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Eur J Appl Physiol. 2016 Aug;116(8):1503-9. doi: 10.1007/s00421-016-3406-y. Epub 2016 Jun 4.

Cortisol and testosterone dynamics following exhaustive endurance exercise.

Author information

1
Endocrine Section, Applied Physiology Laboratory, Department of Exercise and Sport Science, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC, 27599-8700, USA. tanders2@live.unc.edu.
2
Endocrine Section, Applied Physiology Laboratory, Department of Exercise and Sport Science, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC, 27599-8700, USA.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

Cortisol (C) and testosterone (T) are impacted significantly by prolonged endurance exercise with inverse responses. Increases in C are witnessed concurrently with decrements in T, possibly impacting recovery. This study was conducted to assess the dynamics of C and free T (fT) concentration and recovery time following an exhaustive endurance exercise session (EES).

METHODS:

12 endurance-trained males (X ± SD: VO2max 66.3±4.8 ml/kg/min, age 22.8 ± 3.1 years, body fat 11.0 ± 1.4 %, training 7.1 ± 3.2 years) completed a treadmill EES at ventilatory threshold (74.7 ± 4.6 % of VO2max; 96.9 ± 10.8 min). Basal blood C and fT were collected at baseline: -48, -24 h, and immediately before (0 h) the EES as well as immediately (+0 h), +24 h, +48 h, and +72 h after the EES. Blood glucose (G) was measured to confirm no undue influence on C. Statistically data were analyzed with repeated measures ANOVA (LSD post hoc).

RESULTS:

C (nmol/L) increased significantly from -48 h (321 ± 59) to +0 h (701 ± 178) (p < 0.001), and displayed a baseline overshoot with +24 h (209 ± 67) being significantly lower than -48 and +0 h (p < 0.03). fT (pmol/L) decreased significantly from -48 h (161 ± 40) to +0 h (106 ± 38) (p < 0.01) and remained lower at +24 h (110 ± 33) and +48 h (129 ± 30) (p < 0.001). G remained stable throughout. A moderately negative correlation (r = -0.636, p < 0.026) was found between C and fT at +0 h.

CONCLUSIONS:

EES recovery may require 48 h for C and 72 h for fT to return to baseline values. Furthermore, C and fT were only correlated immediately post-exercise. Future research should perform more frequent measurements throughout time course.

KEYWORDS:

Endocrine; Overtraining; Recovery; Stress

PMID:
27262888
DOI:
10.1007/s00421-016-3406-y
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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