The effect of glycogen reduction on cardiorespiratory and metabolic responses during downhill running

This source preferred by James Gavin

Authors: Gavin, Myers, S.D. and Willems, M.E.T.

Journal: European Journal of Applied Physiology

Publisher: Springer

eISSN: 1439-6327

ISSN: 1439-6319

DOI: 10.1007/s00421-014-3094-4

Purpose Exercise-induced muscle damage and lowered glycogen are common during heavy training periods, and may prolong recovery. We examined the effects of lowered glycogen on cardiorespiratory, metabolic and perceptual responses to downhill running.

Methods Twelve men performed two downhill runs (−12 % gradient, 12.1 ± 1.1 km/h) separated by 6 weeks, under normal (NORM) and reduced glycogen (RED) conditions in a crossover design. For RED, participants performed exhaustive cycling at 60 % VO2max power (95 ± 13 min) in the evening, and the next morning completed a downhill run comprising of five stages of 8 min running, with 2 min recovery (1 % gradient, 8 km/h) between each stage. Expired gas, heart rate, rating of perceived exertion (RPE) and blood lactate (bLa) and glucose were measured for each stage.

Results Blood glucose (P < 0.05) and respiratory exchange ratio (P < 0.01) were lower in RED, than NORM, throughout the downhill run. RED demonstrated higher bLa until stage Four (P < 0.05), and RPE for stages Two and Five (P < 0.05). Ventilatory equivalent of carbon dioxide output (VE/VCO2) was higher for stages One (P < 0.01), Two and Five (P < 0.05), and oxygen uptake (VE/VO2) was lower for stages Three and Four (P < 0.05) for RED.

Conclusions Downhill running with reduced glycogen, elevated fat oxidation and bLa response, and, in part, increased effort perception. The alterations in VE/VO2 and bLa may suggest that carbon dioxide removal was somewhat impaired.

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