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Hormonal Responses to Resistance Exercise in Long-Term Trained and Untrained Middle-Aged Men

Cadore, Eduardo Lusa1; Lhullier, Francisco Luiz Rodrigues2; Brentano, Michel Arias1; Silva, Eduardo Marczwski da1; Ambrosini, Melissa Bueno1; Spinelli, Rafael1; Silva, Rodrigo Ferrari1; Kruel, Luiz Fernando Martins1

Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: September 2008 - Volume 22 - Issue 5 - pp 1617-1624
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e31817bd45d
Original Research

Cadore, EL, Lhullier, FLR, Brentano, MA, Silva, EM, Ambrosini, MB, Spinelli, R, Silva, RF, and Kruel, LFM. Hormonal responses to resistance exercise in long-term trained and untrained middle-aged men. J Strength Cond Res 22(5): 1617-1624, 2008-This cross-sectional study compared hormonal responses to resistance exercise between trained and untrained men to investigate the adaptations of the endocrine system to long-term strength training in middle-aged men. Twenty-one middle-aged men were recruited for this study and matched into a strength-trained group (SG) (n = 10) and an untrained group (UG) (n = 11). In the SG, the individuals had practiced strength training for hypertrophy for at least 3 years. Upper- and lower-body muscle strength was measured with a 1 repetition maximum (1RM) test. Blood samples were collected at rest and after multiple sets of a superset strength training protocol (SSTP), with an intensity of 75% of 1RM values. With these blood samples, the levels of total testosterone (TT), free testosterone (FT), dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), cortisol, and sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG) were determined. In addition, the TT-to-cortisol ratio and TT-to-SHBG ratio were calculated. There was no difference at rest between groups in hormonal values for TT, FT, DHEA, cortisol, the TT-to-SHBG ratio, and the TT-to-cortisol ratio. There were increases after SSTP in the levels of TT, FT, DHEA, and cortisol and the TT-to-SHBG ratio in the UG, but only FT increased in the SG. The SG demonstrated lower values in the TT-to-SHBG ratio after the training session. These results suggest the presence of alterations in anabolic and catabolic hormonal responses to resistance exercise in long-term trained middle-aged men, with the trained subjects demonstrating lower responsiveness in the hormone values. Long-term trained men seem to require a higher volume of training, at least similar to their daily workout, to stimulate greater hormone responses.

1Exercise Research Laboratory, Physical Education School, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, Brazil; 2Department of Clinical Analysis, Catholic Pontific University, Porto Alegre, Brazil

Address correspondence to Eduardo Lusa Cadore,

© 2008 National Strength and Conditioning Association