Impact of Endurance Exercise in Hypoxia on Muscle Damage, Inflammatory and Performance Responses
Sumi, D, Kojima, C, and Goto, K. Impact of endurance exercise in hypoxia on muscle damage, inflammatory and performance responses. J Strength Cond Res 32(4): 1053–1062, 2018—This study evaluated muscle damage and inflammatory and performance responses after high-intensity endurance exercise in moderate hypoxia among endurance athletes. Nine trained endurance athletes completed 2 different trials on different days: exercise under moderate hypoxia (H trial, FiO2 = 14.5%) and normoxia (N trial, FiO2 = 20.9%). They performed interval exercises (10 × 3-minute running at 95% of V[Combining Dot Above]O2max with 60-second of active rest at 60% of V[Combining Dot Above]O2max) followed by 30-minute of continuous running at 85% of V[Combining Dot Above]O2max under either hypoxic or normoxic conditions. Venous blood samples were collected 4 times: before exercise, 0, 60, and 120-minute after exercise. The time to exhaustion (TTE) during running at 90% of V[Combining Dot Above]O2max was also determined to evaluate endurance capacity 120-minute after the training session. The H trial induced a significantly greater exercise-induced elevation in the blood lactate concentration than did the N trial (p = 0.02), whereas the elevation in the exercise-induced myoglobin concentration (muscle damage marker) was significantly greater in the N trial than in the H trial (p = 0.005). There was no significant difference in plasma interleukin-6 (inflammatory marker) concentration between the H and N trials. The TTE was shorter in the N trial (613 ± 65 seconds) than in the H trial (783 ± 107 seconds, p = 0.02). In conclusion, among endurance athletes, endurance exercise under moderate hypoxic conditions did not facilitate an exercise-induced muscle damage response or cause a further reduction in the endurance capacity compared with equivalent exercise under normoxic conditions.