Blog – The Art of Being Studied – Edward Sutton


Edward Sutton is currently taking part in a research study at the GSK Human Performance Lab doing weight lifting and testing the effectiveness of ice-bath recovery

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Blog – The Art of Being Studied – Edward Sutton (blog here)

NOTE: Send your results as well as club, team & event news here

Another of the ‘blogs’ we have had sent to VeloUK in the past week is from eighteen year old Edward Sutton who hails originally from the Isle of Wight. He writes “Late 2012 I bought my first road bike as a faster way of doing my commute, rather than on an old mountain bike. Come mid 2013 I started enjoying going out on group rides and enjoying taking part in the local time trial scene.”

“2014 was my first season road racing which I enjoyed some success, winning a couple of road races and local time trials as well as high placings in other races. My results in the road racing scene have taken me from a 4th cat to a 2nd category license”.

Edward is currently based in London studying at the University of Greenwich, and is currently taking part in a research study at the GlaxoSmithKline Human Performance lab taking part in a weight lifting programme which aims to see the effectiveness of the ice-bath recovery technique. After each session, he stands in 14 degrees water up to shoulder height for 14 minutes. That part of the study isn’t something he says he particularly looked forward to!

He writes … For those of you that are interested in the details of the study I am taking part in I decided to write up this post with some in-depth info on what exactly the study is about and what I’ve got to come. There are 30 racing cyclists like myself taking part in the study.

weight training

The aim of which is to find out the effects of two recovery strategies on ‘short-term recovery’ and ‘long-term physical adaptation’. The aim is to clear up conflicting views on whether the use of protein supplementation/cold-water immersion recovery strategies over a resistance training programme are effective long term/short term.

Week 1 – My two weight training sessions this week have been pretty enjoyable. I’ve made really good progress with the technique and my lower back troubles seem to have gone. I got through the sessions quickly and on Wednesday’s visit I even managed to get into the ice-bath without even flinching!

The following week, I walked into the gym area there were some GB athletes doing their thing, I’m not sure if I’m allowed to mention who they were or what they were doing so I’ll keep hush hush. Anyway, that week’s Wednesday session in the gym was our 5 rep max assessment for the three exercises; Half squat, calf raises, and Bulgarian squat.

My max weight for the half squat near enough stayed the same at 100kg, but it may have gone up a bit – not that I can remember too clearly. My calf raises went up to 120.5kg and on the Bulgarian squat up to around 62kg. I should really make note of what I’m lifting – I have a terrible memory.

During my second session, there were groups of people having a tour around the lab which put a bit more pressure on, in a good way, to get the technique spot on. In the ice bath, I even managed to keep my breathing very relaxed – at least while there were hordes of visitors passing by and watching, after they’d gone my breathing became a little less out of my control.

The ‘visual analogue scale’ on which I draw on a line how sore my legs are feeling are certainly staying down the ‘No pain/soreness’ end of things, perhaps down to my lack of regular riding at the moment but it may mean that the ice bath recovery really does work. We’ll know for sure at the end of the study.

The latest week of the study saw me manage to get some time on the bike in too which I’m pleased about. In all honesty it’s been hard to motivate myself to go out in the oppressive weather of late especially after losing my Scicion failed me, losing my beloved Crank Brothers multi-tool in the process in addition to problems with getting a new pair of bib-shorts that fit… and a set of rollers that make a massive rattling noise.

My list of things to moan about goes on- cycling is undoubtedly a sport that puts plenty of monetary hurdles in the way…

Anyway the weight sessions: Any back problems seem to be a distant memory as I’m improving and getting stronger in the gym dealing with the weights alright. The first ice-bath of this week wasn’t all to nice and was admittedly a bit of a shock to the system. My Friday session however went a lot better, and I came out of the hot shower afterwards without going into violent-shiver-mode.

Follow Edward’s progress in the study here …

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