Continuous and Accumulated Bouts of Cycling Matched by Intensity and Energy Expenditure Elicit Similar Acute Blood Pressure Reductions in Prehypertensive Men

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Fonseca, GF, Farinatti, PTV, Midgley, AW, Ferreira, A, de Paula, T, Monteiro, WD, and Cunha, FA. Continuous and accumulated bouts of cycling matched by intensity and energy expenditure elicit similar acute blood pressure reductions in prehypertensive men. J Strength Cond Res 32(3): 857–866, 2018—This study investigated differences in postexercise hypotension (PEH) after continuous vs. accumulated isocaloric bouts of cycling. Ten prehypertensive men, aged 23–34 years, performed 2 bouts of cycling at 75% oxygen uptake reserve, with total energy expenditures of 400 kcal per bout. One exercise bout was performed continuously (CONTIN) and the other as 2 smaller bouts each expending 200 kcal (INTER1 and INTER2). Systolic blood pressure (SBP), diastolic blood pressure (DBP), mean arterial pressure (MAP), and cardiac autonomic control were monitored in a supine position for 10 minutes before and 60 minutes after each exercise bout, and during a control session. Compared with control, blood pressure was significantly reduced after CONTIN (SBP: [INCREMENT] − 3.4 mm Hg, p < 0.001; MAP: [INCREMENT] − 2.5 mm Hg, p = 0.001), INTER1 (SBP: [INCREMENT] − 2.2 mm Hg, p = 0.045), and INTER2 (SBP: [INCREMENT] − 4.4 mm Hg, p < 0.001; DBP: [INCREMENT] − 2.7 mm Hg, p = 0.045; MAP: [INCREMENT] − 3.3 mm Hg, p = 0.001). The PEH was similar in CONTIN and INTER2, whereas INTER2 elicited greater PEH than INTER1 (SBP and MAP: [INCREMENT] − 2.0 and [INCREMENT] − 1.8 mm Hg, respectively, p ≤ 0.05). Increases in sympathovagal balance from baseline were inversely related to changes in SBP and DBP after CONTIN and INTER2 (r = −0.64 to −0.71; p = 0.021–0.047). These findings indicate that similar amounts of PEH are observed when exercise is performed as a single 400-kcal exercise bout or 2 × 200-kcal bouts and that the exercise recovery pattern of cardiac autonomic activity may be important in eliciting PEH.

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