Dietary fish oil, providing docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) modulates oxygen consumption and fatigue in animal models. However, in humans predominately supplemented with high eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), there is no evidence of endurance performance enhancement. Therefore, this study examined if DHA-rich fish oil could improve repeated bouts of physiologically stressful cycling and a subsequent time trial in a state of fatigue. Twenty-six trained males took part in a double-blind study and were supplemented with either 2 × 1g/day soy oil, Control) or DHA-rich tuna fish oil (Nu-Mega) (FO) (560mg DHA / 140mg eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), for 8 weeks. Maximal cycling power (3 × 6s), isometric quadriceps strength (MVC), Wingate cycling protocol (6 × 30s) and a 5min cycling time-trial were assessed at baseline and eight weeks. The Omega-3 Index was not different at baseline (Control: 4.2 ± 0.2; FO: 4.7 ± 0.2%) and increased in the FO group after eight weeks (Control: 3.9 ± 0.2; FO: 6.3 ± 0.3%, p < .01). There was no effect of DHA-rich fish oil on power output of maximal 6s cycle sprinting (Control: Pre 1100 ± 49 Post 1067 ± 51; FO: Pre 1070 ± 46 Post 1042 ± 46W), during 5min time trail (Control: Pre 267 ± 19 Post 278 ± 20; FO: Pre 253 ± 16 Post 265 ± 16 W) or maximal voluntary contraction force (Control: Pre 273 ± 19 Post 251 ± 19; FO: Pre 287 ± 17 Post 283 ± 16 Nm). Nevertheless, relative oxygen consumption was reduced the FO group during the cycling time trial (Control: -23 ± 26; FO: -154 ± 59ml O2/min/100W p < .05) suggesting improved economy of cycling. We conclude that DHA-rich fish oil, successful at elevating the Omega-3 Index, and reflective of skeletal muscle membrane incorporation, can modulate oxygen consumption during intense exercise.
Lachlan Hingley, Michael J. Macartney, Marc A. Brown, Peter L. McLennan and Gregory E. Peoples
James J. Tufano, Jenny A. Conlon, Sophia Nimphius, Lee E. Brown, Laurent B. Seitz, Bryce D. Williamson and G. Gregory Haff
To compare the effects of a traditional set structure and 2 cluster set structures on force, velocity, and power during back squats in strength-trained men.
Twelve men (25.8 ± 5.1 y, 1.74 ± 0.07 m, 79.3 ± 8.2 kg) performed 3 sets of 12 repetitions at 60% of 1-repetition maximum using 3 different set structures: traditional sets (TS), cluster sets of 4 (CS4), and cluster sets of 2 (CS2).
When averaged across all repetitions, peak velocity (PV), mean velocity (MV), peak power (PP), and mean power (MP) were greater in CS2 and CS4 than in TS (P < .01), with CS2 also resulting in greater values than CS4 (P < .02). When examining individual sets within each set structure, PV, MV, PP, and MP decreased during the course of TS (effect sizes 0.28–0.99), whereas no decreases were noted during CS2 (effect sizes 0.00–0.13) or CS4 (effect sizes 0.00–0.29).
These results demonstrate that CS structures maintain velocity and power, whereas TS structures do not. Furthermore, increasing the frequency of intraset rest intervals in CS structures maximizes this effect and should be used if maximal velocity is to be maintained during training.
Gregory A. Brown, Matthew D. Vukovich, Tracy A. Reifenrath, Nathaniel L. Uhl, Kerry A. Parsons, Rick L. Sharp and Douglas S. King
The effects of androgen precursors, combined with herbal extracts designed to enhance testosterone formation and reduce conversion of androgens to estrogens was studied in young men. Subjects performed 3 days of resistance training per week for 8 weeks. Each day during Weeks 1,2,4,5,7, and 8, subjects consumed either placebo (PL; n = 10) or a supplement (ANDRO-6; n = 10), which contained daily doses of 300 mg androstenedione, 150 mg DHEA, 750 mg Tribulus terrestris, 625 mg Chrysin, 300 mg Indole-3-carbinol, and 540 mg Saw palmetto. Serum androstenedione concentrations were higher in ANDRO-6 after 2,5, and 8 weeks (p < .05), while serum concentrations of free and total testosterone were unchanged in both groups. Serum estradiol was elevated at Weeks 2, 5, and 8 in ANDRO-6 (p < .05), and serum estrone was elevated at Weeks 5 and 8 (p < .05). Muscle strength increased (p < .05) similarly from Weeks 0 to 4, and again from Weeks 4 to 8 in both treatment groups. The acute effect of one third of the daily dose, of ANDRO-6 and PL was studied in 10 men (23±4years). Serum androstenedione concentrations were elevated (p < .05) in ANDRO-6 from 150 to 360 min after ingestion, while serum free or total testosterone concentrations were unchanged. These data provide evidence that the addition of these herbal extracts to androstenedione does not result in increased serum testosterone concentrations, reduce the estrogenic effect of androstenedione, and does not augment the adaptations to resistance training.
James J. Tufano, Jenny A. Conlon, Sophia Nimphius, Lee E. Brown, Harry G. Banyard, Bryce D. Williamson, Leslie G. Bishop, Amanda J. Hopper and G. Gregory Haff
To determine the effects of intraset rest frequency and training load on muscle time under tension, external work, and external mechanical power output during back-squat protocols with similar changes in velocity.
Twelve strength-trained men (26.0 ± 4.2 y, 83.1 ± 8.8 kg, 1.75 ± 0.06 m, 1.88:0.19 one-repetition-maximum [1RM] body mass) performed 3 sets of 12 back squats using 3 different set structures: traditional sets with 60% 1RM (TS), cluster sets of 4 with 75% 1RM (CS4), and cluster sets of 2 with 80% 1RM (CS2). Repeated-measures ANOVAs were used to determine differences in peak force (PF), mean force (MF), peak velocity (PV), mean velocity (MV), peak power (PP), mean power (MP), total work (TW), total time under tension (TUT), percentage mean velocity loss (%MVL), and percentage peak velocity loss (%PVL) between protocols.
Compared with TS and CS4, CS2 resulted in greater MF, TW, and TUT in addition to less MV, PV, and MP. Similarly, CS4 resulted in greater MF, TW, and TUT in addition to less MV, PV, and MP than TS did. There were no differences between protocols for %MVL, %PVL, PF, or PP.
These data show that the intraset rest provided in CS4 and CS2 allowed for greater external loads than with TS, increasing TW and TUT while resulting in similar PP and %VL. Therefore, cluster-set structures may function as an alternative method to traditional strength- or hypertrophy-oriented training by increasing training load without increasing %VL or decreasing PP.