Meet Christoffer Lisson, a 25-year-old cyclist riding for Riwal Cycling Team. Christoffer has ridden for Riwal Cycling Team since the start of the 2020 season. He made the switch from Team BHS Almeborg Bornholm after a solid 2019 season, including 16 top-10 five top-5 finishes. But the 2020 season has been less than ideal, with the best result being 14th place on stage 2 at the French stage race Tour Poitou-Charentes en Nouvelle Aquitaine. And he is one of the few people who has beaten Mathieu Van der Poel in the General classification of GP Genérél Patton. So, what changed?
In the autumn of 2020, he discovered an injury that has severely limited his performance and ability to train properly. He was diagnosed with iliac arterial endofibrosis, or a constriction of one of his major arteries, in both his legs. This means that the blood supply for his muscles was reduced, as when you bend the water hose to stop the water flow.
“GRASPOR eliminates the mental factor.
You’re never in doubt if it’s a physiological
or psychological limitation on the day,
and that’s a gamechanger for me.”
– Christoffer Lisson
GRASPOR has helped Christoffer to figure out his limitations and work around them. If you have a bad training day, and it all just seems a little tough, is it because of sore legs, fatigue, or is something else on your mind? GRASPOR has taken some of the guesswork out of Christoffer’s training, which has changed his training.
Since I found out about my injury and how I could correct it, I quickly had surgery to correct the constriction in my left leg. After the surgery, I had to stop training for eight weeks to recover.
After the first surgery was a success, my right leg was underperforming in comparison, meaning that my left leg would be able to perform better and would fatigue slower than my right leg. I went to GRASPOR to have a chat and see how they could help my rehabilitation, and we went through a threshold test with a GRASPOR unit on both my legs to see the difference. The result is here:
It is very clear that my left leg is outperforming my right leg, which is something no one wants. The interesting part is that there is virtually no difference in the oxygen supply at 150 watts, but the difference is close to 30% at 350 watts.
I have used GRASPOR very much during my rehabilitation and actively in my training, it is the only tool I have that can give me an exact indication about how hard I can push myself and how my body reacts. With this injury, it is important to measure your effort, and it is vital to understand what is happening inside my body. If I train at the intensity of my good leg, my bad leg will fatigue much faster, and I would risk injuring the muscles and forcing myself off the bike again.
I just had surgery on my right leg in the middle of June this year, and I am currently two weeks into my 8-week break. So, in 6 weeks’ time, I can get back on the bike and ride a few hours easy. When I get back on the bike, GRASPOR is also important for me because what used to be easy for me before the surgery is probably going to be too hard for me because of all the fitness I lost from lying on the couch watching the Tour de France all summer.
During my first rehabilitation, I regained my fitness very quickly, so using GRASPOR during my training allowed me to track my improvements more easily than having to do a 20-minute test every 2 weeks. I did a threshold test in the beginning, and let my Muscle Oxygen control my efforts, and changed my watts to suit my Muscle Oxygen, and I was surprised by how quickly it all changed.
I have used GRASPOR to monitor my training and see if I have trained correctly or if I went too hard or too easy. There is a lot of opportunities to dive deep in my training with the data GRASPOR gives, and I can quickly see if my 5x 4-minute 410 watt Vo2Max intervals were too hard or just right, also on a day-by-day basis. I can compare two identical workouts on different days, and figure out how my body has responded to the accumulated training stress, and see how the same 410 watts require more or less oxygen to sustain.
As you can see from the images above, my Muscle Oxygen is different from day to day even though these two workouts are identical. This information is important for me because I can adapt my training the following days, or even on the day.
After the workout I could figure out, that my Muscle Oxygen was lower because my oxygenated haemoglobin was lower, by using the GRASPOR app. This means that I expose my body to more stress than I should if I sustain 410 watts, something that is natural after an 8-week break, where I have lost a lot of muscular strength.
Now I just wait and enjoy some time off until I can start riding again. When I have been back on the bike for a little while, I will head back to GRASPOR to do another threshold test with a device on each leg to see if the difference is gone.
Thanks for letting us be part of your journey back Christoffer! See you back #GRASPORING on the road.
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