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Acute Pre-Exercise Supplementation Improves Times To Exhaustion During High-Intensity Running In Men And Women

Smith, Abbie; Fukuda, David H; Graef, Jennifer L; Kendall, Kristina L; Moon, Jordan R; Stout, Jeffrey R

The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: January 2010 - Volume 24 - Issue - p 1
doi: 10.1097/01.JSC.0000367213.48655.96

Nutrition has become a major focus for athletes and coaches as an effective way to augment training sessions with the ultimate goal being enhanced performance. Specifically, timing of supplementation has developed as the latest area of research. The available body of performance related nutrition research reports the effectiveness of a few ingredients on anaerobic and aerobic performance. Acute supplementation utilizing ingredients that are regarded as safe has yet to be thoroughly explored. To examine the effects of acute pre-exercise supplementation on time to exhaustion (TTE) during high-speed running in college-aged men and women. Ten moderately-trained men and women (mean ± SD; age 26 ± 3 yrs; height: 172 ± 8 cm; weight: 71 ± 12 kg; o2MAX: 51 ± 7 ml·kg−1·min−1) volunteered to participate in this randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled, cross-over study. Thirty minutes prior to testing, participants consumed the active supplement (ACT; 18g; whey protein, cordyceps sinensis, arginine, creatine ethyl ester, citrulline, ginseng, and caffeine) or placebo (PLA; 18g; maltodextrin, natural and artificial flavors and colors). After a familiarization week, the testing was conducted over three non-consecutive days for the randomly-ordered ACT and PLA trials (6 days total). A maximal oxygen consumption test (o2MAX) on a treadmill was performed on day one to establish peak velocity output (PV) at o2MAX. Day two involved treadmill running at 110% and 90% of the PV, while day three involved running at 105% and 100% of the PV. TTE (s) was recorded during each trial, and each trial was separated by 15 min of rest. All testing days were separated by 48 hours. The mean ( ± SE) values for TTE during the ACT trials were 125.7 sec, 156.9 sec, 185.7 sec. and 353.5 sec. at 110, 105, 100, and 90% PV, respectively. The TTE values during the PLA trials were 117.3 sec, 143.8 sec, 169.7 sec and 332.7 sec. at 110, 105, 100, and 90% PV respectively. TTE was greater (P = 0.01 − 0.04) for the ACT supplement than the PLA at 110%, 105%, and 100% PV, but there was no difference (P = 0.08) between ACT and PLA for the TTE at 90% PV. The use of this pre-workout supplement may augment time-to-exhaustion by 10-12% during high intensity running. Although not significant, this supplement may also improve endurance time below PV. Athletes that consume this supplement 30 minutes prior-to exercise or competition can prolong their time at high-intensities by up to 21 seconds longer than with no supplementation. This may enhance training adaptations and ultimately lead to improvements in both individual and team performance.

© 2010 National Strength and Conditioning Association