The Effect of Protein Supplementation on Lactate Accumulation during Submaximal and Maximal Exercise

in International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism
Restricted access

Eleven subjects performed a graded exercise test after 1 week of protein supplementation (PRO) or glucose polymer placebo (CON), randomly assigned in a double blind fashion. The exercise consisted of 3-min graded exercise bouts separated by 10 min of active recovery at zero pedal resistance. Subjects then performed a 30-sec Wingate test (WIN) to assess performance during supramaximal exercise. Blood samples were obtained in the last 15 sec of each exercise and recovery period. PRO resulted in a decrease in blood lactate following 120% VO2max and WIN, an increase in blood alanine at all time points, and lower postexercise muscle lactate and glycogen. Resting muscle GPT activity was 47% higher during the PRO trial. Mean power output during the WIN did not differ between PRO and CON. The WIN fatigue index was not significantly different between PRO and CON. The increased alanine may reflect increased transamination of pyruvate, thereby reducing the accumulation of lactate, which in turn had a marginal effect on performance during supramaximal exercise.

Vukovich is with the Human Performance Laboratory at Ball State University, Muncie, IN 47306. Sharp, King, and Kershishnik are with the Exercise Physiology Laboratory at Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50010. Request reprints from M.D. Vukovich.