Mathew DeGiacomo
Matthew DeGiacomo

Matthew DeGiacomo

Primary Sport: Cycling

If you value your training plan/your body you should look into heart rate variability. This is the new way to monitor training stress, ithlete is perfect for athletes, and fitness enthusiasts.

My athletic background is hockey and cycling. I’ve taken a year out this year to work to pay off my schooling but previously I was a competitive Pro 1/2 cyclist racing for 6 years at the provincial, national and international level. During my 6 years I have managed to achieve:

  • 1st- 2012 Provincial Criterium Championships Windsor, ON
  • 2nd- 2012-West Branch Classic Criterium West Branch, MI RME.1
  • 3rd- 2012-West Branch Classic Road Race West Branch, MI RME.1
  • 3rd- 2012-Provincial Time Trial Championships Rockland, ON RMU23.1
  • 5th- 2012-Spring Bank Classic London, ON RMU.23.1
  • 2nd- 2010-Milford Criterium Milford, MI RME.3
  • 3rd- 2010-Tour Di via Itialia Provincial Criterium Championships Windsor, ON RMU23.2
  • 4th-2010-Stage 2- Provincial Hilll Climb Championships Elliot Lake, ON RMU23.3
  • 4th- 2010-Good Friday Road Race Hamilton ON RMU23.3
  • 4th-2010 Le Tour de Terra Cotta Terra Cotta, ON RMU19
  • 1st- stage 2- Jewel in the Wilderness Criterium Elliot Lake, ON Junior Male
  • 2nd- Tour de Terra Cotta Road Race Mississauga, ON Junior Male
  • 4th- stage 1- Jewel in the Wilderness Provincial Hill climb, Elliot Lake, ON Junior Male
  • 1st- Ontario Provincial Individual Time Trial Championships Wellandport, ON, Cadet Men
  • 1st- Ontario Provincial Hill Climb Championships Elliot Lake, ON, Cadet Men
  • 2nd- Stage 2 – Jewel in the Wilderness Criterium Elliot Lake, ON, Cadet Men
  • 2nd Overall- General Classification Jewel in the Wilderness Elliot Lake, ON, Cadet Men
  • 3rd Overall- Ontario Cup Road Standings, Cadet Men
  • 3rd OFFSAA Mountain Bike Championships Mansfeild, ON, Junior Men

I’ve been using ithlete for almost a year now and I’ve noticed that it is pretty accurate on its calculations. I have taken much needed rest days after the HRV drops too low which makes a huge difference with my performance when I’m back on the bike. Using ithlete definately helped me win the Provincial Criterium Championships in 2012 and also a bronze medal at Provincial Time Trial Championships in 2012.

I have had some injuries and illnesses during my cycling career, whilst none of these are a direct result of overtraining there have certainly been times when backing off would have been better. For example one my injuries, pattelofemoral, I think it was from trying to do too much in short a time frame and that is when recovery took a backseat when it never should.

Then I heard about ithlete through my friend who has been racing at a very high level of cross country skiing. He explained the software and how ithlete calculated fatigue and training stress. I would say the research and how the software works really reaffirmed my decision to start using ithlete. If you value your training plan/your body. You should look into heart rate variability. This is the new way to monitor training stress, ithlete is perfect for athletes, and fitness enthusiasts.

I don’t always follow ithlete’s recommendation. I don’t follow it if the last couple weeks have been in a reasonable range and when I’m in a building weeks because I want the stress to be high enough to achieve adaptation. However, I have learnt from using ithlete where my limits are, if ithlete HRV numbers are too low I know to reduce the training hours.

Using ithlete, for the most part, hasn’t changed the how much I train but more how I train. I may train an hour or two more since using ithlete but it has certainly changed the way I monitor fatigue and how much emphasis I put on recovery throughout the day/weeks. That has definitively changed my training and the way I schedule my weeks. I am a numbers guy. I like how easy it is to get your daily reading and then to compare the numbers. It allows for an easier program design. I do not need to use any other systems; I really like ithlete for it’s easy to read screens and analysis of each day.

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