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Divergent Blood Pressure Response After High-Intensity Interval Exercise

A Signal of Delayed Recovery?

Hunter, Gary R.1; Fisher, Gordon2; Bryan, David R.1; Borges, Juliano H.1,3; Carter, Stephen J.1,4

The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: November 2018 - Volume 32 - Issue 11 - p 3004–3010
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000002806
Original Research

Hunter, GR, Fisher, G, Bryan, DR, Borges, JH, and Carter, SJ. Divergent blood pressure response after high-intensity interval exercise: a signal of delayed recovery? J Strength Cond Res 32(11): 3004–3010, 2018—The objective of this commentary is to highlight potential factors influential to the adaptation of high-intensity exercise. Herein, we present a rationale supporting the contention that elevated systolic blood pressure, after a bout of high-intensity exercise, may be indicative of delayed/incomplete recovery. Relative to type I skeletal muscle fibers, the unique cellular/vascular characteristics of type II muscle fibers may necessitate longer recovery periods, especially when exposed to repeated high-intensity efforts (i.e., intervals). In addition to the noted race disparities in cardiometabolic disease risk, including higher mean blood pressures, African Americans may have a larger percentage of type II muscle fibers, thus possibly contributing to noted differences in recovery after high-intensity exercise. Given that optimal recovery is needed to maximize physiological adaptation, high-intensity training programs should be individually-tailored and consistent with recovery profile(s). In most instances, even among those susceptible, the risk to nonfunctional overreaching can be largely mitigated if sufficient recovery is integrated into training paradigms.

Departments of 1Nutrition Sciences, and

2Human Studies, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL;

3Growth and Development Laboratory, Center for Investigation in Pediatrics, School of Medicine, University of Campinas, Campinas, São Paulo, Brazil; and

4Department of Kinesiology, School of Public Health, Indiana University Bloomington, Bloomington, IN

Address correspondence to Dr. Gary R. Hunter,

Copyright © 2018 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.