Tell me who you are & I tell you how to train
Against that background, the first thing you should memorize about the recently published study by Cadore et al. from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (Cadore. 2012) is the training status and physical fitness of the subjects, namely 19 young strength-trained men (mean 23.5 years), who were engaged in regular (4–6 times a week) and systematic training program for at least 3 months. Another important and significant information is the number of training sessions that were conducted. In this case of the 5 visits to the lab, the subjects trained on only two occasions, which means that they participated in both the
strength training which lasted approximately 30 minutes and consisted of 3 sets of 8 repetitions at 75% of 1RM with 90 seconds of resting between bench press, squat, lat pull-down, and knee extensions (in the given order), and the
Table 1: Performance was identical regardless of the exercise order.
- aerobic training, which was performed for 30 minutes on a cycle ergometer at 75% of maximal heart rate
|Figure 1: Total testosterone (nmol/L) and cortisol (nmol/dl) response to cardio first (AE-ST) or cardio post (ST-AE); mind the axes (Cardore. 2012)|
- the study at hand does not allow any conclusions as far as the real world "anabolism" of the two protocols is concerned; with only one workout we would at least have had to have some protein uptake studies to make a prediction, but that was not part of the protocol
- the increase in total testosterone in the ST-AE group from mid to post-exercise can - as the researchers point out - also be precipitated by the increased receptor binding and not a decrease in secretion. I have written about that in a precious article ("Anabolic workouts revisited"). While long arduous strength workouts decrease the number of androgen receptors, short and hard workouts have been shown to increase the numbers of receptors and also that strength training bout stimulates the acute increases in AR content (Willoughby. 2004). Cardore et al. are yet right to point out that "this hypothesis should be considered with caution and remains speculative" (Cardore. 2012)
|Making HIIT a Hit: Long intervals for increases in VO2 max even in already trained athletes, short intervals for overall fitness and fat loss. Rings a bell? Yep, that was part of the recommendations in part II of the "Making HIIT a Hit" article on the SuppVersity. Now add the weight and some "regenerative" light intensity steady state aerobics and you are set up for a leaner physique and above all a longer, healthier life.|
- Cadore EL, Izquierdo M, Santos MG, Martins JB, Rodrigues Lhullier FL, Pinto RS, Silva RF, Kruel LF. Hormonal responses to concurrent strength and endurance training with different exercise orders. J Strength Cond Res. 2012 Dec;26(12):3281-8.
- West DW, Phillips SM. Associations of exercise-induced hormone profiles and gains in strength and hypertrophy in a large cohort after weight training. Eur J Appl Physiol. 2012 Jul;112(7):2693-702.
- Willoughby, DS and Taylor, L. Effects of sequential bouts of resistance exercise on androgen receptor expression Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2004; 36:1499–1506.