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Med Sci Sports Exerc. 1991 May;23(5):618-24.

The maximally accumulated oxygen deficit as an indicator of anaerobic capacity.

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Exercise and Sport Science Department, University of Arizona, Tucson 85721.


Recently, a procedure has been established for the determination of the maximally accumulated oxygen deficit (MAOD) (Medbo et al., J. Appl. Physiol. 64:50-60, 1988) as an indicator of anaerobic capacity. We hypothesized that, if MAOD were a valid indicator of anaerobic capacity, it should distinguish between aerobically and anaerobically trained athletes and correlate with other existing anaerobic testing measures. Subjects were four distance and five middle distance runners, three sprinters, and four controls. The subjects ran for 2-3 min at 125-140% of VO2max until exhaustion, and the accumulated O2 deficit for that run was calculated by an extrapolation procedure. Subjects also performed the Wingate cycle ergometer test and runs of 300, 400, and 600 m. (Only athletes performed the runs.) Post-exercise blood lactates were obtained following the supramaximal treadmill run. MAOD (in O2 was higher for the sprinters (78) and middle distance runners (74) than for the long distance runners (56) and control subjects (56) (P less than or equal to 0.05), indicating a greater anaerobic capacity for the former two groups. Consequently, the relative anaerobic contribution was larger for the sprinters (39%) and middle distance runners (37%) than for the long distance runners (30%; P less than or equal to 0.05). Significant correlations were found between MAOD and both Wingate power and treadmill work for all subjects and between Wingate power, Wingate capacity, treadmill work, and 300 m time for the athletes, suggesting that relationships do exist among MAOD and other anaerobic test measures. Potential use of MAOD as an indicator of anaerobic capacity is therefore promising and should be further explored.

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