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Relationship between training frequency and subcutaneous and visceral fat in women


Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: December 1997 - Volume 29 - Issue 12 - p 1549-1553
Clinical Sciences: Clinically Relevant

Relationship between training frequency and subcutaneous and visceral fat in women. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc., Vol. 29, No. 12, pp. 1549-1553, 1997. We examined the interaction of two different frequencies of aerobic exercise training (30 min at 50-60% of maximal heart rate reserve per session) and a self-administered caloric restriction program on the changes in subcutaneous (SFM) and visceral (VFM) fat mass over a period of 13 wk. Twenty-six sedentary young women (27.9% body fat) were randomized into three groups: nonexercising control (C, N = 8); 1-2 sessions/wk plus a 240 kcal caloric restriction (1-2SW, N = 9); and 3-4 sessions/wk without caloric restriction (3-4SW, N = 9). There was a equivalent decrease in the percentage of body fat and total fat mass in both exercise groups compared with that in C. Reduction in SFM was significant in 3-4SW, but not in 1-2SW or C. A negative correlation was observed between training frequency and changes in SFM (r = -0.65). In contrast, VFM decreased significantly and equivalently in both 1-2SW and 3-4SW, but there was no correlation between training frequency and changes in VFM (r = 0.20). It is suggested that the decrease in SFM, but not VFM, is proportional to the amount of aerobic exercise training. A change in VFM appears to be related to an deficit in caloric balance either by dietary restriction (decrease caloric intake) or by increased caloric expenditure.

Department of Exercise and Sport Science, Tokyo Metropolitan University, Tokyo 192-03, JAPAN and Department of Life Sciences, University of Tokyo, Tokyo 153, JAPAN

Submitted for publication September 1996.

Accepted for publication August 1997.

©1997The American College of Sports Medicine