Lactic threshold testing. Or, holy crap that was hard.

All of the recent heart rate talk inspired me, and I took that inspiration to the treadmill tonight. Wow, what a bad idea.

I completed the lactic threshold test, which is really a fancy way of saying kill yourself, because that's about the extent of it.

I'm likely to lose many of you in the mumbo-jumbo of anaerobic threshold talk, so I'll explain it as best I can. It's hard. There you go.

After a 10-minute run at a decent pace, it's time to speed up. Full on, balls to the wall, ass-kicking, puke pace. For 20 minutes. Twenty straight minutes at pee-yourself pace. There is no mercy, and there's definitely no slowing down. Just go.

If you think you're going to puke, keep going, I was told yesterday. TWENTY MINUTES.

Huh. Awesome.

And so I did. I cranked the treadmill to a speed of 7.9 for 20 minutes. That's somewhere around a low-seven-minute-mile, or so, pace, which is somewhere around too fast, thank you. But I held it. For 20 minutes.

The last two minutes were brutal. My right leg was twitching and couldn't keep up. My breathing lost track of itself. I think I actually made audible noises. Kind of embarrassing, really. Especially in a fitness room the size of your mom's closet with other exercisers looking at me funny.

I'll have you know I did not, in fact, pee my pants. Or puke. But it was considered.

But dammit, I finished.

The point - yes, there is a point - is to determine your lactic threshold. Or, to be all scientific, the speed just below the point at which lactic acid is being produced at a faster rate than it can be removed from the bloodstream. Chinese for really fast.

The lactic threshold is determined by averaging your heart rate during the 20-minute overkill. Mine, I discovered tonight, is 191, which seems absurdly high. And, to be honest, I have no idea what to do with it now.

Somehow I need to determine my training zones, and take off from there. But I'll leave that up to someone who knows what the hell they're talking about.

I'm just pleased I got this far.