Training Mask 2.0

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Training Mask 2.0

Postby jonathon.e » 19 Mar 2015 10:04

Training Mask 2.0

There are a number of respiratory devices on the market to improve the lung function or breathing, and numerous publications and training books, such as:
Power breathe, power lung, resistance straps and masks.

I won't bother you with the techno crap, but the link below goes straight to the website.
http://www.trainingmask.com/training-mask-2-0/

If you don't want to fork out some money you can improve your breathing in other ways.
http://kimballtrombone.com/breathing/10 ... breathing/

And getting straight to the nitty gritty, does it work ?


Yes and No.

Why did I purchase it?
For my fiftieth birthday, Mrs J. Is going to pack me off to Africa so I can accomplish a tick on the life list and bimble up Kilimanjaro. So I took to researching altitude training ( I also looked at drug useage and possible athletic enhancement, but that is another story ). To replicate altitude you need altitude, but you can simulate it by restricting the inhalation and exhalation to get the required O2 volume, ( arguments for and against, but reviews of the mask were favourable by Trekkers and mountaineers ).

I have used a Power Breathe, but you cannot exercise with a power breathe on and it requires a nose clip, again, plenty of reviews for these, I found that the power breathe was ok, but not brilliant. So looked at the Mask.

Cost: variable from £40ish to £70

Used for: Mainly on the spinning bike, or static bike, some elliptical trainer and on the road bike.

Downside: if you are self conscious then this may not be for you, you get to look like Bane, whilst sounding like Darth Vader, and will often get interrupted by other gym users asking what are you are wearing that for ? You will sweat more, it is difficult to take on fluid whilst wearing the mask, and requires to be cleaned after every use ( my choice ), if you push really hard, your eyes will look as if you have had a really bad night on the town and be slightly bulging, and bloodshot, this is not unusual due to lack of oxygen, and soon disappears. AND, there was very little improvement in performance after 10 weeks of usage at least twice a week. If I had been more scientific about it, I could have done a few fitness tests( bleep, ramp etc) and checked before and after, but, due to injury this wasn't a viable option.

BUT

Upside:
It is not the physiological improvement but the psychological improvement where the gains are made.
Breath is life, and life is breath. It is said that breathing is often associated with mental well being, a relaxed person breathes long and slow, and agitated person breathes short and quick, right now stop reading and start thinking about your breathing, go on, are you really making the best use of your lungs. Breathe in 1-2-3-4 fill the lungs, and just try to take another intake before you breath out, 1-2-3-4, and again, after about six of these you will start to feel light headed, and resort to a more shallow breathing, leaving dead space in the lungs.
The mask, I found was a focus on my breathing, you hear the breaths, you need to force the air into your lungs and expel it hard, it is relaxing. It makes me more relaxed when running.


The mask is claustrophobic, those that have used respirators or participated in CBN/CBRN training will know the feeling. I would advise against just thinking, ' hey I am fit, put the attachments on that simulate the highest level, and hope for the best ', you may need to acclimatise to its use gradually.
The mask is attached via a neoprene strap with Velcro fastening, these can be replaced and purchased off EBay, if breakage occurs.
The marketing blurb suggests a twenty minute session with the mask is as good as a 60 minute session without. When wearing it I do feel more fatigued after its use, but doubt the x3 improvement. However, if injured, it does give a more concentrated workout effort without putting too much pressure on the injuries, so a plus point there for me at least.

Is the mask a worth while purchase ? for me yes.
It can be a training aid that could give a marginal gain to TT cyclists who are racing in a position that isn't good for oxygen uptake, but it is not the magical bullet and panacea that it perceives to be. I would pigeon hole this device in the same slot as swimming hand paddles, running whilst dragging a tyre behind you, and weight jackets etc.

6/10
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Re: Training Mask 2.0

Postby md6 » 19 Mar 2015 14:52

no so much interested in the mask but Kilimanjaro!!! Awesome. How long until you go???
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Re: Training Mask 2.0

Postby jonathon.e » 19 Mar 2015 16:32

md6 wrote:no so much interested in the mask but Kilimanjaro!!! Awesome. How long until you go???


Mrs J. Has said I can go whenever I want, I don't turn 50 until the end of 2016, so just looking at the various companies and opportunities, possibly combining the trek with the Kilimanjaro marathon. One of the companies is run by Simon Mtuy, who did one of the fastest ascents and is a top marathon runner, or go for one of the bigger commercial companies. But, I need to ensure my knees are up to it, the blurb says anyone of reasonable fitness can do it, but it is altitude sickness which can ruin it, and that can strike the fittest person. But the fitter I get the more I can enjoy it :D
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Re: Training Mask 2.0

Postby Kevy427 » 19 Mar 2015 22:16

I got a bit excited when I read "resistance straps and masks" :oops: And in other news, aren't those funny blue pills meant to help with altitude sickness? Not sure if it's Tritans or S11 selling them at the moment
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Re: Training Mask 2.0

Postby jonathon.e » 20 Mar 2015 08:06

Kevy427 wrote:I got a bit excited when I read "resistance straps and masks" :oops: And in other news, aren't those funny blue pills meant to help with altitude sickness? Not sure if it's Tritans or S11 selling them at the moment


:D
Sorry to get your hopes up ;)
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Re: Training Mask 2.0

Postby md6 » 20 Mar 2015 10:08

jonathon.e wrote:
Kevy427 wrote:I got a bit excited when I read "resistance straps and masks" :oops: And in other news, aren't those funny blue pills meant to help with altitude sickness? Not sure if it's Tritans or S11 selling them at the moment


:D
Sorry to get your hopes up ;)


Not just hopes based on his pill of choice :lol: :lol: ;)
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