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J Appl Physiol (1985). 1991 Dec;71(6):2099-106.

Linear and nonlinear characteristics of oxygen uptake kinetics during heavy exercise.

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Department of Medicine, Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, Torrance 90509.


We assessed the linearity of oxygen uptake (VO2) kinetics for several work intensities in four trained cyclists. VO2 was measured breath by breath during transitions from 33 W (baseline) to work rates requiring 38, 54, 85, and 100% of maximal aerobic capacity (VO2max). Each subject repeated each work rate four times over 8 test days. In every case, three phases (phases 1, 2, and 3) of the VO2 response could be identified. VO2 during phase 2 was fit by one of two models: model 1, a double exponential where both terms begin together close to the start of phase 2, and model 2, a double exponential where each of the exponential terms begins independently with separate time delays. VO2 rose linearly for the two lower work rates (slope 11 ml.min-1 W-1) but increased to a greater asymptote for the two heavier work rates. In all four subjects, for the two lighter work rates the double-exponential regression reduced to a single value for the time constant (average across subjects 16.1 +/- 7.7 s), indicating a truly monoexponential response. In addition, one of the responses to the heaviest work rate was monoexponential. For the remaining seven biexponential responses to the two heaviest work rates, model 2 produced a significantly better fit to the responses (P less than 0.05), with a mean time delay for the slow component of 105 +/- 46 s.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

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