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A 'Fast-start' Pacing Strategy Enhances Performance During High-intensity Exercise: 1982Board #52 May 31 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM

Jones, Andrew M. FACSM; Wilkerson, Daryl P.; Vanhatalo, Anni; Burnley, Mark

Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: May 2007 - Volume 39 - Issue 5 - p S343
doi: 10.1249/01.mss.0000274341.26218.d4
D-23 Free Communication/Poster - Pulmonary: MAY 31, 2007 1:00 PM - 6:00 PM ROOM: Hall E

1 University of Exeter, Exeter, United Kingdom.

2University of Wales, Aberystwyth, United Kingdom.

PURPOSE: To investigate the influence of pacing strategy on performance during high-intensity exercise.

METHODS: Seven male subjects completed cycle exercise bouts to the limit of tolerance on three occasions. On one occasion, the subjects completed a step test to a constant-work-rate (340 ± 57 W) which had been estimated from pilot testing to lead to exhaustion in 120 s (EVEN-PACE strategy; ES). On the other occasions, the subjects either completed a step test to a work rate which was initially 10% lower than that in the ES trial but which then increased with time such that it was 10% above that in the ES trial after 120 s of exercise (SLOW-START strategy; SS), or the reverse (FAST-START strategy; FS). The total work done over the first 120 s of exercise was the same in all three conditions.

RESULTS: The time to exhaustion was significantly greater (P<0.05) for the FS (174 ± 56 s) compared to the ES (128 ± 21 s) and SS (128 ± 30 s) conditions. The VO2 at the end of exercise was not different between the conditions (ES: 3.68 ± 0.43; SS: 3.66 ± 0.35; FS: 3.69 ± 0.35 L.min-1). However, in the FS condition, VO2 increased more rapidly (mean response time; ES: 50 ± 11; SS: 54 ± 10; FS: 37 ± 7 s; P<0.05) and the total O2 consumed in the first 120 s of exercise was greater (ES: 5.15 ± 0.78; SS: 5.07 ± 0.83; FS: 5.36 ± 0.84 L; P<0.05).

CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that a fast-start pacing strategy might enhance performance by increasing the oxidative contribution to energy turnover and ‘sparing’ some of the finite anaerobic capacity across the transition to high-intensity exercise.

© 2007 American College of Sports Medicine