Preparing for a Lactate test and where

I live in San Jose in Northern Calif and would like to do get lactate testing at a lab. Any suggestions, and after finding one, any tips on doing them? what to eat before, what general fitness level is most accurate, how much rest before, etc?

I have seen posts of people doing their own, and that there can be a bit of variability. I read elsewhere that stopping to do your own testing was not as accurate; that was after I bought a unit from a couple of years ago, never used it still have it.

Hello, just seeing this post now.

I would highly recommend just doing it yourself.

yes it takes practice.

yes once in a while you will make a mistake.

However, you can do this more often than going to a lab, you can do this while training, say during a 40m tempo piece take lactate every 10m.

I can do lactate without stopping … with some practice so will you.

The practice time and cost savings will be greatly worth it.


Thanks, this is very helpful. I have a Lactate Scout and strips box gathering dust because I didn’t think if I did it myself it would be useful.
I got a message from UCSF today about lactate testing. They are booked for 2 months and the cost is $299 (much more expensive than Kaiser at Sacramento), so you are right, doing it myself would save me a lot of money.
I will look around for articles on how to do it right if self-serve, given that I saw a post recently that said half the time it is not done correctly at home. Open to suggestions.

Half the time is wrong, maybe one or two lactates every few tests.

I do not use that analzyer so can’t be exactly sure with my tips.

  1. have a table beside your training station that is tall enough you don’t have to bend over to reach your supplies.

  2. Make sure there are edges on the surface so nothing can roll off.

  3. pre-open a number of strips that you think you will need

  4. rubbing alcohol in a spray bottle

  5. box of kleenex

  6. use 4 or 5m steps, be consistent every single time. If doing a tempo interval, break into 1/3s for taking lactate, one lactate means nothing, you always need a trend.

taking a lactate

Not a fancy video…just did it before writing this post.

Note that I gently squeeze finger tip prior to lancing. This allows blood to pool.

When you are trying to get a drop of blood, gently massage the finger, don’t push really hard to do so.

Use the side of your finger, not your finger tip.

Most people who have trouble getting a big enough drop because they use to fine of a lancet needle. You need to try a few different ones to see what works for you.

This entire process should take less than 30s, maybe 20s once you get confident.

I always start with about minute left before I want the lactate.


Spot on (pun intended)