains work like big computers and they do the majority of analysis for us. So if we would listen to our brain and pay attention to the sensations when something in our body changes, then we would be a lot of times better off, than looking at data only.

Athletes should get a feeling for their body and see what happens when they pass over certain points. This should give us a better indication, where we are and how hard we are really working.
RPE is often looked at a subjective measure, and its true, however establishing a RPE (Rate of Perceived Exertion) and constantly working with it gives you a better overall feeling for your workout.
An example is that easy should feel easy. Zone 2 work should feel like a 2 or a 3. An 8 on the RPE scale is maybe not sustainable and a lot of us cannot even describe how 5 or 6 feels.
RPE numbers can be replicated based on Athletes sensations.

It is also a smart approach to rather stay 10% under your Threshold instead of pushing 2% over. It is easy to go over your desired zone. But you can always stay in the desired zone when you back off a little bit, instead of working always on the edge of your zone.

So pay attention what happens when you are passing over your „threshold“ and how this effort feels for you. Create self awareness in the heat of the moment.

The Myth Threshold

What is a Threshold and when is it useful?



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