This number makes for a pretty accurate pointer on your breathing efficiency and stamina. And it’s dreadfully simple to test it out. Just follow the next steps and report back to me.
It’s light on the difficulty, and chances are you’re not passing out on the first time. So clear the room and get a stopwatch out.
- Keep your mouth shut
- Breathe in through the nose
- Breathe out by the nose and pinch it shut.
- Count the slow seconds till you feel a clear impulse to draw in more air
- Release and inhale normally.
If you’re bowing out below the 40-second mark, then that implies all is not well with body microcosm, and you might be breathing dysfunctionally.
This comes with downsides, that you may or may not be aware of. The inability to breathe efficiently can cause you to run out of gas early on in an intensive training session. The body will be struggling to buffer against the influx of hydrogen ions produced from rise in lactate, and as a result, a hard and steady pace gets cut short early.
In general, your recovery during and after exercise is going to be tanked due to this low threshold. Outside of the gym, it’s going to crop up every now and then, especially when you have a flight of stairs to beat.
Beyond that critical point on stamina, sleep quality will be affected, as you’ll be struggling to pull in enough oxygen even at rest. So you’re at the risk of constantly waking up feeling like you’ve skipped a few days.
The gist of breathing dysfunction, is that it’s going to seriously disrupt the energy-making process. A lot of common issues, such as sleep apnea and lethargy, can be down to this inefficiency.
Now that’s been reasonably established, how would you go about raising a frail BOLT score?
There are two main avenues to improving the score by switching to better diaphragmatic and nasal breathing. Fortunately for you, I’ve already covered both of them.
- Mouth Taping At Night – Bottle up the fear and test out this theory by taping your mouth shut before hitting the hay. This will make sure the body has to breathe through the nose. If you’re unable to report back, then I thank you for your services to research.
- Nasal Breathing Throughout The Day – Practice during all waking hours. During training, behind the wheel, before meals, make a conscious decision to keep the mouth closed and breathe from the nose and into the diaphragm. Do this for a minimum of an hour a day.
Follow the trail for a week, and whip out the stopwatch and attempt the BOLT score again. It should be on the way up, and that’s at the back of a few frugal and simple alterations to your lifestyle.